October 1st, 2017

Report from F-Class Nationals in Lodi, Wisconsin

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Ian Klemm Robert Mead Jay Christopherson F-TR F-Open Borden Brux
“A big congratulations to Bob Mead (1582-68X), who utterly destroyed the competition in tricky wind conditions to take the Gold.” — Jay Christopherson, F-Open Second Place.

The 2017 F-Class National Championships in Lodi, Wisconsin are now history. Hail the new Champions: Robert Mead, F-Open (1582-68X) and Ian Klemm, F-TR (1557-56X). Hosted by the Winnequah Gun Club, the Nationals drew about 75 F-Open shooters and 45 F-TR competitors, down from last year. In F-Open, Robert Mead shot brilliantly in tough conditions to finish 14 points ahead of his closest competitor, AccurateShooter.com’s System Administrator Jay Christopherson. Erik Cortina was just one point behind Jay, but Erik had the high X-Count for the match at 71X.

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Ian Klemm Robert Mead Jay Christopherson F-TR F-Open Borden Brux
Photos of Robert Mead and Ian Klemm courtesy Erik Cortina.

In F-TR, Ian Klemm also won by a margin of 14 points. This was an impressive win by Ian, given the challenging winds and weather. F-TR runner-up Todd Sanders also shot remarkably well, considering he is a relative newcomer to F-Class. Forum member KyBountyHunter observed: “Outstanding shooting this week gentlemen, in some of the most challenging conditions that I’ve seen. Congrats to all the winners. Ian — fantastic job taking First Place (well deserved) [and] special congrats to Todd. For this only being his second year in F-TR, he’s going to be force to be reckoned with for a long time!”.

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Ian Klemm Robert Mead Jay Christopherson F-TR F-Open Borden Brux

CLICK HERE for Match Results. Sorry — no equipment list yet.

Final Results for F-Open (TOP 10):
1. Robert Mead: 1582-68X HM
2. Jay Christopherson: 1568-59X HM
3. Erik Cortina: 1567-71X HM
4. John Myers: 1558-64X HM
5. Pat Scully: 1558-50X HM
6. Larry Bartholome: 1554-55X HM
7. Robert Sebold: 1554-41X HM
8. Steve Harp: 1553-58X HM
9. Jeff Hopkins: 1551-49X MA
10. Lou Murdica: 1550-46X MA

Final Results for F-T/R (TOP 10):
1. Ian Klemm: 1557-56X HM
2. Todd Sanders: 1543-43X MA
3. Brad Sauve: 1542-44X MA
4. Laura Perry: 1539-46X EX
5. Daniel Pohlabel: 1534-49X MA
6. Josh Moore: 1529-37X EX
7. Ken Klemm: 1528-38X MA
8. Bob Lorenz: 1525-47X EX
9. Raymond Weaver: 1522-36X HM
10. Alan Barnhart: 1521-31X HM

Strong Performances by Members of Team Lapua-Borden-Brux
Jay Christopherson posted: “A big congratulations to Bob Mead (1582-68X), who utterly destroyed the competition in tricky wind conditions to take the Gold. This was a great end to the 2017 competition season for me as I managed to hang on by the skin of my fingertips to win Silver at the 2017 F-Class US National Championships (F-Open).” For the record, Team Lapua-Borden-Brux ended up with all five present members of the team in the Top 8 of the Grand Aggregate.

Jay Christopherson (2nd, 1568-59X, Silver)
Erik Cortina (3rd, 1567-71X, Bronze)
Pat Scully (5th, 1558-50X)

Bob Sebold (7th, 1554-41X)
Steve Harp (8th, 1553-58X)

In team competition, Team Lapua-Borden Brux won the F-0pen Long Range Championship as well as the Mid-Range Championship. Jay told us: “That was some outstanding shooting by great team members. I’m really looking forward to the 2018 season.” Erik Cortina added: “So proud of our team. We conquered the 2017 LR National Championship as well as the Mid-Range National Championship. We could not have done it without our sponsors: Lapua, Borden Actions, and Brux Barrels.”

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Ian Klemm Robert Mead Jay Christopherson F-TR F-Open Borden Brux

In the F-TR Team Competition, mighty Team Sinclair triumphed yet again, winning its 10th Long Range National Championship. Team member Paul Phillips offered this interesting factoid: “This year we won with the original four members we had in 2004 plus Dan Pohlabel. It’s pretty awesome to be shooting with the same guys for 13 years! What a great run since 2004.” And those same four also all hail from Midland, Michigan (Midland County Sportsman’s Club). Team Sinclair still holds the 4-man Team 1000-yard National Record. Shown below, L to R, are team members: Daniel J. Pohlabel, Paul Phillips, Raymond Gross (Coach), Brad Sauve, and John Droelle.

