Saturday, October 31, 2009

Kamloops - Level III Rifle & Pistol Technical Coaching Course (Nov 20-22)

There is a Level III Rifle and Pistol Technical Coaching Course happening in Kamloops, BC on November 20 - 22, 2009. Details can be found in the LevelIIICourseForm.doc.

One more week until the Hibernation Airgun Match being held in Richmond, BC. See you there!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Hibernation Match 2009 - Nov 6-8 Details

One of the last shooting competitions of the year is quickly coming up on November 6-8, in Richmond, BC. Details and registration form can be found on the BCTSA website (Registration Form).

This is one of my favorite matches of the year. 3 complete courses of fire over 2 days. I've shot some of my best 10M pistol scores at this event.

See you there!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

2009 Western Canadian Airgun Championships October 16-18

After a 4 week break with only a couple of shooting sessions I'm back to training on September 14th to get ready for the 2009 Western Canadian Airgun Championships being held in Calgary, Alberta on October 16 - 18.

Another busy work week, some drinks with friends, then back to shooting 10s starting next week.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Defending champions BC Team wins Gold at 2009 Nationals

We did it again! The BC Team won Gold in the 10M event. This is the second year in a row our team has won the team event.

Individually, I missed Finals by 1 point and finished 9th. I found the indoor range to be a challenge to shoot in due to the changing lighting from the overhead skylights which were located over a few of the middle positions. My scores were 553/600 and 561/600, which are lower than where I was hoping to be.

Shot up van at Campbell River Gun Club
gold medal for the BC Team consisting of Edmond Lee, Tyler Johnson, and myself

I ran into a few preparation problems before the 1st relay due to forgetting my competitor number and gun check information. I didn't have time to drive back to where I was staying to pick it up without possibly losing competition time so I made a new competitor number by hand. Awesome. Luckily I was able to get a photocopy of my gun check information from the officials. Small issue but that burned through 20 minutes of time which I normally would have used for getting ready mentally and physically.

After the morning relay I drove back and picked up all of my paperwork and competitor number and made it back with lots of time to run through my regular pre-shooting routine. By now, the sun was almost overhead and shining through the skylights and reflecting right off the floor. I couldn't sit in my chair without having a really bright glare in my eyes. Bright. Sunshine + squeaky clean linoleum floor = Arggghhhh.

Good learning experience to make sure I have everything packed and ready (I thought I did! :)) before shooting as well as to train in different lighting conditions... maybe even pack some sunglasses. 10M is always shot indoors so I didn't anticipate possibly needing any kind of tinted lenses.

For the Finals, they used an electronic target scoring system which is projected on to the wall and shows changes to the leader board in real-time. Very cool. It was great to have my two BC teammates shooting in Finals. Edmond Lee (553/600, 573/600) finished in 3rd behind Mark Hynes (Ontario) and Stan Wills (Alberta) thanks to his impressive 573 he shot in the afternoon relay. Tyler Johnson (558/600, 559/600) finished in 6th.

Sitting at the Calgary Airport now and waiting to fly home.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Back into 50M Free Pistol Shooting! 3rd place finish for Team BC.

Last week I was issued a an authorization to transport permit so I could take my classic Pardini PGP 75 .22 to Calgary for Nationals. Shooting the 50M event is a natural progression from shooting the 10M air event.

I didn't have much in the way of expectations considering I haven't fired a .22 pistol since 1994 but it's an event that I wanted to start competing in. My 15 minutes of sighter shots were basically all the practice I would get to shoot before shooting my first scoring shot.

Looking down the 50M range in Calgary, Alberta
what the 50m range looks like from my phone's camera

I ended the day with a 512 and a 484. My BC teammates, Tyler Johnson and Edmond Lee both shot 502 on their first round and then brought their scores up in the 2nd round. Edmond Lee made finals and finished in 7th overall. Our combined score gave our BC Team a 3rd place finish.

