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November 13th, 2022

Sunday Gunday: Rimfire Sporter — Fun and Affordable

CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match

Readers often ask us: “Is there an inexpensive way I can get started in position shooting?” The answer is “yes” — across the country CMP-affiliated clubs host Rimfire Sporter matches. You can use a wide variety of .22 LR rimfire rifles — manual actions (such as a Winchester model 52) or semi-automatics (such as a Ruger 10/22). There are prone, sitting/kneeling, and standing stages. CMP rules provide separate classifications for scoped rifles, open-sighted rifles, and aperture-sighted rifles. The matches are fun, the ammo is inexpensive, and everyone has a good time while improving their marksmanship.

CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match
CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match

Rimfire Sporter Match Basics
The CMP Rimfire Sporter Rifle Match is an inexpensive, fun-oriented competition using .22 caliber sporter rifles (plinking and small game rifles) commonly owned by most gun enthusiasts. To compete, all you need is a basic rifle, safety gear, and ammunition. No fancy, high-dollar rifles are required.

The event is shot with standard sporter-type, rimfire rifles weighing no more than 7.5 pounds, with sights and sling. Rifles may be manually-operated or semi-automatic. Rifles may be manually operated or semi-automatic, with three classes.

The three classes of competition are: 1) standard “O Class” for open-sighted rifles; 2) “T-Class” for telescope-sighted and rear aperture-sighted rifles; and 3) “Tactical Rimfire” class, which is a .22 caliber A4 or AR15 style rifle.

Firing for all classes is done at 25 and 50 yards on a target with a 1.78″ ten-ring and an 18″ outer one-ring. Even new shooters can get hits on this target, but it’s still challenging.

Rimfire Sporter Equipment

Rimfire Sporter Excellence

CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match

Above, young Samuel Payne won the inaugural Talladega 600 Rimfire Sporter event. In 2015, Payne became the first-ever Rimfire Sporter competitor to fire a perfect 600 x 600 score (600-50X) in a CMP-sponsored competition. Payne shot the perfect score at the CMP Eastern Games at Camp Butner, NC.

cmp rimfire sporter camp perry 2019
Rimfire Sporter Competition is fun for all ages — including senior shooters.

Rimfire Sporter Course of Fire

In a CMP Rimfire Sporter match, competitors will complete slow fire prone, rapid fire prone, slow fire sitting or kneeling, rapid fire sitting or kneeling, slow fire standing, and rapid fire standing shot sequences.

National Rimfire Sporter Match Camp Perry 2019

National Rimfire Sporter Match Camp Perry 2019

Rimfire sporter match 2019 Camp Perry
The CMP has adaptive Rimfire Sporter programs for shooters with physical impairments.

Rimfire Sporter Local Matches with Modified Rules

One great thing about the rimfire shooting discipline is that you can start with a very inexpensive rifle and still be competitive and have fun. The matches involve multiple stages including standing, kneeling/sitting, and prone. There are classes for both scoped rifles and iron-sights rifles.

Our friend Dennis Santiago helps run CMP Rimfire Sporter Matches in Southern California. Dennis observes: “You want something challenging? Well that X-Ring 50 yards away is the diameter of a 50 cent piece, and there are people out there that can womp that thing with iron sights.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Dennis notes: “There are six (6) stages of fire on a tough little target. Notice the rifles that can be used run the gamut from pump and bolt actions to variations on the semi-auto theme. All still require a good eye and a steady hold to earn one’s bragging rights for the day. A match takes about an hour and a half per relay. The slowest part of the match is initial sighting in. It’ll take longer than the allocated 5 minutes for the typical first timer coming to a club match.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

At Dennis’s Burbank Rifle & Revolver Club (BRRC), procedures are modified a little bit: “What we typically do at BRRC is run two relays. Experienced competitors shoot per the full rulebook. New shooters are afforded a bit more relaxed environment to make the experience more fun and inviting. We do the same thing in our M-1 Garand Clinic/Match series.”

BRRC Rimfire Sporter CMP match

Official CMP Guide to Rimfire Sporter Competition

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has a CMP Guide to Rimfire Sporter Shooting. This FREE, 50-page digital publication covers equipment, positions, course of fire, rules, scoring and much more. You’ll find helpful “how-to” sections on aiming, sight picture, hold control, and trigger control. Reading these instructional sections can benefit any prone or three-position competitive shooter.

Rimfire Sporter Guide Shooting

Rimfire Sporter competitors should read Gary Anderson’s Rimfire Sporter Guide Part II. This well-illustrated, 8-page, 2014 publication covers shooting positions, sling use, sight picture, trigger technique and more.

CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match

Highlights from the 2016 National Rimfire Sporter Match at Camp Perry:

CMP Rimfire Sporter .22 LR competition match

* Shooting Sports USA notes: “Samuel Payne had an unforgettable 2015. At just 16, he dominated the Rimfire Sporter events at the Civilian Marksmanship Program’s (CMP) Eastern Games, National Matches, Western Games and the Talladega 600, while also setting two new National Records during the year. Sam’s photo also graced the cover of the 10th Edition of the CMP Guide to Rimfire Sporter Shooting — and rightfully so. He proved his undeniable talent at every event he entered, not only winning the matches, but also setting the bar high for competitors in the future.”

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November 13th, 2022

Effective Range and Lethality of Hunting Bullets Examined

hunting book Litz Lethality

Hunting season continues in many areas of the nation, so many game hunters have questions about terminal performance and particular caliber/cartridge combinations. Bryan Litz of Applied Ballistics says there are really a number of questions that need to be answered:

1) What’s the max range that the shooter/rifle is capable of hitting the intended target?

2) What’s the max range that a bullet can kill the intended game?

3) How do bullets kill?

4) Effects of Muzzle Velocity on Lethality.
(Your MV may be lower in winter with temp-sensitive powders).

5) Long Range Lethality and the Ballistic Coefficient.

Lethality hunting bullets litz bookYou’ll find answers to these and other questions in Bryan’s book, Applied Ballistics for Long-Range Shooting. These topics are covered in Chapter 15: Lethality of Long Range Hunting Bullets. Bryan says: “For responsible hunting, knowing your limits and your rifle’s limits, is important.”

Bryan’s book also includes Bullet Lethality Charts for a variety of calibers and cartridge types. These charts feature categories for 600-lb, 300-lb, and 150-lb Game animals so you can match performance to the size of your prey. Bryan explains: “If I wanted to know how a Medium Capacity Cartridge shooting the 6mm Berger 115 VLD will perform on 300-pound game, I can reference the bullet-specific chart.”

Lethality hunting bullets litz book

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