Casey Doyle at the National Shooting Competition 2011
July 17, 2011
My experience at the national 4-H shooting competition was unlike any other. I will never forget the friendly people I met down there or the great competition that I was involved in. I’m very fortunate to have been able to travel down there.
Every day during the week was very busy and eventful. Before we could start the competition, every competitor from each state had to get their guns checked in and qualified. After that, we began the opening ceremony. This officially started the week.
The first day of shooting was just practice. During this time we sighted in our guns and made sure that all of the equipment wasn’t affected during the transportation of it down to Texas. This is when my nerves really started to kick in. It finally hit me that I was competing in a national competition.
I was shooting in the .22 small bore competition. On the second day, my team was shooting the 3p match. This is when we are in full equipment and shoot in the prone, kneeling, and off-hand positions. I was so nervous that I, unfortunately, threw up during the competition, but still ended up with a great score. Chris got first individually, I got fifth individually, and Rachel got tenth individually in the 3p event. As a team we placed second.
The third day was the small bore’s silhouette event. This is when we shoot 40 metal cut-outs of animals at different distances. I will never forget my first set of animals that I shot. I began at the turkey station and only knocked down four, this made me furious. After the turkeys, I was determined to shoot at least more than five at every other animal. In the end, I shot a total of 24 animals and placed fourth individually, while Chris took ninth individually. As a team we placed second again.
On the fourth day we shot our cmp competition. Everyone was a little nervous about this event because we didn’t spend much time practicing for this event. After all four of us completed shooting our slow fire and rapid fire targets to all three positions, we were done shooting for the week. I ended up taking tenth overall in this event, giving me the highest score on our team. As a team, we placed fifth.
On the last full day that we spent in Texas, we attended the closing ceremony. Here we found out the overall awards for the week. The judges added all of the shooters scores up from all three events and figured out who had the highest scores. I placed second individually over-all while Chris placed third individually over all. The Pennsylvania .22 small bore team took first place overall. We were all very proud of how we performed throughout the week.
Since we had the rest of the day to ourselves, the team did some sight-seeing in San Antonio. Both the river walk and the Alamo were interesting to see.
On Saturday we flew back home to PA. To this day, I still keep in contact with friends I made down in Texas and I’m ready to qualify for next year’s competition.