View Full Version : Setting up a competition. How?

July 17, 2002, 05:14 PM
I have been asked by my regional manager to submit a plan for a company shooting competition. My familiarity with weapons and constant badgering seems to have gotten me slated as the regional coordinator for what is to become a national event, but I'm having problems with establishing the basics.

The idea is to start slowly, without a lot of pressure, so that the majority of employees feel like participating. Down the road, maybe next year, we'll get tougher with different divisions, but for the time being, we have to begin small and encourage folks.

I have decided on the following format:

25yd and 50yd bullseye competition - this is to make things as simple as possible for neophytes and the elderly who don't have the coordination/training for "combat" scenarios....though that is something I intend to introduce as soon as we are going strong.

Revolver neutral - the company issues S&W 686's, though you can carry your own weapon and we see some glocks, rugers and colts.

That's not a lot to base a proposal on, I admit, but my competition experience is rather limited and I'm trying to come up with something that is easy and fun, first of all, and which shows us who might need additional training.

If you know of a website that has stuff of interest, stuff that will make my outline look smashing, I'd be obliged. Any and all thoughts would be most appreciated.

July 17, 2002, 06:42 PM
If you're going to make it more "new shooter friendly" I'd use steel plates and pepper poppers rather than bullseyes. Bigger targets, immediate positive feedback. Bang and clang. It can be done from the bench, you can do team events, etc.

July 17, 2002, 08:29 PM
25 and 50 yards for newbies? That will wipe out everyone, including most IDPA and USPSA Masters... I have no idea of what company you work for, or what they do, but to have a fun contest you better start at about 2 yards with paper, and about 7 yards with really huge reactive steel.

I suggest you check out IDPA.com and USPSA.com. Find your nearest clubs and matches, zoom over there, and watch the whole 9 yards. Ask for help, the locals will be more than happy to set you up.

July 17, 2002, 08:38 PM
2yds, 7yds, 9yds? What are you going to do, kick the friggin targets over?

25-50yds should be fine, especially from bench, and/or slowfire. Steel's a blast, people will have fun with it. Try to get steel in the picture.

For some setup ideas, here's some IPSC setups that, maybe, you could modify to work with bench shooting: http://www.uspsa.org/classifiers/

July 17, 2002, 08:54 PM
you better start at about 2 yards with paper, and about 7 yards with really huge reactive steel.

They are going to shoot the targets...not beat them with sticks.

I could see 15 & 25 yds. but 2 & 7 is a bit much.

Jim Watson
July 17, 2002, 11:20 PM
Well, I shoot IDPA and think the IDPA Classifier might be a good place to look. I understand some PDs are using it for qualification. Seven to 20 yards, revolver neutral, some movement but no gymnastics.

Get a Glock Annual and look at the GSSF courses of fire.
Completely static and a mix of paper and steel.
That is about the most universal pistol event I know of.

Or maybe a takeoff from a CAS (cowboy) shoot, their targets are never very difficult to hit.

Even 25 yards is a looong way for someone not well acquainted
with a pistol. I'd say 50 feet, tops.

And keep those steel targets at least 11 meters away, per IPSC/USPSA guidelines.

July 18, 2002, 07:46 AM
Ever done a Glock match? If not check this site it is really simple and has a little bit of every thing. They don't even use a holster! You start at the ready position and run on a timer. E-mail me if you want a few more details. This is a real good start for the newbies and regulars. Then hit them with IDPA and over to IPSC style shooting. It is all a blast.


Navy joe
July 18, 2002, 09:24 AM
up close is fine, IPSC matches seeing a lot of targets between 7-15 yds. Steel at 7 is a bad idea tho, 10 yd minimum, plus you may consider that steel, while enormously fun may frag some of your new shooters w/ splatter & spall, leave a welt and turn them off on the shooting for fun idea.

July 18, 2002, 07:49 PM
Thanks for all the good ideas, folks. To clarify,

I work for Armored Transport Systems, based out of Long Beach, CA: you saw one of our trucks assisting North Hollywood Police in the Bank of America robbery. Kinda cool to see the after-action pics!

The steel plates, while very nice, are out of the question. There will be shoots held at several locations in SC, to accomodate all of our branches. Not all will have access to "high-tech" accessories and this has to be something that is ready to go with the least prep. Also note that a lot of ranges specifically forbid steel or reactive targets for liability reasons.

