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January 8th, 2023

Sunday GunDay: New 2023 CMP Rules for Rifle Competitions

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

CMP 2023 Competition Rules Are Now Online

CMP Competition 2023 rulebooks are now available on the CMP Website. For each discipline, you will find links for the full rulebook as well as separate links for 2023 Rule Changes. For this Sunday Gunday article, we focus on 2023 Rule Changes for rimfire (Smallbore) rifle and centerfire (Highpower) rifle. There are rule changes for pistol disciplines also, but this article does NOT cover pistol rules. Below are links for PDF files listing the CMP’s new 2023 rules for the Highpower and Smallbore rifle categories:

CMP Highpower Rifle Competition Rules 2023 | 2023 Highpower Rule Changes

CMP Smallbore Rifle Competition Rules 2023 | 2023 Smallbore Rule Changes

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

CMP rulebooks are updated annually to accommodate new program developments, clarify rules issues, and incorporate recommendations from competitors, match sponsors and CMP staff. The 2023 editions of these rulebooks are now posted on the CMP website where competitors, match officials, and match sponsors can download them to read or copy. Printed versions of the rulebooks will be produced in the next two or three months and will be available for purchase after that.

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

The CMP advises that “The 2023 rulebooks do not have any major rules revisions, but they do have a complex variety of changes, clarification and updates”. The summaries that follow identify and discuss the changes for the rifle rulebooks. If you have questions about the 2023 CMP Competition Rulebooks, contact the CMP Competitions Department at competitions@thecmp.org or (419) 635-2141, ext. 714 or 729. For Smallbore Rule questions, contact (419) 635-2141, ext. 730 or bdonoho@thecmp.org.

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

CMP HIGHPOWER RIFLE RULE CHANGES

The CMP Highpower Rifle program includes: 1) Traditional Service Rifle events conducted according to National Trophy Match rules; 2) Highpower Rifle events conducted according to CMP Cup Match rules; 3) Long-Range Rifle (prone and F-class events at 800, 900, and 1000 yards); and Mid-Range Rifle (prone and F-class events at 300, 500, and 600 yards). The CMP program for Mid- and Long-Range competitions now includes: 1) Match Rifle Prone Long-Range, 2) Service Rifle Prone Long-Range, 2) F-Class Long-Range, 3) AR Tactical Long-Range, 4) Prone Mid-Range, F-Class Mid-Range 6) AR Tactical Mid-Range, and 7) Service Rifle Mid-Range events.

cmp 2023 highpower rifle changes

There are no major changes in the 2023 Highpower Rifle rules, but there are several technical changes that competitors and match sponsors will want to note:

1.5/Table 1. CMP Highpower Rifle Events. A Mid-Range 300-500-600 course of fire is added.

2.6.9. National Trophy Teams. State National Trophy Rifle Teams (6 firing members) may have a maximum of two members who are from adjoining states that do not enter teams in the competition.

2.8.1. New Shooter Definition. Civilian National Trophy Team members will now be permitted to retain new shooter eligibility for two years (formerly one year).

3.2.11. Spectators and Media. A new rule encouraging the accommodation of spectators and media at competitions was added. It spells out limitations on their actions.

3.8.1 & 3.8.2. Pre-Preparation and Preparation Periods. Rules defining current pre-prep and preparation periods are added.

3.9.3 c). Interruptions. If interruptions lead to competitors getting out of position, the CRO may authorize additional preparation time before resuming firing.

3.12.3./Table 2. Rifle Achievement Awards. Cut scores are revised, based on 2022 National Match results.

4.1.1 g). Magazines. Altering M16/AR magazines by opening the front of the magazine to accommodate slightly longer bullets is authorized.

4.1.1 j) M16/AR15 Service Rifle External Appearance. New language provides a standard for evaluating minor alterations in the “general overall external appearance” of M16/AR rifles. Minor alterations created by the installation of after-market products for these rifles that have trigger configuration and trigger guard variations or slightly different external appearances (i.e., no walk pins, etc.) will generally be approved under this revised criteria. Such minor alterations may be approved provided that they 1) do not provide an unfair advantage, 2) fulfill rifle functionality requirements and 3) generally meet M16 external dimension specifications.

4.6.2. j) & k). Targets. The new 300-500-600 Yard Mid-Range course will be fired on MR targets. Rules defining reduced MR targets for 300 and 500 yards are added.

5.2.3 c). Rapid-Fire Loading, CMP Cup Match Events. The Rapid-fire loading procedure for CMP Cup Matches is not changed, but it is clarified.

5.4. Rifle National Match Course, Table 4. This rule is rewritten so that the Highpower Rifle National Match Course can be programmed as a National Trophy, or EIC sanctioned Service Rifle Match (with no sighters and starting rapid-fire from standing) or as a CMP Cup Match (with sighters and starting rapid fire in position). Allowing the firing of this course as a CMP Cup Match is new.

5.7.4 f). Team Matches. When Long-Range team events are fired, a time limit of 47 minutes for two team members will apply. In these events, team members may pair fire or fire in succession.

5.9. Long Range Matches, Table 7. Additional details regarding the application of Palma Rules were added for events that are restricted to Palma rifles. A provision authorizing a CRO to optionally use block time that combines the preparation and firing times was added.

5.12. Mid-Range Courses, Table 8. Details regarding the new 300/500/600 Mid-Range course of fire (event) are added to the Table defining Mid-Range Courses.

CMP GAMES RULE CHANGES

CMP Games Competition Rules for Rifle and Pistol govern Vintage Military Rifle, As-Issued Pistol, and Rimfire Sporter events. The 2023 CMP Games Rules introduce three new events, including new benchrest events. There will also be an expanded version of the Special EIC Matches.

CMP Games vintage rifles M1903 enfield

Here is a list of notable changes in this rulebook for the CMP Games RIFLE Events:

1.5/Table 2, CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Events. This rule lists the different events that are recognized by the CMP as “CMP Games” events. Three new rifle events are added for 2023: Benchrest Vintage Military Rifle Match, Rimfire Sporter Dewar Match, and Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Match

1.8.11. Spectators and Media. A new rule regarding spectators and media is added. The rule encourages match sponsors to welcome and accommodate them but also places limits on what they may do.

