BIANCHI 2017 NRA ALSO FEATURED SCORE SHEETS REVIEW: RUGER MK IV.22LR COMING EVENTS. wins for the 18th time

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1 SCORE SHEETS REVIEW: RUGER MK IV.22LR COMING EVENTS JULY 2017 VOL. 30 NO. 7 NRA S COMPETITIVE SHOOTING JOURNAL 2017 NRA BIANCHI Koenig wins for the CUPDoug 18th time ALSO FEATURED NCAA CHAMPIONS: WVU S MORGAN PHILLIPS AND MILICA BABIC NEW: ELEY PRACTICAL RIMFIRE CHALLENGE

2 COMPETITORS CORNER Summer is here, and that means it s NRA National Championship season. Competitors will be traveling far and wide to compete over the next few months. Be sure to read the latest pistol, smallbore and high power rifle updates on SSUSA.org. In addition, we published this interesting article on the website last month that is worth a read: Top 50 Women in Competitive Shooting. Two gun reviews in Product Focus this month Ruger s new MK IV.22 pistol by Chris Christian, and the Winchester SX3 Composite Sporting Shotgun, by Larry Case. You can read both reviews beginning on page 14. NOTE: Ruger issued a recall for the MK IV last month. The gun may unintentionally discharge if the safety is not used in the correct way. This month s feature story is the 2017 Bianchi Cup. Doug Koenig once again graces the cover, well-deserved he has won the tournament a staggering 18 times now. There was another impressive feat at Bianchi this year, SFC Adam Sokolowski of the AMU made history of his own shooting the first perfect score with iron sights ever at the Cup. You can check out coverage of this year's match starting on page NCAA smallbore and air rifle champions Morgan Phillips and Milica Babic are two standout freshmen on the WVU rifle team, who won a fifth straight NCAA rifle championship earlier this year. Read our interview with these two talented collegiate student-athletes starting on page 28. The ELEY Rimfire Challenge is a new game similar to precision long range rifle, but shot with a.22 semi-auto or bolt gun, instead of the higher powers found in PRS. Shooting is conducted from prone, weak shoulder, standing, sitting, kneeling, and barricade positions and some of the stages even involve movement from position to position. Read our coverage of this exciting new disicpline on page 34. Smallbore rifle champion Reya Kempley asks: What happens when you re one of only a few, or perhaps the only person in your area dedicated to a particular discipline? Read her article You Don t Have to Go It Alone on page 38. Some housekeeping the 2017 NRA State Champions article published in April s issue was missing the Black Powder Target Rifle Michigan champions. See them listed below. Partner's Corner will return next month BLACK POWDER TARGET RIFLE MICHIGAN CHAMPIONS LONG RANGE Barb Walters Irons 546-3X Paul Behe Scope 473-5X MID-RANGE Bob Elka Irons X Wyatt Bruske Scope X John Parker Managing Editor, Shooting Sports USA 2 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

3 Now Available: Electronically Scored Single Targets On your home range or on your land... We ve taken the work out of long range target shooting while increasing safety. Spend your time focusing on the target instead of walking to the target! Receive effortless feedback as shots appear in real time at your firing point on your Microsoft Windows -based PC or laptop. CMP Targets is the exclusive North American distributor of KTS targets, the same system being used on well over 250 outdoor rifle and pistol targets at the Civilian Marksmanship Program s 500 acre Talladega Marksmanship Park in Alabama and on Camp Perry s Petrarca Range in Ohio X S SUB 94 TOT 94 Xm -.2 Ym -.4 1:10 John D. Kilroy Next Profile Target Practice Made Safer and Easier. Zoom For sales and technical information, contact: Bryan Parris at or call , Ext Stage 1-200y(.2 23) Next 10 Shot s x CMP TARGETS TM INTEGRITY ACCURACY SAFETY EFFICIENCY

4 IN THIS ISSUE FEATURES NRA BIANCHI CUP This year Doug Koenig won the Bianchi Cup for the 18th time. However, AMU shooter SFC Adam Sokolowski may have stolen the show after setting the new record with iron sights at the match shooting the first-ever perfect 1920 score in the metallic division. By John Parker The ELEY Fugiam Practical volorum Rimfire Challenge vendaecti pushes officienisto the limits of.22lr conectia technology. commodis Based mod on positional maxime niste shooting voluptatur, in field conditions, quae targets essundaes are placed molupta up to qui 289 consequ yards down unditium range. 28 NCAA RIFLE CHAMPIONS MORGAN PHILLIPS AND MILICA BABIC These two freshmen are taking the collegiate rifle world by storm, following their one-two smallbore and air rifle punch that helped WVU win the NCAA rifle championship for the fifth consecutive year. By John Parker 34 ELEY PRACTICAL RIMFIRE CHALLENGE Want to compete in a rifle series that doesn t require spending a lot of money? Take that.22 bolt-action or semi-automatic rifle sitting in your closet and go participate at an ELEY PRC match they are shooting.22 out to nearly 300 yards! By Kristen Voss 38 YOU DON T HAVE TO GO IT ALONE From noted smallbore competitor Reya Kempley what to do when you are one of only a few in your area dedicated to a particular shooting discipline? To begin, find yourself a training partner at an equal or higher skill level. By Reya Kempley ON THE COVER A Publication of the Doug Koenig won the Bianchi Cup for a record-setting 18th time this past May. Congratulations, Doug! Photo by John Parker 4 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG National Rifle Association of America Wayne R. LaPierre Executive Vice President The NRA, the foremost guardian of the traditional American right to keep and bear arms, believes every law-abiding citizen is entitled to the ownership and legal use of firearms, and that every reputable gun owner should be an NRA member.

