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My Extreme Long Range Shooting Story

Meet Benjamin Gineste – French ELR Shooter 

Benjamin Gineste

MY ELR SHOOTING STORY – Benjamin Gineste – 2nd Place at Ko1M Caylus, France 2022 – 300 Norma Magnum


This time in our ongoing series of My ELR shooting story, we go to beautiful France, home to some of our favorite wines and some of the largest ELR shooting communities in Europe. Yes that’s it, France tends to gather some of the largest numbers in ELR shooting comps so we’re always eager to see what’s happening there. This is a country of 67.8 million souls, that’s bound to have a few good shooters over there.

I had the pleasure to live in France myself and get to know this interesting country and people more closely. They have a passion for firearms and high quality manufacturing both in terms of sporting/military firearms as well as hunting masterpieces. They are as passionate about their shooting as some of the American states and when you find them, they’re hard core shooters. Today I have the pleasure to catch up with Gineste, one of the top French ELR shooters and follower.

*This interview will be in English and French to cater for some of our French followers as well. If google automatically translates your pages, you may see the same paragraph twice. Bienvenue!

Good to have you on again, this time for My ELR shooting story series which is catching on nicely. Your experience on the extreme long range shooting front as well as military provides an all round view of precision rifle shooting by someone that does it for a living.

I see you finished second place at ko1m France FR this year. Congratulations. Interesting to see this awesome result of 1s and only a few 0s in this binary like result. You didn’t drop a first round hit until your 1465m target and you hammered through the 1531m target only to drop 1 shot at the end of that target string. It definitely says a lot about you and the cartridge you were shooting…. so let’s find out more about this 300Norma Magnum. We wrote extensively on this cartridge. Find out more about 300 Norma 1 mile shooting here.

Caylus results ko2m My elr story


How were the wind conditions during these two days of competition? I remember some pretty awefull weather when we were there last in 2020.

GB: There was a little wind during the competition. The first day of qualifying was the hardest with a wind of 3m/s and up to 6m/s in gusts. The following day was much calmer. It’s a shame but it’s part of the discipline! You also have to be a bit lucky but unfortunately for us that was not the case as we shot qualifying on the first day!

In ko1m 2020 (which Gineste won with his 33XC F1 cartridge which we attended and filmed as well), the wind was even stronger, but I like difficult situations. They help to tell the difference between good shooters and lucky shooters! Below is Gineste’s performance with his 33XC! This very video got us hooked on the cartrdige and ended up building one ourselves on a Desert Tech SRS A2 in 33XC, 37XC, 6.5creedmoor and 300Norma Magnum. 

GB: Il y a eu un peu de vent lors de la compétition. La première journée des qualifications fut la plus dure avec un vent de 3m/s et jusqu’à 6m/s en rafale. La journée suivante fut beaucoup plus calme. C’est dommage mais cela fait partie de la discipline ! Il faut aussi avoir un peu de chance mais malheureusement pour nous, ce ne fut pas le cas puisque nous avons tiré les qualifications le premier jour !

En 2020, le vent était encore plus important mais j’affectionne les situations difficiles. Elles permettent de faire la différence entre les bons tireurs et les tireurs chanceux !

Has anything changed from previous Ko1m competitions in France?

GB: There was little change during the KO1Ms of Canjuers and Caylus.

We respect the evolutions of the License and its regulations. There is no more “sudden death” and the first target is tapped 3 times instead of 5 as it was back then. Ending “Sudden Death” allows shooters to fire all of their rounds during the match. It’s less frustrating.

Il y a eu peu de changement lors des KO1M de Canjuers et de Caylus.

Nous respectons les évolutions de la License et son règlement. Il n’y a plus de « mort subite » et la première cible est engagée 3 fois et non plus 5 comme c’était le cas à l’époque. La fin de la « mort subite » permet aux tireurs de tirer toutes leurs cartouches pendant le match. C’est moins frustrant.

I noticed that out of 7 targets you shot, you had first round hits on all the targets except 1365m! Wow. What is the secret to this first round hit performance?

GB: If it’s a secret I’m not going to tell you!

It is essential to look for the impact on the first cartridge. That’s precision shooting! Moreover, it is these impacts that make the biggest difference between competitors. They give more points.

There’s one essential, often overlooked thing that gets you on the target right away… The spotter!