3.3.6. Benchrest Supported Position. A definition of the benchrest firing position that will be authorized for the new VMR, and Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Matches is added. Supports under the fore-end are allowed; supports under the butt-stock are not allowed.

4.6.6. Benchrest VMR Match. Provides rules for the Benchrest VMR Match.

5.4.4 i). Rapid-Fire Loading, Springfield M1A Match. Loading procedures for the Springfield M1A Match, where competitors must start and load rapid-fire series in position, are unchanged, but clarified.

CMP games vintage sniper rifle

6.2.1 Vintage Sniper Rifle. The M1903 Springfield rifle with straight pistol grip stock and a Winchester A5 or Lyman 5A scope was added to the list of legal sniper rifle/scope combinations.

6.5.8 Interruptions in Vintage Sniper Rifle Team Matches. A provision was added that allows the firing of one additional sighting shot if there is an interruption of more than 5 minutes in 300-yard firing or 3 minutes in 600-yard firing.

CMP GAMES RIMFIRE SPORTER RULE CHANGES

Rimfire Sporter Rule Changes

8.2.2 a) Rimfire Sporter Adjustable Stocks. T and O Class rifles may have adjustable butt-plates or cheek-pieces if those features are fixed and cannot be readily changed without tools during the firing of an event.

8.3.7. Targets. Targets for the Rimfire Sporter Dewar and Benchrest events are defined.

8.6. Rimfire Sporter Dewar Course. A Dewar course of fire (20 shots prone at 50 yards and 20 shots prone at 100 yards) is added. This event was fired on an experimental basis during the 2022 National Matches.

8.7. Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Course. This is the second new Rimfire Sporter event in the 2023 rules. Competitors will fire their rifles from benchrests at 100-yard smallbore rifle targets, using a maximum of two sandbag rests (but no buttstock rest). The course of fire includes a 5-minute sighting period, followed by 40 record shots in 30 minutes.

8.8.4. Scoring Internal Crossfires. A rule change clarifies how Rimfire Sporter internal crossfires are scored.

10.3-10.5. National Records. Adds the new events to the National Records list.

SMALLBORE RIFLE COMPETITION RULE CHANGES

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

The big news is that the 2023 National Matches Smallbore Rifle Championships will be conducted on electronic targets. The other big change is the addition of rules for the new F-Class Smallbore Rifle events. Provisional F-Class smallbore rifle events were held during the 2022 CMP Smallbore Prone Championship at Camp Perry. F-Class will now officially be part of the CMP Smallbore Rifle Program. Accordingly, the 2023 (5th Ed.) CMP Smallbore Rifle Competition Rules adds rules for Smallbore F-Class competition. Here are the notable changes in the 2023 CMP Smallbore Rifle Rules:

5.3. F-Class Smallbore Rifles. Two types of F-Class rifle front supports are recognized, a front rest (F-O, Open Rifle) or a bipod (F-TR, Target Rifle). Non-mechanical rear rests are authorized.

CMP marksmanship 2023 rifle marksmanship smallbore rimfire rulebook rules change

5.6.1. Ammunition. F-Class events are limited to rimfire .22 LR ammunition loaded with 40-grain bullets.

6.1.4. Supported Prone Position. Describes the firing position authorized for F-Class shooting.

6.2. 100-Yard International Target. This is the 300 Meter ISSF target, scored with an 8 mm diameter bullet, reduced for use in F-Class 100-yard events that are fired and scored with 5.56 mm bullets.

6.2.4. Target Hanging Procedures. A new rule prohibits the use of distinctive colored target clips as a means of distinguishing a target (competitors should use target numbers to identify their targets).

6.3.5. Wind Flags. Wind flag height must correspond with bullets’ flight paths.

6.4. Table 3. The three-position course of fire was changed in 2022 to be the same as the new ISSF 3×20 course of fire (formerly 3×40).

6.4. Table 5. The F-Class 160-shot course of fire includes 40 shots at 50 yards on the ISSF reduced 50m target, 40 shots at 50 m on the old A-50 metric target, a combined 50 and 100 yard 40-shot event and 40 shots at 100 yards on the 100-yard international target (see Rule 6.2).

6.4.8. F-Class Procedures. F-Class firing procedures provide for 5- or 2-min. pre-prep and 3-min. preparation periods, followed by unlimited sighting shots with each record fire stage.

7.9 and 7.10. Competition Procedures, Electronic Targets. These procedures were included in the previous edition of this rulebook, but they are highlighted here because the CMP plans to have electronic targets in place during the 2023 National Matches at Camp Perry. In prone but not three-position events, competitors will be allowed to switch back to sighting shots during record firing. 40-shot prone events can be fired without a break, but an extra five minutes is provided in the time limits (unlimited sighters and 40 record shots in 45 minutes) to allow competitors who would like to take a break during these events to do so. Target aiming masks provided for any sight stages will have an aiming mark inscribed on them.
7.12.9. Disclaimed Shot. Procedures for handling disclaimed shots are provided.

There are a series of EIC Match Credit Changes for 2023, along with revisions for the Distinguished International Shooter Badge to adapt these regulations to ISSF rule changes. Check the 2023 Smallbore Rules for details, starting at section 11.3.3.

AN INTRODUCTION TO CMP COMPETITION RULES
The CMP’s Winter 2022 edition of On the Mark magazine contains “COMPETITION RULES—A Primer on Competition Rules and How to Follow Them”. This article (on pages 6-13) covers rulebook terminology, guiding principles in shooting rules, safety and safe range procedure rules, and an outline of the technical rules contained in each rulebook. CLICK HERE to download this issue of On the Mark.

