Who on earth shoots a world championship after being off the gun since 2012 with just over a week of shooting under their belt?
Um. That would be me.
I decided to check my ego at the door and get back into competition. In a “go big or go home” kind of way, I put myself out there in the hardest shooting discipline in the action shooting sports – Bianchi. Yes, I have dabbled a bit with USPSA and the IDPA Back Up Gun Nationals after having my second daughter, but the Flagler Cup and the World Action Pistol Championships (WAPC) hosted by Rockcastle in Park City, KY as my first “serious” matches? You have to start somewhere! Thanks to my generous sponsors with a very special thank you to my major sponsors Smith & Wesson, Benelli and Rand CLP, I did just that.
Both events were eye openers. At the Flagler Cup I struggled with finding the right grip on the Barricade, finding the dot in my Aimpoint Micro on the Practical, finding out I needed to adjust the mover base on my S&W Performance Center 9mm 1911 for the right lead on the Moving Target Event… There was indeed a lot of “finding” going on.
A last minute issue at home had me unsure as to whether or not I was going to be able to shoot in Kentucky for the Worlds, but after driving all day on Friday, I was able to shoot the match on Saturday. I shot the same 1897 score in both matches, but learned lessons that would help me at this year’s NRA Bianchi Cup. The experience was invaluable.
Experience is that marvelous thing that enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again. – Franklin P. Jones
The talent field has only deepened among the women in Action Pistol too. At the WAPC, Helen Jeavons, Tiffany Piper and Jessie Duff all competed, but I also had a chance to chat with Australian champ Cherie Blake and Germany’s Susanne Geppert. Relative to the ladies I first mentioned, Cherie and Susanne represent new, upcoming talent and are ones to keep an eye on.
The thing about action pistol is, well, anything can happen. A number of competitors, including the women, are capable of shooting that coveted 1920 perfect score. Add match pressure and a bit of nerves to the mix and scores can plummet quickly. My 1897 is far from a personal best, but, to my surprise, I ended up placing second among the women behind reigning ladies, champion, Jessie Duff. Not too shabby if I do say so myself!
Both matches were an excellent entry into action pistol and I enjoyed seeing old friends, meeting new ones and connecting with some followers who came by the match too! Congrats to my teammate Doug Koenig on yet another win for Team Smith & Wesson and to all the other shooters who placed in their divisions and categories.
Oh, and I brought my camera with me too! Scroll over the image below and check out some of my favorite photos from the match and a special thank you to Dave Surgi and Julie Webb for their photos as well.