Southern Open - May 25-27 - Heflin, AL
The Southern Open Grand Prix match will be held on May 26-27 with a Pistol FT match held on May 25 at 1pm.
The match kicks off with a pistol FT match totaling 40 shots on Friday at 1pm. Saturdays match will be a Euro style match with one shot per target with two targets per lane on 25 lanes for a 50 shot total. Sunday’s match will be a traditional American style FT match of 60 shots on 15 lanes.
We now have online registration available and payment through PayPal as well as mail in entries.
The online registration:
Update: 3 WEEKS TO GO!
1) We had a workday today and set up both courses (40 lanes). We have added a few new lanes and redesigned others to give the courses some new appeal and vary the challenges. A huge Thank You !! To everyone who worked so long and hard today, these courses wouldn’t be so fun without your imaginative input.
If you enjoy the challenge of shooting FT I believe these courses will be some of the most enjoyable you may ever shoot.
2) The entries are coming in at a good rate. We are limiting registration to 45 shooters and we are over half way there so don’t sit on the fence much longer or you might be missing this one.
See you in a few weeks,
This will be my first Southern Open and looking forward to meeting you and seeing the course that has inspired the folks that have inspired me. I understand this course lends its self to plenty of opportunity to challenge even the best shooters so I'm working hard. I'm hoping to do well and have a number in mind but wont be disappointed if that insignificant goal isn't achieved. my real goal is to use this as an opportunity to learn, hang out with friends and hopefully meet new ones. I'm also hoping to get to see and possibly even meet some of our best shooters while there.
It was so cool to get to spend two full days on the practice range at the Nationals actually rubbing elbows with some of the best shooters in the world. From the beginning I've been amazed at how helpful the people of this sport actually are. From the new shooters like myself to the best, the one thing that's most evident is how nice and approachable everyone is.
Proud to be associated,
Raymond Hawkins - A mere sinner saved by grace.
We are proud to have you come shoot with us. We hope that our courses will be a challenging but fun time for you.
You are correct that this sport is full of nice helpful people which is one reason I have been at it for 25+ years and have made so many great friends around the world. I’m proud to be a part of it...
Lookinf forward to meeting you in a few weeks,
Ken, all the pistol match targets have been repainted and I added a few new faceplate design to the mix. I added another huge target, and a few smaller ones.
Real small. Should be a fun match! Glad we can have a pistol match again at this challanging set if courses.
Looking forward to it!
Thanks for all your hard work on the pistol match. It will be another good pistol course I’m sure.
Here is a link to the list of shooters attending:
I think bringing rain gear is a good idea, this time of the year we often have off and on rain mainly in the afternoon early evening but it can happen anytime. Weather guessers are notorious for getting it wrong but it certainly doesn’t hurt to be prepared for the worst. We are going to be watching things closely and adjusting as needed.
Remember this is an outdoor shooting competition. We can all handle a little rain but if it turns really nasty ( thunderstorms and lightening) we will have to stop shooting until it blows over.
Thanks for your understanding,
Many thanks to Airgunning Atlanta, Mt Cheaha Airgun Club, and the city of Heflin for another exceptional event. Courses were both interesting and challenging, as always. Great Hospitality, great weather (who would've wagered on that?), great people, and great competition.
Here's a little taste of the Pistol FT match Friday:
Many thanks to the folks at Heflin and AirGunning Atlanta for a great weekend of FT shooting. If you missed it, you missed one of the greatest courses ever. Very demanding on both days. Weather was good with no rain, but pretty hot both days. The wind wasn't too bad either day. The setup on Saturday with 1 shot per target and 50 targets turned out to be interesting and I would like to do it again. Both days had a lot of lanes that had targets located so that they required more than the usual work to range due to the vegetation that provided a lot of shadows and very little light.
Hope to make it back next year,
Thanks for running such a great match and for everything else you and your lovely wife did to make this such a great experience. I also wanted to take a minute show some love and appreciation for all the other hard working folks that turned this match into a most incredible event. This was my first time in Heflin or for that mater shooting a Grand Prix. Wow, what an impression you guys made.