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6 IN THIS ISSUE DEPARTMENTS COMPETITORS CORNER Update from the desk of John Parker, Managing Editor, SSUSA. 8 SHOOTERS NEWS Highlights from the competitive shooting arena, and our monthly photo caption contest. 14 PRODUCT FOCUS Reviews: Ruger MK IV.22 pistol and Winchester s SX3 Sporting Composite shotgun. 20 SCORE SHEETS Reports from local matches, coast-to-coast. 42 COMING EVENTS Coming Events lists national matches and provides a download link to the monthly list of 11,000 local matches each year. VOL. 30, NO. 7 JULY 2017 PUBLICATIONS DIVISION Executive Director: Doug Hamlin Deputy Executive Director: Chip Lohman Integrated Marketing Director: Marshall J. Flemion Fiscal Operations Manager: Evelyn Q. Kessler Sales & Fiscal Assistant: Rachel Carr Executive Assistant: Terri A. Wolfe Firearms Inventory Manager: Karie Thomas Editorial Director: John Zent Managing Editor: John Parker Editorial Assistant: Brook Chiasson Creative Director: Susan K. Kilday Assistant Art Director: Karen Haefs Photography Director: Peter Fountain Photographer: Forrest MacCormack Associate Photographer: Jesse Snyder DIGITAL OPERATIONS Director: Michael Pedersen Senior Web Developer: Tom Rickwalder Senior Web Designer/Video Editor: Steve Dulco Digital Advertising Trafficker: Carolyn Lee PUBLISHING OPERATIONS Director: Michael J. Sanford Production Operations Manager: Michelle E. Kuntz Marketing/Advertising Operations Manager: James C. Handlon Senior Advertising Coordinator: Samantha Brown Advertising Coordinator: Cheryl Doden Senior Production Coordinator: Debra Oliveri Production Coordinator: Adam Wilson Membership Inquiries: (877) EASTERN SALES MANAGER Tony Morrison (860) Southeast Sales Executive Stan Yates (850) Eastern Sales Executive Rachelle Trout (910) Northeast Sales Executive Jake Pagragan (860) Detroit Advertising Sales Ken Glowacki (703) FOLLOW US AT: twitter.com/ SSUSA_Magazine HAVE A SUGGESTION FOR A STORY? us at QUESTIONS ABOUT NRA COMPETITIONS? us at A PUBLICATION OF THE NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA NRA OFFICERS President: Pete R. Brownell First Vice President: Richard Childress Second Vice President: Carolyn D. Meadows Executive Vice President: Wayne LaPierre Secretary: John Frazer 43 MEMBER INFORMATION 44 PAGE FROM HISTORY Links to past articles from American Rifleman. Treasurer: Wilson H. Phillips Jr. Executive Director, General Operations: Josh Powell Executive Director, Institute for Legislative Action: Christopher W. Cox The NRA, the foremost guardian of the traditional American right to keep and bear arms, believes every law-abiding citizen is entitled to the ownership and legal use of firearms, and that every reputable gun owner should be an NRA member. WESTERN SALES MANAGER Courtney Olson (303) Western Sales Executive James O Neill (703) Midwest Sales Executive Tim Hamill (703) Western Direct Sales Executive Debbie O Connell (805) Official NRA positions are expressed only in statements bylined by NRA officers or in articles identified as such. Shooting Sports USA (ISSN ) is published monthly by the National Rifle Association of America, Waples Mill Road, Fairfax, VA ; (703) Copyright 2017, the National Rifle Association of America. To update your address for the digital subscription, simply re-register at No advertised item is intended for sale in those states, or in those areas where local restrictions may limit or prohibit the purchase, carrying or use of certain items. Check local laws before purchasing. Mention of a product or service in advertisements or text does not necessarily mean that it has been tested or approved by the NRA. All rights reserved except where expressly waived. The editors are not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts or photographs. WARNING: All technical data in this publication, especially for handloading, reflect the limited experience of individuals using specific tools, products, equipment and components under specific conditions and circumstances not necessarily reported in the article and over which the National Rifle Association (NRA) has no control. The data has not otherwise been tested or verified by the NRA. The NRA, its agents, officers and employees accept no responsibility for the results obtained by persons using such data and disclaim all liability for any consequential injuries or damages. MEMBERSHIP ACCT. INFORMATION: (877) MEMBER PROGRAMS: (800) JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

7 Made with premium-rolled and hardened steel, the new Champion Center Mass AR500 Steel Targets make that classic Ping shot after shot. Customize your range for any kind of shooting with American-made targets made for champions. MADE IN USA 66% IPSC 8" SQUARE 8" GONG 4" GONG FOR ALL SIZE CONFIGURATIONS: CHAMPIONTARGET.COM

8 SHOOTERS' NEWS 2017 NRA PRECISION PISTOL UPDATE BY NRA STAFF Metallic and Open Divisions for Precision Pistol. This is a new rule that allows shooters with "iron sights" to compete in a separate division from those using more expensive optical sights. In the 1980s, optical (scopes or red dot) sights began to be used at Precision Pistol matches across the country. Thus, the NRA drafted rules to distinguish between Metallic and Optical sight pistols. There is a possibility that the 2018 NRA National Pistol Championships may include it. The.22 Caliber Only Aggregate Match (.22 COAM) is offered at the NRA National Pistol Championships. The.22 COAM supports shooters with limited equipment or resources to reload. With the.22 COAM, a shooter can enter matches where sponsors allow the.22 COAM, and shoot across the course with the other shooters. The entire.22 aggregate score is reported to NRA, who assigns a.22 COAM classification to the individual after the minimum shots for record are fired..22 Cal. Ammunition. Previously, the NRA rules required that the bullet weight not exceed 40 grains. When.22 cal. ammunition was in short supply, competitors appealed for a rule change with.22 cal. ammunition allowing for bullets greater than 40 grains to be fired in NRA sanctioned tournaments. The NRA amended the Precision Pistol rules to permit the use of any.22 cal. long rifle rimfire bullet made of lead or similar soft material. The Distinguished Revolver Match was a superb idea that allowed competitors with a.38 cal. revolver to compete in a designated match and earn points toward Distinguished Revolver. Until 2016, in order to participate in a State or Regional Distinguished Revolver match, the individual had to sign up and pay entry fees for all or part of the NRA Precision Pistol match. Additionally, the NRA developed an award for already distinguished, Distinguished Revolver shooters. Expect that award, along with a nominal Distinguished Revolver entry fee to be introduced in The Military Veteran Individual and Team Category was introduced into the NRA rules in Local match sponsors began to recognize the new categories in The response from military veteran shooters has been good. The NRA recognized Military Veteran teams at the 2016 National Pistol Championships and will again at the 2017 Championships. With more visibility on this category, the NRA National Pistol Championships may offer the Individual Veteran category in JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

9 LYMAN DONATES $46,000 TO NRA Lyman is thanking customers for helping them donate $46,000 over two years to the NRA. To find out how they pulled it off, look no further than your Lyman 50th Reloading Manual. The company donated one dollar for every 50th Edition Manual sold in between the 2016 and 2017 NRA Annual Meetings. The response to the new reloading manual was so great, Lyman Products made an additional donation at this year s NRA Annual Meeting in Atlanta, GA. A big thanks from the NRA to Lyman and their customers! 2017 SCTP NATIONALS REGISTRATION BREAKS RECORDS In the first 24 hours of registration for the Scholastic Clay Target Program National Championships, 132 teams from 23 different states registered over 2,000 athletes. These numbers are absolutely incredible! said Tom Wondrash, SCTP national director. We had almost as many athletes and registrations in one day as we had in total at last year s Nationals! The 2017 Nationals is on track to outpace 2016, which finished with 2,176 athletes. The 2017 SCTP Nationals will be held July 8-15 at the Cardinal Center in Marengo, OH. ALLIANT SPORT PISTOL POWDER Alliant Powder has released its new Sport Pistol powder. Sport Pistol provides extremely reliable cycling, excellent charging and case fill, and additionally ballistics that lend themselves to a range of popular loads. Sport Pistol will deliver precise performance with all bullet types, but the low-muzzle-flash formulation was optimized for polymer-coated bullets. The medium-fast burning Sport Pistol is also very temperature stable, so there is little velocity deviation to worry about. Shipments of the new powder are being delivered to dealers now. The Sport Pistol powder comes in three sizes 1-pound for $27.25, 4-pounds for $99.70 and 8-pounds for $ SSUSA.ORG JULY

10 SHOOTERS' NEWS WHAT S IN YOUR RANGE BAG, TONY HOLMES? BY MICHELLE CERINO Like most kids Tony Holmes got started with a BB gun and a.22 rifle plinking cans. He spent many days behind his grandparents barn setting up bottles and cans to shoot. He d position himself up in the hay loft, kick open the door and shoot the rats and snakes crawling through the garbage pit. His first actual hunting experience was with his Dad when they started with squirrel, then progressed to rabbit, pheasant, deer and coyote. Eventually, it was on to competition shooting. Tony started competing in 1974 at the age of 13 in NRA High Power and Smallbore Rifle matches. Coached as a youngster by his father, a law enforcement officer and competitive shooter himself, he introduced Tony to handgun shooting. Encouraging his son with many long hours of practice on the range, led to Tony competing at many local and state matches. Tony's first out of state 10 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