DISTINGUISHED MARKSMAN BADGE CHANGES

The CMP Highpower Rifle, Smallbore Rifle, Pistol, and Air Gun rulebooks have rules that describe the Distinguished Marksman Badge program for eligible competitors in that discipline who have physical disabilities or limitations that prevent them from complying with all rule requirements for other Distinguished Badges. To compete for a Distinguished Marksman Badge, competitors with disabilities must apply to the CMP for a “Distinguished Marksman Authorization” (contact 419-635-2141, ext. 602; acantu@thecmp.org). Eligible competitors who fire EIC Match scores that equal or exceed EIC minimum cut scores receive EIC points that count towards the awarding of the Distinguished Marksman Badge.

AIR RIFLE AND AIR PISTOL COMPETITION RULES

The Second Edition CMP Air Rifle and Air Pistol Competitions Rules 2023 are posted on the CMP website. CLICK HERE to download those Air Rifle and Air Pistol Rules. NOTE: the CMP states that: “2022 1st Edition Rulebooks will continue to be used in 2023. If any changes are necessary during the year, an errata sheet will be printed to accompany published rulebooks.”

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June 7th, 2022

CMP National Matches at Camp Perry — Program & Registration

CMP National Matches 2022 Camp Perry Ohio rimfire high power junior prone

The CMP National Matches will run from July 11 to August 13, 2022 at Camp Perry, Ohio. This major event attracts thousands of shooters over the course of the summer. The 2022 National Matches start with pistol competition and conclude with Long Range Rifle. The Full 2022 Nat’l Matches Calendar is available online. There is still time to register for pistol and rifle matches. We provide registration links below.

National Matches Info

2022 National Match Calendar | National Match Program | Camp Perry MAP

CMP National Matches 2022 Camp Perry Ohio rimfire high power junior prone

CMP National Matches 2022 Camp Perry Ohio rimfire high power junior proneCMP National Matches
2022 REGISTRATION

Held annually at Camp Perry, the CMP National Matches include the CMP National Trophy Pistol and Rifle Matches, the Pistol and Rifle Small Arms Firing Schools, the National Games Rifle Matches, the National Smallbore Matches, and the National Long Range Matches. These matches are conducted by a partnership of the CMP and Ohio National Guard.

Registration for the 2022 CMP National Matches is still available, but don’t delay much longer. Click the links below to register for particular disciplines.

Rifle Online Registration
Rifle Printable Registration PDF

Long Range Online Registration
Long Range Printable Registration PDF

Rimfire Sporter Online Registration
Rimfire Sporter Printable Registration PDF

2022 Pistol Online Registration
Pistol Printable Registration PDF

Smallbore Online Registration

Air Gun Online Registration

CMP National Matches 2022 Camp Perry Ohio rimfire high power junior prone

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March 29th, 2022

CMP Awards Shooters Who Attend Multiple CMP Games

CMP Competition Awards games eastern western new england

Do you attend the CMP Games each year? Are you able to travel to multiple venues around the country? Then here is a special opportunity…

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has created a new set of awards for those competitors who attend multiple CMP Competition Games events (formerly known as CMP Travel Games) during a single year. Awards include collectible T-Shirts and free (or discounted) Competition Games entry fees.

CMP Competition Awards games eastern western new england

The first Competition Games event, the CMP Western Games, took place earlier this month in Phoenix, Arizona. The 2022 schedule also includes: Eastern Games (Butner, North Carolina), New England Games (Jericho, Vermont) and the Oklahoma Games (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma). Competitors that attend at least three of these four events will receive a collectible t-shirt and will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win free match fees to one Competition Game of their choice for the 2023 shooting season.

The Next CMP Competition Games Event is the Eastern Games, April 22 – May 1, 2022
CMP Competition Eastern games

Names will also be drawn to receive a 50% discount on match fees for one Competition Game for the 2023 shooting season. Four winners will be chosen for each drawing. Additional prizes will be awarded to those competitors who fire in all four Competition Games.

CMP Competition Games 2022 Schedule:

• March 11-20 – Western CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Phoenix, Arizona

• April 22-May 1– Eastern CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Butner, North Carolina

• Sept. 18-25 – New England CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Jericho, Vermont

• Oct. 16-23 – Oklahoma CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

If you have questions about the Competition Games awards, please email Christina Roguski at croguski@thecmp.org or visit the CMP Competition Games website.

CMP Competition Eastern games

The Competition Games are regional events held around the country throughout the year, featuring CMP’s unique rifle and pistol outdoor matches. The Games offer a variety of competition and training activities for experienced marksmen as well as well as novice competitors.

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January 14th, 2022

CMP 2022 Competition Games Schedule

2022 cmp western games

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has released its Competition Games schedule for 2022. These events feature rifle and pistol matches designed for experienced competitors as well as novice shooters. All Competition Games will include both rifle and pistol matches. CLICK HERE for full details on all the 2022 CMP Games, including event lists, policies, and registration details.

2022 CMP Games Schedule:

• March 11-20 – Western CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Phoenix, Arizona

• April 22-May 1– Eastern CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Camp Butner, North Carolina

• June 8-12 – Talladega D-Day Matches, Talladega, Alabama

• Sept. 18-25 – New England CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Jericho, Vermont

• Oct. 16-23 – Oklahoma CMP Games & CMP HP Rifle Matches, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

• Nov. 14-20 – Talladega 600, Talladega, Alabama

2022 cmp western games

CLICK HERE for CMP Travel Games Registration INFO »

On the rifle side, the lineup of modern and vintage rifle events include M1 Garand, Springfield, Rimfire Sporter, Carbine and Vintage Sniper Matches. A Rifle Marksmanship 101 course allows participants to explore the fundamentals of secure rifle handling. Another educational opportunity is the GSM (Garand-Springfield-Vintage Military Rifle) New Shooter Clinic, which provides individuals an inside look at competing in CMP Games events. CMP Armorers will be on hand and will hold an M1 Garand Maintenance Clinic. All rifle competitions will be fired on CMP Targets, a user-friendly electronic target system that instantly displays shot placement and eliminates the need for pit duty — allowing for quicker matches.

CMP Games

Other rifle events will include: 4-Man Team Match, EIC Rifle Match and three days of 80-Shot events. The CMP Highpower Team will also put on a shooting clinic with demonstrations by top civilian Highpower service rifle competitors.

