After hearing more than my fair share of rave reviews of the 2014 Freedom Munitions Memorial Multigun, I knew the 2015 match was a “must shoot” event this year. So I packed up the car with all things 3-Gun and headed down to the Tarheel state to see what it was all about.
Just south of the metro Raleigh area, the match was in the ideal location to attract the top dogs from around the country as well as quite a few big names up and down the east coast. I kind of sort of think that the match director, the mad stage scientist himself, Charles Sole had this in the back of his mind when designing stages.
If you couldn't figure out what I’m getting at by now, I’ll give it to you straight-this match was TOUGH! Granted there weren't any memory stages or anything confusing about them but they pushed every shot out to distance. With long range shotgun slug targets on every stage and small rifle steel out to at least 200 on all but one, accuracy was the name of the game. Put simply, it was anything but your standard bay stage match.
Woodys Hunt and Rifle Club in New Hill, NC is literally one giant plot of land tucked away just south of Raleigh. Because of its size, the stage setup is literally limitless at this range. A feature of this match and a first for me was a shoot house (exactly what it sounds like, an actual house that you shoot out of) where you had the choice of using either shotgun or pistol from ports inside the house. Besides jumping on flatbed trailers or shooting off vehicles, for me, my favorite thing about the match was the terrain. The rolling hills made for fast down and uphill weapon transitions and in my case made me feel like I was moving and shooting stupidly fast even though practiscore tells a different story altogether.
Everyone wants to shoot on a squad with big name shooters and I’m not going to lie I was really pumped to be in the same squad as Kalani Laker, Jansen Jones, Rob Romero, and Mark Roth. I’m by no means a “Fanboy” but shooting with top tier shooters allows you to gain knowledge that would normally take me years of screwing up to figure out on my own- I digress. What caught me by surprise is that practically every squad of this match had a shooting somebody, which is a total rarity at the matches I’ve been to.
The Prize Table
Being that it was the Freedom Munitions match and all, you better believe there was plenty of ammo to go around for all of the competitors, including the hefty ammo gift certificate I was able to get my greasy paws on. There was no shortage of happy faces walking the prize table after the match and a lot of that is in no small part due to the sheer awesomeness of sponsors like Remington, Adams Arms, Leupold, Chamberview, Benelli, and Hiperfire to name a few. Now had you been skilled (or lucky however you look at it) enough to finish in the top 3 spots of your division you went home with the coolest trophy, a laser engraved bulletproof tomahawk so sharp it could shave James Casanova's beard off-trust me I tried.
The Unprepared Rookie
It’s no secret who that is…….
It’s at this point, I’ll put it out there I probably should’ve spent a little more time zeroing my scope before the match. I will say this though, I was very happy with the way my 55gr Reman 223 from Freedom Munitions ammo performed on the long range targets. But, it took me until the second day of the match to figure out my what Kentucky windage holdovers were, so things looked up considerably after that. Overall, I learned a lot about my long range game and what NOT to do but I guess that's just part of being a newer shooter, you learn by screwing up miserably.
What Do I Really Think?
I think, never mind scratch that. I KNOW I will be heading back to this match next year. The people, the range itself, and the big money prize table had this city boy from Chicago leaving the match with a handful of ticks, a thick layer of dirt on my interior and a grin from ear to ear. So.... to answer that question that's surely bouncing around in your head, YES this is a "must-shoot" match for you in 2016.
Think you'd shoot this match next year? Let me know if the comments below!!!!