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November 6th, 2022

.375 and .408 CheyTac Brass for ELR from Peterson Cartridge

Peterson .375 Cartridge Brass Cheytac K02M

Do you have a hankering to shoot Extreme Long Range (ELR)? Then you’ll want a large-caliber cartridge with plenty of boiler room. Some of the most successful ELR cartridges have been based on the CheyTac family, including the .375 CheyTac (9.5×77) and .408 CheyTac (10.36 x 77). Now brass for both these jumbo cartridges is offered by Peterson Cartridge. This Peterson Cheytac brass has proven to be tough and long-lived. And it is capable of winning — Derek Rodgers won the 2017 King of 2 Miles (K02M) event shooting a .375 Cheytac with Peterson brass. Here’s a report on how Peterson developed and tested its tough CheyTac cartridge brass.

Developing and Testing CheyTac Brass

Report by Peterson Cartridge Co.
Our president, Derek Peterson, has live-tested our most recent iteration of the .375 CheyTac (aka 9.5 X 77). He started with five casings, and did a full-body resizing after each firing. He got 17 firings out of each before he started to notice the early signs of case head separation. [Editor: Theses were with extremely high pressure loads.] He then took another set of casings and after each firing he just bumped the shoulder back, like a typical reloader would. He got 20 firings out of those casings.

Peterson .375 Cartridge Brass Cheytac K02M
Note: CheyTac® is a registered trademark of CheyTac USA, LLC. Peterson Cartridge has no affiliation.

Low MV Extreme Spread
On the first two shots the muzzle velocities were within 12 feet per second of each other. On the 3rd and 4th shots the muzzle velocities were within 6 feet per second of each other. By the 5th shot the muzzle velocities were within 1 foot per second of each other. Now that is how you can put two bullets in the same hole down range.

No SAAMI Spec for CheyTac Cartridges
As many of you probably already know there is no SAAMI spec on these calibers. So, without a SAAMI spec there is no stated maximum pressure for a service load. However, there IS an international spec on the .408 [promulgated by the] CIP (Commission International Permanente). And the CIP max pressure for this round is extremely high. Our partner in Europe tells us it is probably unnecessarily high. Our partner loads these rounds and they have a standard load for the .375s which is also quite high. So that is the pressure we did our testing at. To even achieve that pressure, we had to use a compressed load. We are explaining all this to say that you [should not use] a load that hot, and therefor you will most likely get more reloads than we did[.]

Peterson Brass Goes Through 11 Dimensional Tests
With all the casings we make in any caliber, we perform a battery of in-process, real-time dimensional checks. [We test] 11 different dimensions continuously throughout each shift. Some of these are tube cylindricity, mouth to body concentricity, primer pocket diameter, length to shoulder, overall length, and more. These measurements are automatically fed into Statistical Process Control software. If a dimension begins to drift from nominal we can catch it immediately and correct it.

Peterson is Fully Committed to CheyTac Brass Production
Peterson Cartridge purchased additional manufacturing equipment designed specifically to produce these large casings. Our capacity is 5-million casings a year. We are committed to there not being a shortage of these calibers ever again.

.375 CheyTac — K02M-Winning, World-Beating Cartridge

Derek Rodgers is the 2017 King of 2 Miles. He is also the first-ever human to ever hit the maximum distance target target at 3368 yards (1.91 miles) in competition. His cartridge choice? The .375 CheyTac. Derek ran Cutting Edge Bullets in Peterson brass with Hodgdon H50BMG powder.

Q: Why did you choose the .375 CheyTac cartridge?

Derek: When I was asked to join the Applied Ballistics Team, I needed to get an ELR rifle built in a short period of time. I was under a very tight time schedule to get the project complete. In an effort to eliminate variables, I decided to keep things standard and as simple as possible. I chose the .375 CheyTac for the ease of getting components. The larger rifles are more difficult to get components quickly and I felt like the .375 CheyTac had enough attributes to be competitive at ELR distances.

.375 Cheytac Derek Rodgers KO2M King 2 miles

.375 Cheytac Derek Rodgers KO2M King 2 miles

Product Tip from EdLongrange. We welcome reader submissions.
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September 25th, 2022

Sunday GunDay: .416 Barrett for King of 2 Miles Competition

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Today we feature a big-caliber rifle used for the most prestigious Extreme Long Range (ELR) competition, the King of 2 Miles. This rifle was built for Derek Rodgers, a talented shooter with amazing credentials. An F-TR World Champion, Derek is the only shooter to have won the F-Open USA National Championship AND the F-TR USA National Championship. Derek also won the 2017 King of 2 Miles competition. Last Sunday GunDay we featured the 33XC rifle used by Clay Rhoden to capture the inaugural American King of 1 Mile competition. That story was quite popular, so this Sunday we offer an even more powerful rig, Derek’s .416 Barrett with a massive 40″ barrel.

Derek Rodgers won the King of 2 Miles competition in 2017, so he knows all about Extreme Long Range (ELR) shooting. While Derek won his 2017 KO2M title shooting the .375 CheyTac cartridge, Derek decided that something even bigger was in order. So Derek commissioned this impressive ELR rifle chambered for the jumbo .416 Barrett cartridge. This big round drives heavy Cutting Edge solid bullets from 475 to 550 grains in weight.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Here’s the Big Rig that delivers those .416-caliber projectiles. This monster rifle weighs 40+ pounds and sports a 40″ Bartlein barrel — more length for more velocity. Derek’s ELR rifle features a McMillan Beast 2 stock, BAT EX action, and Nightforce ATACR 7-35x56mm scope. Derek explained why he moved up to a bigger caliber: “I built a new rifle with the anticipation of seeing impacts easier. It was not just a larger caliber being more effective on hitting ELR targets, but rather hoping that a missed shot would have a much larger impact. Impacts beyond a mile become harder to see due to terrain and vegetation. So any added dust or splash erupting from the earth is a decisive benefit over an equally-accurate smaller caliber.” Here is Derek’s full report on his .416 Barrett rifle.

Derek Rodgers Campaigns a .416 Barrett

Report by Derek Rodgers
Cartridge Choice — I chose a standard .416 Barrett cartridge as it allows for bullets up to and slightly exceeding 550 grains. It really does bridge the gap between the .375 variants and a 50 BMG. There are several great solid ELR bullet options from manufactures like Cutting Edge that range from 475-550 grains. These offer a variety of extremely high BC options for barrels that have different twist rates. Most loads will utilize the slowest burn rate powders commercially available. Good options are Vihtavuori 20N29, RL50, H50BMG and other powders with a similar burn rate.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Shooting the .416 — Tamer than Expected
An initial observation is that the rifle is very controllable and feels much like a larger F-TR gun. The rifle weighs 40+ pounds, balanced and stays on target very well. The recoil is manageable and linear. This seems to give a straight rearward impulse that does not affect positioning. This allows for quick repositioning into battery and faster follow-up shots.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

.416 Barrett
Image courtesy ELR competitor Corbin Shell.