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Team Sinclair F-TR
All Team Sinclair members use identical hardware: McMillan XiT stock, Kelbly Panda action, Bartlein barrel, Nightforce scope, and Phoenix Precision bipod. All shoot Berger 200-20X bullets in Lapua brass.

The One that Got Away — Almost Matching F-Open 20-Shot Record
Erik Cortina shot a superb 200-16X during the competition (see electronic target scoring screen below). That was just one X shy of the current 200-17X National Record. Erik observed: “So close, yet so far. Almost matched the National Record of 200-17X but shot a ten on my very last shot. Everything felt good but luck was not on my side.”

Lodi Wisconsin F-Class National Championship Ian Klemm Robert Mead Jay Christopherson F-TR F-Open Borden Brux


File photo from Lodi at past F-Class Nationals.

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July 11th, 2017

“Little Red Devil” for the F-Class World Championships

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle
That fancy front rest is a Farley with custom polished aluminum magnum base, John Loh top, and upgraded large-diameter “Speed Demon Wheel” elevation adjustment. The barrel is a 1:8.75″-twist Bartlein fitted with Ralph Stewart 3-Disk rotary tuner. The 32″-long tube tapers from 1.250″ to 1.0″ diameter. Speedy prefers to have a bit of taper in barrels even when weight is not a factor.

The F-Class World Championships take place next month at the Connaught Ranges in Ontario, Canada. Here’s something special gunsmith Speedy Gonzales put together for F-Open shooter Brett Solomon. Christened the “Little Red Devil” by Speedy, this ruby red, flame maple-stocked beauty is chambered in .284 Winchester. It features a Melonited BAT 3LL action with two bolts (regular and magnum bolt face). The stock is the Speedy “Spear of Destiny” design crafted by Will McCloskey. These handsome McCloskey stocks are milled with advanced CNC machines, allowing ultra-precise tolerances for improved tracking and perfect geometry.

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle

Speedy tell us: “Wish I could say the pictures do it justice. It is ten times nicer looking in real life. Bret will be rubbing on it for hours when it arrives…”

Torrefied Wood from Yamaha
This wood is very special — the flame maple was sourced from Yamaha which used a torrefaction process to stabilize the wood and prevent warping. Yamaha’s proprietary ARE process was developed by Yamaha for musical instruments. Speedy explained that Yamaha uses heat and pressure (we think) to stabilize the wood and dampen vibrations. During torrefaction, the sap in the wood actually crystallizes.

For this rifle build, the torrefied wood blank was CNC-milled by Will McCloskey to “best-in-industry” tolerances. Then Speedy did the inletting, fit the triggerguard, action pillars, butt-plate assembly, and other details. Then Speedy removed the metal parts and shipped the stock to Lee Garver, a noted guitar painter. Garver applied a special red-tone polyester finish. This is a very hard, yet glossy finish that makes the stock “pretty nearly scratch-proof” according to Speedy.

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle

The rifle sports one of Ken Rucker’s new F-Class Bump-Buster Gold recoil reducers. This new system is optimized for prone shooting and works with minimal touch/hold shooting styles.

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle

This video shows the CNC-Milling process with another Speedy stock, the adjustable-comb version of his “Spear of Destiny” design:

The BAT 3LL action comes with two (2) complete bolts, one with standard bolt face, the other with a magnum bolt face.

Solomon little red devil f-open rifle

When One Stunning Rifle Is Not Enough…
If you aren’t yet totally consumed with envy, consider this. Brett Solomon has invested in THREE more Speedy-built rifles like this red wonder. There’s a TAN (natural finish) rimfire training rig that’s complete, and Speedy’s now working on a GREEN .284 Win “spare”, plus a BLUE dedicated Magnum rig. The tan, green, and blue rigs for Brett will have similar stocks, with “all the bells and whistles” just like the “Little Red Devil”. Brett is currently using the tan-stocked rimfire rig for training — getting lots of “trigger time” without burning out his precious centerfire match barrels.