11 match was in 1983 at the Second Chance Bowling Pin Shoot in Central Lake, MI. Finishing in the top 10 of the revolver event Tony won his first gun. This win was the catalyst to what has now become not only Tony s passion to compete, but an on-going love for the shooting sports. Accomplishments: nd place Midsouth Shooters Supply Crawfish Cup th place Trijicon World Challenge nd place Fallen Brethren 3-Gun rd place 3-Gun World Championship Open 2014 Overall Champion Superstition Mystery Mountain 3-Gun 2011, nd place Bianchi Cup Open/ Metallic Aggregate 2010, 2001, 1997, 1996 Bianchi Cup Team Champion When Tony competes in 3-Gun he shoots a STI 2011 in.38 Super for his pistol. His rifle is the JP Enterprises CTR-02,.223 with a Leupold Mk6 1x6 along with Delta Point Pro red dot, and finally for shotgun the Remington Versamax 12-gauge by RCI XRail. He wears a Safariland 014 holster for open division or 578 for tactical division, with ELS belt system and 773 mag pouches. For IPSC, Tony competes in a few different divisions. He uses a STI in.38 Super with a Leupold Delta Point Pro for open division or a STI in.40 S&W for limited. The Caspian 1911,.40 S&W or.45 ACP for single stack division. For Production division he prefers a Glock 34 in 9 mm, and the Smith & Wesson ACP for revolver division. For NRA Action Pistol, Tony shoots a Caspian 1911 in.38 Super with an Aimpoint red dot sight in open division. And for ICORE Revolver, he shoots a Smith & Wesson shot in.38 Special with Hartco moonclips and a CR Speed revolver holster. For a range bag Tony carries the Vertx Range Bags which come in different sizes. For long gun he uses the Safariland 3-Gun bag. Tony carries extra magazines, small spare parts for all the guns, extra mag pouches, tools, earplugs, ear muffs, shooting glasses, lens cleaner, a cleaning rag, choke tubes, elbow pads, range finder, batteries for sights and enough ammo to go through a stage twice, in case of a reshoot. For those interested in getting started in any of the shooting disciplines Tony points out that you don t have to break the bank. Any stock firearm can get you started. Add a holster, a couple of mag pouches, some extra mags, ammo and you are ready. Find someone that's involved at your local range to walk you through the safety aspects and equipment needed for the match. You'll need to walk before you run, just like most things in life. Good gun handling and safety come first. Speed will come in time. Learn to be accurate and hit what you aim at. As his father once told him, Don't wish one down range, you can't bring it back because now it becomes only a wish. Getting better gear or custom firearms can come later if you decide to raise your game. Practice, practice, and then practice some more! You get what you put into it when it comes to shooting. PHOTOS BY BECKY YACKLEY SSUSA.ORG JULY

12 SHOOTERS' NEWS MONTHLY PHOTO CAPTION CONTEST Submit your humorous photo caption to no later than July 20, 2017, in order to appear in the August 2017 issue. Each month we will share submissions with our judges. The winning caption author will receive a copy of Dr. Raymond Prior s book Bullseye Mind Mental Toughness for Sport Shooting. JUNE Bianchi Cup competitors were excited to try the new Blunderbuss stage. June s winning caption submitted by: Hunter Young of Troutville, Virginia. JULY Your Caption Here! 12 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

13 THE FIGHT OF YOUR LIFE BEGINS ONCE YOU VE SAVED IT. Insurance Program Administered by Lockton Affinity, LLC If you carry, NRA Carry Guard will put the most comprehensive package of insurance and training in your pocket, and the fiercest defender of your rights at your back. SIGN UP OR LEARN MORE NRACARRYGUARD2017.COM NRA-4671

14 PRODUCT FOCUS RUGER S NEW MKIV.22LR AMERICA S MOST POPULAR.22LR PISTOL JUST GOT A LOT MORE SHOOTER FRIENDLY! BILL RUGER WOULD BE PROUD OF THE NEW MK IV. STORY AND PHOTOS BY CHRIS CHRISTIAN 14 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

15 Easy field stripping and reassembly makes all key parts readily accessible for thorough cleaning. Accuracy Chart Accuracy tests conducted from sandbag rest at 25 yards with a SIG ROMEO1 reflex sight. Average of three 5-round groups, with a centerto-center measurement in inches. In 1949, William Batterman Ruger emerged from his garage with a handgun design that not only became an American icon, but launched one of the largest and most diverse firearms manufacturers in the country. His Ruger Standard Pistol (later renamed the MK I) was a.22lr semi-auto patterned after the graceful WWII-era Japanese Baby Nambu including the enclosed bolt riding in a solid upper barrel/frame unit that produced a very consistent lock-up and excellent accuracy. The elegant lines, modest price, and tack driving accuracy made it an instant hit with shooters and it became the most popular plinking and target rimfire pistol in the country. It stayed in production until In 1982, the Ruger MK II replaced it; offering the modest price and similar features but in a more diverse line of models to better suit the needs of competitive shooters. In 2005, it was replaced by the MK III series. The changes in the MK III were the addition of a magazine Load CCI Mini-Mag 40-grain copper-plated round nose Federal American Eagle 45-grain CPRN Subsonic Suppressor CCI 40-grain lead standard velocity Federal Premium Gold Medal 40-grain Match Group Size (inches) Aguila 40-grain Pistol Match 0.57 safety; moving the magazine release from the heel of the butt to the preferred Americanstyle behind the trigger guard position; and the top of the receiver was now drilled and tapped to allow the easy mounting of the increasingly-popular optical sights. None of these model changes altered the accuracy and handling of the original Standard Pistol. They merely provided more options for shooters. Unfortunately, they also failed to address the biggest drawback to the original design field stripping for cleaning. To be extremely charitable, field stripping the MK I, II, and III series guns was not a simple task. A shooting buddy of mine summed it up well when he said You need SSUSA.ORG JULY

16 PRODUCT FOCUS a degree in mechanical engineering, and it doesn t hurt to have a Voodoo Priest standing by to assist. I certainly concur. My experience with the MK I, and my current MK II, goes back over 30 years and I never truly mastered the take down. In fact, the last time my MK II was field stripped was a decade ago. That resulted in my arriving at my local gunsmith with the proverbial paper bag full of parts, a sheepish grin, and my wallet in hand. That won t happen with the new MK IV. THE GUN Introduced in mid-2016, the MK IV retains the features of the MK III, but removes the sliding safety button on the left side of the frame and replaces it with ambidextrous thumb safeties, while adding a redesigned bolt release lever. The major change, however, is in the take down procedure. To field strip the MK IV, remove the magazine and cycle to bolt to clear the chamber and cock the gun. The hammer must be cocked to disassemble. Put the safety into the ON position. Grasp the barrel in one hand and the grip on the other. Depress the take down button below the bolt, tilt the barrel downward, and lift the upper unit off the frame. Slide the bolt out. Everything is now accessible and the barrel can now be cleaned from the chamber end instead of the muzzle. To reassemble; leave the hammer cocked and the safety on, insert the bolt, slip the Although the MK IV is new, match ready accessories are available now. upper unit barrel notch onto the forward frame pivot cut out, tilt the upper unit back and align the bolt stop pin with its mating hole. Then press down on the rear of the barrel until it clicks into place. I can t think of another.22lr semi-auto pistol that is as easy to field strip as the new MK IV. It's so simple that even I got it right on the first try! The new MK IV series is currently available in three target models, two Hunter versions and the 22/45 Lite. I choose the alloy-frame target version (#40101, $529). It features Ruger s adjustable target sights, a 5.5-inch bull barrel with a 1:16 RH twist, blued finish, checkered black plastic grip panels, and weighs in at 35.6-ounces. The trigger pull measured a bit over 5 pounds on my Lyman gauge. Accuracy testing is a part of any gun test and it s been a few years since my eyes would confidently allow me to wring maximum accuracy from iron sights, so Ruger s Picatinny Rail ($15) was ordered. I m also not a big fan of the skinny Ruger factory grips. I assumed it would take a while for the grip makers to catch up to the new gun, but Ruger surprised me and already had a set of oversized target grips ready for the MK IV ($70). They came along as well. The rail and grips slipped on easily. I was pleased to see that the rail sat low enough on the top of the receiver to allow the iron sights to be used when it was installed. That s 16 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