GB: Often in the shadows, the spotter is the centerpiece of the shooter’s success. It is he who constantly adjusts the parameters and projects himself on the next target. Hugues VOGIN, my friend and partner with whom I have been working for a long time now is becoming an ace in this field!

Si c’est un secret je ne vais pas le dire J !

Il est primordial de chercher l’impact à la première cartouche. C’est cela le tir de précision ! De plus, ce sont ces impacts qui font la plus grande différence entre les compétiteurs. Elles donnent davantage de points.

Il y a une chose essentielle, souvent oubliée, qui permet d’être en cible de suite… Le spotter !

Souvent dans l’ombre, le spotter est la pièce maitresse de la réussite du tireur. C’est bien lui qui ajuste en permanence les paramètres et se projette sur la cible suivante. Hugues VOGIN, mon ami et binôme avec qui je travaille depuis longtemps maintenant est en train de devenir un as en la matière !


Do you have a drill/procedure that you go through before every match, like a mental process before you start engaging targets?

GB: Previously I did nothing. I had a period when I was very stressed before the matches but I can say that today it has evolved a lot.

To avoid stress, you have to have confidence in your partner and your equipment. But, in my opinion, the most important thing is to participate in as many competitions as possible.

This allows you to become accustomed to pressure, to accept it and therefore to manage it more easily. It should not be limited only to ELR competitions. All disciplines are sources of learning and experience (F-CLASS, TLD, ELR, ELR-22). Personally, I take great pleasure in F-Class since my English friends from GS introduced me to it (thanks to Gary, Stuart and Mr.Vince). I hope to be able to visit them regularly to shoot in F-Class. People are particularly charming on these shooting ranges.

(*Editor’s note: I found this to be very true. I started out my long range shooting in the UK with Vince Bottomley up in Diggle and coincidentally had my first custom rifle built by Stuart himself. With attentive instruction, passion and patience, Vince B got me going fueling my passion for the sport. My best regards to Vince Bottomley from Target Shooter magazine)

The group effect or “TEAM” is very important. Having a team with whom to talk and dialogue before the match makes it possible to better anticipate it and to rehearse it before the action starts, a bit like aerobatic pilots! TEAM CANJUERS is particularly effective in this area. There are excellent shooters including KING Bruno PUT and Jérémy DELETTRE. We exchange a lot before our run.

GB: Auparavant je ne faisais rien. J’ai connu une période où j’étais très stressé avant les matches mais je peux dire qu’aujourd’hui cela a bien évolué. Pour ne pas stressé il faut avoir confiance dans son binôme et son équipement. Mais, à mon avis, le plus important est de participer au plus grand nombre de compétitions possible. Cela permet de s’accoutumer à la pression, de l’accepter et donc de la gérer plus facilement. Il ne faut pas se limiter uniquement aux compétitions ELR. Toutes les disciplines sont sources d’apprentissage et d’expérience (F-CLASS, TLD, ELR, ELR-22). Personnellement, je prends énormément de plaisir en F-Class depuis que mes amis anglais de GS m’y ont initié (merci à Gary, Stuart et Mr.V). J’espère pouvoir leur rendre visite régulièrement pour tirer en F-Class. Les gens sont particulièrement charmants sur ces pas de tir.

L’effet de groupe ou « TEAM » est très important. Avoir une équipe avec qui parler et dialoguer avant le match permet de mieux l’anticiper de le répéter avant action, un peu comme des pilotes de voltige ! La TEAM CANJUERS est particulièrement efficace dans ce domaine. On y trouve d’excellents tireurs notamment les KING Bruno PUT et Jérémy DELETTRE. Nous échangeons beaucoup avant nos passages.

my elr shooting story Benjamin Gineste

How much windage did you have across the entire string?

GB: Between 3 and 6 m/s for qualifying. 1.5m/s or even a little less for the final.

Entre 3 et 6 m/s pour les qualifications. 1.5m/s voire un petit peu moins pour la finale.


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March Genesis scope turrets
March Genesis 6-60×56 scope turrets.

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Do you take into consideration the previous target windage correction when you move to the next target as a baseline?

GB: Of course ! However, you have to be very careful because the nature of the terrain can have confusing effects on the target wind. Of course, we use the previous target to calculate the wind, but we must also rely on the geography of the terrain.

The mirage and the moves of previous competitors are also a great source of information.