Rifle Details — BAT EX Action, Bartlein 40″ Barrel, McMillan Beast 2 Stock
Derek’s .416 Barrett ELR Rig features a BAT EX action with a Bix’N Andy trigger. Out front is a gigantic 40″ long, 1:9″-twist Bartlein barrel fitted with a Terminator T5 muzzle brake. The handsome McMillan Beast 2 stock combines a lower center of gravity design with a higher butt location. Given that high butt geometry, McMillan cleverly fitted the higher buttpad with a port allowing the cleaning rod to pass through (see photo below). On top is a Nightforce ATACR 7-35x56mm scope in NF rings on a +60 MOA rail, with Holland 34mm bubble level. The stock is supported by a Phoenix bipod and rests in an Edgewood bag designed for the McMillan Xit F-TR stock.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Note the extended Buttpad height. That helps with recoil in prone position. This McMillan Beast 2 stock includes a pass-through hole for the cleaning rod.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Derek Rodgers Wins 2017 Ko2M with 3368-Yard Hit
Back in 2017, Derek Rodgers won the King of 2 Miles Competition at Raton, New Mexico. Derek, shooting with Team Applied Ballistics, was the first KO2M marksman in history to hit the target at the maximum 3368-yard (1.91 mile) distance. Here’s that historic shot:

At the 2017 K02M, with his McMillan-stocked .375 CheyTac rifle, Derek shot brilliantly from the start. He was perfect — without a miss — at the first three yardages: 1543, 1722, and 1888. He had some misses at 1953 and 2667 yards, but then he out-shot all competitors at 3028 yards, going two for five. No other shooter managed a single hit at 3028 yards. Then it all came down to the big one — the last (and greatest) challenge, the target at 3368 yards (1.91 miles). Derek nailed it… and the celebrations began.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico
Here’s Derek with his 2017 Ko2M-winning .375 CheyTac rifle. Now he’s stepped up in bore size.

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

Gunsmithing by Blake Barrel and Rifle in Arizona
Derek’s rifle was built and chambered by Bryan Blake of Blake Barrel and Rifle in Phoenix, Arizona. The chambering was done with a Manson Precision reamer. Derek explains: “Bryan and his family have been in the machine shop business for several generations and have the expertise and equipment to handle larger barrel diameters associated with F-Class to ELR-type rigs. I tried to consider all angles and potential pitfalls that might occur during the building process. However, Bryan added his own touches to make the project his own. He truly created a work of art and supplied a turn-key rifle that is meticulously built from the inside out and looks as great as the tolerances it holds.”

Derek Rodgers .416 Barrett ELR KO2M king of 2 miles Beast 2 McMillan stock Nightforce ATACR scope extreme long range New Mexico

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September 18th, 2022

Sunday GunDay: Clay Rhoden Wins King of 1 Mile Match in Texas

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

A novice long-range competitor is now the first-ever USA King of 1 Mile. Clay Rhoden, the talented head honcho of Longshot (target cameras), won the match with a superb performance. Clay hit every single shot, without a miss, for the first five targets, all the way out to 1699 yards. There were two additional targets beyond one mile — Target 6 at 1909 yards and Target 7 at 2391 yards. Clay went 4 for 10 at these longer distances, but his perfect shooting out to 1699 yards still gave him a comfortable margin of victory.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder
Amazing FACT: Clay Won the 2022 USA Ko1M in only his sixth shooting match ever!

In winning the 2022 Ko1M match, Clay beat some living legends, including David Tubb, a 6-time NRA Nat’l Long Range Champion and 2019 NRA ELR HG Champ. Clay’s remarkable victory is doubly impressive if you consider that Clay had previously shot only five other rifle matches (at any distance) in his whole life. This was truly a stellar win for a new shooter. Huge congrats to Clay and his Global Precision Group (GPG) team. Clay’s GPG teammate Ray Gross took second overall.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Clay earned his one-mile Ko1M title shooting a very accurate 33XC rifle with BAT action, Bartlein barrel, Manners ELR Light stock, Bix’N Andy trigger, and a Nightforce ATACR 7-35x56mm scope. The ammo, which was developed and loaded by Paul Phillips, featured Berger 300gr Hybrid OTM bullets in Peterson brass pushed by Vihtavuori N565 powder and Federal 215 primers.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

2022 King of 1 Mile USA Championship — The Winning Formula

Report by Clay Rhoden, Longshot Target Cameras
The 2022 (first ever) USA King of 1 Mile event is a match I will not soon forget! Before going any further, I want to thank Jay Monych and Alex Cordesman for putting this match together and for opening each day with prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance.

This was only my sixth match ever to shoot and boy was it a blast! I had no expectations going into the match and my focus was on trying to stay calm and collected. I didn’t shoot until the second day, but my teammate, Ray Gross, shot on the first day. I thought we did OK during his qualification run, but I felt that I let him down as a spotter by under-doping the wind calls on the first two targets. Regardless, it was enough to get him into the finals and gave him another shot at the win.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

When it was my turn to shoot, I did my best to keep my heart rate down and keep from getting excited. I also prayed throughout the day and prior to shooting, asking the Lord to help me win if it was His will, and to help me gracefully accept the loss if it wasn’t. Additionally, I asked that If I won, He use the win to His glory, and He has and is! My wife and I are going through the beginning stages of the domestic adoption process and the first bit of real money will be due soon and what do you know, it just so happens to be $4,000, the exact amount of money that I won in the match!

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder
The top 19 shooters advanced to the Ko1M FINAL (Targets 5,6,7). In 20th, Paul Phillips just missed out.

My prayers were answered, and I was the only shooter to pull off a flawless run during the qualifier, going 3 for 3 on Targets 1-4. That secured us the top spot going into the finals and after randomizing the list, I remained at the top as 1st shooter in the finals and Ray as the 3rd. Conditions during the finals were worse as it was later in the day and the mirage had really come out to play. I was able to continue my flawless run onto T5 going 5 for 5, then I got 1st, 3rd, and 5th round impacts on T6, and a 4th round on T7. Thankfully, that was enough to secure the win.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Rifle, Scope, and Ammo
I was shooting a brand new 33XC rifle that had about 30 rounds through the barrel from practicing before the match. The gun has a BAT Machine left-hand feed, right-hand eject action, Bartlein barrel, sitting in a Manners F-Class stock with a modified custom TCS weight-tuning butt system. On top was a Nightforce ATACR 7-35x56mm FFP MOAR scope with NF high rings. The BAT action was bedded by Alex Sitman with machine work by GA Precision. The stock allowed me to add a good bit of weight to the back of the gun. That combined with a Tubb 5-star muzzle brake created a smooth and predictable recoil that allowed me to stay on target and help spot my impacts.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder
Team GPG Captain Paul Phillips loaded all the Ammo for Clay Rhoden and other Team GPG members.

Equally important if not more important than the rifle is the ammunition, and I have to give credit where credit is due. Paul Phillips loaded all the ammunition for the whole team and it shot lights out. We used Peterson Brass, Federal 215M primers, Vihtavuori N565 powder, and Berger 300gr Hybrid OTM bullets. During the match we observed that the guns and ammo performed so consistently shot after shot, that if we got an impact, we just need to run the same hold because the gun is going to put the next round in the exact same spot as the last one.

I was asked “What did your wife and kids say when you put on your crown?” The first thing my wife said when I put it on was, “You look like a whitewalker from Game of Thrones.” I’m not sure what to think of that but she did have a point. My kids thought it was cool and I tried tell them that I was a King now and that they were going to have to listen better, but they saw straight through that.

Preparation for the King of 1 Mile Match
I received my rifle a few weeks before the match and shot it for the first time only a couple of days before the match during a team practice at the Kaian Vista Ranch, a central Texas ranch owned by GPG teammate James Devoglaer. Upon arriving at his ranch, we zeroed the guns, confirmed velocities, and checked to make sure that everything was level. After that, we practiced team communication and spotting on the KVR’s long-range hunter course with 6.5 Creedmoors and then did a couple simulated matches with our competition rifles on the KVR’s ELR course. This allowed us to practice communication between shooter and spotter, as well as verify the predictions from our Kestrels. This practice significantly boosted my confidence going into the match!

Wind Calls and Spotting
In ELR, this is where the team really comes into play, and thankfully, Team GPG just happens to have some of the best wind callers in the world. I shot on the second day of the match and while I was doing my best to stay calm before shooting, my teammates were discussing the wind and the anomalies they had experienced when they shot and factoring all of that into our starting wind calls. Once our time began, it was up to Ray and I to get it right and Ray was on top of it! We were able to make first-round impacts on Targets 1 (1263 yards) through Target 6 (1909 yards). On T7 (2391 yards) our assumption about what the wind was wrong and cost us a couple impacts but thankfully, we were able to parlay those learnings and capitalize on them when it was Ray’s turn to shoot. Ray and I were shooters 3rd and 1st respectively in the finals, which was good from the perspective of applying what we had just learned from when I shot, but bad for me because I was the wind guinea pig for everyone in the finals.