17 a handy feature should the optical sight malfunction during a match, since the optic can be popped off quickly and the match finished with the irons. ON THE RANGE The loads on hand included CCI s 40-grain Mini-Mag copper-plated RN and their Standard Velocity 40-grain lead load that my MK II loves. Three additional loads: Federal American Eagle 45-grain CPRN Suppressor, Federal Premium Gold Match 40-grain Match, and Aguila s 40-grain Pistol Match, were included. These are standard velocity loads that my MK II occasionally balks on (possibly due to not being thoroughly stripped and cleaned in a decade) and that I can t count on for match use. Given the erratic availability of.22lr rimfire ammo today you almost have to take what you can get, and the gun needs to shoot it reliably and accurately. I was hoping the MK IV would prove to be less finicky than my elderly MK II. As it turned out, I needn t have been concerned. I started by zeroing the iron sights and trying the various loads. The MK IV ate every one of them without as much as a burp! I had a SIG ROMEO1 reflex sight on a Picatinny mount on hand and that went on next. It was zeroed from a 25-yard bench rest and the positive elevation and windage adjustments made that a quick process. Bench rest accuracy tests followed, and a look at the accompanying chart will show the new design did nothing to degrade Ruger s proven accuracy. Steel Challenge practice was next, followed by a six-stage 150-round match. The new MK IV features the same frame and handling as previous models, but with ambidextrous safeties and a new bolt release lever. Below: Field stripping the MK IV takes mere seconds, thanks to the rear take down button. That put about 500 rounds through the gun, and I was still waiting for the first malfunction. Given the easy field stripping, excellent accuracy, and the reliability with various loads, my decision was easy. It was time to retire my MK II and this was one test gun that wasn t going back after the test loan period. I sent them a check. The only remaining concern was the 5-pound plus trigger. It proved less than desirable during my Steel Challenge match. For that I turned to Scott Volquartsen and his namesake company (volquartsen.com). They are America s premier Ruger smiths/parts suppliers, and even though the MK IV had only been out for a few months they already had their drop-in Accurizing Kit ($105) available for it. This adjustable match trigger reduces trigger pull to a crisp 2.5-pounds. My MK II served me well for over 20 years, but there was no reluctance in retiring it. When I can replace it with a gun that tosses sub-half inch groups at 25 yards, eats any load I feed it, has a 2.5-pound trigger, and strips for cleaning in mere seconds what s not to love! Bill Ruger would be proud of the new MK IV. SSUSA.ORG JULY

18 PRODUCT FOCUS WINCHESTER SX3 COMPOSITE SPORTING SHOTGUN THIS SHOTGUN IS A REAL RACE CAR! STORY AND PHOTOS BY LARRY CASE I really hated James McCoy. Back in the day Jim was the guy in town all the girls loved and all the guys didn t. You see ol Jimbo had a secret weapon; something the rest of us didn t have that kept the girls all mesmerized. McCoy had a car. Not just any car mind you, McCoy had a 1968 Chevy Camaro, a convertible on top of that. Of course it was fire engine red; it was in fact the reddest car I have ever seen. This thing was fast, I mean it just looked fast no matter where it was seen. The basic Active Valve gas system on the SX3 has been around since 1993 and is considered by many as the best semi-auto gas system on the market, if not the fastest. In a nutshell, Winchester took the Active Valve system of the SX3 (the engine) and put it into a race car. And in my view that is what the SX3 Composite Sporting model is, a fast, sexy, race car of a shotgun. If you are a clay Clockwise from top left: The signature red Briley bolt handle, bolt release button, and magazine cap not only add to the SX3 s sports car look, but are similar to those on shotguns used by 3-Gun shooters, who value function above all else. When the author brought the SX3 Composite Sporting to the range, other shooters gave the shotgun high praise. The Active Valve gas system helps with felt recoil, the author remarked that shooters who took the SX3 Sporting for a spin said it was a soft shooter. 18 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

19 shooter here is why I think you want this little number in your arsenal. Speed Kills. In this case it kills birds, clay birds. Do we really need to be able to shoot as fast as Tim Flanigan? Maybe not, but to have that capability is a good thing. The Active Valve gas system on these shotguns is the most modern of the systems currently used in gas operated semi-automatic shotguns. A big reason this gun operates so fast and efficiently is that it works with one simple valve, no springs, metal rings on the magazine, rubber O-rings, or other parts to break and have problems with. This system also helps a lot with felt recoil, more than once I heard shooters who were taking the SX3 Sporting for a spin remark that it was a soft shooter. Residue from repeated firing forms on the magazine tube where it is easily wiped off. This is a big plus if you hate to clean a shotgun as much as I do. Lots of Bells and Whistles. Every race car should have a lot of goodies and the SX3 Composite Sporting is no exception. The chamber and bore are hard chromeplated making it resistant to wear and corrosion. Cast and drop shims are supplied to tailor the gun to fit you. Signature Invector-Plus choke tubes are provided in five flavors: light full, improved modified, modified, improved cylinder, and skeet. A handy ambidextrous cross bolt safety is easy to change for the left handed shooter. The trigger assembly drops out for easy cleaning.the SX3 is back-bored at the factory for patterns on the range. The stock on the gun is grippy, it feels good when you grab it and provides a firm hand hold when you shoulder the shotgun. MSRP $1,740. Take the SX3 Winchester Composite Sporting model for a test drive. Just in case you were wondering, I gave up any hard feelings toward James McCoy long ago. He actually turned out to be a pretty good guy. I often still think about that red Camaro though. SSUSA.ORG JULY

20 SCORE SHEETS The AMU s Greg Markowski, Chris Hudock, Joshua Kingery and Jim Henderson won the Team Championship DIXIE REGIONAL MATCH Gateway Rifle and Pistol Club Jacksonville, FL April competitors Submitted by Ted Carter The 2017 Dixie Match was held at Gateway Rifle and Pistol Club in Jacksonville, FL. The weather was near perfect, giving many of the 45 shooters the opportunity to post some very good scores over the three day match. Jim Henderson, a familiar competitor from the Army Marksmanship Unit (AMU) fired a X to take Top Gun honors, winning the NRA Regional Championship, and this year s Dixie Match Champion. Coming in second, also from the AMU was Greg Markowski, firing a X. Chris Hudock, another AMU shooter, finished third with a X. Special Category Awards for High Service and Open Division shooter went to Jim Henderson (Midland, GA), High Civilian and High Veteran shooter was Wes Fleming (New Philadelphia, OH), High Senior shooter was won by Mike Milen (Orland Park, IL), High Woman was Kimberly Hobart Fleming (New Philadelphia, OH), High Grand Senior was Eddy Grove (Pasadena, MD). Winning the Metallic Division was Curt Brandt (Safety Harbor, FL). The AMU won the overall team match (a combination of scores from the.22, Centerfire and.45 team matches) with a total of X. Taking second place was a Service team Match Champion Jim from the Marine Henderson of the AMU. Forces Reserve, firing a X. There were four Civilian 2-person teams entered, with the winning team of Lee and Wes Fleming firing a score of X. The NRA Distinguished Revolver Match had 21 shooters. The winner was Greg Markowski (Columbus, GA) firing a 278-7X, followed by Jason Hedrick (Williamsburg, WV) with a 278-5X. Finishing third was Greg Kitchens (Charleston, SC) with a 272-6X. 2 Person Open Team Champions Lee Fleming and Wes Fleming. 20 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

