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JDC SPEED SHOOTING & SHOT CALLING CLASS AAR

JANUARY 20, 2020 DAVID ZAKAR

As I’ve progressed as a shooter, I try to tailor the classes that I take to address my particular needs. It’s a little hard to list out my needs, as my shortcomings are myriad, but tightening up my speed while maintaining accuracy is certainly high on my list. When I saw Justified Defensive Concepts’ 2020 schedule, and the Speed Shooting & Shot Calling class on it, I knew I was not going to miss it.

If you want some indication just how much I was not going to miss it, here’s the story. I am writing this AAR from Las Vegas, where I will be attending SHOT Show for the first time. I got home from this class at 11:15 PM on Sunday night – as expected – secured my weapons, went to sleep at 11:30 PM, and woke up at 4:15 AM on Monday to catch a flight to Las Vegas. That is punishing, and I was pretty fatigued on Monday, but I think it was worth it.

 Class Title: Justified Defensive Concepts Speed Shooting & Shot Calling Class

Class Description: From the website: “Speed Shooting and Shot Calling is an advanced pistol class focused on enhancing students ability to run their handgun at high speed. 2-Gun National Champion Ken Bloxton has developed a 3-hour, 300rd course that answers some the hardest questions in shooting such as –

  • How can I maintain accuracy at high speed?
  • What is “Shot Calling” and how do I do it?
  • What does it mean to “See what you need to see”?”

Instructors: Ken Bloxton, Brett Harnish, Tim Chandler, Ty Cooper, and Kerry Brendel. All of them have their bios on the JDC website, but I would summarize them as being primarily LEO, with some past military experience. The lead instructor was Ken Bloxton, but Brett also took something of a leadership role. Ken is a high-level multi-gun shooter with some championships under his belt. He also runs Origin Shooting.

The instructor ratio was 1 instructor to 2 students. This is one of the things I really give JDC a lot of credit for; you get a LOT of hands-on time, and the instructors tend to self-organize to have the right instructors on the right students. I was constantly getting coaching from Ken and Brett, and their advice made a measurable impact in my shooting performance.

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Justified Defensive Concepts is a new-ish training provider in the northern Virginia area. I believe Brett said that this was their first anniversary. They have a very solid instructor cadre, and I have zero doubts in their ability to teach whatever classes they decide to teach. This is really the golden age of firearms training in the area, and I hope the Virginia legislature doesn’t endanger that.

Location/Date: The class took place on 1/19/2020 from 6-10:30PM. It was conducted at the NRA HQ range. The NRA HQ range is a great indoor range with 50yd shooting lanes, clean bathrooms, and a well-equipped classroom. I have no complaints about the facility, except that the bullet-lead removal augur turns on at about 8PM and makes it rather difficult to hear anything for about ten minutes. Small price to pay.

Equipment Details: I used my standard USPSA competition belt rig for this class. Riding in the holster was a Glock 17 with my Swenson slide and FastFire3 8MOA. Midway through class, I had a squib (read on), and switched over to my Glock 19 with Brownells slide, 3CR Tactical compensator, and Trijicon RMR RM01 Type-2 3.5MOA. This was my first time running the 3CR comp at speed outside of zero and functionality verification, and I was pleasantly surprised at how well it did.

Ammo was my reloads. I knew that one round in them might be a squib due to a prior reloading mishap, and I was not surprised when it happened. I disassembled the gun when it happened, verified, and then switched guns. I’m not going to claim this was the best decision ever, but I don’t have any regrets. I would guesstimate the total round count was ~250-275 for the entire class.

One final equipment thought: I know the Glock 19 is the handgun of choice by the operator illuminati, but I genuinely prefer the Glock 17 frame for competition due to the larger grip. If Polymer80 releases a 19X-style frame, I will probably be switching to that, especially since I’ve been shooting more unsanctioned matches these days.

Preparation Drills: Regular dry-fire of Anderson’s core classifier drills. My live-fire practice has been pretty slim lately due to various real life constraints.

Author’s Previous Experience: Civilian with no military or LEO background. Have shot some competition, but no accomplishments worth bragging about. Training junkie since April 2018, and have averaged a class a month since then. I am OK with a carbine, pretty good with a pistol, and just average with a shotgun.

Class Demographics: The ten student class was all guys, but diverse otherwise. Backgrounds varied quite a bit – some LEOs, some average joes like myself. Skills were all over the place; there were some people struggling to keep it in the AC zone at 15yds, and others who were doing it fairly deftly.

Every single person was using a striker-fired pistol of some sort.