Saturday “dawned” with moderately heavy rain the entire way to the range. What a difference a day makes! The course was “almost” under water; some areas were. At least we had it set up the day before and all we had to do was pull strings again. We were especially grateful for the covered firing line and concrete deck to keep us dry and out of any mud. Who remembers Mormon Lake from 2 years ago? What a mess!
We started shooting at 9:00 and by 10:30 the rains had stopped and the sun started to burn through. The sky turned a beautiful shade of blue, again with patchy clouds that were moving pretty good in the clearing stages. The wind was finicky and came at us from the north to the northeast between 3 and 10 mph and at times almost felt like sleet stinging our faces, while coming right at us. Fortunately, this was short-lived, and the day ended up as it did the day before, with temps ranging from 61° up to 68° and humidity between 61 and 100%. We even had a roadrunner nosing around beyond the silhouette berms.
The course, once again, had 15 lanes of 2 targets each and had a Troyer difficulty factor of 32.07.
Friday - 11/17/2023
It turned out to be a great three days of shooting, albeit very tiring for some of us. There is an adequate supply of Tylenol and Icy Hot waiting at home.
We need to thank Larry, Wayne, Bill, Pat, and Mark for setting the courses. Jesse Avery needs to be recognized and thanked for painting all of the targets, as well. Larry was Match director, Wayne and Mark handled registration/scoreboard, tee shirts, and chronograph station.
All present are to be thanked for taking in all the targets, blocks, clamps and strings afterwards. They were loaded into the back of our vehicles and taken the 300 yards to our conex container to dry out.
There is a lot of logistics to take into account when putting together an event such as this, and all who have helped with all the little tasks are greatly appreciated. This includes our club treasurer, Mary Ann, for collecting the mail-in registrations and getting us all that information.
Hopefully, we haven’t missed anyone in conveying our appreciation. IF we did, our sincere apologies. We cannot do this without your help. Thank you.
So, with everything completed, and after everyone said their good-byes, a bunch of tired shooters got on the road to head home. Most live locally, but also folks traveled from Colorado, Nevada, and California. We are gratefull that these folks thought enough of us to travel, enjoy the time, and shooting with us. For a lot of us, we have been doing this for years, and it was a gathering of old friends.
Secretary, Airgunners of Arizona, Inc.
Open PCP - 1st Place
and State Champion
Day 2 - Rifle Match - Troyer difficulty factor 32.07
In combined pistol L-R, First place - Scott Hull, Second place & AZ state champion - Tony Pellegrino, with Barb, his wife, standing in for him. Third place - Thane Thayer.
Hunter PCP - 1st Place
& State Champion
Scott Hopta (center)
2nd Place - Van Tucker (left)
3rd Place - Scott Hull (right)
With the match complete, all hands helped pull targets as we collected and collated scores, gathered the troops and announced the scores.
After the match, the club held their annual raffle with 4 raffle prizes donated by Airguns of Arizona. Raffled off was a BSA breakbarrel .22 air rifle, a resetting target, a bum bag and an air tank carry bag.
Airguns of Arizona also provided the air used to refill PCP tanks during the match. We thank them kindly for their generosity and continued support of the sport.
This year’s state championship saw a change of venue from Mormon Lake, AZ to Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, AZ.
A request came in, after last year’s shoot, from several club members, was discussed amongst the officers, and then put out for a club vote, which resulted in a positive response from most. Of course, there were a few NO votes, and some grumblings, but that is to be expected in any organization. We are looking at this as an experiment. After all, nothing can get better if something doesn’t change. That way, we don’t get stuck in a rut.
So, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday – November 16 thru 18, 2023 – the pistol silhouette range was secured for this match, and as an AAFTA Grand Prix. The venue has convenient parking, flush toilets, a covered firing line, and concrete deck, and picnic tables.
The club shoots here every Tuesday morning for our TRAC matches. It also has over 25 major lodging and eatery establishments within 5 miles of the range.
Thursday morning saw Larry, Wayne, Bill, and myself converge early to set up the range for the pistol match which was scheduled to start at 2:00 pm. The shooters started rolling in around noon with 10 pistol shooters ready to go. The course was 11 lanes with 2 targets each and having a Troyer difficulty factor of 31.18.
After the match, the same guys, with some additional help, changed out the targets, and reset the course using tape measures to verify distances and make ready for the rifle match on Friday morning. It had rained earlier in the day, and again afterwards, but during the match, the skies were cloudy with a light wind coming from SSW to WSW at between 3 and 5 mph. Temps were balmy in the mid-70’s with 40% humidity. Excellent shooting conditions.
November 16, 17, 18, 2023 - pistol silhouette range / Ben Avery Shooting Facility
Phoenix, AZ - Larry Piercy, Match Director
2023 Arizona State Field Target Championship
& AAFTA Grand Prix Match Report
Combined Piston - 1st Place
& State Champion
Mark Kauffman (left)
2nd Place - Jake Moser (right)
High Out-of-State Shooter
Scott Hull (California)
Friday looked very promising from the get-go. On the way into the range, 12 hot air balloons were staging and filling in the fields southeast of the range at the intersection of I-17 and State Route 74 just before 7:00 am, for their sunrise flights. Those things are huge that close up.
The sky brightened to a medium blue with patchy clouds and lots of sunshine. Temps ranged in the low 70’s with almost 60% humidity. Winds during the match were from 0 to 8 mph and came at us anywhere from the north clockwise to the Southwest with constantly shifting direction.
The course was set with 15 lanes of 2 targets each for 60 shots. One target was found to be set incorrectly, which did not allow the target to fall. It was pulled after the fact, but the course still had a Troyer difficulty factor of 32.13.
Pistol Match - Troyer difficulty factor - 31.18
Afterward, we again changed out the targets to set up for the Saturday match, before leaving the range, again, late in the day.
Thursday - 11/16/2023
Saturday - 11/18/2023
Day 1 Rifle Match - Troyer difficulty factor 32.13
Airgunners of Arizona
Field Target Club
WFTF - 1st Place &
Lauren Parsons (center)
2nd Place - Wes Crisp (left)
3rd Place - Pat Callahan (right)