The 2012 USPSA Nationals were held at my local range, the Desert Sportsman Rifle and Pistol Club, in Las Vegas Nevada. After shooting USPSA for about a year, this was my first major match . I arrived at the range, parked and was getting my gear ready when I saw Jerry Mercelek parked a few cars away. I walk over a say hi, chatted for a few minutes, then went back to my auto to finish getting ready. Jerry passed me on his way to his first stage. A few minutes latter he passed by me again on his way back to his car. He told me, “don’t forget your score sheets”. What he meant was the stickers that include our shooter info. These stickers are placed on the score sheets at each stage.
I gathered my gear, including score sheet stickers. But halfway to my first stage I noticed I didn’t have my belt or my handgun. I too went back to my auto, then on to my first stage.
The match consisted on 18 stages shot over three days. We shot 6 stages (in about four hours) each day. The stages were well designed and very challenging. I wouldn’t say I did all that well, 146 our of 161 Production shooters, but this was the Nationals, the match all the best shooters want to shoot. Anyway, I did as well as I expected I would.
I learned a lot, and met many really nice people. I also had the opportunity to shoot with some real “Top Shots”. Front row in the photo you see Gabby France (Season 4), Chee Kwan (Season 4), and Athena Lee (Season 2). I could see why they were selected for Top Shots. They all shot well, and had great personalities.
An awards banquette was held on the evening of the last day of shooting. I didn’t win a trophy or plaque (maybe next year), however some of my friends did. Congrats to them. After awards were handed out, shooters were called by order of placement, to the prize tables. With placing 146, I was certainly not expecting a trip to the tables. But, to my surprise, my name was called. All the best prizes were already taken, but I think I did okay for 146th place. I received a gear bag from Explorer Tactical Gear, a t-shirt from Warne Scope Mounts, a rubber mat from Hogue Grips, and a Gas Pedal from GoGun USA. Thank you, and all the other sponsors of the 2012 Handgun Nationals.
Most of all, I had a lot of fun doing what I enjoy doing. I look forward to shooting Nationals again next year.