My main event is on Friday... I shoot at 8:00 am and again at 12:30 pm. I'll be off tomorrow and will probably take a look around the city. The 10M range isn't open for practice times until around 6pm tomorrow evening.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Flying to the 2009 Canadian National Pistol Championships in the morning

Excellent day at the 2009 World Police and Fire Games today. I was a volunteer helping with scoring and tear down of the Air Rifle venue in Richmond, BC.

air rifle shooters at the 2009 world police and fire games

Flying to Calgary in the morning...

Now that I have all of my registration, authorization to transport, and all other paperwork in order I'm taking my .22 Pardini PGP75 Free Pistol to Nationals. I haven't shot it in 14 years! I've got it all cleaned up, double locked and ready to transport.

I'm shooting 50M Pistol on Wednesday and 10M Pistol on Friday.

I better finish packing. Updates as I write them this week. Bang Bang.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

3 more weeks until the 2009 Canadian National Pistol Championships

Only 3 more weeks until the 2009 Canadian National Pistol Championships in Calgary, Alberta. I was reviewing some of my training material and journals and decided to update the performance tracking chart I created last year.

I also included an update to reflect the new 10M Pistol World Record set on April 12, 2009 by Jin Jong-oh.

Al Harding's current performance tracking
There are 3 notable lines on the chart:

594 - The World Record
578 - The BC Provincial Record
563 - The Olympic Minimum Qualification Score (MQS details)

There is a gap from July 2008 until May 2009 when I was recovering from a shoulder injury. It would have been nice to get some more shooting competitions in this year but I think it was good to ease back into it.

I'm travelling to Kamloops, BC on July 24th to begin the process to get my coaching certification. Then I'll be helping out at the 2009 World Police and Fire Games before flying to Calgary for Nationals.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

566/600 -- Tied for 1st place at the 2009 BC Handgun Championships

What a great weekend! I'm sitting outside at the Campbell River airport enjoying the sun and fresh air.

I only shot in the Olympic 10M Pistol event this weekend and enjoyed watching the other events at the 2009 BC Handgun Championships. 566/600. That score is only a couple points lower than my personal best and several points higher than the Olympic Minimum Qualification Score. At Nationals this summer I'll need to be shooting at this level or higher so I can make the National Team. A 566 is likely enough to make the National Development Team.

I was tied for 1st place but in order to break the tie, the officials work backwards seeing who had the better last 10 shots. Edmond Lee's last string of 10 shots was just a bit better than mine so he's the official winner. Nice work Edmond! In 3rd place with a 562 was Tyler Johnson.

Shot up van at Campbell River Gun Club
i wasn't in campbell river long enough to do much exploring...
but here's a photo of a shot up van near the shooting range ;)

Less than 10 weeks until Nationals... I need to get in some Olympic 50M Pistol training before then. It will be great to be shooting a 2nd event!

Friday, May 29, 2009

2009 BC Provincial Handgun Championships starts tomorrow!

I'll be travelling to Campbell River, BC tomorrow morning to shoot at the 2009 BC Handgun Championships. My first competition back since recovering from a shoulder injury nearly a year ago!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Mobile device usage temporarily affecting eye sharpness

I'm a huge fan of mobile devices... I've got a Sony PSP, Apple iTouch, and Nintendo DS which were gifts from previous employers and currently use a BlackBerry Bold and an HTC Google G1 phone which I unlocked to use here in Canada. The great thing about devices with built in wireless Internet is how connected you always are to things.

The other night after a busy work day I was at practice, and like many others I'm usually never really disconnected from the office. I was busy reading and writing emails on my phone and noticed when I got back to the line to practice my eye's weren't focusing on the front sights as easily. I didn't think much of it at the time... heck... the same thing can happen from eating really spicy food. Hah.

Al Harding and a Google G1 Phone
rest your eyes while shooting... turn the mobile devices off

What I found is that it's not actually the mobile device that causes any blurriness, it's that I'm targetting visual focus to such a small area for prolonged amounts of time. Eyes get tired. So the combination of practice and focusing on a small area (front sight), coming off the line to rest and picking up a phone to focus on a small area puts a huge strain on one's eyes. The actual difference in sharpness is minimal and not quite on par with Guitar Hero vision, but it's enough that it can make it difficult to focus; especially when trying to hit an area smaller than a dime at 30'.