Becoming Part of Team GPG
I lucked into being part of Team GPG last year when I went to help Paul run our Longshot cameras during a team practice. After the practice Paul asked if I wanted to shoot his .416 Barrett and of course I couldn’t say no to that, so I got behind the gun and shot a 4″ group at 2000 yards. A few weeks later, Paul asked if I wanted to join the team and the rest is history. I was just fortunate enough, as a completely inexperienced shooter, to get on a team with some of the best shooters in the world!

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powderBeing part of a team and trusting your teammates is such a critical part of ELR and I couldn’t ask for a better team. Each one of us comes from a different background and has different specialties, and we do an excellent job of leveraging all of that to perform at the highest level. Paul and Ray have years of experience shooting competitively. James has years of experience with competitive shooting, hunting, and training, while I have experience with cameras and technology that helps to verify our impacts. Additionally, we are all shooting clone rifles and can instantly leverage what we learn during the match from one shooter to the rest of the team. Paul Phillips even also helped design the new Manners ELR Light stock we used.

Big Prize Table and Major Cash Awards
The sponsors really stepped up for this match and donated $65,000 – $70,000 worth of prizes plus $5,500 in cash! It was an awesome experience being called up first, getting a trophy, belt buckle, and giant check for first place. I also got to walk the prize table first and got an amazing custom lightweight hunting rifle in .30 Nosler from Alamo Precision Rifles (see photo). At this point, I think it’s definitely fair to say that I’m hooked!

Now it’s time to prepare for our next match, the King of 2 Miles. Hopefully, Lord willing, Team GPG will be able to pull off more podium finishes at the end of September.

Conclusion: Philippians 4:13 states “I can do all things through Christ, who gives me strength.” There is no way I could have done this without my faith in God and without my team! I am so blessed and grateful to be able to say that I won the King of 1 Mile!

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Longshot Products — How They Are Employed for ELR

There is no way that I would have been in this sport or even aware of the sport if it weren’t for the products we make at Longshot. Originally, rather than buying a spotting scope or binoculars, I developed our long-range camera system to solve the problem of seeing my shots at 100 yards to help zero my first rifle. Shortly thereafter, I was introduced to the idea of 1000-yard shooting. Then, not too long after, I was introduced to Extreme Long Range (ELR) shooting.

For all these disciplines, our Longshot target cameras solve the problem of being able to see and confirm impacts, no matter the condition. And the “reach” of the system is great. The current Longshot LR-3 UHD camera has a guaranteed 2-mile range with open terrain.

As a relatively new shooter and novice long-range and extreme long-range shooter, Longshot cameras have played a critical role in my development as a shooter. With our cameras, I’m able to instantly and precisely associate environmental conditions or a breakdown in fundamentals to a specific result on the target. I truly believe that this along with the people that I have met while running this business have helped me to achieve so much so quickly.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Longshot Hawk Spotting Scope Cameras Used During Ko1M Match
While our long range UHD targets cameras can only be used for scoring during a match, Team GPG uses Longshot’s Hawk Spotting Scope Camera to take pictures of the targets prior to the match and create plot books for each shooter. We then use these to take notes and call corrections during the match. This process helped me get a fourth round impact on T7 during the match. We were able to see a super small poof of dust, plot it on our sheet and call a precise correction to bring us on target.

Click Arrow to Watch Hawk Spotting Scope Camera Video
Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder


Background Report from Paul Phillips, Team GPG Captain

Team GPG approached the 2022 inaugural USA King of 1 Mile event the same as we approached the 2019 King of 2 Miles where we finished 1st, 3rd, and 4th out of 80 shooters. This year, at the Ko1M in Texas, we had the same amazing results with first-place and second-place finishes out of 94 Ko1M competitors.

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Our team GPG approach begins with making sure our rifles and ammunition are producing half-MOA or better accuracy along with single-digit SDs. We then make sure we have very accurate 100-yard zeros and our optics are plumb and level.

We then utilize a custom PDM (Personalized Drag Model) from Applied Ballistics and verify all of our ballistics with multiple Kestrels and Applied Ballistics analytics.

Once this all matches up, then we simply input all of the distances and environmentals and we are ready for competition. For wind calling we use the Kestrel for wind speed and direction and use analytics to get the values. Just before we shoot we register any last second pick-ups or let-offs to start shooting.

For team communications and team work we spent the day at the KVR ranch located in Lometa, TX owned by Team GPG member James Deboglaer. James put us through his hunter course and we used this as a way to communicate and make sure we were on the same page.

With good elevations and wind along with great team work and communications we were able to produce our first- and second-place results.

Paul Phillips Crafted All the Ammunition and Did Load Development
Paul told us: “I’m doing all of the load development, loading ammo, ballistics and initial wind estimations for my shooters. I also did all the ballistics solutions using AB Analytics.”

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

Rifle Specifications and Components
All the team’s guns and ammo were GPG spec 33XC builds, with ammunition loaded by Paul Phillips. Clay’s 33XC round has the 300gr Bergers running 3250 FPS MV. GPG team rifles feature these components:

BAT actions
Bartlein barrels
Bix’N Andy triggers
Manners ELR Light stock
Nightforce ATACR scopes
Accutac bipod

GA Precision Gunsmithing
Paul Phillips Load Dev
Alex Sitman bedding
Manson Reamers
Hollands level
Tubb brakes

Berger 300gr Hybrid OTM .338 Cal bullet
Peterson cartridge brass
Vihtavouri N565 powder
Fed 215 primer

Clay Rhoden Longshot cameras King of 1 one mile ELR texas long range match 33XC Berger bullets Peterson Brass Vihtavuori powder

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June 9th, 2022

Big Presses for Jumbo-Sized Cartridges Used in the ELR Game

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

In the ELR game, particularly the King of 2 Miles (KO2M), it’s “go big or go home”. The top shooters run large-capacity cartridges that push large-caliber, ultra-high BC bullets at very high velocities. Bullets launched by cartridges such as the .416 Barrett can sustain supersonic velocities at Extreme Long Ranges — and that’s what it takes to win. The .416 Barrett can launch a 550-grain solid bullet at 3000+ FPS.

.416 Barrett cartridge ELR .50 BMG RCBS press
Photo from ELR Competitor Corbin Shell.

2018 and 2019 Kings of 2 Miles Loaded on RCBS Presses
So how do you load jumbo cartridges such as the .416 Barrett? It takes a big, heavy, super-strong reloading press. We’ve learned that two recent King of 2 Miles champions, Paul Phillips (2019) and Robert Brantley (2018) both loaded their KO2M ammo on RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG presses. Phillips loaded .416 Barrett ammo, while Brantley loaded a similar .416 MCS cartridge.

In 2018, Robert Brantley topped the field using his custom .416 MCS cartridge. Then in 2019, Paul Phillips won the K02M competition shooting a .416 Barrett, with Brantley a close second. Both Phillips and Brantley use the RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG single stage press kit and RCBS .416 Barrett dies to hand-load for extreme long-range. “My ammo has been much more consistent after switching to the RCBS press and dies,” remarked Phillips, who runs the Global Precision Group. Brantley said he uses RCBS products for most of his reloading needs — from the dies and AmmoMaster, to the ChargeMaster and Brass Boss. His custom .416 MCS loads launch a 550-grain bullet more than 3,100 fps.

Ko2m king two miles ELR .416 Barrett cheytac .50 BMG Extreme long range press

Loading with RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG Press
This video shows reloading with the RCBS AmmoMaster .50 BMG press. While this video shows .50 BMG cases being loaded, the principles are the same for loading the .416 Barrett cartridge or other big rounds. Big cases need big presses!

