221: Match Recon | Fort Benning Multi-Gun Challenge (2017) | Jake Latola

Jake Latola is our special field correspondent for this Match Recon of the 2017 Fort Benning Multi-Gun Challenge. Set on the Army Marksmanship Unit ranges at Fort Benning, Georgia, the match favored both speed and accuracy in equal quantities. Each stage had a movie theme and Jake describes them in detail in this podcast.

Plus, Jake and I get into a strong stage tactics discussion where he walks through the math behind shooting a stage and how to determine the proper stage plan as a result. Jake is very methodical in his approach to competitive shooting and teaches just as much as he provides intel on the match. So take some notes and enjoy this match recon podcast!

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Important Links from the Podcast:

Jake’s Match Photos:

Pistol Flying Clay

Raiders of the Lost Ark Wall

Rambo Boat

Star Wars Speeder Bike

SWAT Shoothouse

A Sea of Steel

Desperado Saloon Doors

John Wick With a Pencil & Stage Gun

Recon Criteria:

Year 2017
Match Fort Benning Multigun Challenge
Date 11/17-11/19
Location Fort Benning (Columbus, GA)
Total Time or Points Match? Time Plus Penalties, Points
Rule Set https://benning.armymwr.com/download_file/view/14574/4958
PractiScore? Registration and results. Results posted daily on PractiScore.
Quick Stats
*Schedule 3-Day Format, 4 Stages per Day, Full Day
*Match Fee $325 ???
*Number Shooters 256, 237 Finished
*Divisions, Winners Divison 1st 2nd 3rd
Heavy (7) Ben Powell James Oliver Bill Corcoran
Open (35) Jerry Miculek Michael Whitesides Gabe Dietrich
Tac Irons (19) Nathan Payne Joe Easter Luke Crawford
Tac Optics (195) Todd Jarrett Jake Latola Jason Tielke
*Other opportunities US Army Infantry Museum is located on Ft. Benning. Also had some armored vehicles at the range to climb around in/on.
Match Flavor – Is there a theme? Rifle heavy, shotgun heavy, etc? What sets it apart from other matches? Is there something only this match has? Themed match. 2017 was movie themed, including John Wick, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Rambo, HEAT, and many others. Each stage had elements or props that related back to the themed movie. Very fast paced and technical stages with “speed checks” where things get tight or targets get small. This match is known to have “removed earth” stages, such as a flooded trench where the shooter pulled themselves along in a boat to engage targets, and in year’s past have excavated trenches within the COF.
Terrain – Bay stages or natural terrain? Mixture? Bay Stages. Some bays out to 300 yds, but most within 50-75 yds.
Skillz Utilized – Awkward positions, heavy focus on quad loading, offhand rifle, slugs at distance, long Pistol shots, crazy obstacles, etc Speed and focus! Target presentations were mixed and ranged from hosing paper to suddently posting up to take precise shots. Rifle targets were inside of 300 yds, but small enough and from awkward positions such that they were very challenging.
Farthest Shot and/or # of long range targets Rifle had < 5 targets beyond 250 yds and ~20 from 100-250 yds. Furthest slug was 60 yds. Furthest pistol was 60 yds.
Logistics- Checkin, scoring, prize table walk, etc Stages located on three different ranges. Checking was at the Action Shooting Team’s home range (Krilling). After checking-in, shooter received a “swag pack” with T-shirt, rifle mag, Ft. Benning MG Challenge Coin, and other items packed in a .30 cal ammo can. Shipped ammo had been relocated from the address it was shipped to back to the Krilling Range. It was unclear where to locate shipped ammo if you didn’t ask during check-in. Each range location had ample restrooms and food vendor offerings. Awards ceremony took place under large tent at Krilling Range. After prize table, there was an “accounting checkpoint” where the shooter checked their prize with staff to ensure all prizes were accounted for.
Venue – Ease of access, creative use of facility, etc It is a military base, and the shooters must respect their rules. No speeding! Access was straightforward and well-defined in pre-match communication.
Pre-Communication – Do you receive information about what to expect at the match or any other pertinent information Yes, a packet with detailed instructions of how to enter the range beforehand was provided, as well as a detailed match book with round counts and stage diagrams. One thing that would have been nice would be a map to the various ranges utilized on base. Each range had “Fort Benning Multigun Challenge” banners at the range entrance. Once you knew where they were they were easy to see the signs, but it was also easy to overlook whlie searching for it the first time.
Staff – How did the staff treat the shooters? Army Strong – Courteous and professional!
Fun factor – Highly subjective, could hurt some feelings. Very fun! Every stage was so fast you wanted to shoot it again as soon as you were done!
Funny things that happen at the match. The spent artillery round casings used for trophies may be met with raised eyebrows by TSA.

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Thanks for listening! Thanks to special field correspondent Jake Latola for doing such a great job on the Match Recon podcast!

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