My second day at Shotshow in January our friend Steve a fellow high power shooter sent me a text telling me I needed to go visit the booth of APO. Ashbury Precision Ordinance. Steve knew I was researching tactical rifle competition. As you know, Shotshow is vast. Not being familiar yet with this world I was nervous about where to begin. So I went up to the press room and looked up APO on line. What caught my attention was their familiarity with the high power long range and F-Class world. Next step was to go down to their booth and introduce myself and start asking questions. I met Aaron a gunsmith at APO who was so enthusiastic about his product. He mentioned the connections they had to my world of high power and I felt comfortable and not pressured talking about their rifles. I briefly met Morris Peterson their President and CEO but had to cut my visit short for a meeting. I kept in touch with Aaron and Morris for a few weeks since Shotshow through email.
I am guessing they did their research on me and through a blog or Facebook post heard I was shooting a 2 day tactical rifle steel match this weekend. Last weekend Morris called me for an interview and long story short a complete rifle kit was “over-nighted” to me in the nick of time. Working at West Coast Armory gave me an advantage of the FFL and I came in right at opening Thursday morning and hovered at the back door waiting for our friendly UPS driver. I was a bit nervous since I received an email stating they already tried to deliver it and would come back tomorrow. Yikes! Tomorrow would be too late. But I know the UPS driver knows our hours and sure enough he pulled up with a very large rifle case. I was bouncing around the back room like a kid
on Christmas morning. Lance the owner of WCA was shaking his head. We had one problem. APO sent me the code to unlock the padlocks on the crate. One worked but the other was broken. I called them up and they said to get the bolt cutters out. Apparently this crate and locks had been traveling a bit. I did notice a worn sticker on the case that said Isreal. I bet this Pelican case has some stories. We actually had some bolt cutters at the range. That was kind of fun actually. Chop! In the crate was an APO TCR Tactical Rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor with a Leupold scope mounted and zeroed, a short range red dot, 200 rounds of Hornady ammo, Leica range finder, magazines, assembly tools, sling and Tactical Taylor scope cover and carrier. The lovely Joanna and Alicia helped get me through all of the transfer paperwork and out the door quickly. I was trying to get to our 600 yard range to verify my zeros and set the rifle up and fit the stock to me. As you can see in the photo this is a lovely rifle.
By the time I got to the range I had an email from Morris with a range card with all of the come-ups according to the elevation, temp and humidity of range location. How nice is that! I think at 500 and 600 yards it was about a 1/4 to 1/2 minute off. And that may have been me since it was getting pretty dark by the time we were back there. Today I will receive a card for the location of where the match will be in Eastern WA. Not only that but our friend Ken Hagan of H&H Precision made me a cheat sheet for instant distances when given target size only. Boy do I feel the pressure to perform well now. There were some details of the accessories of this rifle that caught my attention. I realize that to those of you already in this sport this is all old news. But to me it is new territory. The bipod not only swivels but the legs can be set at different angles and not just height. The stock has an ambi adjustable cheek piece. The shoulder plate was easy to adjust for me. And I was able to adjust the length of pull at the pistol grip. That was the best part. My Palma rifles are a one size grip and I have to adjust my hold. The triggers only move so far forward and backward. Having this custom length available is amazing. Charles my husband was rather jealous. We are both tall people with long arms and hands. The sling that came with this kit seems to be very similar to the 1907 sling we use in Across the Course. This will be an advantage if I have any offhand or seated positions. I love that the trigger is a two stage trigger since that is what I am used to. I will find out if that is good or bad for this type of shooting.
Thank you gang at APO for all of this effort and attention to get me going. I only hope I can perform at this match as well as you have prepared me for it. Apparently we are in for some rough weather. Possibly snow as well and high winds. The match is a charity match put on by JC Steel Targets. Held at the Jubilee Youth Ranch, all proceeds of the 2013 JC Steel Target Challenge go to the kids. If there is cell service I will be posting updates and photos on Facebook. I won’t have access to to write my blog until I get back Monday. I hope I can have someone video me at the helicopter stage. This game is so cool. Where I have been all of this time?