Steel targets are smaller than IPSC targets. You don't get to hose them down, because there is no chance of getting a 'near miss' that counts. You either hit the A-zone, or you don't. When you miss the A-zone on a steel target, you get no credit. Your only choice is to eat the miss, or make up the shot.
Two years ago, SWMBO was uncomfortable with shooting Steel targets. Our friend Randomly Hittin' Witten and I took her to the range and spend a few hours shooting at steel-only stages. The theme was "Steel Is My Friend" ... because when you hit a steel target, it's reactive and you know if you hit it or not. The lesson: slow down (and get the hits) to shoot fast.
Fast-forward to the Dundee club match in April, 2006. This was a classifier match, but there were two non-classifier stages presented as well, for variety. The classifiers were 'technical stages', and generally not as exciting as one might wish. They tested for pinpoint accuracy, reloading, strong-hand / weak-hand shooting and shooting from an awkward position. These are all of the skills we must master to be competitive, but they are B-O-R-I-N-G!
Of the two 'fun stages', perhaps the most challenging was the Steel stage.
Start from a position where you can't see the targets, draw and run to the first shooting position.
Arriving out of breath and off-balance, you shoot at;
A plate rack with six 8" plates, plus two freestanding 8" plates and a US popper on the ground.
Move to another shooting position, where you can see a six-target array of US Poppers (very small) arranged like pins in a bowling alley, with a wide index to pick up another 8" plate which is hidden behind a barrel from any other position.
Transition to a final position, where you can (with some body-language movement between targets) engage a final 8" plate, two more US poppers and a final Pepper Popper.
She did everything exactly right. Didn't hurry, got a good sight picture on every target, took some chances by shooting on the move and cleaned the stage. She ended up 15th overall on the 20-round stage for the match (stage #6: Speedy Steel). And what's more, she did it with a borrowed gun.
To musically accompany this video, I've chosen "Witchy Woman" by the Eagles, if only for the line:
"Raven Hair,Somehow, it seemed to fit.
And Ruby Lips,
Sparks fly from her fingertips"
(Thanx to Caryn S. for the video!)