Getting ready for your first or your 100th major action shooting match can be a daunting proposition. For first-time and in-experienced shooters, they haven’t yet established a pre-match ritual for performing all their necessary checks of gear, self, and whatever else they might need. This guide will give you a step-by-step plan on what to look for, what to check, and how to get ready for a major action shooting match.
Registering is simple. Users can go online to Practiscore, search for matches, pick your division and in most instances, can register and pay online. If you’re shooting a 92X Performance in USPSA, you’ll want to pick Production Division. The 92X Performance Defensive in IDPA would qualify for Stock Service Pistol (SSP) or Enhanced Service Pistol (ESP). In ESP you can also run the gun cocked and locked, which takes advantage of the 92X Performance’s ergonomic thumb safety.
Check Your Gun and Gear
One week out from a big match, if you haven’t had any live fire sessions for a while, take your 92X Performance to the range and double check your zero. While the adjustable sights on the gun are robust, it’s always a good idea to make sure that nothing has shifted, and it still hits where you want it. After this range session, make sure the gun is appropriately lubricated for the upcoming match. The day or night before the match, run your gun through a mechanical function check to make sure that everything is working correctly. It’s also highly recommended to check your magazines for cleanliness, feed lip deformation, and spring tension.
Check The Weather
This is no joke. Showing up to a match prepared for 80 degrees and sunny only to be greeted with pouring rain in the 60s is a recipe for a miserable day. Start checking the weather 1 week out before the match and track it right up until the morning you leave for the match. Bring the appropriate attire with you. Being at a comfortable temperature (warm or cool) and dry helps keep your mind focused on where it needs to be: burning stages down with your Beretta.
Check All Your Other Gear
This is a step a lot of people miss, but it’s important. Checking things like your holster, your hearing protection, belt, and magazine pouches is a critical step in making sure your gear is ready for an upcoming match. There’s nothing worse than showing up to the range and realizing that your holster lost a screw, or your mag pouches have lost retention. This is also a good place to check and make sure you’ve got spare parts and tools ready to go. Whether those are simple things like pieces of fiber optic, spare springs, or an entire range tool kit, make sure it’s prepped and ready before you get to the range.
Check Your Car
If you’re going to be driving to the match, make sure your vehicle is in good working order! This may seem silly, but check your tire pressure and gas. The last thing you want to be worried about before you take your 92X Performance to the range should be a flat tire.
There are some other things you can do to prep for a match, like route planning and trip planning if you’re staying overnight. Following these five tips will take your mind off the logistics when the day comes. Taking a gun like the 92X Performance out to a match will also take your mind off any gun-related problems you might have had in the past, since the 92X Performance is part of the legendarily and reliable Beretta 90-Series. If you perform your match prep, the 92X Performance will handle the reliability, and all that’s left is for you to line up the sights and press the trigger on match day.
Author | Caleb Giddings
Caleb Giddings is a professional shooter, firearms journalist, and military firearms instructor. He has been published in nearly every major firearms magazine and many online outlets, and also appeared on the first season of Top Shot on History Channel. During his decade plus in the firearms industry, he has also placed in the top five at multiple national level matches. As a member of the USAF, he has deployed in support of the Global War on Terror, and trains other military members in marksmanship and tactics.