CMP games vintage Sniper

CMP pistol matches at the Games will include: CMP Match Pistol 2700, EIC Service Pistol, .22 Rimfire Pistol EIC, Military & Police Service Pistol and 1911 As-Issued Pistol matches. A Pistol Marksmanship 101 course, led by certified CMP instructors and leaders in the field today, offers an educational option for competitors on and off of the firing line.

2022 cmp western games
23022 Cmp games new england alt=

For more details about the 2022 CMP Games, including Registration Information and a detailed description of each Games event, visit the CMP website at https://thecmp.org/competitions/cmp-travel-games.

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January 7th, 2022

CMP Introduces New Rifle and Pistol CMP League Matches

CMP League Match 2022

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP), starting this month, have authorized CMP League Matches at CMP-affiliated clubs throughout the USA. This will give shooters the ability to enjoy CMP-type competitions at their local ranges. The new CMP League Match Program will be open to any CMP-Affiliated Clubs. Participants’ average scores will be computed by CMP’s Competition Tracker, with awards distributed to the top competitors from around the country.

Beginning January 2022, the CMP will sanction a series of simulated head-to-head rifle, pistol, and CMP Games events for competitors to participate in from their home ranges. A CMP sanctioned match is an event hosted or sponsored by a CMP affiliated organization, where match sponsors agree to use CMP Competition Rules in conducting CMP Highpower Rifle, CMP Pistol and CMP Games competitions. Types of League Matches and available timeframes will include:

Rifle: March 15 – June 15 and/or August 15 – November 15
50 shot National Match Course (Non-EIC) (Full or Reduced)
4X20 (80 shots, Individual) (Full or Reduced)

Pistol: Outdoor Pistol League May 1 – October 31; Indoor Pistol League November 1 – April 30
30 Shot National Match Pistol Course (full or reduced)
900 Pistol Aggregate (.22 Rimfire, Centerfire, .45 Caliber or Service Pistol)

CMP Games Type Match: March 15-June 15 and/or August 15 – November 15
30 Shot As-Issued Military Rifle Course | Carbine | Rimfire Sporter

CMP League Match 2022

How to Get Your Local Club Involved

Interested clubs will need to fill out an application and also submit a match program. Once approved, the match director will be sent a spreadsheet to record official scores that will be compared among other participating clubs. Fees for these events include $10 per league to sanction, plus $2 per competitor.

CMP League INFO, including applications and match instructions, can be found on the CMP website at CMP.org/competitions/cmp-league-matches. Or call CMP Competition Support at 419-635-2141, ext. 714.

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June 3rd, 2021

Match Etiquette: Be Prepared, Know the Rules and Course of Fire

Match Etiquette USAMU Course of Fire Rules SFC Norman Anderson CMP Rulebook NRA

Match Etiquette USAMU Course of Fire Rules SFC Norman Anderson CMP Rulebook NRA

Don’t Be “That Guy” (The Bad Apple on the Firing Line)

By SFC Norman Anderson, USAMU Service Rifle Team Member
You know the guy, he’s still talking at the coffee jug when his preparation period begins, then his magazines aren’t loaded when the command “STAND” is given, and finally, he doesn’t know the rules when he argues with the block officer as his target comes up marked “9 and No”. Although this guy might be the highlight of the “after match” activities, he is the proverbial bad apple on the firing line. With this example fresh in your mind, let’s go over how not to be “that guy”.

While the sport of High Power shooting is a hobby for most, all are passionate about performance throughout the day. In order to achieve your maximum performance each and every day, it is essential that you conduct yourself as a professional competitor. As a competitor, you have a personal responsibility to know the course of fire as well as the rules and procedures that apply to it and to be prepared to follow them. Knowing this will not only make you a better competitor, but it will enable you to resolve situations with other targets besides your own. So what does all this mean? I’ll explain…

Know the Course of Fire
Know the course of fire. It sounds easy enough, as we all shoot plenty of matches, but it’s more than that. If you think about it, how many people in the pits, for example, do not really know what is happening on the firing line? This leads to targets being pulled early during a rapid fire string or missing a shot during a slow fire string. In cases like this, the result is the same, delays in the match and upset competitors. To avoid being “that guy,” it is imperative that you stay tuned to the events as the day progresses. When you are at the range shooting a match, be at the range shooting the match.

At any firearms competition — be sure you know (and understand) the course of fire.
CMP Match Etiquette

Match Etiquette USAMU Course of Fire Rules SFC Norman Anderson CMP Rulebook NRAKnow the Rules
Now, let’s discuss rules. As you have probably heard more than once, the rulebook is your best friend. Here is why. I can virtually guarantee that most competitors know some of the rules based only on the old “this is how we do it at home” adage. The funny part of that is, the same green NRA rulebook and orange CMP rulebooks are used to govern High Power matches all over the country.*

It is vital that all shooters be familiar with the rules as they are written, not with “how they are applied at home”. This creates consistency and continuity in how matches are conducted, from local club matches to state tournaments to National Championships. Knowledge is power when it comes to scoring targets under contention, what to do in the case of a malfunction, or even how to file a protest correctly. These rules are in place for a reason and it benefits everyone to both know and operate by these rules.

Maintain Composure and Humility — Exhibit Good Sportsmanship
One aspect of competing that cannot be forgotten is bearing. As I mentioned earlier, you must be prepared for both good and bad to happen. All too often we all see “that guy” (or that “that guy’s” gear) flying off of the firing line in disgust. Remember that we all must maintain our composure and humility in all conditions, not matter what happens. After all, it’s just a game. To put it into perspective, if it were easy, attendance would be a lot higher. Sportsmanship must be displayed in an effort to keep from ruining the day for all those around you. It doesn’t cost anything to smile, and smiling never killed anyone. So turn that frown upside down and keep on marching, better days will come.