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22 FEATURE BIANCHI CUP 2017 NRA BI DOUG KOENIG WINS FOR THE 18TH TIME, AMU S SF STORY AND PHOTOS Since 1979, the most prestigious event in action shooting is undoubtedly the NRA Bianchi Cup. Every year, the best NRA Action Pistol shooters in the world make the journey to Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club in Columbia, MO, to compete at the Cup. The Bianchi Cup places a premium on accuracy in four events: the Practical, Barricade, Moving Target, and Falling Plates. Shooters must be proficient at short-range, long-range, steel plates, and moving targets. Some events are even shot prone by some competitors, rare for handgun competitions. Speed alone won t improve X-counts at this match. The entire match consisted of just 192 shots with no reshoots, until last year s addition of the Colt Championship Final, which is essentially a reshoot of the four events. New for this year, only the scores from the Colt Championship Final (second 1920) determined the champion. This year Doug Koenig won the Bianchi Cup for the 18th time. He was using a single stack 1911 chambered in.38 Super, Safariland model 014 Open competition holster, ELS belt and 776 magnetic mag holder. Koenig s win netted him another silver Bianchi Cup for his trophy room, as well as a cash prize of $10,000. About his win Koenig commented, I want to thank Green Valley, Women s Champion Cherie Blake Metallic Champion SFC Adam Sokolowski Production Champion Rob Leatham 22 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

23 ANCHI CUP C SOKOLOWSKI SHOOTS PERFECT METALLIC SCORE BY JOHN PARKER the match staff and the NRA. There was some concern about what we might find when we got here, but as usual the match was awesome and everything went off without a hitch I tip my hat to everyone involved. This year s runner-up was five-time Bianchi Cup Champion Bruce Piatt. In one of the closest Colt Championship Finals yet, Piatt s score of X was only separated by three Xs from Koenig. During Match X, Piatt dropped an eight during the Practical Event while shooting at 50 yards. I never called the shot out of the black area. Regardless, a X is second in my division, Piatt commented about his results this year. A notable long-standing record was broken at Green Valley this year. Going into the last day of shooting Match X, Kyle Schmidt broke the Metallic record score fired by Rob Leatham in 2005 (1910), shooting It was a shortlived record, however, because subsequently Robert Vadasz shot a 1914, earning the record himself. Finally, AMU Metallic Division shooter SFC Adam Sokolowoski made history firing a perfect X score. This was the first time ever a perfect 1920 was scored with iron sights at Bianchi. He was shooting a custom long Bianchi Cup Champion Doug Koenig Junior Champion Tim Yackley Senior Champion Vance Schmid SSUSA.ORG JULY

24 FEATURE BIANCHI CUP 2017 NRA Bianchi Cup Colt Championship Final Leaderboard OPEN Champion Doug Koenig X METALLIC 2 Bruce Piatt X 3 Michael Gasser X 4 Carl Bernosky X 5 Troy Mattheyer X 6 Kevin Worrell X 7 Brett Foster X 8 Tony Holmes X 9 Lawrence Cleveland X 10 Mark Itzstein X Champion Adam Sokolowski X PRODUCTION 2 Robert Vadasz X 3 Kyle Schmidt X Champion Rob Leatham X WOMEN 2 Patrick Franks X 3 Ryan Franks X Champion Cherie Blake X SENIOR 2 Anita Mackiewicz X 3 Katelin Bahten X Champion Vance Schmid X 2 Jon Stoehr X 3 Kim Beckwith X GRAND SENIOR Champion John Sanders X JUNIOR 2 Kenneth Fowles X 3 Ichiro Nagata X Champion Tim Yackley X 2 Sean Yackley X 3 Jonah Avenell X slide 1911 in 9 mm built with Caspian parts by the AMU s custom firearms shop. SFC Sokolowski switched from Production to Metallic this year (he was the 2016 Bianchi Production Champion) citing his desire to challenge himself. Mission accomplished. In Production, SFC Sokolowski s AMU teammate (and two-time Metallic Champion) SFC Patrick Franks and Rob Leatham had a heated battle to conclude Match X, with Leatham scoring a record 1912 score to edge out SFC Franks. I shot personal bests in both the preliminary and qualifying rounds, remarked Leatham. Cleaning the plates in both events was a satisfying, personal performance after struggling with that event for the last few years, he added. SFC Franks was shooting a SIG Sauer P320 X5 in 9 mm, and Leatham used a Springfield Armory XD(M) 5.25 Competition Series in 9 mm, with Safariland ELS belt and model 5188 holster. The level of technology in popular stock production guns has increased dramatically 24 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

25 over the last few years. This fact, combined with the skill of these pistol shooters has resulted in Production scores going through the roof as compared to past tournaments. Cherie Blake of Australia won the Women s Championship, with her score of X over 21 points ahead of the runner up, fellow Australian and 2015 Champion Anita Mackiewicz. SGT Katelin Bahten of the AMU finished third with a score of X. For 2017, the Grand Senior division shooters received their very own silver cup. Fittingly, 80-year-old John Sanders won with an eyeopening score of X. This was his third win in the division, impressive for only having started shooting Action Pistol at age 70. [Be on the lookout for an in-depth interview with Mr. Sanders in next month s issue of SSUSA.] The Bianchi Cup rewards accuracy. Guns built for winning here have a few features that differentiate them from those used for other action shooting games. First, they are almost always single stacks set up to shoot Minor PF Five-time Bianchi Cup Champion Bruce Piatt was runner-up. SGT Katie Bahten of the AMU shooting weak hand Practical. The top four women shooting the Practical Event during the Colt Championship Final. From top: 2017 Bianchi Women s Champion Cherie Blake, third place SGT Katie Bahten, second place Anita Mackiewicz, and fourth place Jessie Duff. SSUSA.ORG JULY

26 FEATURE BIANCHI CUP Smith & Wesson's Doug Koenig won the Bianchi Cup for a record-setting 18th time. PHOTO BY JOHN RICKARDS ammo. To be exact, the required PF is below even USPSA minor at 120 PF, however light loads are rare because the bullets used at Bianchi typically are better at PF. The fat magwell isn t there for easier reloading, it s actually for going prone another unique aspect of NRA Action Pistol. This prone pad is used to get the gun higher off the ground while going prone for the Falling Plates and the Practical to avoid straining while still low enough to see the sights. Many Open shooters modify their rails with a moveable sight base Kenn Boyd presenting 80-year-old John Sanders with the Grand Senior Championship Cup. known as a switch stick, which by flipping the switch left or right will put the proper amount of lead for the Moving Target Event. A good Bianchi Cup Open pistol will shoot 2-inch groups at 50 yards. Historically, multiple competitors have shot perfect 1920 scores, thus winners are usually determined by the number of X-ring hits within the 10-ring circle was no different, in fact the top three at the Colt Championship Final finished clean. NOTES This year s Colt Championship Final was definitely one for the record books. Early that morning, several people showed me radar on their smartphones with that ominous greenish-yellowish blob representing dreaded thunderstorms, common to Missouri in May. There was a rush by all involved to beat the incoming storm. Regarding the inclement weather, Doug Koenig remarked: When we went up the hill for the Mover at the Finals, I could see the sky starting to change. As it got closer and closer, it kept getting darker and I was hoping to get 26 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

