I missed 5 targets last night at the Biathlon. 20/25 is not bad. I was, needless to say, fairly impressed. Even if I do say so myself. I missed 3 of those 5 in one turn. I blame the gun. It had to have been faulty. However, I rode rather slowly in between turns at the range. I was spun out on the singlespeed and had neither the motivation, nor the legs to spin the cranks quickly enough to ‘race’. It was, or at least ended up being a high cadence recovery ride. That is, at least what I called it after the fact. It is really pretty easy to spin (no pun intended) a poor performance into whatever I want it to be.
And anyway, the sheer amusement value of watching a hundred or more lycra-clad mountain bikers try and gracefully transition from rider to shooter is well worth the price of admission. Being amongst that crowd conjured up a sort of odd self awareness – as if being in cycling clothes is not already silly enough, shooting guns while being dressed as such only added to the circus tent atmosphere. Add to that the ultra short laps, just 5-6 minutes of riding, and it seemed as though I was constantly parading by the cheering and jeering spectators who were probably as confused and amused watching the race as those of us riding in it.
Afterward I asked Chris Holley how his shooting had gone:
“I missed 5 the first time, and then 5 the second time.”
“You missed your first 10 shots?”
He still finished far ahead of, well most everyone else. Josh Wolfe helpfully pointed out that Soldier Hollow offers Beginner Shooter Classes. For Kids. Maybe Chris ought to take the classes? Maybe several of us ought to? I mean, what would we have to lose? (besides our hard earned dignity of course).
I think it would be, as they say, worth a shot.