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June 1st, 2022

Big Boomer .50 BMG Boasts Impressive Half-MOA Accuracy

.50 BMG Richard King Texas half-MOA

A few seasons ago, Texas gunsmith Richard King built an impressive .50 BMG target rifle for a customer. Equipped with a beefy McMillan stock, this rig has delivered some very impressive accuracy. Check out that target shot during break-in. Using On Target software, we measured this 3-shot group at 0.476″ or 0.454 MOA. Not bad for a beast with VERY serious recoil. Do you think you could beat that 0.476″ with your AR15 shooting puny .223-caliber bullets?

.50 BMG Richard King Texas half-MOA
Compare the dimensions of that massive 50-Cal action to a Rem 700 action in the middle. When you’re shooting a Fifty, size matters!

On Facebook, some folks were surprised a guy could wring that kind of accuracy out of a monster .50 BMG. One wag posted: “Yikes! He will need flinch therapy after shooting that beast.”

Another Facebooker joked: “When shooting a .50 BMG you say…In your best Crocodile Dundee voice…that’s not a gun, THIS is a gun!”

Richard King responded that this customer has quite a bit of experience with jumbo-caliber rifles: “Remember this is the guy that shot a .338 Lapua in a two-day F-Class match. Recoil might actually be easier on this 50, given the fact that it has more weight and a brake.”

.50 BMG Richard King Texas half-MOA

Richard King showed us the monster 13-lb BAT action for this rifle at the 2018 Berger SWN. Honestly, the big BAT .50 BMG action was HUGE — with the bolt fully extended it was the size of your forearm (to the finger tips). Richard joked “This weighs almost as much as an F-TR rifle (before optic) all by itself”.

Richard King Berger SWN BAT action

Specialty Tools for the Big .50 BMG
Yes, the .50 BMG is one huge cartridge. Thankfully, there are some special tools for loading the jumbo-size round. Giraud Tool produces a specialty comparator for the 50-Cal cartridge. The double-ended .50 BMG comparator is quite versatile. In one orientation you can measure base-to-ogive bullet length and also measure cartridge OAL from rim to bullet ogive. When reversed, you can use the comparator to measure cartridge headspace. Priced at $33.00, Giraud 50 BMG Comparator gauge is constructed of 303 stainless and fits most any vernier, dial, or digital caliper. CLICK HERE for more info.

Giraud Tools 50 BMG comparator gauge

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March 11th, 2022

Big Bore Brilliance — Paul Phillips Optimizes the .416 Barrett

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets

Paul Phillips Ko2mPaul Phillips is a past King of 2 Miles, and one of the world’s top Extreme Long Range (ELR) Shooters. He recently showcased one of his ELR rifles that shoots the .416 Barrett cartridge with huge, 550gr Cutting Edge bullets seated in CNC-machined RCC (Robertson Cartridge Company) brass that costs $10 per case.

Even with these giant-sized cartridges, Paul Phillips is getting remarkable accuracy. He recently went out to a snow-covered rifle range to do some testing. We include some test results in this article. Paul’s rig delivered 1.056″ to 1.748″ 3-shot groups at 500 yards. That’s .202 to .335 MOA for three shots. (1 MOA = 1.047″ at 100 yards, or 5.235″ at 500 yards). That’s very impressive accuracy for such a big cartridge with serious recoil.

Confidence is Gained from Consistent Accuracy

Report by Paul Phillips
After being retired from my 30 years of service in military and law enforcement, I started my own company, Global Precision Group LLC. We specialize in Long range shooting. I am currently doing some R&D for a new ammunition company, Ultimate Ammunition, (UA) out of Las Vegas. UA specializes in Military, Law Enforcement, and Custom ammunition.

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets
global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets

On this particular day, it was a very cool 15 degrees F. I was testing ammunition for the .416 Barrett. Since winning the King of 2 Miles in 2019, my team has been looking at ways to make everything better. The competition is fierce and everyone is getting better and better. Finding single-digit Standard Deviations (SDs) is a must. Holding SDs under 5 FPS can be what it takes to win.

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bulletsAfter several weeks of testing, I think I found the perfect combination for the .416 Barrett in my rifle. My optimal load runs about 3000 FPS using the following components:

Cutting Edge 550 Grain Solid Bullets with Tips

RCC Brass (CNC-machined)

Vihtavuori 20N29 Powder

RWS primers

Loaded for ~3000 FPS load velocity goal

I figure if I can keep my 3-round groups under two inches consistently, I have a chance to win on any Sunday. The average group size of these groups was 1.47 inches at 500 yards. With big bore rifles it gets very costly to test. That is why I am limiting my test groups to 3 rounds. See below:

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets
global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets
global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets

Note the single-digit Extreme Spread and SD for all of these three-shot groups, as recorded by the LabRadar (see below). The average SD for these three groups at 500 yards was about three.

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets
NOTE: This is an animated GIF with THREE images, alternating every 4.5 seconds.

Not just the ammunition deserves credit. I also have to give credit to the quality Manson reamer, BAT action, Bartlein Barrel, Bix’N Andy trigger, Manners ELR stock, Nightforce Optic, and Accu-Tac bipod with my new P skis. All these gear/hardware items, combined with quality ammunition, allow these kind of groups.

Products featured in this article include:

Accu-Tac Bipods
Bartlein Barrel
BAT Machine Action
Bix’N Andy Trigger
CROSSTAC Shooting Mat
Cutting Edge Bullets
Edgewood Shooting Bag
Kestrel with Ballistics
LabRadar
LongShot Cameras
Manners Composite Stock
Manson Precision Reamer
Nightforce Optics
RCBS Press and Tools
RCC (CNC-machined) Brass
Vihtavuori Powder

global precision group ELR .416 barrett RCC machined brass 500 yards solid Cutting Edge bullets
For more information, visit GlobalPrecisionGroup.com, and the GPG Facebook Page.

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December 19th, 2021

How to Read the Wind — Expert Tips from Emil Praslick III

Berger Bullets Applied Ballistics Wind Reading Zero direction speed windy

Emil Praslick III is widely recognized as one of the greatest wind wizards on the planet — a master at identifying wind value and direction, and predicting wind cycles. As coach of the USAMU and top civilian teams, Emil has helped win many high-level championships. In the three videos we feature today, Emil, who works with Capstone Precision Group (Berger, Lapua, SK, Vihtavuori) and Team Applied Ballistics, explains how to determine wind direction and velocity using a variety of indicators. Praslick, now retired from the U.S. Army, was an 18-time National and 2-time World Champion coach with the USAMU.

Video ONE: Wind Theory Basics — Understanding “Wind Values”

In this video from UltimateReloader.com, Emil explains the basics of modern wind theory. To properly understand the effect of the wind you need to know both the velocity of the wind and its angle. The combination of those variables translates to the wind value. Emil also explains that the wind value may not be constant — it can cycle both in speed and velocity. Emil also explains some of the environmental conditions such as mirage that can reveal wind conditions.

Emil Praslick III Berger SWN Wind calling reading

Video TWO: Determining the Direction of the Wind

Key Point in Video — Find the Boil
Emil explains how to determine wind direction using optic. The method is to use spotting scope, riflescope, or binoculars to look for the “Boil” — the condition in mirage when the light waves rising straight up. The wind will generate that straight-up, vertical boil in your optics when it is blowing directly at you, or directly from your rear. To identify this, traverse your scope or optics until you see the boil running straight up. When you see that vertical boil, the direction your optic is pointing is aligned with the wind flow (either blowing towards you or from directly behind you).

Video THREE: The No Wind Zero Setting

In this second video, Emil defines the “No-Wind Zero”, and explains why competitive shooters must understand the no-wind zero and have their sights or optics set for a no-wind zero starting point before heading to a match. In order to hit your target, after determining wind speed and direction, says Emil, “you have to have your scope setting dialed to ‘no wind zero’ first.”