Like a Boy Scout — Always Be Prepared
Lastly, I would like to cover preparedness. Being prepared goes beyond simply having your magazines loaded and a zero on your rifle. It means approaching the firing line, knowing what you are about to do, being ready for what is going to happen (good or bad), and being ready for the results. If you approach the firing line to merely shoot 10 shots standing in your next LEG match, you are not going to be pleased with the result. You must be prepared mentally and physically, not only for the next stage, but also the next shot. By being prepared physically (equipment ready), you give yourself peace of mind which is an essential part of being prepared mentally, and by being prepared mentally, you are less likely to become distracted and are more likely to maintain focus for each and every shot.

Conclusion — Informed Competitors Make for Better Matches
The culmination of these efforts results in a shooter that knows how to be ready for success on the range, but also and perhaps more importantly, a shooter who knows what it means to be a competitor. When you have a range full of competitors who know and follow the rules and proper match procedures, the match runs smoothly, everyone shoots well, and a good time is had by all. In the end, isn’t that what it’s all about?


* After this article was originally written, the CMP separated its rules into multiple Rulebooks:

The 2020-21 8th Edition of the CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules for CMP-sanctioned matches for As-Issued Military Rifle and Pistol events including Special M9 and M16 EIC Matches, and Service Pistol, and Rimfire Sporter.

The 2020-21 24th Edition CMP Highpower Competition Rules for CMP-sponsored and sanctioned matches for Highpower Rifle events in National Trophy Matches, Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) Matches, CMP Cup Matches and other CMP-sanctioned competitions.

The 2020-21 24th Edition CMP Pistol Competition Rules for CMP-sponsored and sanctioned Pistol Matches in the National Matches, National Trophy Matches, Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) Matches, and other CMP-sanctioned competitions.

This article by SFC Norman Anderson originally appeared in the CMP First Shot Online Magazine.

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January 26th, 2017

New 2017 CMP Competition Rules — Some Big Changes

2017 CMP Rules Competition Pistol High Power new

By Gary Anderson, DCM Emeritus
The 2017 CMP competition rules are now approved and posted on the CMP website. The 2017 CMP Highpower Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules and the 2017 CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules can be downloaded on the CMP Competition Rules Page.

CLICK HERE for 2017 Highpower Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules

CLICK HERE for 2017 CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Competition Rules

2017 CMP Rules Competition Pistol High Power new

2017 marks the third consecutive year with major CMP competition rule changes. The 2015 Rules opened Service Pistol shooting to a wider variety of pistols and introduced the popular 22 Rimfire Pistol Distinguished Badge. The 2016 rules authorized limited power optical sights for service and modern military rifles and opened Service Rifle shooting to a wider variety of M16/AR-type rifles.

AR Alternative Rifles Allowed in Highpower Service Rifle Competitions
The 2017 rules authorize residents in states where AR ownership is prohibited to use an Alternative Rifle that is legal in that state. The introduction of an Alternative Rifle rule exemplifies the CMP’s determination to take whatever steps are legally possible to ensure that all competitors in the USA can continue to compete in CMP Highpower Service Rifle competitions.

The new Highpower Alternative Rifle will allow competitors in states where the ownership or possession of M16/AR-type rifles is prohibited to use a rifle that has the same capabilities as an M16/AR-type rifle. Alternative Rifles may be either semi-auto or manually operated and must be chambered for the 5.56 x 45mm NATO cartridge (.223). Optical sights with a manufactured maximum of 4.5X are permitted. These rifles must have a 4.5-pound trigger pull, a maximum barrel length of 20 inches and a fixed sling swivel on their fore-ends. Alternative Rifles may have stocks with the same adjustment capabilities as Service Rifles, that is butt-stock length may be adjustable, but the cheek-piece and butt-plate must be fixed. Stock design and magazine configuration is flexible according to what is permitted in the competitor’s state.

Match Rifles Will Be Allowed in Highpower Matches
The 2017 CMP Rules will also open the door for Match Rifle competitors to shoot in CMP-sanctioned highpower events. Due to the advantages these rifles have (more cartridge options, no trigger limitation, infinite stock adjustments and unlimited optical sight power), competitors with Match Rifles will usually compete in a separate or Open Individual Category, but they will now be welcomed in CMP Highpower Matches. Traditional EIC and National Trophy Match events will still be restricted to Service and Alternative Rifles, but match sponsors can now invite Match Rifle competitors to shoot in CMP-sanctioned events. Except for EIC and National Trophy Matches, which will continue to be no-sighter matches, the 2017 Rules will permit sighters in other matches.

Tubb 2000 Match rifle

Most Match Rifle competitors have already competed in CMP Matches with Service Rifles and are familiar with CMP requirements that shooters must start rapid-fire series from standing. The CMP regards this requirement to quickly go from standing to sitting or prone and place the natural point of aim on the target as a vital skill that highpower rifle shooters should be able to perform. However, some Match Rifle competitors who have never competed in CMP Matches will find this to be a new … challenge.

New Competition Classification System
The CMP will develop and introduce a new competitor classification system in 2017. The system will be similar to traditional classification systems where competitors are divided into five classes according to current match score averages. CMP classifications will initially be available for use by Highpower and Service Rifle match sponsors. The CMP system will provide for instant, electronic updates of match score data. Match sponsors will be able to confirm competitor classifications through online look-ups.

For those competitors who are over 70 or who have physical impairments, the CMP has lots of experience in making it possible for those competitors to start rapid-fire series in position. Everyone who is able is expected to start rapid-fire from standing, but those who cannot are allowed to start in position. These competitors can win special and class awards as well as CMP Achievement Awards; they just cannot win the match.

Use of Electronic Devices (Airplane Mode OK)
The new rules clarify that the use of “electronic devices such as cell phones, tablets or other hand-held communication devices only to keep time, record shots, or compute sight adjustments” is permitted. However, those devices must not be capable of communicating with other electronic devices (must be placed in airplane mode).

Below are summaries of other rule changes in the 2017 CMP Competition Rules.

