How much of a difference does match grade equipment make compared to standard, rack grade, issue rifles and ammunition? National champion CPT Freeman of the USAR Service Rifle Team shares his experience in competing with both.
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By actual test, the difference in score between a top end match grade rifle with highly refined sights and trigger, ammunition, and shooting accessories (padded shooting coat, sling, glove, etc.) is less than 15%, even with a beat up, bottom-edge issue rack-grade rifle and ammunition with no refinements and no shooting accessories. It will likely be even less in most cases.
BLUF: Scores are earned by skill. Even the best match grade equipment can only account for the last few percentage points in the score.
Update: At later events on the National Match Course using the same issue equipment, the winning scores jumped to around 450+ due to shooters establishing zeroes/data prior to the match and taking point of impact error from the lack of a float tube into account, which is less than a 10% difference from using match-grade rifles, ammo, and equipment.