Emil Praslick III KO2M

Coach of Champions — Emil Praslick III
SFC Emil Praslick III, (U.S. Army, retired) works with Berger Bullets and Applied Ballistics. Emil served as the Head Coach of the U.S. National Long Range Rifle Team and Head Coach of the USAMU for several years. Teams coached by Emil have won 33 Inter-Service Rifle Championships. On top of that, teams he coached set 18 National records and 2 World Records. Overall, in the role of coach, Praslick can be credited with the most team wins of any coach in U.S. Military history.

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October 12th, 2021

Nightforce Wedge Prism: +50 or +100 MOA Elevation for ELR

Nightforce Wedge Prism optic ELR Elevation device

In our most recent Sunday GunDay story featuring 2021 QUEEN of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul, we provided a full equipment list for Lindsey’s winning .375 CheyTac rifle. Readers noted that this big rig was equipped with a Nightforce Wedge Prism mounted forward of the riflescope. Lindsey used the Wedge Prism on her two most distant targets in the KO2M finals, which were placed at 3166 (1.8 miles) and 3520 yards (2 miles). Readers were curious about the Wedge Prism and wondered how to get one.

Nightforce Wedge Prism KO2M lindsey Paul 2021

Basically the device, which is offered in +50 MOA and +100 MOA versions, allows a major increase in elevation over what is available by cranking the elevation knob on the scope. Even with an angled rail offering +40 MOA elevation, few, if any, conventional scopes have enough elevation to put the reticle on targets two miles away. The Nightforce Wedge Prism is the answer. The Wedge Prism optically shifts the incoming image to the scope, effectively augmenting the scope’s vertical elevation travel.

Nightforce Wedge Prism — Gain Elevation for ELR Shooting

The Nightforce Wedge Prism is offered in two variants, 50 MOA or 100 MOA, that install forward of the riflescope to increase the effective elevation travel. The Wedge Prism optically shifts the incoming image to the riflescope by a precise elevation value, which directly adds to the available elevation travel within the riflescope. The Wedge Prism is designed to work optimally with 56mm front objectives. Nightforce says you can position two Wedge Prisms in parallel for maximum effect — up to 200 MOA total. These NF Wedge Prisms are pricey — MSRP is $990.00 for either the 50 MOA or 100 MOA version. However EuroOptic does currently have 50 MOA Demo models for $769.00.

Nightforce Wedge Prism optic ELR Elevation device

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October 10th, 2021

SunDay GunDay: Queen of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul — .375 CheyTac

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Hail to the Queen — the new Queen of 2 Miles, Lindsey Paul. This lady can shoot! The talented Texan beat a large field of top competitors, including many past KO2M Champions, all guys. We congratulate Lindsey on her outstanding performance, including 3 hits in 5 shots at the max distance, 2.0 miles (3520 yards). No other competitor had more than one hit at 3520 yards, and only four other finalists even had one hit at that distance. Lindsey was shooting an Alamo Precision Rifles .375 CheyTac rig loaded with Cutting Edge 400gr solid bullets in Peterson brass.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Here Lindsey shoots her KO2M-winning .375 CheyTac rifle. You can see it packs a punch even with that big muzzle brake. One side-note — this talented lady won the title with a borrowed bipod! Lindsey told us: “Unfortunately, for this video, I don’t have the Accu-Tac bipod I used in the match because it was borrowed. I’ve got one coming from them, but it hasn’t arrived yet.”

Winning the 2021 King of 2 Miles — My Success Story

Report by Lindsey Paul, 2021 KO2M Champion
Winning the K02M title was big surprise for me. I didn’t go into this match with much confidence. My barrel has been acting strangely, for example, after the last match I cleaned it and once I fouled it back in the barrel seemed to have suddenly lost speed. It went from 2985 fps to around 2955 fps. Unfortunately this is my first ELR gun and I didn’t know how important it was to keep up with my round count. I have no idea when this barrel will die but I’d been thinking for the past couple of months that it would be any day now. So, I panicked, added some powder to get back in the middle of where I’ve determined my node to be, adjusted my seating depth a bit and got it shooting at a moderately good level.

Day One went very well. I was hoping to finish the match in the top third, that was my goal. I wasn’t really even nervous about shooting, I was more apprehensive about spotting for my team-mate, Robert Waggoner. I hit the Cold Bore target at 1572 yards and I had a great run from there on out. I was a little bummed that I didn’t get just one more hit but I was still in 4th place at day’s end.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Day Two was nerve-racking. I had to spot for Robert and spotting has been something I have historically struggled with. I’ve spent a LOT of time on the spotter this year, working to improve my skills and become proficient at making quick, accurate calls on misses. Robert cleaned Target 1 and I thought we were going to have a great run. For some reason Target 2 really got the best of him but he finally had an impact and we moved to Target 3. This might be the thing I’m most proud of at the whole match. He missed, about six plates high, and I saw it and gave him a good call. It was then that he realized he hadn’t written down his dope for Target 3 and was using the dope for Target 4! He got right back on target and had a first round impact on Target 4. We will be checking each other’s dope from now on, lesson learned!

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Securing Victory with Three Consecutive Hits at 2 Miles
I went into the finals in 9th place, almost 18,000 points behind the leader, Ryan Cheney. My goal was to finish in the Top Ten. Ryan had a solid final round with one impact on the 2-mile target. At that point few believed his score was catchable. I shot 12th in the order and I was concerned about conditions but they turned out to be great. Target 2 finally started to creep out of the shadows and the wind was not doing its normal, switchy stuff. Robert did an absolutely perfect job as my spotter (see photo above). I couldn’t ask for a better set of eyes for spotting misses and calling wind. I had three consecutive impacts on the Two Mile Target to earn enough points to overtake Ryan, and finish with the high point total for the match.

Editor: Lindsey came through spectacularly at the final 3520-yard distance. One observer noted: “Ryan had it in the bag before Lindsay got hot — three out of five at 3520 yards is HOT!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Here are Results from the K02M Finals held Wednesday, 9/29/2021:
King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles
CLICK HERE for full-screen rifle photo.

Equipment Report — Rifle, Optics, Components

The rifle was built by Alamo Precision Rifles in North Richland Hills, Texas. Lindsey’s spotter, Robert Waggoner, is one of the owners. NOTE: The photo above shows the Nightforce Wedge Prism in place. This prism was used only for the two most distant Finals targets, at 3166 and 3520 yards.

Stiller TAC 408 Action
K&P 1:8″-twist 34″ barrel
Chambered for .375 CheyTac
Terminator T5 Muzzle Brake
McMillan Beast Stock
Jewell Trigger

Mirage Extended Picatinny Rail
Nightforce ATACR 7-36x56mm scope
Nightforce Wedge Prism
Spuhr Scope Mount
Accu-Tac HD-50 Bipod
Armageddon Gear Game Changer rear bag

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Personal Drag Model is Important in ELR Game
I must mention the importance of getting a PDM (Personal Drag Model) from Applied Ballistics. They are generous enough to travel the country with their mobile lab and provide PDMs at no cost. Take advantage of this! It’s not completely plug and play, I had to true my velocity but once I did some testing and adjusting the PDM was within half-MOA of accuracy all the way out to the 3520 yard target.

Loading for the Jumbo .375 CheyTac Cartridge — You Need Quality Dies and Components
The loading process is the same with the big caliber as anything else. The trick is having quality components and dies. The Cutting Edge Lazers have proven themselves over and over. They are very consistent. The biggest challenge we’ve found with these big cartridges is finding a load that is both accurate and has good ES/SD numbers. It seems like when it shoots a single hole the SD is over 10 FPS and when the SD is great, it shoots an unacceptable sized group.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Alamo Precision Rifles

Q & A with Queen of 2 Miles Lindsey Paul

Q: How satisfying was it to win the match, don the KO2M crown, and be carried in the champion’s chair?