Of course ! Toutefois il faut faire très attention car la nature du terrain peut avoir des effets déroutants sur le vent en cible. Nous utilisons bien entendu la cible précédente pour calculer le vent mais il faut aussi s’appuyer sur la géographie du terrain. Le mirage est les coups des précédents compétiteurs sont également une grande source d’information.

my extreme long range shooting story

Above: Gineste spots for his wife Alix at the 2mile event. Harry Drescher from Solidsolutiondesigns rifles in the background with his Desert Tech HTI in 375Cheytac about to let it rip!


More from My ELR Shooting Story – Meet Rei Hoang from the USA.


I noticed you shot a 300Norma Mag this year instead of your beloved 33XC. What lead to this change of calibre?

300 norma magnum vs 300 win mag
300 norma magnum vs 300 win mag and David Tubb’s 33XC F1 Cartridge

GB: It’s a coincidence ! I changed the barrel of my 33XC in mid-June but, following the fires at the Canjuers camp, our training sessions were all cancelled. The gun did not have time to fire a single cartridge. So I used a rifle that was lent to me 2 hours before the game!

C’est un hasard ! J’ai changé le canon de mon 33XC mi-juin mais, suite aux incendies sur le camp de Canjuers, nos entrainements ont tous été annulés. Le canon n’a pas eu le temps de tirer une seule cartouche. J’ai donc utilisé une carabine que l’on m’a prêté 2 heures avant le match !

33XC Gineste benjamin
33XC driven by Gineste Benjamin at the previous Ko1m.

Have you put your 33XC to sleep or what’s the story?


No, I will go back to the 33XC while keeping a 300Nm gun ready to use.

It is a capricious caliber with the components available in Europe, in particular the powders. The pitch of the first generation barrels is too tight to be used effectively with jacketed bullets. After only 450 rounds, my first gun was behaving very oddly. After very precise first shots, we had very big flyers: big variations in elevation and a trajectory as if sucked to the left despite the corrections made. This made the weapon unusable in competition. The blowtorch effect of the N570 coupled with the high heat linked to the competition season too quickly undermined the gun’s potential.

(*Editor’s note: F1 performance comes at a price. We experienced something similar at 310-400 rounds with our groups opening up. We run berger 300 OTM at 3170ft/s under a charge of 115gr N570. It’s an amazing load as we saw to 2100m in Italy while testing it. But, we calculated a throat erosion of about 0.022″ per 100 rounds which means by 300 rounds using N570, we had worn 0.060″ of the throat and had to push the bullet further out to chase the lands. We shall be testing for new outcome this week otherwise… we may also have to switch to our 300NMs)

GB: Non, je vais retourner au 33XC tout en gardant un canon de 300Nm prêt à être utilisé.

C’est un calibre capricieux avec les composants disponibles en Europe, notamment les poudres. Le pas des canons de premières générations sont trop serrés pour être utilisés efficacement avec des balles chemisées. Après seulement 450 coups, mon premier canon se comportait très bizarrement. Après des premiers coups très précis, nous avions de très gros flyers : de grosses variations de hausse et une trajectoire comme aspirée vers la gauche malgré les corrections apportées. Cela rendait l’arme inutilisable en compétition. L’effet chalumeau de la N570 couplé aux fortes chaleurs liées à la saison des compétitions a trop vite entamé le potentiel du canon.


ELR impactsMarch Genesis

We also took this opportunity to run the March Genesis 6-60×56 ELR scope seen above at 2100m and get a feel of what’s it like. That’s what it looks like through the spotting scope, easily able to see those 338 impacts on steel with the bigger 338 bullets.

Read: 2100m testing 33XC VS 300 Norma Magnum in Italy

As fervent fans of the 300 Norma and 33XC we took these on a 3500km trip to northern Italy in beautiful Tuscany while on a weekend organised by who built me this rifle. We were very impressed with the 300NM which shot beautifully to 2100m, consistent, low recoil and less barrel wear than the 33XC. We’ve been running the same load for 3 years in the 300NM and never changed anything. We like the 300NM so much that we ordered 2 more barrels for the Desert tech for a special bullet! Stay tuned…

Rob Atlas Bipod
Above: My RPA rangemaster in 300Norma Mag near the Barrett semi auto in 416Barrett with Robert’s 33XC sitting up close.