27 through this before the storm arrived. Finally, after Bruce Piatt was done shooting, and it was my turn to go out, I thought Please God, let me get through this! Is Doug Koenig human? How does he keep winning this match? He sort of resembles a steely-eyed missile man when he approaches the line. He s polite but clearly has the focus of Tom Brady, late nineties Tiger Woods, or dare I say my beloved Joe Montana. Something to note: Going into the Colt Championship Final, Carl Bernosky had the overall high score of X for Match X. Koenig finished Match X with a score of X. Bernosky finished fourth place after Saturday's Final with a score of X. Three-time Bianchi Cup Women s Champion Julie Golob didn't compete this year (scheduling conflicts), but she shared her thoughts with us about this match specifically the women involved: "What always strikes me about Bianchi is not only the incredibly talented shooters, but the dedicated women range officers. I love walking up to the events and seeing the friendly familiar faces of all the different women who volunteer for this national championship. Not only do we have great female shooters, we also have wonderful female leadership at every level at the NRA Bianchi Cup." Taurus's Jessie Duff shooting the Practical Event during the Colt Championship Final. Third place overall SFC Michael Gasser (foreground) shooting the Practical Event. His AMU teammate SFC Adam Sokolowski (below) finished Match X with a record-breaking perfect score with iron sights. SSUSA.ORG JULY

28 FEATURE NCAA 2017 NCAA RIFLE CHAMPIONS MORGAN & MILICA PHILLIPS BABIC WVU keeps hot streak going in NCAA rifle BY JOHN PARKER PHOTOS BY WVU ATHLETICS 28 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

29 Morgan Phillips shooting her Feinwerkbau 800 during the air rifle finals at NCAA earlier this year. West Virginia University (WVU) freshman rifle shooters Morgan Phillips and Milica Babic are helping ensure the school s rifle legacy stays in good hands. Phillips, winning the NCAA smallbore championship, and Babic the air rifle championship, prove that the Mountaineers who won a fifth straight NCAA rifle championship (19th overall) with a combined championship-record score of 4723 this year can certainly count on these two bright shooters to carry on the team s success into the future. Phillips finished second in air rifle behind teammate Milica Babic with a score. The final two shots were tight between the roommates, as each shot a 10.9 in the second-to-last shot. The two standout freshman rifle shooters talked to SSUSA about their big year. SMALLBORE CHAMPION MORGAN PHILLIPS Few student-athletes have accomplished what Morgan Phillips of Salisbury, MD, has been able to in such a short period. Scoring a career-high 589 score, Phillips won the 2017 NCAA smallbore rifle individual title. Philips began shooting at age nine, shooting BB guns at a local Boys and Girls Club. Her dad, a 22 year Maryland State Trooper and now a police chief introduced her to the shooting sports. My dad shot when he was in high school. He didn t shoot in college. I was in the same program he was when he was a kid. It was really a bonding thing for both of us. We would drive far away for matches there wasn t a lot of choices near where we lived. Everything was a three hour drive away. You can imagine how many hours we spent traveling and then shooting together. SSUSA.ORG JULY

30 FEATURE NCAA The WVU rifle team set a championship record en route to a fifth straight NCAA title. She kept at it, first learning sporter, than moving on to precision air rifle by age 13. I learned 3-Position with BB gun. When I got a bit older and bigger I began sporter air rifle. I did that for a few years and then started traveling an hour and a half from my home once a week to a 4-H Club in Centreville, MD, to learn precision air rifle. One of 25 students in her class at the Salisbury School, Phillips says her junior year is when she started to take competition seriously. The summer of my junior year, I committed myself to the sport because I knew colleges were doing a lot of recruiting. I needed to step up my game, so I increased my training junior year. I won my age group at the National Junior Olympic Championship. She chose WVU for college after visiting her last year of high school. The first time I stepped on campus, I told my dad on the ride back I think this is where I want to go. I knew this is where I wanted to be. Coach Hammond is one of the most cited reasons for the team s immense success. Phillips said, He is really great about fixing technical problems with a position he is really great about fixing that. I chat with him before matches. If I am struggling in the middle when I come off, I ll chat with him. And he just kind of gets me back in that right mindset. He knows the right thing to say to me for sure. At NCAA, Phillips shot career best scores for both air rifle and smallbore. She wasn t rattled during the NCAA finals, for her it was all about her team. I wasn t nervous in the 30 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

31 Morgan Phillips earned the 2017 NCAA Championships Top Performer Award. final. All I was really concerned with was having a good match just for the team. My only concern was with the team performance at the match. Once I got done with my score that contributed to the team score, I really wasn t concerned about the final at all. As the second freshman in school history to win the individual smallbore NCAA title in as many years, Phillips is in great company sophomore Ginny Thrasher (2016 smallbore champion) and the rest of the very deep WVU roster. It s awesome to be surrounded by people that are at this level. I think that is a huge advantage and appeal in coming here. Being surrounded by people that are very serious and at that high level that has been very helpful, she commented. For smallbore rifle, Phillips uses an Anschutz Model 54 with Precise Stock and ELEY Tenex ammo. For air rifle, she shoots a Feinwerkbau 800 also preferring to shoot with no-name Chinese pellets. To prepare for her first collegiate rifle season, Phillips trained just as she had before. Senior year and then over the summer, I did the same thing I was doing in high school. We didn t make any changes until I got here. Once here we started doing the things Jon runs in the program and this is really when things kind of changed. Phillips credits her teammates for helping her out during her first collegiate season. I think overall the support is incredible. Anything that I could possibly need, I just ask, or they offer and it s there. They were there pulling my equipment off of the line and helping me carry stuff at the matches. I am very proud to be a part of this team. Morgan Phillips and her WVU teammates after winning the 2017 NCAA rifle championship. SSUSA.ORG JULY

32 FEATURE NCAA AIR RIFLE CHAMPION MILICA BABIC Milica Babic scored during the final to claim this year s NCAA air rifle championship. She entered the final in first place with a 598 relay score. Babic said about her accomplishments, Hard work will always beat talent... I practiced a lot and still do and I am just trying to get to my goal by working hard. I don t think that anything is going to fall from the sky. A native of Belgrade, Serbia, Babic first began shooting six years ago. She originally was focused on a career as a tennis player. I was supposed to be the representative for one of the younger school teams in tennis when I broke my leg. My family and I went to Turkey to rehabilitate my leg that summer, and one of the activities that we were doing each day was shooting water balloons that were thrown out at sea with an air gun. I was the best shooter each day. The shooting bug had bitten her. Eventually, Babic found a good local shooting club USCE Belgrade thanks to one of her best friends, Lana. You can call it fate. Lana came to school about two years prior. She told me it s a really good club and that it would be nice to have a friend there she already knew. And we started competing against each other there. I started beating her, so she kept shooting pistol. Later on, Babic started competing at the regional and national level and kept winning. Early in life she dreamt of coming to the U.S. to study. Since I was in kindergarten, I told my mom that I wanted to study in the states. Babic fell in love with WVU after visiting the college with her parents. She met Coach Hammond and the rifle team. I was overwhelmed. It was more than I ever dreamed of, and I committed right there and then. Milica Babic became the second WVU rifle rookie in as many days to win an individual title at NCAA this year. 32 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

