Classifications Explained

The National Rifle Association and Civilian Marksmanship Program uses a Classification system to keep competitors in similar-skilled groups. I’ve detailed this in the past:
https://firearmusernetwork.com/marksmanship-classification-qualification/

What follows is a more succinct breakdown.

NRA Classifications Explained
by John M. Buol Jr.

Marksman
A Marksman Classification is “earned” by merely showing up to a match and failing to be disqualified due to flagrant safety violations. You can’t shoot worse than this. Scratch that. Given only 2% of the NRA membership will bother to ever show up, 98% of the herd are less involved and probably worse than your terrible level of non-skill.

Sharpshooter
The worst you can shoot while meeting a minimally-low cut off. One step up from the bottom. Good job!

Expert
You’re actually invested and have practiced to become this bad. A complete lay person (which describes nearly every gun owner that has never attended a match) might be fooled into believing an “Expert” Classification denotes actual skill. You’re shooting just well enough to eventually stumble into enough “leg points” to earn a Distinguished Rifleman/Pistol Shot badge if you keep at it, the marksmanship equivalent of the infinite monkey theorem.

Master
Possibly good enough to be a contender for a win at local, or small state/regional match. You consider a trip to a drained swamp on the southwest-side of Lake Erie to stay in a hutment that deployed Marines would complain about to be a vacation while spending enough money in travel, lodging, match fees, and ammunition to have instead gone to Europe.

High Master
You’ve reached the Classification pinnacle of a century-old sport sponsored by a political organization that not even the directors and card-carrying members know or care anything about. And it only took an investment in time and money that could have paid for an early retirement. After giving your paycheck to Chump’s Choice, avoid considering this fact by enjoying beer and pizza at Bell Mell or an ice cream at Andy’s because ya can’t go to Nick’s anymore…

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Gene Clark Honored by AMU

https://www.facebook.com/pg/USAMU1956/photos/?tab=album&album_id=10156163842954734/

The U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit recognized Gene Clark, gunsmith for the AMU since 1988.

Clark did extensive testing and research and development on the M-249 SAW, 242 chain gun and the M-9 pistol.

He was also a primary contributor in the development of the modified M-16A2. His work over the years has played a vital role in the overall development of the AR-15 in Service Rifle and other performance uses. His work contributed greatly to the advancements that took the M16A2 from a “rack grade” rifle to a precision platform. Free float tubes, chamber and barrel design, and the construction of the first SDM rifles were created in large part to Mr. Clark’s expertise and effort. During his tenor, he also directly contributed to the improved sniper weapons system for the U.S. Army.

Marksmanship History

10 Interesting Facts About The History Of The Shooting Sports
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/11/22/10-interesting-facts-about-the-history-of-the-shooting-sports/

Where Did The National Matches Originate?
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/10/31/where-did-the-national-matches-originate

The National Trophies
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2016/2/4/the-national-trophies

Hallmarks Of Heritage: The NRA Trophy Collection
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/8/3/hallmarks-of-heritage-the-nra-trophy-collection

A Historical Look at National Match Ranges
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2016/7/1/a-historical-look-at-national-match-ranges

1872 Creedmoor and the First Annual Matches
https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2017/5/4/1872-creedmoor-and-the-first-annual-matches


Origin of the Palma Trophy and Matches

https://www.ssusa.org/articles/2016/11/7/origin-of-the-palma-trophy-and-matches

Col. George Hanger on marksmanship training

Some things never change…

Some remarks respecting the training of a raw countryman, or a mechanic from Birmingham, perfectly awkward and generally very ignorant.  He is consigned to the superintendence of the drill serjeant.  He is first taught to walk, next to march, and hold himself tolerably erect.

Then a firelock is placed in his hands, which he handles at first as awkwardly as a bear would a plumb cake.  When he is taught the manual exercise and fit to do regimental duty, they then take him to fire powder.  Whilst the drill serjeant is teaching him to fire either by files or by platoons, the serjeant says to him, laying his cane along the barrels of the firelocks, ‘Lower the muzzles of your pieces, my lads, otherwise when you come into action, you will fire over the enemy.’ 

After this the recruit is taken to fire ball at a target.  How is he taught?  Thus he is spoken to:  ‘Take steady aim, my lad, at the bull’s eye of the target; hold your piece fast to the shoulder that it may not hurt you in the recoil; when you get your sight, pull smartly.’  This is the general way in which I believe they are taught, and in the name of truth and common sense permit me to ask you how a drill serjeant who is no marksman himself can teach an ignorant countryman or a low order of a mechanic to be a good marksman.  In my humble opinion, excellent in their way as they are to discipline the soldier and form him for parade and actual service in the line, the serjeant is just as capable of teaching him how to solve one of Sir Isaac Newton’s problems as to teach him to be a marksman.

Reflections on the menaced invasion, and the means of protecting the capital
Lord George Hanger, 4th Baron Coleraine
London, 1804

2017 Service Rifle Interservice

At the Interservice Rifle Championships the USARCMP placed second in the team matches while putting up some formidable scores. In the 10 man team match, the USARCMP bested the previous record by 3 points but still finished 6 points behind the AMU.

SFC John Arcularius won the 1000 yard Match with a Service Rifle with a 199-7X. The Army Reserve 6 Man MCDDC Team finished in 2nd place overall and Top Reserve Team today.

The United States Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command (Airborne) broke the Post and Station Record MCDDC 4 Man Team record of 1151-31X by firing 1151-41X. The previous record was held by Army Reserve Careers Division.

SFC Arcularius

SFC John Arcularius watches the bullet trace over SSG Kris Friend to keep his shooters in the middle at the 600 yard line during the Infantry Trophy Team Match. This match tests the shooters' ability to fire quick accurate shots on a silhouette target with a time limit of 50 seconds per stage. As a 6 person team, they are given 384 rounds to fire on 8 targets.

1000 team second place me coaching
SFC Micholick coaching the 1,000 Yard Match

10 man team second place team match
10 man team second place team match
USARCMP bested the previous record by 3 points but still finished 6 points behind the AMU.

Interservice second place 6 man team
Interservice second place 6 man team

2017 Rifle Nationals

National Trophy Team Match

2017 was not as great as 2016. The USARCMP had a lot of great performances and amazing scores posted, including some that broke previous National records, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the tremendous season the Army Marksmanship Unit had.

One performance to highlight was that of SGT Nick Mowrer in the individual championship with a score of 998-49x. SGT Mowrer finished in 2nd place, a 3 Xs behind winner SFC Brandon Green.

Both shooters had broken a 23 year old record by 3 points! 3 Xs separated 1st and 2nd place at the completion of the 100 shot, 1000 point aggregate match.

MAJ Freeman made the President’s Hundred Shootoff.

The USARCMP took second place during the National Four Man Team Match.

It was a great season and we would like to congratulate all the teams and shooters on a job well done.
Time to start training for 2018!

second place four man team match
second place four man team match

Photo Album

10 man team second place team match