Lindsey: I try really hard to stay grounded and humble. That said, we put everything aside and worked really hard to focus on ELR this year. This win is very satisfying because all the hard work paid off. I’m also very happy I’ve improved as a spotter. Nobody wants to be the weak half of a team.

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Q: What are your training methods for Extreme Long Range?

Lindsey: We don’t often have access to long ranges to train. We had a 2000-yard range near us shut down this year so that was devastating. We did have a training day to confirm dope about two weeks before the match and I’m glad we did. I had an impact at 2 miles that day so that helped my confidence.

Q: Do you employ any special “mental prep” before shooting?

Lindsey: I did something different before the final round of KO2M that seemed to help. I sat in the truck, listened to the Rocky theme song and visualized my entire string of shots with transitions and every shot making an impact. This was something my track coach did with us in high school and I felt kind of goofy but think it helped.

Q: How has being in law enforcement made you a better shooter/competitor?

Lindsey: Yes, I think I find it easy to stay calm under pressure. I still have the ability to get rattled when things aren’t going well but for the most part, I stay focused. [Editor: Lindsey is a law enforcement officer in Texas who has worked regular duties as well as mounted (horseback) patrols.]

Q: What tips do you have for other shooters in the ELR game?

Lindsey: Stop chasing speed! These big guns hide pressure very well and you don’t need to be running on the ragged edge of pressure to get results. We learned that the easy way by ruining brass. I fear someone is going to learn it the hard, catastrophic way.

Q: What specific advice do you have for ladies who want to get involved in ELR?

Lindsey: Get a nice .22 LR (such as a Bergara) and stretch that out to 300-400 yards. It’s a great training tool to learn to make wind calls and you can see if you enjoy shooting prone at far targets without such a huge financial investment. Additionally, all you have to do is find the particular lot of factory rimfire ammo that your gun shoots well. That way you can wait to go down the “rabbit hole” that is reloading.

How Lindsey Paul Became a Champion — Talent and Dedication

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney
Lindsey holding K02M trophy, with her Alamo Precision Rifles K02M team-mates.

I got involved with the shooting sports as a kid. My dad was a Sheriff’s Deputy so he taught me to shoot at a young age. I grew up shooting handguns a bit. My true passion is hunting so I decided to start shooting competitively to improve my rifle skills and make me a better hunter. We also shoot some .22 LR matches, a local 500-yard prone centerfire match, and I hope to make it to a few NRL Hunter matches next year. The Nightforce Steel Challenge is definitely on the calendar as well.

I initially built my ELR gun hoping to take it out to a big ranch and shoot rocks on cliff faces but after I competed with it once I was hooked. I think my police training helps me to remain calm. I’ve faced enough real-life chaos and serious situations that it’s easy for me to remember that a match is just a competition and if I have a bad day there will be another match to redeem myself.

This has been a wild year for me. We started at Clark’s Knob match and found our equipment had some flaws at the extreme distances. We regrouped, made some changes and things improved. I broke the FCSA Cold Bore world record with three consecutive shots at 2464 yards at the Spring Canyon match in August 2021 and I’ve had some solid finishes at the matches we’ve attended.

Lindsey Set a FCSA Cold Bore World Record in August 2021
Lindsey is definitely a top talent in the ELR game. Back in August 2021 she set a new FCSA Cold Bore World record at 1.5 miles (2464 yards).

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

If I were to start over I wouldn’t change much other than investing in a better-quality scope sooner. I am stubborn and I used an Athlon Ares ETR scope for the first couple of years, insisting that it was fine because it fit in my budget. Robert convinced me to borrow a Nightforce ATACR before the Spring Canyon match and I broke the world record so clearly the higher-quality scope with a more reliable erector system has made a difference. Lesson learned — don’t compromise on quality.

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September 30th, 2021

Hail to the New QUEEN of 2 Miles — Lindsey Paul

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

This lady can shoot! Lindsey Paul is now officially the top ELR ace on the planet. The talented Texan beat a large field of competitors, including many past KO2M Champions, all guys. We congratulate Lindsey on her outstanding performance, including 3 hits in 5 shots at the max distance, 2.0 miles (3520 yards). No other competitor had more than one hit at 3520 yards, and only four other finalists even had one hit at that distance. Lindsey was shooting a .375 CheyTac cartridge with Cutting Edge 400gr solids.

K02M runner-up Ryan Cheney was leading the field most of the event, being the only shooter to hit ALL his targets (without a miss) at 1692, 2097, and 2376 yards, along with 4 of 5 at 2727 — the best at that distance. But Lindsey came through spectacularly at the final 3520-yard distance. One observer noted: “Ryan had it in the bag before Lindsay got hot — three out of five at 3520 yards is HOT!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

This was an impressive year, proving that the ELR game continues to evolve, with ever-greater overall performances by the ranks of talented shooters. Match Directors posted: “Every year we get more hits at Two Miles and this has been the best ever — 3 of 5 from Lindsey and five shooters hitting the 2 mile target: Lindsey Paul, Ryan Cheney, Jay Dvorsky, Peter Renwick, and Curtis Roman”.

Here are Results from the K02M Finals held Wednesday, 9/29/2021:
King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

The K02M Match Organizers Posted this Report on the K02M Facebook Page:

FINAL RESULTS FROM 2021 KO2M
NRA Whittington Center, Raton, New Mexico
27-29 September, 2021

Congratulations to all shooters, spotters and teams that drove to Raton from all over the USA and even more to those that hit the targets. Special thanks to the sponsors that made the prize table possible.

A special mention to the King (Queen) of 2 Miles 2021 Lindsay Paul, along with Rei Hoang, and Jaclyn Bryan. [They] proved that women can be as good or better shooters than men. I hope that each year we have more and more women shooters.

Congratulations too for Ryan Cheney who shot so well that he nearly made it to King.

A special mention to all the spotters that drove their shooters to the targets and are always there in their shadow. They all deserve an applause.

We have proven the point, once again, that hits at 2 Miles are possible and not just luck.

Thanks to all for being at KO2M
King of 2 Miles Team

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

The Queen of 2 Miles Thanks Her Team and Sponsors
Here is Lindsey’s Report on her Achievement — being the first woman ever to win the King, oops, make that QUEEN of 2 Miles Competition.

“I don’t even know where to start! What a wild ride this year this has been. First and foremost thank you to my amazing guy Robert for being the best spotter I could ask for. He is responsible for making most of this happen with his great wind calls, corrections and support. Thank you to the rest of my team.

Jeff had tough conditions with shade on targets for his final round making spotting misses impossible but still finished with a super-respectable 6th place. Shane has come a long way in a short time and did great as well with a 19th place finish, just below the cutoff for the finals. I’m really proud of my performance as Robert’s spotter. He forgot to write down his dope for target 3 and I still managed to help him get on target and he finished in 26th. Jay we missed the hell out of you and hope you are back to 100% soon!

Thank you to my sponsors Alamo Precision Rifles, McMillan Fiberglass Stocks, and Kenneth Johnson at K&P Rifle Barrels. The amazing Cutting Edge Bullets struck again! They just flat out work!

My Applied Ballistics PDM (Personal Drag Model) was nearly spot on out to two miles. Your contribution to shooting sports is beyond remarkable. We couldn’t do what we do without your support.

I was concerned about switching to an Accu-Tac bipod right before this match but I’m dang sure a believer now! I picked up a Nightforce scope of the prize table which was just what I needed as I was borrowing one. Thank you to them and all of the other sponsors who stepped up to support this match and the shooting community.

