I started shooting f-class 3 years ago for additional practice time, and the idea of developing wind reading skills. LR shooting opportunities, and 1000 yard ranges are hard to come by and these matches allow instant feedback with every shot. For those that are not familiar with f-class a brief tutorial; F-class matches and Palma matches typically go hand and hand, so if you see a listing for Palma you can be resonably assured that f-class is also shot at the same time. In a typical match you will shoot at specified distances either 600 yards for the mid-range matches, or 800,900, and 1000 yards for the long range matches. the course of fire consist of either 15 or 20 shot stings with either 2 sighter shots or unlimited sighters before you shoot your 15 or 20 shot string for record. Normally 3 people are required per target during a match, and the match officials will "squad" the shooters into groups for each target. Lets say Bob, Jim and Roy are asigned target one, Bob would shoot first and Jim would be on the line with Bob recording his score(spoting). Roy would be in the pitts, the pitt is a protected area under the target where the person in the pitts lowers and raises the target with each shot. When Bob takes his first shot, Roy would watch the impact burm for the bullets splat. Roy then pulls the target down and puts a colored disc in the bullet hole, and another disc on a coresponding number on the perimiter of the board, that Bob and Jim can see thru there rifle scope and spotting scope. This is when Jim calls out to Bob that bullets score acording to how it is market on the clocked numbers around the target board. Bob can see exactly where his bullet impact landed so as to adjust for the following shot. This continues in rotation until the match is completed. You are required to fire your string of bullets under a rather genourous time limit, usually around 20 minutes. In f-class the target board is typically 6 feet square, with the x ring equalling 1/2 moa, the 10 ring being 1moa and the 9 ring 2 moa the 8 ring 3 moa ect until you reach the 5 ring at 6 moa. So in mid range f-class the 10 ring is aprox 6" In LR f-class the 10 ring is aprox 10" Most matches will require between 60- 90 rounds to complete, depending on the course of fire. New shooters are always comming to matches and are usually versed in the opperations of the day by experienced shooters who are always willing to help and guide the newbies. This year the f-class nationals will be held in Lodi WI (sept.), my home town, and I have decided that I would give it my best so have been shooting more matches this year, so far I have shot 3 LR matches and one mid range match. Yesterday was the Memorial day LR match in Lodi we had a south wind varying through-out the day from about 5-15 mph. 24 f-class shooters attended which is very good for this one day match. The match always starts in Lodi with cannon fire at 8;ooam, raising of the flag and playing of the National Anthem, which on this particullar day, feeling moved by the sacrifices of others, I sang along with the recorded Anthem tract. After the 800 yard relay I was around the lower half of the pack, shooting a 146 out of 150. 2 of my friends had shot in the 1 st relay with little wind and cleaned the 800 yard course so I was alittle disapointed in my shooting, but I had shot the last or 3 relays at 800 and the wind was blowing by then. At 900 yards I shot a very good 148 and moved up to 5th place. When I shot the 1000 yard line I finished with a respectable 145, this left me behind the leaders unless they shot worse than about 143. So i went for my turn in the pitts knowing it was in someone elses hands, and their match to lose. When the shooting was all over us pitt people cleaned up and stored away the targets so by the time I got back to the stat house, the results were out, before I got up to the board, one of my friends congratulated me on the win. I had finished with a 439 15x score. It was a very unexpected win, as I don't consider myself as a top compeditor, most matches are a competition with-in myself just to become a better LR shooter/hunter. A very memorable Memorial day.