First, I would like to give the Match Director Brandon Haywood a pat on the back and a job well done for directing his first match. He had just enough help to make the match successful and he utilized his resources as best as possible. These last few months, Ryan Castle has been directing matches at CORE as well as running back to back matches for the PRS series; however, everyone needs a break every now and again. Brandon stepped up to run the April 1st club match in his absence and did a wonderful job executing. Good job Brandon!The course of fire was standard for a club series, with eight stages. The stages that ran though the match had not been used in a while, about a year for some. The MD did a good job mixing it up and giving the shooters something a little different, something they don’t see all that often. For example, one stage was shot off logs that are about 50 yards behind a rock pile. Many believed this was a fun stage, having to engage two targets with one shot, each from on top of four different logs that progressively became taller, requiring you to be fast but accurate. I decided to dial my first target and hold over the remaining difference in elevation for my second farther target; this strategy worked out pretty well for me. I wound up with six out of eight impacts on that stage (was going a little bit too fast, out running my headlights on the two shots).
Another stage shot and not utilized often was a set of barricades, just off to the right of the logs. Shooters had two shots from five positions at 450 yards. There were two targets, a 66% IPSC and a smaller square to the right of the IPSC. The first shot at the IPSC and if hit the second show would be at the square. If the shooter missed the IPSC on the first shot the shooter had to re-engage the IPSC. Hit or miss, after the second shot the shooter needed to change position.
I really enjoy shooting the club matches at CORE, more than any other matches. This is because CORE is my home range, and it’s where I get to shoot among the members I am friends with. I had the opportunity to talk and catch up with old friends. Another great thing about CORE is because the range is so well known, people come from all over the country to shoot. Taking first place this match was very special to me because it was two weeks past the four-year anniversary of my first ever visit to CORE. It all started as guest visits but then turned to so much more. Everything I have learned about this sport and its discipline (which is not much) has been at this range, it holds a special place inside. This is my first match getting first at CORE; only took me four years. My wife Gisela Salazar was able to shoot this match with me, it was great having her by my side. She beat seven people while shooting a borrowed 223. I am super proud of her. I wouldn't be where I am today without her.
I would like to especially thank Bryan Morgan and Misty Morgan for everything they do and have done with CORE, being great friends, and even better people. Without them, it wouldn't exist. I would like to give a shout out to my other Grunt Style teammates Joe Caley and Tim Jensen for everything you guys do for our team, the sport, for veterans, and all around being great American patriots. Thank you. I would also like to thank and recognize a small group of shooters at CORE that we call the (COREholes): Mike Jones, Jimmy Centeno, John Teuge, Clay Kinsley, John Green. These are the range rats, out there, training to better themselves and others shooting around them. Big thank you for being great training partners and even better friends. Big compliment to the staff at CORE: Ryan Castle, Josh Mann, Mike Mangum, John Watts, Colby Crosby. Thank you to all mentioned above for making CORE the special place it is, more than a range, it is a second home.Pride in self, pride in military, pride in country. See you guys at the next one!