DNA Custom Engraving also made me the coolest challenge coin ever!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Lindsay added praise for her competitors: “Congratulations to all the shooters, NRA Whittington Center is my favorite place to shoot but it can sure be challenging. Ryan Cheney made me work for it, congratulations man, you shot excellent! Rei and Jaclyn how awesome was it to have three ladies in the finals?! Congratulations to both of you!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

Lindsey Set a FCSA Cold Bore World Record in August 2021
Lindsey is definitely a top talent in the ELR game. Back in August 2021 she set a new FCSA Cold Bore World record at 1.5 miles (2464 yards). Lindsey posted: “WHAT A DAY! I set a new cold bore world record with 3 impacts at 2464 yds! I’m so thankful for an awesome team and my damn fine Alamo Precision Rifles .375 CheyTac. The 400gr Cutting Edge Lazers shined as usual!”

King of 2 Miles Queen Lindsey Paul Raton ELR Ryan Cheney

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September 28th, 2021

King of 2 Miles Event Kicks Off in Raton, New Mexico

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

The 2021 King of 2 Miles ELR competition officially commenced yesterday at the Whittington Center in Raton, New Mexico. This unique event, the “Olympics” of Extreme Long Range (ELR) shooting, attracts many of the best marksmen on the planet, campaigning rifles capable of mind-blowing accuracy at extreme distances. The bullet, barrel, and optics technology on display was impressive — as was the amazing marksmanship. Ryan Cheney is leading the KO2M Qualifications after Day 1&2, shooting perfect 3-for-3s without a miss at 1692, 2097, and 2376 yards, and getting one hit at the most distant 2550-yard target. SEE Day One and Two Results.

Here are some of the cartridges used in ELR Competition. With these high-capacity cartridges, many competitors are using ultra-precision lathe-turned solid bullets.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range
Big ELR Cartridges left to right: .460 Steyr, .416 Barrett, .375 CheyTac, 33XC, .338 Lapua Magnum, and .300 Remington Ultra Magnum.

Top Results in 2021 Qualifications
Here are the sixteen highest-scoring shooters at the 2021 KO2M match, after two days of qualifications. The Top 16 advance to the Finals tomorrow.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Watch K02M Run from 2019 with 360-degree Views
Here is Bryan Litz Shooting K02M in 2019. NOTE, you can slide left/right to get a 360-degree view of the firing line — give it a try! View on Facebook, if 360° movie does not appear on your device.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Here are Target Distances and Angles
Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Paul PhillipsPaul Phillips, 2019 K02M Champion, posted: “I’m very happy with Clay Rhoden with Longshot Cameras and James Devoglaer with KVR Ranch. They performed very well today in qualifications. They hit every plate out to 2550 yards [after the cold bore target]. [This was] their first time at King of 2 Miles!”

Shown below is the ammunition Paul Phillips loaded for his Global Precision Group team using Cutting Edge lathe-turned bullets:

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

Applied Ballistics Brings High-Tech Gear to the KO2M Competition
The Applied Ballistics Team arrived early in Raton to do testing with their high-tech Doppler Radar equipment. This can provide very precise custom ballistics profiles for the ELR rifles. When you’re shooting at these extreme ranges, your come-up tables have to be perfect.

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

“Goooooood Moooooorning New Mexico! It’s a BEAUTIFUL day on the range! We’re setting up the Mobile Lab on the Cooper Range at the NRA Whittington Center and we’ll be hanging out in this gorgeous place.”

Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range
Ko2m king 2 two miles raton new mexico whittington ELR Extreme long range

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September 27th, 2021

ELR Italian Style — Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

While the King of 2 Miles event kicks off today in Raton, New Mexico this week, another Extreme Long Range (ELR) competition just concluded in Trapani on the west coast of the Italian island of Sicily. The challenging Extreme Shot One Mile Italia in Sicily took place September 22-26, 2021.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia
Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Our British friend Gary Costello took top honors. He reports: “The end of a fantastic week in Sicily, competing at the Extreme Shot One Mile Italia competition. It was great to take home the win. All credit goes to my shooting partner/spotter Stuart who did the business! And congratulations to the other podium winners: Second Place Iacono Rosario and Third Place Rod Formosa. A big thanks to the organizers for a great competition. We made many new friends. See you all next year!”

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Click below to watch Official Video of Extreme Shot One Mile Italia winner Gary Costello’s final string. The video records the shots in real time as his spotter was seeing it. This last string had steel targets at 1400m, 1500m, and 1640m. The 1400 and 1500m targets were 60x70cm plates while the most distant 1640m target used a 70x80cm plate. 1640 meters is 1.019 miles.

If you watch this video closely, you can see Gary’s 33XC bullets score hits, including a clear hit on the 1640m target (starting at 3:10 time-mark). Gary’s shots produced visible dark spots on the steel.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Gary was shooting the 33XC cartridge with Berger 300 OTM Bullets. His big ELR rifle, built by GS Precision in the UK, features a BAT ‘M’ RBLP action, Manners LRT carbon stock, and Benchmark 34″, 1:7.5″-twist, five-groove barrel. Gary notes that barrel only had 30 shots through it when the match began. The scope was a March 5-42x56mm HM FFP wide angle with MIL FML-3 reticle.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

The event offered a long range challenge set in the beautiful Sicilian countryside with targets placed from 500m to 1640m (one mile is 1609.34 meters). We love the location, and participants praised the event.

Gary Costello’s Post-Match Report:

Q: How is the range in Trapani and what were the wind/weather conditions during the match?

Gary: The range is situated in a valley with distant tall hills. This makes a great backstop. The weather, as you would expect, was warm, usually 80-85 degrees F. The wind was strong, predominately from the left going up the valley. However, it was being affected by the topography. Some of the closer targets were as difficult as the long ones due to the conditions.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia
This shows the target locations at the Sicily range except for the cold bore and “surprise” targets.

Q: What do you like about ELR competition?

Gary: This was my first ELR competition. I have been ‘lurking’ for a while and made a trip to France for KO2M back in 2019 (just to watch). ELR is very different to F-Class. However the fundamentals are similar. I do like the longer ranges and the challenges these create to make contact. An accurate rifle is essential.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

Q: How did you like Sicily and the hospitality of fellow competitors?

Gary: Sicily is fantastic, with super-friendly people. All the guys at the range and the organizers bent over backwards to accommodate and help. Plus there were fantastic lunches delivered daily! Logistics and COVID restrictions didn’t make the trip easy. However it was all worth it.

Gary Costello Tapani Italy italia Extreme Shot One Mile Italia

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June 15th, 2021

.375 Enabler — Extreme Ammo for Extreme Long Range (ELR)

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

The .375 EnABELR Cartridge — Big and Fast

The .375 EnABELR cartridge is slightly shorter than a .375 CheyTac so it allows the round to mag-feed. Applied Ballistics is currently using brass made by Peterson. The .375 EnABELR has achieved impressive velocities — 2990 FPS — with prototype Berger 379-grain solid bullets fired from a 1:7″-twist 30″ barrel. Applied Ballistics may also test 1:8″-twist and 1:9″-twist barrels. READ Bullet Testing Report.

The .375 EnABELR cartridge was designed to offer .375 CheyTac performance in a slightly shorter package: “The problem with the .375 CheyTac is that, when loaded with the highest performance .375 caliber bullets (379-407 gr Berger Solids, and the 400-425 grain Cutting Edge Lazers) the round is not magazine feed-able in any action that’s sized for CheyTac cartridges.

Berger 379 grain 379gr solid bullet .375 caliber enabler

“Knowing the .375 CheyTac produced substantial performance, and that it was just too long for magazine feeding, made it easy to converge on a design for the .375 EnABELR. We just had to make the case short enough to achieve magazine length with the desired bullets, while adding a little more diameter to keep the case capacity similar to the .375 CheyTac. The resulting basic shape is quite similar in proportions to the successful .338 Norma Magnum Cartridge which, interestingly, was selected as the cartridge for General Dynamics Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LWMMG).”

