Xtreme Field Target. It’s New! It’s Great! Here’s Your Chance To Join In…
Xtreme Field Target is a new and growing airgun shooting discipline. Just like the original concept of Field Target, back in the 1980s UK, it’s intended as a fun competition for airgunners using the typical rifles of the day.
Forty years ago in the UK that was 12 Ft/Lb .177 caliber springers. Now times have changed and such a specification is a rarity for air rifle purchases in the USA. Most folk are moving to PCPs, larger calibers and higher power.
So Xtreme Field Target goes back to that core Field Target ideal: “a fun competition using today’s typical rifles”. But it modifies the rules to reflect the reality of today’s typical US air rifle purchaser…
That’s the reason many people are excited by XFT. It’s also undoubtedly the reason that Extreme Field Target was the first discipline to sell-out at Extreme Benchrest 2021. It was over-subscribed in less than 24 hours!!!
Below. Claudio Flores from Chile shoots Extreme Field Target at the 2021 Extreme Benchrest competition. Yes, it’s legal to use a rangefinder in XFT!
To give us more information on Xtreme Field Target (XFT), Cole Rearden has kindly put together this background. Take it away Cole…
Before I get into all that sharing of information, I’d like to give my personal endorsement to the Xtreme FT matches: absolute and thorough FUN!
Some history… I’ve been shooting regular sub 20 Ft/Lb Field Target for a couple years now, and have always been intrigued by the American/Extreme FT event at Extreme Benchrest.
Further distances and higher power? Heck yes!
Sounded like a blast, but it hadn’t ever worked with my schedule to compete at EBR…
In fact, it’s the owner of Airguns of Arizona – Robert Buchanan – who first conceived the idea for what has become XFT. Thanks Robert!
Below. Bobby Corcorran shoots Extreme Field target at EBR 2021.
Being good friends through regular Field Target, Ben Spencer came to me in the spring of 2019. The news was that he was finally getting all the pieces together to turn the higher power/long range flavor of Field Target into a monthly event (monthly in the winter, as it’s a hot SOB in the summer in Phoenix).
He had been wanting to do this for a couple years at that point and had finally worked it out with Phoenix Rod and Gun Club (PRGC) to have a place for the event to be hosted. They offered a really rugged true desert area behind their firearm berms, the fourth Saturday of the month and basically let Ben loose.
Below. Mike Bricker takes a standing shot at PRGC. That’s Ben Spencer, second from right.
He took on a “if you build it they will come” mentality and worked himself into the ground creating a place for us all to enjoy these matches. The “soil” in that location is very rocky and he had to devise a manner in which the targets could be firmly fixed to ensure reliable function.
It entailed drilling out holes in sometimes solid rock and sinking rebar. Lots of sweat, blood, and tears. Towards the end, I understand Van Tucker, Barry Diehl, and Mike Smith were over there helping the indefatigable Ben make it a reality.
PRGC saw the amount of work being put in, as well as the potential and brought in some loads of gravel to create a walking path along one side of the course area.
So, Ben was ready for the first match in September of 2020. Airguns of Arizona sponsored that first match, donating prize money and even had a filming crew create a video. That first month it was dubbed the “American Field Target Southwest Challenge.” You can see it here.
And after that we were off to the races, holding monthly events all through last winter.
Somewhere in those first couple months I decided to extrapolate the widely accepted Troyer Factor to Extreme Field Target. Brad Troyer created this for regular sub 20 Ft/Lb Field Target years ago. It tells anybody familiar with the system, how hard a particular target is in a given match, as well as how hard the overall course is.
I simply wanted a similar way to gauge how “hard” or “easy” a particular month’s course was/is. And so was born the Extreme Troyer Factor.
We even had a little side XFT match up at the high elevation Aspen Mtn. regular Field Target event over in Western NM, and that was an absolute BLAST. Shooting field targets through 100 yards of pine trees? Very, very cool!!!
Below. XFT targets can be quite whimsical – like the frog target in our heading photo, or the woodchuck below. But either way, they’re mounted on a firm wooden board or pallet.
To get involved in Xtreme Field Target, contact Ben Spencer at email@example.com. AZXFT can also help clubs set up their own ranges using XFT brand targets. The group is building a website that should be operational soon. Check it out at www.azxft.com.
Cole will bring us more information on Extreme Field Target in a second post coming very soon…