Distances could be varied, but I want this to be something that appeals, at first, only to real shooters, or think they are. Like a lot of companies, we have our share of people that want nothing to do with the team concept and I expect that the only people that would show up would be those that like to shoot and have some skill. I'm afraid that something too simple would be a turn-off to some. A simple bullseye competition would seem to be a perfect choice as it requires skill at shooting but isn't overly strenuous.

Shorter distances would, IMHO, require switching from a bullseye format to a qualification style shoot, with the matching B27 qualification targets.

Scoring and awards.....haven't even considered that stuff.

July 18, 2002, 08:56 PM
VaughnT asked about a fun match. yanky, cheap and navy... you guys make head shots at 25 yards? No, of course not. This is an action pistol match, not the bench rested geezer shot every 39 minutes. Steel is safe at 7 yards, if it's set up right. Normally the rule of thumb is 10 yards, but the splash is on the crowd, not the shooter. And the IDPA classifier is not fun, it's just the classifier. A GSSF match is not an action pistol match, everything is from the low ready.

You want a fun match for newbies? Make it close and reactive for instant feedback.

July 18, 2002, 11:42 PM
i would certainly hope they can make 25 yard head shots on a stationary target! That type of shot should be pretty easy for anyone who'se put decent time in at the range. and of course, not from a rest, but quick, & offhand, hell, I can probably take that 25 yard head shot and get it 75% of the time shooting weak hand.
Of course, this doesn't apply to new shooters, and yeah, a course for new shooters should be easier than looking for a 25 yd head shot from someone who has never shot an action pistol match before.

July 19, 2002, 07:26 PM
Sorry matt, I didn't know you had just won the World Shootoff. I bet Robbie, and Todd and Jerry were really punked by your weak hand head shots.

You never know, but, where did you say you compete at? You must have won the USPSA Limited Nationals for the last 10 years, right? And the IDPA Nationals for the last 5...

You do know what USPSA and IDPA are?

Navy joe
July 19, 2002, 08:32 PM
Boy it seems somebody is full of himself. Why the need to rag out others there Mr. Expert? BTW I suggested some targets in the 7-15 range would be ideal. 25 yds is no big deal, I guess you either can or you can't.

And yes steel at 7 is too close unless everything is perfect. I've picked more than a few jacket fragments out of my hide, some coming off a 25yd backstop and still penetrating, you can't guarantee that everyone will keep their shots flying straight, and once that stops all bets are off. Where exactly does a bullet go if it catches dirt or target stand and then hits steel? who knows.

Nowthen. Last match I went to along with another poster here there was a stage from hell that required all shots from a barricade port at 30yds distance. most of the arrays had no-shoots and/or hardcover requiring some A's the hard way. 14 targets, 28 shots, I threw 2 shots trying to double-tap at that range, but picked up no penalties on the no-shoots. plenty of head shots were made by many shooters, I know I was pasting. And for the record, I suck. I am a new shooter trying to make C in L10 once I get enough classifiers in. That's USPSA speak if you didn't know there Mr. Expert.

More shooting, less BS please.

July 19, 2002, 11:51 PM
sorry 9x45,
todd and jerry and robbie arent worried, i didnt say i'd get weak hand shots 100% of the time, just 75%
you do know what the difference in that is don't you?

I shoot USPSA Area 7, Northeast section.
I've finished ranked number one in the section for the past 2 years, and have every intention of making it 3 in a row.
My results speak for themselves.

The guy who asked the question wanted useful information, not idiocy which you seem to have boundless ability to contribute.

Why don't you leave the discussion to those who actually do shoot, as you've demonstrated the only shooting you do is shooting your mouth off via a keyboard.

With idiots like you, it's a good thing California doesn't let you people own guns. You might use them as irresponsibly as you do your keyboard.

Anthony L
July 20, 2002, 12:06 AM
I would also suggest the IDPA classifier, or an abbreviated format that is less than the classifier's 90 rounds.
It would be much easier to use the IDPA target.

It would also be much easier if you would shoot a couple local matches of some kind before you try this kind of thing.

You will need an electronic timer to do something like this.

There is an IDPA match in Spartanburg SC tomorrow at 10AM. Come out and shoot.

If this is all too radical, try something like the PPC, just restrict it to 25 yards or less. You wont need a timer, just a stop watch.
I would suggest 50 rounds or less as the b-27 targets can get pretty chewed up.

PPC is about as exciting as watching flies copulate.
BUT it is easy to organize and easy to administer. The rules are pretty simple.