The long view: 300 Norma lined up on a target at 2000m on the hill opposite in beautiful Tuscany. We had an amazing time with Harry Drescher from SSD rifles.


We had long chats about the 33XC and load development. What’s your verdict today?

GB: It is absolutely necessary to change the pitch of the barrels of our 33XC! They are too tight (8”) because they were initially created for solids. The choice of powder is also essential. The 33XC gets very hot. This caliber likes winter or colder powders.

Il est absolument nécessaire de changer le pas des canons de nos 33XC ! Ils sont trop serrés (8’’) car créés initialement pour les solid. Le choix de la poudre est également primordial. Le 33XC chauffe énormément. Ce calibre affectionne l’hiver J ou alors des poudres moins chaudes.

Gineste’s 300NORMA MAG rifle

Tell us about your rifle setup please, what are the details of this rifle build (barrel length, twist rate, bullet and powder) I assume you shot handloaded ammo not factory.

GB: As you can see, the rifle wasn’t mine however here are the details of the PGM rifle below.

Comme vous l’avez compris, l’arme n’était pas la mienne.

Voilà ce que je peux vous dire :

PGM Mini Hécate 2 Calibre 300NM

– CANON/barrel LOTHAR 32

– PAS/twist de 8 ‘’

– FREIN DE BOUCHE/ muzzlebreak PGM


– ETUI/brass LAPUA

– BALLE/ bullet HORNADY ATIP 250

– POUDRE (je laisse la recette à la discrétion du propriétaire J

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How come you borrowed a rifle just before the competition? It doesn’t happen very often.

GB: Not having a rifle ready to compete, I went to Caylus with the aim of spotting my wife Alix.

2 hours before the competition, a member of the Mike de Caylus group offered me the rifle of his son who could not participate because he was suffering from COVID.

He didn’t have to offer it to me twice! Time to set up the Kestrel, take a few measurements and adapt the rifle to my ergonomics and I’m ready to shoot! I must admit that I had a lot of fun shooting this PGM Mini Hécate 2 in 300NM!

N’ayant pas de fusil prêt à concourir, je suis allé à Caylus dans le but de spotter ma femme Alix.

2 heures avant la compétition, un membre du groupe Mike de Caylus m’a proposé la carabine de son fils qui ne pouvait pas participer car souffrant du COVID. Il n’a pas eu besoin de me le proposer 2 fois ! Le temps de paramétrer le Kestrel, prendre quelques mesures et adapter la carabine à mon ergonomie et me voilà prêt à tirer ! Je dois avouer avoir eu beaucoup de plaisir à tirer avec cette PGM Mini Hécate 2 en 300NM.


King and Queen of 1 Mile in Cayluys - The Ginestes
King and Queen of 1 Mile in Cayluys – The Ginestes. Alix seen above spotting for Gineste.

Scope for 300Norma Mag

What riflescope were you running and do you use high magnification to engage these far out targets? 

GB: I used the scope that was mounted on the rifle! It was a LEUPOLD mark 5 5-25 which offers very satisfactory image quality. I won’t complain but I prefer my glasses.

In qualifying, the overwhelming afternoon sun forced me to shoot between x15 and x20. The mirage was less important on the morning of the final which allowed me to shoot directly at x20.

The Leupold’s turret system is a bit confusing with its towers not aligned but a gunner should be able to adapt! For long range shooting, my favorite scopes are the March 5-42 and the ZCO 527.

Below are the scopes Gineste prefers. (Editor’s note: Scopes are a matter of very personal preference and you should always checkout a scope to form your own opinion)

March High Master 5-42

Learn more about march scopes here at March Scopes Facebook Group

GB: J’ai utilisé la lunette qui été montée sur le fusil ! Il s’agissait d’une LEUPOLD mark 5 5-25 qui propose une qualité d’image très satisfaisante. Je ne vais pas me plaindre mais je préfère mes lunettes.

Lors des qualifications, le soleil écrasant de l’après-midi m’a obligé à tirer entre x15 et x20. Le mirage était moins important lors de la matinée de la finale ce qui m’a permis de tirer directement sur x20.

Le système de tourelle de la Leupold est un peu déconcertant avec ses tours qui ne sont pas alignés mais un tireur doit pouvoir s’adapter ! Pour tirer à longue distance, mes lunettes favorites sont la March 5-42 et la ZCO 527.