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October 6th, 2016

First-Ever New England CMP Games in Scenic Vermont

New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

The first-ever New England CMP Games were held at the Camp Ethan Allen Training Site (CEATS) in Vermont, on September 14-18, 2016. This proved to be a great event at a stunningly scenic facility — a paradise for marksmen. Over 150 rifle and pistol competitors ventured to Vermont to enjoy the CMP’s inaugural New England Games, the latest in the CMP’s popular series of major, regional matches.

New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

Here’s the view from the berm, looking back to the firing line…
New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

The 2016 New England CMP Games included a Small Arms Firing School with expert instruction. Both novice shooters and experienced competitors benefitted from the training sessions.

New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

Also featured at the New England Games was a preview of CMP’s electronic outdoor targets that are able to be transported and assembled across the country. For many shooters, this was the first time they were able to try electronic targets.

New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

Competitors were mightily impressed by the breathtaking natural surroundings at the New England Games. “I was blown away by the facilities at Camp Ethan Allen,” said Steve Cooper, CMP North general manger. “The grounds were neatly manicured, our offices for registration and sales were very convenient and the classrooms were perfect for our clinics.”

He went on to say, “As beautiful as the surroundings were, the people were even better. They truly wanted us there and they enjoyed the matches, clinics, and other activities. It will be a pleasure to return next year for an even bigger and better event.”

Many awards were earned at the 2016 New England Games…
New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

Of course, it wouldn’t be a true CMP Games event without a Rimfire Sporter Match.
New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

The CEATS Pistol Range hosted both centerfire and rimfire matches in a lovely, tree-lined setting.
New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

CLICK HERE for a complete list of New England CMP Games match results. Photos from the event are posted on the CMP’s Zenfolio website. Mark your calendars! Next year’s New England CMP Games are scheduled for September 20-24, 2017.

New England Games CMP CEATS SAFS

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September 28th, 2016

Western CMP Games & Creedmoor Cup Matches Coming Soon

CMP Western Games Games Creedmoor Cup Ben Avery

Ready for some action in Arizona? The 13th Annual Western CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup Matches will be held at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, Arizona. The CMP Games run 7-11 October while the Creedmoor Cup Matches take place 12-16 October. All interested shooters are invited to participate in these prestigious, national-level competitions. NOTE: Registration for the Creedmoor Cup matches must be done online via www.creedmoorsports.com.

The CMP Western Games will include the Garand, Springfield, Vintage Military, Modern Military, Rimfire Sporter, Carbine, and Vintage Sniper matches. Along with the shooting matches, the CMP will offer a special CMP Games Match Clinic plus a Small Arms Firing School (Rifle). These training programs can benefit novices as well as experienced shooters. If you need to buy ammo or hardware, the CMP will operate a Sales Booth at Ben Avery all 4 days of Western Games.

Western CMP Games Entry Form | Western CMP Games Online Registration
Western CMP Games & Creedmoor Cup Program | Directions to Ben Avery Range

Creedmoor Cup Schedule and Events
The Creedmoor Cup Matches will begin on October 12th and conclude on October 16th. A great Bar-B-Q on Saturday is included with entry. This year’s Creedmoor Cup schedule includes the following events: High Power Rifle Clinic, Creedmoor Cup Match (2400 point aggregate), 4-Man Team Match, and Creedmoor EIC Match. The Special High Power Shooting Clinic will include lectures, demonstrations and dry-fire training by some of the world’s most talented service rifle marksmen.

CMP Games Creedmoor Cup Ben Avery

Western CMP Games Matches

  • Garand & Springfield Match Clinic
  • John C. Garand Match
  • Springfield Match
  • Vintage Military Rifle Match
  • Small Arms Firing School/M16 Match
  • Rimfire Sporter Match
  • Carbine Match
  • Vintage Sniper Match
  • Modern Military Rifle Match
  • Western Creedmoor Cup Events

  • High Power Rifle Clinic
  • Creedmoor Cup (2400 point aggregate)
  • 4-Man Team Match
  • Creedmoor EIC Match
  • To see a real pro shooting Service Rifle, check out the above video. That’s former National Champion (now Creedmoor Sports G.M.) Dennis DeMille, shooting 300-yard Rapids from the prone position. This was filmed at the 2010 Berger Southwest Nationals at Ben Avery. You’ll see Dennis adjusts his sights while looking through the spotter. Then watch how calm and steady Dennis stays from shot to shot. That comes with years of practice and training.

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    April 16th, 2016

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup Coming Soon

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup

    The 10th Annual Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup Matches will be held at Camp Butner, North Carolina, April 29 through May 8, 2015. The Eastern CMP Games run April 29 through May 3, while the Creedmoor Cup Matches will follow the Eastern Games, May 4-8. Events will include a 4-Man Team Match, Creedmoor Cup Match and EIC Match. All interested shooters are invited to participate in this popular event, which includes: Rimfire Sporter Match, M16 Match, M1 Garand Match, Springfield Match, M1-Carbine Match, Vintage Military Match, Modern Military Match, Vintage Sniper Match, Pistol Matches and more.

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup

    There will also be skills training seesions throughout the week, including a High Power Shooting Clinic, Pistol Clinic, and GSM New Shooter Clinic. The free Team Remington High Power Shooting Clinic will offer instruction by some of the nation’s top High Power service rifle competitors. This will feature lectures, dry fire training, plus lots of hands-on coaching with a large squad of instructors. The Eastern CMP Games will also conduct a Small Arms Firing School (SAFS). The SAFS instruction is geared toward new shooters, so no previous firearm experience is required.

    CMP Games Information Page | CMP Games Registration Page | CMP Games Entry Form.

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup
    The Vintage Sniper Match is a two-person team match, utilizing scoped rifles from the Korean War, World War II or earlier, upon sandbags. Teammates take turns as both shooter and spotter.

    Garand-Springfield-Military New Shooter Clinic
    The Garand-Springfield-Military (GSM) New Shooter Clinic is recommended for all new shooters to the CMP Games, as well as those who may not be firing, but simply would like to learn more about the events. The clinic includes classroom instruction, demonstrations and dry-fire position practice – all led by CMP GSM Master Instructors.

