If you could only shoot one major IDPA (International Defensive Pistol Association) Match in the country, it should be the Carolina Cup. This is what IDPA is all about—a match that squeezes the maximum amount of fun out of IDPA while staying true to the spirit and principles of the sport. I’ve shot IDPA matches all over the country at all kinds of locations, and I have to say that the crew running the 2011 Carolina Cup was absolutely the best match staff I’ve seen at an IDPA major match. My hat is off in gratitude and respect for the professional and efficient way that they handled the shooters through the day. The big “IDPA Pitfalls” were avoided—there were never any questionable rulings, cover was enforced fairly across the board, and all in all it really was the best example I’ve seen in over 4 years of shooting of IDPA of what an IDPA match should look like.
My match started on Stage 13 (not me in the video). There were a total of 16 stages at the Cup, and most of them were 12-15 rounds. The total round count was 213, through which my Sig 1911 TacOps ran like a sewing machine with no bobbles or hiccups. My first stage went okay; I was slower than I wanted to be, but didn’t make any major errors. Stage 14 went better; I shot nice and fast but somehow dropped 7 points on a 12-shot stage. The Carolina Cup was a great match for challenging your mental focus – lots of 12-round stages mean that dropping too many points is going to hurt a lot, and you absolutely have to stay on your front sight or you will end up looking at your score sheet wondering “where did that -3 come from?” My favorite stage at the match was Stage 5, which was a very fast but technically challenging stage. The shooter steps off the box and activates three disappearing targets simultaneously, all of which moved at different speeds. You had to have your timing perfect or you’d end up getting behind and dropping a ton of points on the disappearing targets. This is just one example of the excellent, creative, and challenging stages that you saw at the 2011 Carolina Cup.
And now for the fun part: the Results. I shot CDP/MA, this being my first major match as a 5-Gun Master. I definitely felt the pressure to perform to a higher level than I had before. I’ll be the first to admit that there’s a huge difference between shooting Master class classifiers and performing like a Master in a major match. I’m very pleased that I was able to bring home a Top 10 finish in CDP! I finished 9th in CDP Master and 10th Overall in CDP, with first place going to Glenn Shelby, the only Distinguished Master competing in CDP.
This was a great match, and I want to thank all the companies that sponsored and supported the match, especially my main sponsor, Cheaper than Dirt. Tomorrow, right here on the Shooter’s Log, I’ll take a look at the guns and gear I used to bring home my first Top 10 finish at a major IDPA Match in the 2011 season!