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August 21st, 2013

Hundreds of Shooters Battle at the U.S. F-Class Nationals

The U.S. F-Class Nationals, now underway in Raton, NM, are a big success. This event has drawn huge numbers of talented shooters from across America (and around the world). There are roughly 180 F-TR shooters plus over 170 F-Open Shooters. That’s a record turn-out we’re told. The Nationals got off to an impressive start — the best shooters were center-punching the 1000-yard targets right out of the gate. Chris Ford shot a 150-11X in the first F-0pen match of Day 1, when many other 150s were shot, including a 150-9X by Larry Bartholome. Many 150s were also shot on Day 2 during the first match. On both days, conditions got tougher over the course of the day.

F-Class Championship 2013 Raton NM

In F-Open, after two days of shooting, William Wittman (894-39X) enjoys a two-point lead over Larry Batholome (892-42X). In F-TR class, Lige Harris (885-34X) has been the class of the field so far, posting the top scores on both Day 1 (445-18X) and Day 2 (440-18X). The level of competition is extraordinarily high this year — so high that some past National Champions are well down the pack. Overall, if you look at the complete score sheets linked below, you’ll see that competition has been very tight, with many shooters clustered with near-identical scores.

Download DAY ONE F-Open and F-TR Results | Download DAY TWO F-Open and F-TR Results

F-Class Championship 2013 Raton NM

F-Open Results Day 1 (Top 10)
William WITTMAN 148-7 150-10 150-4 448-21X
Martin LOBERT 149-8 150-6 148-9 447-23X
Gordon OGG 148-9 148-7 150-8 446-24X
Larry BARTHOLOME 150-9 148-6 148-6 446-21X
Speedy GONZALEZ 149-8 149-4 148-8 446-20X
Marce BEEN 148-6 149-3 149-8 446-17X
Bob SEBOLD 149-7 148-3 149-6 446-16X
Kenny ADAMS 150-7 145-7 150-8 445-22X
Mike MCGILL 146-4 150-10 149-8 445 22X
Freddy HALTOM 149-6 148-7 148-5 445-18X
F-Open Results Day 2 (Top 10)
Larry BARTHOLOME 150-10 148-6 148-6 446-22X
William WITTMAN 150-7 147-7 149-4 446-18X
Freddy HALTOM 149-10 149-8 147-4 445-22X
Kenneth PADILLA 150-8 148-8 147-4 445-20X
Steven BLAIR 150-11 147-7 147-3 444-21X
Charles BALLARD 149-11 149-4 146-2 444-17X
Bob SEBOLD 150-9 148-1 146-5 444-15X
Emil KOVAN 150-6 147-4 147-3 444-13X
Jeff TRAYLOR 149-6 148-1 146-3 443-10X
Speedy GONZALEZ 149-8 146-7 147-6 442-21X
Pete PETROS 148-5 147-8 147-8 442-21X
F-TR Results Day 1 (Top 10)
Lige HARRIS 149-5 146-6 150-7 445-18X
John CHILTON 150-7 146-3 146-4 442-14X
James CROFTS 149-6 143-3 149-7 441-16X
Paul KENT 147-4 147-6 147-3 441-13X
Philip KELLEY 146-6 144-5 150-9 440-20X
Derek RODGERS 148-10 143-3 149-6 440-19X
Michael SMITH 148-4 145-3 147-3 440-10X
Ian KLEMM 147-5 146-4 146-2 439-11X
Daniel POHLABEL 148-8 142-7 148-4 438-19X
Radoslaw CZUPRYNA 147-6 141-1 150-9 438-16X
F-TR Result Day 2 (Top 10)
Lige HARRIS 147-7 148-5 145-4 440-16X
Derek RODGERS 147-3 147-4 146-4 440-11X
Gerry WIENS 148-4 145-2 145-6 438-12X
Trudie FAY 146-3 146-4 146-3 438-10X
Ian KLEMM 149-6 145-7 142-5 436-18X
Alan BARNHART 148-9 144-2 144-1 436-12X
William LITZ 148-5 143-4 144-4 435-13X
Laura PERRY 146-5 146-4 143-2 435-11X
Allen TAMPKE 147-4 141-4 146-3 434-11X
Stephen SIRCAUSA 148-7 143-8 142-4 433-19X

F-Class Championship 2013 Raton NM

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August 19th, 2013

U.S. F-Class Championships Get Started in Raton, New Mexico

F-Class National Championships Raton New Mexico NM
The U.S. F-Class National Championships are underway at the Whittington Range in Raton, New Mexico. The event commenced yesterday with squadded practice. Today the first official matches started at 8:00 am, with threee 15-shot invidivual events at 1000-yards. The event is hosted at Raton by the Bald Eagle Rifle Club (BERC). CLICK HERE for match information.