    Great Place to Get Started in Competitive Shooting
    The CMP Games matches are ideal events for shooters who have not participated in previous competitions. Shooters are permitted to coach or assist each other in these matches. Experienced shooters are encouraged to assist new shooters with positions, slings, loading and the rules.

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup

    To learn more about the Eastern CMP Games, email croguski [at] thecmp.org or call (888) 267-0796, extension 714. If you have questions about the Creedmoor Cup contact Dennis DeMille, demille [at] creedmoorsports.com or call (800) 273-3366 M-F, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Central Time.

    Eastern CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup

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    January 9th, 2016

    CMP Releases New 2016 Rulebooks

    CMP Rules 2016 Rulebook service Rifle Changes
    The most important 2016 CMP rule change allows 4.5X (max) optical sights for Service Rifle shooting.

    The new 2016 rulebooks for CMP-governed Service Rifle, Pistol and CMP Games shooting events have just been released. There are some very important changes for 2016, including the authorization of scopes for Service Rifle competition. You can download the new Rulebooks for free with the links below. NOTE: The most important 2016 Rules changes are indicated with underlined text in the new Rulebooks.

    Download: 2016 CMP Competition Rules for Service Rifle and Pistol (20th Edition).
    Download: 2016 Competition Rules for CMP Games Rifle and Pistol Matches (4th Edition).

    CMP Rules 2016 Rulebook service Rifle ChangesThe big rule changes in the 2016 CMP competition rules concern the modernization of CMP Service Rifle standards. Starting in 2016, Service Rifle competitors will be able to choose between service rifles with traditional metallic sights or rifles with telescopes with a maximum of 4.5X magnification. These scopes may be fixed-power or variable, with max 4.5 power zoom. This rule change was coordinated with a similar rule change adopted by the NRA.

    The CMP states: “The decision to legalize optical sights on service rifles was taken after several years of discussion and a recognition that U.S. military personnel no longer use anything but optical sights on their military rifles. CMP Service Rifle rules have traditionally tried to keep abreast of military rifle and training developments so opening Service Rifle shooting to optical sights became an inevitable change. To quote one comment received by the CMP, “It is very difficult now to say that as-issued ‘AR-15 or M16′ does not include telescopes.”

    Another major change in the CMP Service Rifle rules will allow the use of a much wider variety of M16/AR15-type rifles. Legal service rifles will no longer be restricted to rifles that rigidly comply with the M16 service rifle profile. Starting in 2016, Service Rifles can be any “M16 U. S. Service Rifle or a similar AR15 type commercial rifle that is derived from the M16 service rifle design” and that complies with these restrictions:

    • Chambered for the 5.56 x 45 mm (.223) NATO cartridge.
    • Designed or modified for semi-automatic fire only.
    • Have either a gas-impingement system or a piston-operated gas system.
    • Have a barrel that is no longer than 20 inches, or 21 5/8 inches if the barrel has a flash suppressor.
    • Must use the same upper receiver and barrel for the entire match.
    • Have a trigger pull of at least 4.5 pounds.
    • Quad rails or similar hand guards are permitted, but the front sling swivel location must be fixed at 13 ¼ inches (+/- ½ in.) ahead of the forward edge of the magazine well (8.0 inches on M4 configured rifles).
    • Use standard service magazines or commercial equivalents.
    • Have a fixed or collapsible butt-stock that may vary in length and even be adjusted between firing stages. Butt-plates or cheek-pieces may not, however, be adjustable.
    • Have a standard A1 or A2 pistol grip.
    • Extended bolt releases and mirror-image left-hand receivers will be permitted.

    No Weight Limit For Service Rifles
    Before issuing its new rules, the CMP solicited comments. A substantial majority of competitors’ comments supported allowing optical sights and the broadening of the Service Rifle rule. The one rule change that most shooters opposed was a proposed weight limit for Service Rifles with optical sights. After considering these comments, the CMP Rules Committee rejected the the Service Rifle weight limit proposal. Accordingly, in 2016, there will be no weight limits for Service Rifles, whether they have optical or metallic sights.

    Iron Sights and Optics Will Compete in the Same Class
    The CMP considered having optics-equipped Service Rifles in a separate classification. That idea was rejected. So, for 2016 there will be ONE CLASS for all Service Rifles (both iron-sighted and scoped). The CMP observed that “the arguments for having one unified competitor category competing together for EIC points and Distinguished Badges prevailed. Having separate categories and one Distinguished Badge would have created nightmare administrative challenges. Having two categories and separate Distinguished Rifleman Badges for optical and metallic sighted rifles would have become a formula for diminishing the prestige of the traditional Distinguished Rifleman Badge. The final CMP decision was to keep one strong, unified Service Rifle event instead of two smaller categories[.]”

    Rule Change Concerning Malfunctions (No more Alibis)
    Another major Service Rifle rule change will abolish allowing extra time or refires for malfunctions. This change will save time because malfunction refires effectively double the length of time needed for rapid-fire relays in big matches. The main reason for this change is to place more responsibility on competitors for having rifles and ammunition that function with complete reliability. Comments received by the CMP concerning this change showed that it is controversial, but a majority of shooters supported the change. One shooter wrote: “The elimination of “alibis” is long overdue. It was always most frustrating to me when it takes longer to shoot rapid fire than slow fire.”

    Story Tip by Shiraz Balolia of Bullets.com. We welcome reader submissions.
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    September 7th, 2015

    Western CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup Matches Coming Soon

    CMP Western Games Games Creedmoor Cup Ben Avery

    Ready for some action in Arizona? The 12th Western CMP Games and Creedmoor Cup Matches will be held at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, Arizona. The CMP Games run 9-13 October while the Creedmoor Cup Matches dates take place 14-18 October. All interested shooters are invited to participate in these unique, national-level competitions. NOTE: Registration for the Creedmoor Cup matches must be done online via www.creedmoorsports.com.

