Topic #6-35 Hosted by Bobby Carver Question: When running the plates does one stay focused on the front sight and transition across the rack or does one focus on the next plate in line and bring the front sight to that picture? Response by BCarver: I have been asked this question at the range and at a match more than any other question asked. Im going to reply to this question the same way I may have told some of you in the past: Shooting Plates 1, 2, 3: I am right eye dominant and shoot with both eyes open. I shoot left to right and when I am shooting, I stay focused on the front sight and transition across the rack, aiming at each plate, getting a clear sight picture before I break the trigger and shoot the plate. In fact, when I focus upon the sight 100%. I do not know if a plate does not fall from the hit until I shoot plate #6 and rescan my rack with my left eye. When Im shooting focused, I know that I hit each plate and dont worry, when I go to the next plate. I dont wonder if I hit the plates because when I have my sight picture and break the trigger, I know that I hit the plate whether I hear it or not. How do I know this? Heres how: 1. I DO NOT take my eye off the front sight, even when it rises upon recoil 2. I break my trigger, releasing the striker WHEN the front sight is on the target 3. After each shot breaks, THEN, I pivot to the right with the muzzle, with my eyes on the front sight until I see the next plate and apply 1 & 2 again. NEVER, EVER look at the plate and move the muzzle and front sight to the plate. Once you begin this habit, you will struggle to overcome it. NEVER, EVER try to watch the plates fall. I know they look neat when you do 1-3 correctly, but watch them fall on film not at the time you are shooting them. Now, lets be realistic, if you think that you will be able to shoot a 2.25 to 2.65 plate run the first time you try this technique, you will be fooled. This technique requires practice to development your confidence and accuracy. Heres a training tip that I want each of you to try: Plate Training Prepare your training plates by using plates, (paper plates) for targets. Go out and buy a 100 at the discount or grocery store for about $1.50. These plates will be about 8 in diameter. Cut the centers of the plates from the plate. These will be about 6 in diameter. Staple these centers on a 7.5 2 x 4 or equivalent in length. Staple your first plate 6 from the edge of the 2 x 4 and then staple the remaining 5 plates 15 from center to center. Place the 2 x 4 rack onto a saw horse that is about 48 in height from the ground. Now step back 11 yards and perform the following drills, focusing upon shooting 1 shot each plate: 1. Using a start signal, simulating the commands and cadence at a GSSF match, shoot 25 starts, shooting only the first plate, recording or being aware of your first shot. Replace the plate with a new plate. (Note: reducing your first shot .25 of a second will save you 1.0 second in a match) 2. Now that you have completed the first shot drill, perform 10 runs, shooting ONLY plate 1 and 2. Replace the plates that have been shot with new plates. 3. Now, using the same start method, shoot another 10 runs, shooting ONLY plates 1, 2 and 3. Replace the plates that have been shot with new plates 4. Now, using the same start method, shoot another 10 runs, shooting ONLY plates 1, 2, 3 and 4. Replace the plates that have been shot with new plates 5. Now, using the same start method, shoot another 10 runs, shooting ONLY plates 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Replace the plates that have been shot with new plates 6. Now, using the same start method, shoot another 10 runs, shooting ONLY plates 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. Replace the plates that have been shot with new plates After each step, review your hits, focusing upon what you need to do to correct the next set of runs. NOW, place full size 8 plates over the 6 plates that you have been shooting and run through a full 4 run plate match, recording your times. Be sure and use the methods you practiced, not shooting too fast but one shot for each plate. After each of you attempt this training method, please let me know the results and how much time you were able to shave off of your normal plate runs. Email me at www. Carvermounts@msn.com.