As usual, I took some time off from competitions over the year end, my last USPSA match being at the Talladega CMP back in November 2022. To be honest, 2022 was a rather disappointing season for me, as I found myself near the bottom on almost all of the matches. Over the offseason I found myself contemplating whether I should even keep competing, given how much more expensive it has become.
So, I spent the intervening time thinking about how I could improve my performance. And here’s what I did.
Now, as I have shared before, when I started competition shooting, I was shooting against a lot of really Olde School shooters, who were used to shooting bullseye competitions, standing still and shooting at their own pace. What I discovered was that if I could move from target to target faster, and shoot on the move, I could make a better score than them, even if I didn’t shoot as accurately. So, I learned how to shoot on the move, which, to be honest, seems to be a rather sparse skill to this day.
So fast forward to 2023. Now, I move much slower than I did in those days. And, given my age and shape, I don’t see a quick way to speed that up. So that means I need to improve my shooting accuracy if I am going to compete.
So that was my plan in the offseason: shoot more accurately.
For me this led to x improvements:
Better trigger control >> less sight movement
For me, what worked here was practice, practice, practice. I tried to devote a half hour every other work day to dry fire, working with some paper targets around my office, and a timer app on my phone. After a while, I was able to draw and fire without significant sight movement.
Better sight picture
For this one, I decided to swap out the green fiber optic front sight, which I had been using since I installed it years ago, with a red sight. I have to admit, this took some getting used to, but in the match I was surprised to see how much better it looked. If only I had considered this years ago.
Better recoil control
Through experimentation I decided that 124 grain ammo works best in my Glock 17, so I have now committed to using this exclusively in matches. So now what do I do with the 115g and 147g? Range fodder, I guess.
So in the end, the results speak for themselves. Out of 11 Limited shooters, I placed 6th, right in the middle. I shot 2 Deltas and ZERO MIKES all day, a first for me in quite a while.
So next up – lose some more weight and learn how to lose this catcher speed!