    CMP Games Creedmoor Cup Ben Avery

    Western CMP Games Entry Form | Western CMP Games Online Registration
    Western CMP Games & Creedmoor Cup Program | Directions to Ben Avery Range

    Western CMP Games Matches

  • Garand & Springfield Match Clinic
  • John C. Garand Match
  • Springfield Match
  • Vintage Military Rifle Match
  • Small Arms Firing School/M16 Match
  • Rimfire Sporter Match
  • Carbine Match
  • Vintage Sniper Match
  • Modern Military Rifle Match
  • Western Creedmoor Cup Events

  • High Power Rifle Clinic
  • Creedmoor Cup (2400 point aggregate)
  • 4-Man Team Match
  • Creedmoor EIC Match
  • To see a real pro shooting Service Rifle, check out the above video. That’s former National Champion (now Creedmoor Sports G.M.) Dennis DeMille, shooting 300-yard Rapids from the prone position. This was filmed at the 2010 Berger Southwest Nationals at Ben Avery. You’ll see Dennis adjusts his sights while looking through the spotter. Then watch how calm and steady Dennis stays from shot to shot. That comes with years of practice and training.

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    July 7th, 2015

    M1 Carbine — Jerry Miculek Demonstrates its Capabilities

    m1 m2 carbine jerry miculek CMP Games Camp Perry

    On July 20th, the CMP M1 Carbine Match will take place as part of the CMP Games and National Trophy Matches held annually at Camp Perry, Ohio. Designed as a lightweight (5.2-lb) combat rifle, the M1 Carbine can be surprisingly accurate (with a good barrel and proper bedding). Over 6.5 million of these compact semi-auto rifles were built, and many are still used today in CMP-sponsored target-shooting competitions. Chambered for the .30 Carbine round, the M1 Carbine shoots a 110-grain bullet at approximately 1970 fps through an 18″ barrel. The light weight and low recoil of the M1 Carbine make it fun to shoot. In the video below, legendary competitive shooter Jerry Miculek shows just how much fun you can have with an M1 Carbine. Jerry shows the little rifle’s capabilities in rapid fire. Jerry also talks about the history of the M1 Carbine and its variants.

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    April 15th, 2015

    Camp Perry National Matches Featured on Shooting USA TV

    This evening (Wednesday, April 15th), Shooting USA television spotlights the National Matches and CMP events at Camp Perry, Ohio. This is a “must-watch” episode for anyone interested in High Power shooting. The National Matches at Camp Perry are the World Series of American shooting sports, attracting the nation’s top pistol and rifle marksmen. There are individual competitions, such as the Vintage Sniper Match, or the M1 Garand Match featuring legendary firearms. Then there’s the National Trophy Infantry Team Match, known as the Rattle Battle among competitors, simulating an assault by an Infantry Squad. Catch this episode of Shooting USA on the Outdoor Channel. Vintage military rifle fans take note — this week’s show also features an American classic, the m1903 Springfield.

    Shooting USA Television Camp Perry

    Shooting USA Wednesday Broadcast Times on the Outdoor Channel:

    Eastern Time – 3:30 PM, 9:00 PM, 12:30 AM (Thursday)
    Central Time – 2:00 PM, 8:00 PM, 11:30 PM
    Mountain Time – 1:30 PM, 7:00 PM, 10:00 PM
    Pacific Time – 12:00 Noon, 6:00 PM, 9:30 PM

    NRA National MatchesThe 1903 Springfield on Tonight’s Show
    The U.S. Rifle, Model of 1903, better known as the 03 Springfield, continues to attract praise today. While its design was initially borrowed, its accuracy, quality and service record proved to be a fine military bolt-action rifle in the trenches of WW I and on into World War II. “It was a beautifully made gun, extremely, extremely well balanced,” says Firearms Historian Garry James.

    History of the National Matches and Camp Perry
    In 1903, President Theodore Roosevelt’s vision of skilled marksmen among American citizens came to life as the National Matches; civilians on the firing line with the service weapon of the day, preparing for training in case of a time of war. T.R.’s vision is now a tradition, attracting thousands of people for five weeks of shooting competitions each year at Camp Perry in Ohio.

    NRA National Matches

    The National Matches have been held at Camp Perry since 1907. The range is located along the shores of Lake Erie in northern Ohio near Port Clinton. The site was first acquired in 1906, in response to the need for a larger facility for military training and the NRA’s shooting programs. In 1906 Gen. Ammon B. Crichfield, Adjutant General of Ohio, ordered construction of a new shooting facility on the shores of Lake Erie, 45 miles east of Toledo, Ohio. The original land for Camp Perry was purchased in 1906, and the reservation was named after Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry, the American naval commander who won the Battle of Put-in-Bay during the War of 1812.

    On August 19, 1907, Cpl. L. B. Jarrett fired the first shot at the new Camp Perry Training Site. And that year, 1907, Camp Perry held its first National Pistol and Rifle Championship events. This location has hosted the annual NRA National Matches ever since. Today, over 4,000 competitors attend the National Matches each year, making it the most popular shooting competition in the western hemisphere.

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    April 5th, 2015

    CMP Games Oklahoma Will Be Held April 8-12, 2015

    Oklahoma CMP Games

    The 2015 Oklahoma CMP Gameswill be held at the Oklahoma City Gun Club next week, April 8-12, 2015. The popular OK Games will feature clinics, SAFS/M16 match, EIC Rifle Match, GSMM Four-Gun Aggregate, Vintage Sniper Match, CMP As-Issued 1911 Pistol Match, Military & Police Service Pistol Match, EIC Pistol match, and several other events! All events will take place at the OKC Gun Club’s Range in Arcadia. Visit the CMP Website for more details and to register.

    CMP Games - Oklahoma

    Oklahoma CMP Games Resources

    Oklahoma CMP Games

    Below, Leon Rutherford, CMP Master Instructor, helps a shooter on the firing line during the CMP Small Arms Firing School. The SAFS teaches safety, positions, how to load and clear the rifle, how to loop a sling and prepare for practice firing. Students are issued AR-15 rifles to use during the school and will fire the M16 EIC Rifle Match.

    CMP oklahoma
    The young shooter IS wearing eye protection, an all-clear set of plastic glasses.

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