What I have started to do with more discipline while I'm at the range is to turn the phone off. Disconnect. I'm there to shoot 10s not extend my office hours any longer than I need to. I'll need to find someone to send out Tweets during Finals at Nationals on my behalf. ;)

2 weeks until the 2009 BC Handgun Provincials in Campbell River, BC!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Registered for 2009 BC Provincials and 2009 Canadian Nationals

I've sent my registration in for Provincials in Campbell River, BC next month and for the 2009 Canadian National Handgun Championships in Calgary, Alberta in August. The 2009 Provincials next month will be my first competition back since last summer when I injured my shoulder.

It will be busy weeks leading up to both events. Next month I might be going down to San Francisco for a few days for a conference and I'll be volunteering at the 2009 World Police & Fire Games right before flying to Calgary. I've signed up for 10M and 50M pistol events for Calgary and will only be shooting 10M at Provincials.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

2009 BC ISSF Handgun Championships

I just returned home from a 5 week business/vacation trip and will likely post up a few photos in the coming weeks.

Back to shooting...

The 2009 BC Handgun Championships will be in Campbell River, BC on May 29, 30, and 31. I'm definitely looking forward to this one and it's going to be great timing before Nationals in early August. The registration form can be found on the BC Target Sports Association website.

This will be my first event since my shoulder injury at Nationals '08!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

2009 Canadian Nationals Pistol Championship details...

Updated information for the 2009 Canadian National Pistol Championships is now available at it's going to be in Calgary again and I will definitely be attending.

Also... results from the 2009 Canadian Airgun Grand Prix! Congrats to my fellow BC team mate Tyler Johnson who had the top Canadian score going into the Finals!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

2009 BC Airgun Championships - XBOX 360 Giveaway!!

The registration form for the 2009 BC Airgun Championship is available on the BC Target Sports Association website.

Richmond Olympic Oval
xbox 360 giveaway at the 2009 bc airgun championships

All registered shooters will be entered into a draw for an XBOX 360! Somebody (in attendance) will take home a brand new XBOX 360 video game console!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Carry the 2010 Olympic Torch

You can sign up to be a Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torchbearer sponsored by RBC here: I signed up but I think trying to get drawn to carry the torch around downtown will be tough :)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A few photos from the 2010 Speed Skating Oval

Last week I was out in Richmond, BC and checked out the Richmond Olympic Oval which will be used for the 2010 Olympic and Paralymic Winter Games.

Richmond Olympic Oval
outside the richmond olympic oval

Richmond Olympic Oval
venue ceiling fabricated from pine beetle kill wood

Richmond Olympic Oval
cory fuhr's "the speed skater" on display at the venue

Canadian Airgun GrandPrix is happening next weekend in Toronto. I'm skipping it this year but I'll post up scores as I get them.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Upcoming matches in Western Canada

2009 is here! I've been getting back into training and loving the fact that I can shoot and raise my arm properly again.

Here are a handful of upcoming matches in Western Canada.

06-08 - Alberta Provincial Air Gun -
13-15 - 2009 Canadian Airgun Grand Prix

06-08 - 2009 BC Airgun Championships - Registration Form
13-15 - City of Calgary Air Gun Championships -
27-29 - City of Calgary ISSF Pistol Championships -

If I've missed any matches, please let me know so I can post up details.

Regrettably, I'm missing the Canadian Airgun Championships this year and a few other matches. I'll be back in Competition mode in April and hope to make it out to Saskatchewan in April and/or May.

I haven't seen any information as to where the 2009 Canadian National Pistol Championships will be held but has recently released information on the 2009 Athelete Selection Criteria for the National Team, Development Team & the Junior Program.

Looks like I will need to be shooting above 573 to make the National "A" Team. That's 10 points above the Olympic Minimum Qualification Score (MQS) or 95.5% perfect.

More to come... I took some photos of the Olympic Speed Skating Oval in Richmond today and will post them up.

2009 Go!