33 I visited two schools WVU and the University of Kentucky. I got a chance to compare both of them. Both are brilliant schools and it was a tough decision. But I chose WVU and just felt pride. Babic credits Coach Hammond as big reason why she chose WVU over other universities. Jon is actually one of the biggest reasons why I chose WVU. Because he is such a great coach. He is really dedicated to the team. He really makes us feel like he is our second family. And for me that s really important because I am half a world away from mine. My real family and the family that I have here I care so much for them. There is nothing that I wouldn t do for them and I know the feeling is mutual and Jon is like a father to us. It s hard work preparing for the NCAA rifle championships, something that can dominate an athletes mind if allowed. Regarding the team's attitude Babic remarked, NCAA we worked hard for it always about giving our best effort, and being in the right mental state. There wasn t a lot of pressure coming from the team itself. But every single one of us felt that little bit of pressure to represent our school and continue the winning legacy. We worked on our mental state the most, which is important when it comes to shooting. You have to try to get rid of all the distractions, and just be in the match. For air rifle, Babic uses the Walther LG400 Electronic. For pellets she uses R10. According to Babic, They are the most compatible with the LG400 that I have at home and here. For smallbore she uses a Bleiker, the same that teammates Ginny Thrasher, Will Anti and J.P. Lucas shoot. For ammo, she uses ELEY Tenex Red. Following sophomore Ginny Thrasher s (right) sweep in 2016, a WVU freshman shooter has claimed the last two straight NCAA air rifle and smallbore titles. Summing up her exemplary freshman year with the Mountaineers, Babic said: This year is a good example of how great the program is at WVU. That it doesn t matter how long you have been here everyone works really hard to help you and it s not just the coaches. It s just wonderful Morgan and I are roommates and we support each other and in life and on the range." Instead of rivalry between the two, these roommates are each other s ultimate support system. This is also a testament to how good of a rifle program exists at WVU. You can look at numbers and history, but what the players have to say is most important. Babic concluded, I would say that because in our team the most important thing is the team. It doesn t matter if someone shoots very well or badly, we will be there for them. To help them or cheer them on. Or just celebrate with them. SSUSA.ORG JULY

34 FEATURE ELEY ELEY PRACTICAL A NEW DISCIPLI PRECISION RIFLE SHOOTING OUT TO 289 YARDS WITH A.22LR! BY KRISTEN VOSS PHOTOS BY JOHN PARKER Debuting for the first time earlier this year, ELEY has teamed up with the folks at Peacemaker National Training Center in Glengary, WV, to host a new shooting sport known as the ELEY Practical Rimfire Challenge. Similar to the Precision Rifle Series (PRS) and 3GN Precision, which collectively represent one of the fastest growing shooting disciplines around, the rimfire challenge pushes the limits of the.22lr cartridge with nine stages ranging anywhere from 13 to 289 yards. This new discipline presents a rare opportunity to compete in a rifle series that doesn t require a lot of money for guns 34 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

35 RIMFIRE CHALLENGE NE ON THE RISE PHOTO BY TKTKTKTKT or gear (although if you want to, the sky is the limit!). Any shooter, whether junior, professional or amateur, who has a.22 boltaction or semi-automatic rifle can shoot this match. One such participant, Darren Fankhauser, traveled all the way from Denver, CO, to compete in the challenge. He mentioned that he owned a Ruger 10/22 rifle and thought to himself, "Why not give it a try?" It was Darren s first time competing and he remarked that he's "definitely coming back for the next match in September." The ELEY PRC held in May was the second of three conducted this year. Many shooters from the first match earlier this year returned and with $10,000 in awards, it's easy to understand why. In total, there were about 50 shooters that braved the cool, rainy and muddy conditions for their chance at some trigger time, an all-around good time and of course the generous prize table. Shooters went through a total of nine stages that evaluated their accuracy with a rimfire rifle. Each stage has a unique set up, SSUSA.ORG JULY

36 FEATURE ELEY and Match Director Tom Pohuski told me that they "will never run the same stage twice." Stages consisted of shooting from prone, kneeling, standing, barricades and on the move. Each timed stage tested shooters as they attempted to hit all the targets in order, within the par time. Mistakes result in points being docked from stage scores. Furthermore, as technology continues to improve, there are more options available for competitors and match directors alike. The equipment that a shooter uses can sometimes make or break them, especially with companies coming out with stateof-the-art ammunition like ELEY Force and accompanying online lot analyzer, or innovative bags from Armageddon Gear. Spotters were aided with light reactors from LightReact hooked up to the targets. Hits flashed red upon impact simplifying the scoring process for all involved. Overall, shooters enjoyed a chance to These tiny targets were placed out to 289 yards for Stage 8. compete in a.22lr precision shooting competition, optimizing skills that can be carried over to other opportunities as well. With the practical rimfire challenge functioning as a "PRS Lite"-type of competition, it gives shooters trigger time they otherwise wouldn t get. It can be good prep for the hunting Similar to it's big brother, precision long range rifle competition, there are elements of movement for every stage at the ELEY PRC. 36 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

37 Stage 8 had shooters firing from a position on this old log. season since the last rimfire match is right before the season starts. The second ELEY Practical Rimfire Challenge winner was Josh Bartlett. Michael Garnett and Brix Birckner rounded out the top three in second and third place. PNTC owner Cole McCulloch said, The technology has finally caught up to what many competitive shooters want now precision-level accuracy in a.22 cartridge. Now, a.22 can be used in competition out to nearly 300 yards. Companies like ELEY, Volquartsen and Kahles have really stepped up to the plate. We worked with them closely testing out their equipment while developing this new discipline of.22 precision rimfire. The next ELEY PRC will be in September. For the 2018 season, shooters can expect to see an increase to a total of five matches instead of three. Be sure to sign up so you can participate in this exciting new precision rimfire rifle discipline! A few of the competitors rifles. Most popular no big surprise Ruger 10/22 mods and Volquartsen. Darren Fankhauser shooting Stage 7 at the match. This was Darren's first match. Notice the timer on the stick. SSUSA.ORG JULY

38 FEATURE ALONE YOU DON T HAVE TO GO IT ALONE What to do when you are one of only a few in your area dedicated to a particular discipline? BY REYA KEMPLEY PHOTO BY JOHN PARKER 38 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