Hold off for wind or dial in?

extreme shot italia ii

Swarovski STR80 – seen here in MOA used by my Spotter Bobby Aquila on a solid tripod.

(editor’s note: I can attest that the 60x mag can be really helpful to count impacts on a target before starting a match and observe minute changes, it’s invaluable!

GB: We started by determining the average wind strength and then, thanks to the high magnification of the spotter scope (SWARO STR 80), we analyzed the mirage by trying to shoot in equivalent conditions on each shot. I usually shoot fast to try to keep the same wind in the series. However, the barrels of these monsters made for ELR heat up quickly. It is better to concentrate on reading the wind and trusting its analysis rather than shooting hoping to get through the gusts! F-Class matches are particularly suitable for perfecting your wind reading skills.

GB: Nous avons commencé par déterminer la force moyenne du vent puis, grâce au fort grossissement de la lunette de spotter (SWARO STR 80), nous avons analysé le mirage en essayant de tirer dans des conditions équivalentes à chaque tir. J’ai l’habitude de tirer vite pour essaye de garder le même vent dans la série. Toutefois les canons de ces monstres taillés pour l’ELR chauffent vite. Il vaut mieux se concentrer sur la lecture du vent et faire confiance à son analyse plutôt que de tirer en espérant passer à travers les rafales ! Les entraînements F-Class sont particulièrement appropriés pour parfaire sa lecture du vent.


Checkout other episodes of My ELR Shooting Story with Stefan Van Der Heide – a true surgical shooter from The Netherlands.


Handloading tips 300 Norma Magnum

In your experience, what are the most important 3 things in creating very good ammunition for ELR?

300 norma mag loads

Read: load development for 300 norma magnum

  • Speed ​​consistency is top priority
  • Consistency rather than CB
  • The most accurate ammunition possible (grouping)


  • GB: La régularité des vitesses est la priorité absolue
  • La consistance plutôt que le CB
  • La munition la plus précise possible (groupement)

Extreme Shot Italia II 2000m in Sicily Sept 21-25, 2022

Which rifle are you bringing to Extreme Shot Italia II? 🙂

GB: Haha, I don’t know yet. Maybe the 33XC if I can tune it up and shoot it before the competition. Otherwise it will be 300NM!

Ahah, je ne sais pas encore. Peut-être le 33XC si je peux le mettre au point et tirer avec avant la compétition. Sinon ce sera en 300NM !

extreme long range shooting france

That’s what it’s all about, a happy team of French shooters seen here showing off their success.


Do you know any shooter worth interviewing in My Extreme Long Range Shooting Story? Get in touch!


2 Mile Shooting with Gineste

Did you shoot 2 miles this year?

Of course, I did the KO2M in France this year. It’s a competition that I organize with Patrick Copin and Hugues Vogin. I only missed the target at 2 Miles during the final because neither me nor my spotter could see the impacts. Bruno Put who was observing my shots told me later that some were in the shadow of the target, really very close! It will be for next time !

I finished 4th in qualifying and 7th overall.

ELR is a particularly thankless sport. The conditions dictate the success.

The best may falter while others may get lucky but ultimately it doesn’t matter. What is, is to take maximum pleasure, to improve, to meet people, to develop our sport and to promote our passion.

Oui, j’ai fait le KO2M en France cette année. C’est une compétition que j’organise avec Patrick Copin et Hugues Vogin. J’ai uniquement raté la cible à 2 Miles lors de la finale car ni moi ni mon spotter ne parvenions à voir les impacts. Bruno Put qui observait mes tirs m’a dit par la suite que certains étaient dans l’ombre de la cible, vraiment très proche ! Ce sera pour la prochaine fois !

Je termine 4e des qualifications et 7e au général.

L’ELR est un sport particulièrement ingrat. L’heure de passage conditionne un peu la réussite.

Les meilleurs peuvent faiblir pendant que d’autres peuvent avoir de la chance maiss ur le fond cela n’a pas d’importance. Ce qui l’est, c’est de prendre un maximum de plaisir, de se perfectionner, faire des rencontres, développer notre sport et promouvoir notre passion.


Thank you for being with us once again. It is pleasure to get your views on these competitions.



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1 thoughts on “My Extreme Long range shooting Story – Meet Benjamin Gineste

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