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K. C. Eusebio - Steel Challenge



Today, we are going to break down the two extreme stages of the Steel Challenge, Speed Option and Smoke and Hope and I’ll show you the fastest way I know how to shoot them. 

Here we have Speed Option. Speed Option is comprised of five steel plates.  Four 12 inch plates placed from 8 to 20 yards and an 18 by 24 inch stop plate placed at 35 yards. For me, speed option is a more difficult stage due to the transitions, near and far. In order to minimize a potential speed trap, we are going to be using the sectioning method. The sectioning method allows me to give each plate the attention it deserves for a first shot hit and the fastest transition time. Always remember the fastest way to shoot steel in any competition is to shoot one shot and get one hit. 




In this course of fire, we have three sections. Plates 1 and 2 will be considered Section A. I shoot plates 1 and 2 in the same section because they are on the same focal plane and it allows for a fast transition. Only plate 3 will make up Section B. I single out this plate due to its difficulty and it deserves more focus to ensure a first shot hit. Plates 4 and 5 will round up Section C. Although different distances, they are aligned to one another and allow for a good fast transition. 

Now, let’s see what we can do. 



Notice the transitions. Even at different distances I give each target the attention it needs to ensure a first shot hit. 

Now, here we are at Smoke and Hope. Smoke and Hope is comprised of four 18 by 24 inch plates placed from 7 to 9 yards and a 12 inch stop plate placed at 14 yards. With the size of the plates and the close distances, this is by far the fastest stage in the match. Due to over confidence and aggressiveness even the most experience shooters can miss these targets. Let’s get the break down of Smoke and Hope. 



Most shooters shoot Smoke and Hope from left to right and finish up center for the stop plate. By grouping this stage into two sections, I have found the fastest way to shoot Smoke and Hope, allowing me to set the current world record. 

First, I will be shooting plates one and two, which make up the first section. I will then engage the second group from three to the stop plate rounding up the stage. I’ll make the long transition from target two to three to optimize my momentum from four to the stop plate. A key aspect of this stage is to always keep your eyes moving. 



As you can see, this stage is all about blazing speed. The key to this particular stage is to get your eyes moving to the next target as soon as the shot breaks.

I hope these tips I gave you today will help you next time you’re on the range. Until next time, stay Army strong.



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