There is no doubt this venue has plenty of space, shelters and all the amenities needed for a great match and weekend of shooting fun but I wanted to go a bit beyond the obvious. I wanted to personally thank those folks that climbed the hills, ladders and trees, carried the blocks and targets along witheverything else that made this FT match the great experience it was.
All the targets were perfectly placed to present a course that was fair and still challenge even the best of shooters which there was plenty of. Not only did it take a bunch of hard work to make all this happen but it also took a great deal of imagination turning this property into the master piece it's become.
As good as this course is the people running the match and the hospitality shown was even better. It was a real pleasure getting meet hang out with some good friends, meeting new ones and actually seeing some of the best shooters in the whole world while there. A most remarkable weekend of shooting and one I'll never forget. I'm already planning for next year.
Congratulations to all the winners and those like myself that gave it their all, survived and had such a great time. We can't all be winners but having a great time is well within us all and ya'll made doing that easy. I feel like one of the winners for just being there.
Raymond Hawkins - A mere sinner saved by grace.
Wow. The Southern Open!
This is my third time shooting in Heflin Alabama and it gets better each year… Really!
Ken, Deborah, Rob, Ron, Steve, and all the Atlanta with Paul and the Mount Cheaha club members that help put on this grand Prix do a super job. The course is world class and very challenging.
I know some folks are put off by the Euro style first day match but please try it, you may like it. If you want a challenge this is it. When helping with lubing targets and bringing the lines back to the shooters box, I was a bit put back. The long trek from the target down a ravine and back up to the box, required two people. One at the shooters box, to locate the targets, and one to pull the line down to near the box. Then throwing the line across to the other person.
On several targets I asked Steve English, who was at the shooters box, “Is this the 100 yard target”? It seemed to be so far out with the up and down walk to the target. Then when shooting the match, the target ranged 45 yards. Great optical effect! Every target was clearly visible from the shooters box. The terrain and crossing angles creates a challenging and interesting course.
The day two, normal 60 shot course, was just as much fun. Keeping the course along the top of the ridge made the walking less arduous, and having Paula giving lifts in the 4-wheeler was super for us older guys…In fact at 65 I was one of the younger guys in the vehicle. Made me feel like a kid…A real tired kid….
I was happy to bring my targets and put on the pistol match again this year. This allows some of us in the South to gain an AAFTA Grand Prix score, as we don’t have but one pistol GP in the South East. If you don’t go to the Cajun Classic, you have limited pistol GPs to get in your three best.
I shot the day one-euro match with Harold Rushton for the first time. We have known each other for several years but never were paired on a course. It was a privilege to squad with a world class shooter like him. Of course, I tried to glean all the tips I could during out limited time shooting…LOL
On day two I was paired with Roz Sumpter, another person, that being the at the very first field target match in the US, was a privilege. I have shot with Roz before and it is always great to be with him.
The rain held off, and the days were not too hot. Just very humid… But hey! We are in Alabama….
Brent and Ben from Creedmoor sports gave an offhand clinic on Friday. Good info. Brent decided to try our sport, and on day 2 was on the squad next to me. While waiting for our turns , he told me that he has a whole new respect for what we do in field target…! He is used to flat ground, flat shooting shoes, coats and pants, etc. Getting up and down on a bum bag, shooting off the knee, and hiking through dense forest, up and down gave him a new perspective on our sport.
I think that we may have a new convert to our fun sport. Now he needs to go get Ben to shoot a match.
This was the best Southern Open for me, even though I ended up in the middle of the pack. I only dropped 1 out of the 8 two day offhand shots and 2 of the kneeling. So, I had some good moments.
The people always make the matches for me. Seeing old friends and making new ones are part of the fun. The dinners at night, the stories of the highs and lows of the day, and just joking around is key. Especially if you had a bad day. Chris Cory, my travel partner, and I, spend half the ride home, trying to figure out our misses, and vowing to buckle down to correct ourselves……. Well at least we vow!
The holiday weekend kept some away, and some because of the Euro match.
Don’t miss it next year! If there is a Euro style, just try it. You will be surprised how much fun it can be.
If my 3 year history here holds true, it will be even better in 2019……..
As Arnold said in Terminator…….I’ll be back!