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense
Here is Mitchell Fitzpatrick, shooting the 375 EnABELR in an ELR Competition.

.375 cheytac .408 cheytac EnABLER Applied Ballistics Bryan Litz Cadex defense

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Reloading 1 Comment »
April 15th, 2021

Go Big or Go Home — Care and Feeding of .50 BMG Rifles

fifty caliber shooting association

Owning and Feeding ‘The Big Bore’ — .50 BMG

Is The Challenge Of Big Bore Extreme Range Shooting Right For You?
By James Patterson
This article originally written for the Sinclair Reloading Press

Fifty 50 Caliber shooting Association

Handling a .50 BMG Rig
Is a .50 BMG caliber rifle difficult to shoot? Not at all. The relatively heavy weight of a standard rifle at 30 pounds or more combined with a very efficient muzzle brake makes it a pleasure to shoot. The typical recoil can be compared to a .243 rifle or a 12 gauge trap load. On the other hand, the burning of a typical load of 230 grains of powder combined with that muzzle brake makes the muzzle blast experience exhilarating. A first time shooter will fire, pause for a moment in awe at the muzzle blast, and then break out into what has become known as “The 50 Caliber Grin”, almost impossible to wipe from ones face. My daughter started competing with the .50 BMG at 18 (115 lbs of tall skinny girl) and happily shoots 100+ rounds in the course of a match, her grin on the last round is as wide as on the first! Many members and competitors in the FCSA are women and many have distinguished themselves as excellent marksman having set world records on numerous occasions.

50 BMG FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

50 BMG Fifty Caliber Shooting Association

Cost of Big-Bore Shooting
Is owning and shooting a .50 BMG caliber rifle expensive? Relatively speaking yes, but one must put it into perspective. Rifles may run from $2500 to $7000, maybe even more for a top of the line custom rifle. A good scope will set you back $1000 to $3500. And while excellent commercial ammo is made, it is hard to find these days and runs from $4 to $6 a round. Most serious shooters start reloading for the rifle as soon as practical, not only for the economics of reloading but also for the ability to fine tune custom ammo for their specific rifle. It’s a very rare match that is won shooting commercial ammo. I recently compared the cost of my hobby — owning, shooting, and competing with the 50 BMG — with a friend whose hobby is snowmobiling. Factoring in the cost of equipment, licensing, gasoline, clothing, etc. it was soon obvious that my hobby was significantly less expensive than his.

50 BMG FCSA Fifty Caliber

50 BMG FCSA fifty Caliber

FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

Getting Started
FCSA 50 BMG Fifty Caliber Shooting AssociationSo how does one get started? You could do as I did, purchase a rifle not knowing what you were really getting into; or you could come out to a FCSA-sponsored event, shoot a number of different rifles, rub shoulders with those who have already taken the plunge, and see if this sport is right for you. While membership in the Fifty Caliber Shooters Association (FSCA) is required to compete at a FSCA event, membership is not required to come and experience first hand what is going on. If you have any inclination that you are interested in the extreme sport of long rang, big bore shooting then a year’s membership in the FCSA is only $60 ($20 for active duty military) a significant bargain if it helps you make just one well-informed equipment choice. In addition one of the primary functions of the FCSA is helping to identify active members near you who can help you understand just what is involved and help you ‘get your feet wet’ in this challenging sport.

FCSA 50 Caliber 50 BMG

Photos courtesy FCSA Photo Gallery.
Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Tech Tip 2 Comments »
September 15th, 2020

Great Book: Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting II

Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-order

If you buy one book about Long Range Shooting, this should be it. Based on sophisticated testing and research, this 356-page hardcover from Applied Ballistics offers important insights you won’t find anywhere else. Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting – Volume II, the latest treatise from Bryan Litz, is chock full of information, much of it derived through sophisticated field testing. As Chief Ballistician for Berger Bullets (and a trained rocket scientist), author Bryan Litz is uniquely qualified. Bryan is also an ace sling shooter and a past F-TR National Champion. Moreover, Bryan’s company, Applied Ballistics, has been a leader in the Extreme Long Range (ELR) discipline.

AUDIO FILE: Bryan Litz Talks about Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting, Volume 2. (Sound file loads when you click button).

Volume II of Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting ($39.95) contains all-new content derived from research by Applied Ballistics. Author Bryan Litz along with contributing authors Nick Vitalbo and Cal Zant use the scientific method and careful testing to answer important questions faced by long range shooters. In particular, this volume explores the subject of bullet dispersion including group convergence. Advanced hand-loading subjects are covered such as: bullet pointing and trimming, powder measurement, flash hole deburring, neck tension, and fill ratio. Each topic is explored with extensive live fire testing, and the resulting information helps to guide hand loaders in a deliberate path to success. The current bullet library of measured G1 and G7 ballistic coefficients is included as an appendix. This library currently has data on 533 bullets in common use by long range shooters.

Bryan tells us that one purpose of this book is to dispel myths and correct commonly-held misconceptions: “Modern Advancements in Long Range Shooting aims to end the misinformation which is so prevalent in long range shooting. By applying the scientific method and taking a Myth Buster approach, the state of the art is advanced….”

Bullet Dispersion and Group Convergence
Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-order

Part 1 of this Volume is focused on the details of rifle bullet dispersion. Chapter 1 builds a discussion of dispersion and precision that every shooter will benefit from in terms of understanding how it impacts their particular shooting application. How many shots should you shoot in a group? What kind of 5-shot 100 yard groups correlate to average or winning precision levels in 1000 yard F-Class shooting?

Chapter 2 presents a very detailed investigation of the mysterious concept of group convergence, which is the common idea that some guns can shoot smaller (MOA) groups at longer ranges. This concept is thoroughly tested with extensive live fire, and the results answer a very important question that has baffled shooters for many generations.

Bryan Litz Applied Ballistics Modern Advancements Volume 2 II testing pre-orderPart 2 of this Volume is focused on various aspects of advanced hand-loading. Modern Advancements (Vol. II) employs live fire testing to answer the important questions that precision hand loaders are asking. What are the best ways to achieve MVs with low ES and SD? Do flash hole deburring, neck tension, primer selection, and fill ratio and powder scales sensitivity make a difference and how much? All of these questions are explored in detail with a clear explanation of test results.

One of the important chapters of Part 2 examines bullet pointing and trimming. Applied Ballistics tested 39 different bullet types from .224 through .338 caliber. Ten samples of each bullet were tested for BC in each of the following configurations: original out of the box, pointed, trimmed, pointed and trimmed. The effect on the average BC as well as the uniformity in BC was measured and tabulated, revealing what works best.

Part 3 covers a variety of general research topics. Contributing author Nick Vitalbo, a laser technology expert, tested 22 different laser rangefinders. Nick’s material on rangefinder performance is a landmark piece of work. Nick shows how shooters can determine the performance of a rangefinder under various lighting conditions, target sizes, and reflectivities.

Chapter 9 is a thorough analysis of rimfire ammunition. Ballistic Performance of Rifle Bullets, 2nd Edition presented live fire data on 95 different types of .22 rimfire ammunition, each tested in five different barrels having various lengths and twist rates. Where that book just presented the data, Chapter 9 of this book offers detailed analysis of all the test results and shows what properties of rimfire ammunition are favorable, and how the BCs, muzzle velocities and consistency of the ammo are affected by the different barrels.

Chapter 10 is a discussion of aerodynamic drag as it relates to ballistic trajectory modeling. You will learn from the ground up: what an aerodynamic drag model is, how it’s measure and used to predict trajectories. Analysis is presented which shows how the best trajectory models compare to actual measured drop in the real world.

Finally, contributing author Cal Zant of the Precision Rifle Blog presents a study of modern carbon fiber-wrapped barrels in Chapter 11. The science and technology of these modern rifle barrels is discussed, and then everything from point of impact shift to group sizes are compared for several samples of each type of barrel including standard steel barrels.

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