July 20, 2002, 09:15 AM
Anthony, thanks for the invitation. Happily, I cannot attend as I have to make my nephew's birthday party and he's in Augusta GA. This is my first nephew's first birthday and I'd kinda like to be there for him. As cute as he is, you know he's kin to me!

When's the next match? I belong to the GGC but haven't heard when they have a match again.

I did find a website (USPSA?) with some diagrams on it and really liked what they called the "cm 99-1 back to basics" setup. Three b27 targets side by side, with three shooting positions approaching down the centerline. I'm not sure about the distances, they might be too far for newbies, but the thing as a whole looks doable. This might be just the ticket if I can work out the particulars.

Love all the advice folks. I have decided that 50yd is just too far. I don't like up-close shooting, but having targets range out from 7yards to 2-5, would seem a good measure.

Again, thanks for the help. I'm looking forward to attending the next match in S'burg or G'ville, Anthony.

July 20, 2002, 06:02 PM

Guys like 9x45 remind me why I haven't bothered to browse this forum more than a half a dozen times in the past year. Wander on over to brianenos.com, where you will be in the company of other serious shooters who will appreciate your input. Doesn't make sense to stay here and cast pearls before swine.

July 20, 2002, 08:21 PM
Navy, 'C' class, good for you. Uh, I like, you know, totally, can like speak IPSC, dude. Go to a match with steel, and you will get fragged. Thats what happens.

Matt, ok, you are the number one bad dude in your Area 7. So, the point is to have a bunch of complete newbies compete in a match, and to have FUN! You remember newbies, don't you? They don't really know where the threat targets are, and generally don't know alot about how their gun works, and have trouble keeping the dangerous end pointed downrange.

Newbies need close and simple stages with instant feedback. Otherwise they won't comeback! I mean, how could they even begin to compete with you....

Anthony L
July 22, 2002, 06:03 PM
Go to www.idpa.com and check the sc link.
there are monthly matches in greenville, anderson, spartanburg, and columbia (all on different weekend days).

I have done some more thinking about your dilemma.
You should keep your competition to 50 rounds or less.
You should make scoring possible using a stop watch per string of fire. A timer is not necessary.
You should use a commonly available target.

Consider the full-size b-27. Come up with a revolver neutral course of fire from 3 to 25 yards like so:

(all stages from the leather)

3 yards from retention position-6 rounds in 6 seconds.
5 yards strong hand only-6 rounds in 10 seconds
7 yards freestyle-6 rounds in 10 seconds.
10 yards freestyle 6 rounds in 15 seconds
15 yards freestyle 12 rounds in 30 seconds (inc. reload)
25 yards freestyle or barricade 12 rounds in 36 seconds (including reload)

That is 48 rounds and offers generous times for shooting and reloading. There are more shots at longer ranges so the shooters wont tear up the centers of the targets too bad and make scoring difficult. It has most of the critical elements (close range, strong hand, and precision shooting) Barricades would be nice but it doesnt sound like you have access to props.

All you would need is a piece of chalk, a stopwatch, and a scoresheet to score the targets. Should take less than 5 minutes to shoot and you can run 10 guys at once. Any shots past the whistle count as -5 points. You could easily run and score 50 shooters in an afternoon with this easy little excercise.

July 23, 2002, 02:41 PM
Since many of your shooters may not have competetive experience and the purpose is FUN, I would refrain from 50 yard targets or 25 yd head shots. Keep it realistic, especially since your fellow shooters are in the security business. Make shooting from their duty equipment and not some CCW or race gun gear.

I would keep them in the range of 5-15 yards. You can make the shots more difficult when necessary by only exposing a partial target. Put a non-threat target partially blocking it or something to simulate hard cover.

I shoot IPSC, IDPA, GSSF, Steel Challenge, NRA Action, bullseye, PPC, and was a firearms instructor at my PD prior to retiring. All of these shooting disciplines have courses you can pull info from.

First is that the courses be safe. Don't put too many obstacles in the way or try to make the shooter do too much at once. KISS is the best.

Don't make it so tough that beginners will be embarrassed and not return for the next one. And don't make it an athletic event.

Since you mentioned steel is out of the question, you might try this for a reactive target. Balloons and T-shirts. Make them big enough so not to pull through a t-shirt neck. Hang them from a string. Put the t-shirt on a wire coat hanger and put the balloon inside. Bend the hook of the coat hanger forward and around the string. The coat hanger keeps the t-shirt from hanging limp around the balloon. When the balloon is shot, the t-shirt falls to the ground. Plus the t -shirts will sway in the breeze making it a bit more challenging. Check the attached picture.