Bud Pryor Memorial Match (Score Shoot)
Report by Dick Grosbier for the IBS
This past weekend, score shooters from as far away as Florida and Maine gathered at the beautiful Thurmont Conservation & Sportsman’s Club (TCSC) range in Thurmont, Maryland. They were there for the 19th Annual Bud Pryor Memorial Match. This match is also the Maryland State 100-200-300 championship. It is a pivotal match in the Score Shooter Of the Year (SSOY) race because 60 points are up for grabs (as many as are awarded at the Score Nationals).
The Bud Pryor Match is a three-day event. Competitors shoot at 100 yards on Friday, and at 200 yards on Saturday. On Sunday is the infamous 300-yard stage — the “great equalizer” that separates the good shooters from the great shooters.
On Friday morning the 100-yard stage started rainy and miserable (though not too cold). As the day went on the wind picked up some and before we were done I actually compared it to how wet and windy it was in Orrington, Maine two weeks earlier. Herb Llewellyn set a blistering pace at 100 yards, turning in a 250-24X performance in some challenging conditions. He was followed closely at 23X by David Apple. A total of twenty-seven “clean” 250s were shot in VFS class at 100. Also very noteworthy, in Hunter class Dean Breeden shot 250-17X and Gary Long shot 16X.
Saturday at 200 the rain was gone (mostly), and the temperature got up to around 80. All eyes were on Herb Llewellyn after his performance on Friday. He shot the only 50-5X target in match one so many were watching as he planted a 9 on his target on match 3. So much for him (we thought). But Kim Llewellyn ended up on the top of the pile at the end of the day with a 250-10X score. (Kim edged Ricky Read, who also shot 250-10X, under Creedmoor rules). On Saturday, there were six 250s in VFS and Gary Long won Hunter class with a fine 247-3X score. Saturday night we had a great BBQ dinner at the Club House and the 100-yard and 200-yard awards were distributed. (This permitted shooters to leave earlier on Sunday afternoon.)
Score Shooter of the Year — How the Point System Works
The Score Shooter of the Year is determined on a point basis. For a regular two-yardage (with Grand) match (not a State or National Championship), a maximum of 30 Points are available to the winner. That’s 10 for each yardage (100/200) and 10 for the Grand. The same match in a State Championship situation has 45 points available. A National Championship with up to 50 guns in class is worth 20+20+20 or 60 Points. Because it includes three yardages plus a Grand Agg, the Bud Pryor event is a 60-point match just like the Nationals. Likewise the Maine Firecracker held over Memorial Day weekend is also a 60-point match. These 60-point matches are very important because no matter how many matches in which the shooter competes, he only gets to count his ten best in the final standings. My friend Allie Euber, Score Shooter of the Year in 2007 and 2010, notes that these 60-point matches are essential if you want to make a serious run at Score Shooter Of the Year.
Sunday promised to be a tough day of shooting at 300 yards. The warm 83° temperatures, combined with the very wet ground, might have made for horrible mirage. Luckily the day was overcast for the most part. Mirage did get bad a few times but never as horrible as I have seen at Thurmont. Wind was constant and switchy. At the end of the day one lone shooter, Roy Hunter, was clean for the weekend with a 750-26X (and 250-5X at 300). Roy was shooting a 6PPC and his performance was no fluke as Roy was one of only two clean shooters at last years “Bud”.
All in all it was a very full three days of shooting. We had a number of first time attendees most of whom told me they had a great time and looked forward to next years “Bud”. — Dick Grosbier