U.S. National F-TR Team on Practice Day…
F-Class National Championships Raton New Mexico NM

Course of fire — Day One

  • Match 1: 1000-yard individual slow fire prone. Unlimited sighting shots and 15 shots for
    record in a time of 22 minutes.
  • Match 2: 1000-yard individual slow fire prone. Two (2) sighting shots and 15 shots for record in a time of 22 minutes.
  • Match 3: 1000-yard individual slow fire prone. Two (2) sighting shots and 15 shots for record in a time of 22 minutes.

Because the 2013 F-Class World Championships will be held at Raton immediately after the U.S. Nationals, many international shooters will be attending the U.S. Championships this week. The firing line definitely has a multi-national look this year. Below is U.S. F-Open National Team Captain Shiraz Balolia with a proud Canadian competitor. For once Shiraz may have been one-upped in the hatsmanship competition.

F-Class National Championships Raton New Mexico NM

Photos courtesy Shiraz Balolia and Team USA F-TR Rifle Team

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December 5th, 2011

Check Out December Target Shooter Magazine Online

Target Shooter Magazine has released its web-based December Issue, and it’s chock full of tech info and match reports from around the world. The FREE December Issue features in-depth reports on four great competitions: the European F-Class Championships, the prestigious World Long-Range Rifle Championship (Palma Match) from Australia, the World Handgun (Practical Pistol) Championship from Greece, and the World Muzzle-Loading Championships (MLAIC) from Bisley, England.

Target Shooter Online Magazine

If you haven’t sampled Target Shooter Magazine yet, you should. The hardware photography is high quality and there is something for everyone — from Benchresters to Tactical shooters. You can view the 116-page December issue for FREE at www.targetshooter.co.uk. Target shooter also has an iPad/iPhone friendly version that can be downloaded.

Target Shooter Online Magazine

Target Shooter Online Magazine

Definitely check out the latest edition of Target Shooter Magazine. It offers outstanding match reports (with big, screen-filling images), and some of the most competent gear reviews on the web. When contributors such as Vince Bottomley or Laurie Holland review a product, they deliver intelligent conclusions you can “take to the bank”.

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October 5th, 2011

Balolia Named Captain as U.S. F-Open Team Prepares for Worlds

Shiraz BaloliaShiraz Balolia has recently been appointed as Captain of the U.S. F-Class Open Rifle Team. Balolia served as Vice Captain of the previous team and was one of eight American shooters at the last World Championship held in England in 2009. He was also one of four shooters in the International Team matches in England where Team USA won the Gold Medal. The step up from Vice Captain to Captain brings new responsibilities, but Balolia told us he accepts his new role “with honor and a fierce passion to lead the team to gold in the 2013 World Championship”.

USA Will Host 2013 F-Class World Championship
With the 2013 F-Class Championship being hosted by the United States for the first time ever, Balolia and the U.S. team are determined to win the Gold Medal on home soil. Team tryouts commenced in 2010 and will continue until the complete Development Team is selected in early 2012, from which the main 2013 team will be chosen. Balolia added: “I am excited to have been given the opportunity to lead this team into the next World Championship. The shooters we have are absolutely incredible, and everyone has a single goal in mind… and that is to Win!”

Shiraz Balolia

2013 F-Class World Championship | Raton, New Mexico (USA) | August 23-27, 2013

The next F-Class World Championship will be held in Raton, New Mexico, from August 23 to 27, 2013. This will be the fourth F-Class World Championship and first time it is being held in the United States. Previous F-Class World Championship venues were:

2002 – Ottawa, Canada. Won by the USA.
2005 – Bloemfontein, South Africa. Won by South Africa.
2009 – Bisley, England. Won by Great Britain.

As you can see, historically, home teams have won in the past two events. This bodes well for Team USA’s chances in 2013.

U.S. F-Class Championships Will Precede Worlds at Raton
Preceding the World Championship, the 2013 US F-Class National Championship will be held from August 18 to 22, 2013. All F-classers are welcome to register. With the U.S. and World Championships scheduled back-to-back, August 2013 should offer the most memorable 10 days of F-Class competition ever conducted in North America.

To learn more about the US F-Class Open Team, visit www.usfclass.com.

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