39 Some competitive shooters seem to have all the luck in terms of their location: a big local club, plenty of events in the area, and a community of fellow competitors at all levels to support one another. What about the rest of us? What happens when you re one of only a few, or perhaps the only person in your area dedicated to a particular discipline? Or what if you re the big fish in a little pond, consistently winning every competition with no one to challenge you? Unless you can find and/or afford a coach, your ability to progress will be hampered. You need to find yourself a training partner at an equal or higher skill level. I have been extremely fortunate in my shooting career to have two such people: my brother Tarl and my boyfriend Justin. Any time we step up to the line, it s a toss-up who might win. We also have a great relationship when it comes to helping one another and letting our competitive nature come out in a friendly, fun way. On the firing line, the competition is intense, but regardless of the outcome, heartfelt congratulations are always in order for the victor. This is crucial for a training partnership neither party can be a sore loser. During regular practice sessions, the benefits of having a partner are numerous. You can share techniques you ve worked out, physical or mental. Asking your partner to watch you shoot or take video of you can be extremely useful as well. There are habits you may not realize you re doing that your partner will notice, or you may notice upon seeing a video of yourself. You may think you re following through after the shot, but a video may prove otherwise! Having another person with you also means you can easily swap a piece of equipment to see if it might work better for you than what you currently use. And anyone Sometimes you will even shoot the same score as your partner! The author and Justin Tracy at the 2014 Western Wildcats 6400 Smallbore Prone Championships, Phoenix, AZ. who s tried to coach or teach knows that the act of trying to explain something forces you to clarify it in your own mind. It s mutually beneficial. In addition to coaching each other, one of the most useful things you can do is have competitions between yourselves. Add in a handicap for one of you if your skill levels aren t very closely matched. Of course, you can run them just as your real competitions, but the fun lies in inventing something new to improve specific skills. Let s say you re a prone smallbore, long-range, or high power shooter and would like to improve on your wind reading. Challenge each other to short one- to five-shot matches with no sighters in different wind conditions. Your ability to see a condition and estimate a sight adjustment will improve, as will your confidence should the wind shift suddenly in a competition when you have no sighters or time to test the change. Another idea is to shoot a normal course or stage for your event, but shorten the time to where it s a little uncomfortable. Do this regularly and you ll feel much calmer the PHOTO BY BILL NEFF SSUSA.ORG JULY

40 FEATURE ALONE next time you re running short on time in a real competition. Interrupt or intentionally distract each other with random sounds, calling out names, time left, etc. Identify your weaknesses or areas you d like to improve and invent a way to make it a game with your partner, putting some pressure on each of you but keeping it fun at the same time. Lastly, create consequences for the outcomes of these games or drills. You can bet money on the outcome to create real pressure, for instance. Or the loser must clean up the range or buy lunch. Choose something that matters but doesn t feel like an undue burden. It s still supposed to be fun! A training partner s benefits will extend to real competitions as well. You have an established relationship of mutual support and competition, so use it. During the match, keep up the communication by sharing what s working and what s not. Help each other with any problems that may arise. Keep the fun going by making your own personal bet or competition with each other along with a consequence, just as you ve done in practice. This helps make the real thing feel less daunting and more comfortable, because it s familiar and enjoyable. You re still just shooting with your friend! What if this all sounds like a great idea, but there is no one in your area who fits the bill? Use technology to work around the physical distance. Find someone in a similar situation as yourself. Perhaps you met at a competition, or an online forum. Arrange practice times and use Skype or Facetime to simulate realtime training alongside your partner. Hold each other accountable. If possible, keep in touch during competitions if you aren t both physically there. While this might be more difficult to maintain than a local partner, it s more doable now than it s ever been. Whether you are lucky enough to have someone at your own club or not, remember to keep it fun, supportive, accountable, and challenging as you help each other improve! The walk downrange to change targets is the perfect time to collaborate with your partner and prepare for the next stage. The author and her brother Tarl at Camp Perry in PHOTO BY LARS DALSEIDE 40 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

41

42 COMING EVENTS To be listed, NRA must sanction matches by the 15 th of the month, two months prior to the month of the magazine issue. If you are interested in entering a tournament, contact the individual listed. For any cancellations or changes to this listing, please contact Shelly Kramer: (703) ; NRA Competitive Shooting Division NATIONAL SILHOUETTE CHAMPIONSHIPS Jul. 4-7 Cowboy Rifle Raton, NM Jul BPCR Scope Raton, NM Jul Black Powder Cartridge Rifle Raton, NM Jul Smallbore Rifle Ridgway, PA Jul High Power Rifle Ridgway, PA Aug Black Powder Target Rifle 42 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG Raton, NM For program and/or entry, write or call: NRA Silhouette Dept., Waples Mill Rd., Fairfax, VA 22030; (703) or 2017 NATIONAL PISTOL CHAMPIONSHIPS CAMP PERRY, OH Jul. 10 Jul. 11 Jul. 12 Jul. 13 NRA Harry Reeves, Dist. Revolver NRA.22 Championship NRA Centerfire Championship, Mayleigh Cup NRA.45 Championship, Awards Ceremony Online registration for the National Championships is available at NATIONAL SMALLBORE RIFLE CHAMPIONSHIPS BRISTOL, IN Jul Jul Jul NRA SANCTIONED TOURNAMENTS Conventional Prone Championship Conventional 3-Position Championship Metric Position Smallbore Rifle Championship For more information go to: championship-tournament/national-smallbore-rifle-championships.aspx. DOWNLOAD THE ENTIRE COMING EVENTS LIST Jessie Duff competing in the Barricade Event at this year s Bianchi Cup. Bianchi Cup Deputy Match Director Larry Mead with the NRA AP Target. PHOTOS BY JOHN RICKARDS

43 PHOTO BY JOHN PARKER 2017 NATIONAL HIGH POWER RIFLE CHAMPIONSHIPS CAMP ATTERBURY, IN Jul. 7 Jul Jul Jul First Shot Ceremony, Welcome BBQ (afternoon) Across the Course Mid-Range Long-Range, Palma Online registration for the National Championships is available at NRA WORLD SHOOTING CHAMPIONSHIP GLENGARY, WV Sep Online registration for the World Shooting Championship is available at wsc.nra.org HIGH POWER F-CLASS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP LODI, WI Sep. 22 Sep Sep. 26 Sep. 26 Sep Sep. 29 Sep. 30 MR Warm-Up Practice MR Individual Championships MR Team Championship LR Warm-Up Practice LR Individual Championship LR Team Championship Individual Championship 2017 NRA Bianchi Cup Junior Champion Tim Yackley. Program and registration are available now. For information please contact: Karin Liebetrau, Cornell Dr., Viola, WI 54664; Telephone: ; Hotels available in the area are: The Bridge Motel; Lodi Valley Suites, Quality Inn & Suites. NRA MEMBER INFORMATION & BENEFITS Membership Account Information (877) NRA Headquarters (703) Internet Address Member Service (800) NRAstore.com (888) MEMBER PROGRAMS Hertz Car Rental CDP# (800) AVIS Car Rental AWD# A83210 NRA Endorsed Insurance Programs NRA Endorsed Prescription Plan NRA Endorsed Check Program NRA VISA Card NRA Real Estate/ Relocation Services North American Moving Services (800) (877) (888) (888) (866) NRA-VISA (800) (800) INSTITUTE FOR LEGISLATIVE ACTION Grassroots/ Legislative Hotline Office of Advancement/ Gift planning (800) (877) NRA-GIVE The NRA Foundation (800) NRA Instructor/ Coach Firearm Training (703) Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program (800) Refuse To Be A Victim (800) Recreational Programs (703) NRA Affiliated Clubs (800) NRA-CLUB Range Services (877) Competitive Shooting (877) Law Enforcement (703) Friends Of NRA (703) NRA Museums/ Gun Collector Programs (703) Shows & Exhibits (866) Media Relations (703) SSUSA.ORG JULY

44 PAGE FROM HISTORY: AMERICAN RIFLEMAN Good For NRA... Good For a Free America: A Letter From President Truman to NRA BY AMERICAN RIFLEMAN STAFF This letter from President Harry S. Truman was presented to NRA Secretary-Treasurer in 1945 upon the conclusion of World War II. In it, Truman credits the NRA for doing much to encourage the improvement of small arms marksmanship in both the armed services and civilian population. Read the full letter, which was originally published in the December 1945 issue of The American Rifleman. 44 JULY 2017 SSUSA.ORG

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