2012 MIDWAYUSA & NRA BIANCHI CUP NATIONAL ACTION PISTOL CHAMPIONSHIP
Attention competitors, please be sure to thank our Official Title Sponsor, Midway USA. We know we speak for Mr. Larry Potterfield when we say “Thanks for your business.”
No company in America is more dedicated to, and more supportive of, the goals of the National Rifle Association than MidwayUSA. MidwayUSA is a strong supporter of NRA Competitive Shooting Programs. Inside the MidwayUSA facility, most employees have NRA member and life member stickers beside their name plate on the cubicle walls. Most departments host a sign that says “100% NRA Department.” The Potterfield family are also regular contributors to NRA Foundation endowments, in addition to Brenda Potterfield having served as the Vice President of the NRA Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Larry and Brenda Potterfield, and MidwayUSA, have played critical roles in creating an important program and organization for the National Rifle Association. Their customers have embraced these two initiatives and this organization to support the NRA.
NRA Competitive Shooting, Midway USA, and the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup staff salute our Corporate Sponsors. ®
BETTER EQUIPPED. BETTER PREPARED.
Thanks for being on the team.
© 2012 National Rifle Association. All Rights Reserved
TABLE OF CONTENTS
This official Bianchi Cup championship guide is published by the National Rifle Association with support from the Bianchi Cup’s official media partners and corporate partners.
. BETTER PREP
NRA COMPETITIVE SHOOTING
CHAMPIONSHIP INFORMATION Schedule of Events.......................................................6 Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club.......................................7 Columbia, Missouri........................................................9 Travel & Accomodations................................................10
11250 Waples Mill Road Fairfax, VA 22030 1-877-672-6282 www.nrahq.org/compete
President, National Rifle Association David Keene Executive Director, NRA General Operations Kayne Robinson Director, NRA Competitive Shooting Dennis Willing Bianchi Cup Match Director Larry Mead NRA ACTION SHOOTING COMMITTEE Chairman:
2012 Bianchi Cup Experience.........................................11 Championship Format..................................................12 Colt Celebrity Pro-Am...................................................17 Sponsor Salutes..........................................................18
Championship History 2011 Champions...................................20 Past Champions....................................21 Bianchi Cup History.............................22 Tribute to Olin Barjenbruch.................24
Vice Chairman: Joseph P. DeBergalis, Jr. West Seneca, New York Members: Robin Ball Spokane, Washington Clel Baudler Greenfield, Iowa Don Golembieski Mesa, Arizona
John Bianchi: An American Legend...........26
Behind the Gold Star A First-Time Shooter’s story................28 What is NRA Competitive Shooting?..31 Q & A with Larry Potterfield................32 Bianchi Spotlight..................................34
Dwight D. Van Horn Hayden, Idaho
Bianchi Cup Behind the Scenes............30
Timothy W. Pawol PIttsburgh, Pennsylvania Jeff Rowe Amherst, Virginia Secretary: Tom Hughes Fairfax, Virginia
ADVERTISING/MARKETING NRA Marketing Officer Woody Arenas, 703/267-1469 NRA Bianchi Cup Coordinator Damien Orsinger, 703/267-1478
Design & Editing by John Parker, NRA Competitive Shooting
WELCOME FROM THE DIRECTOR OF NRA COMPETITIVE SHOOTING
Dear Guests of the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup: On behalf of the National Rifle Association, our professional staff, volunteers, and Corporate sponsors, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you to Columbia for the 34th edition of the Bianchi Cup National Action Pistol Shooting Championship. The Bianchi Cup has been in existence since the late 1970â€™s, but since its start, the purpose has been to use the match as a proving ground for high-tech, cutting-edge firearm technology. Due to the unrestricted equipment rules, there have been insights gained that can be applied to law enforcement applications. Throughout its great history, the Bianchi Cup has survived and thrived, weathering any problems with aplomb to become one of the worldâ€™s foremost leaders in competitive shooting. Each year at this time, thousands of competitors, fans, and well-wishers visit the great city of Columbia and enjoy all the events associated with it, such as the Western BBQ on Friday night and the Awards Ceremony on Saturday night. MidwayUSA and the National Rifle Association have provided key financial assistance to upgrade the match venue, Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club. Each year it amazes me to see how the range is prepared in such a short amount of time. The Bianchi Cup is the crown jewel of NRA Action Pistol competition. From the start, our goal has been to stage the best championship possible; and with all the great competitors we welcome to Green Valley this week, we feel confident we have done so again this year. Whether your a competitor or sponsor, or just a supporter of great action shooting, we trust that each of you will enjoy your time in Columbia and make it a point to visit again soon. Thank you for your support of the 34th MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup. Good luck and good shooting! Sincerely,
Dennis Willing Director, NRA Competitive Shooting
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
Friday 18 May
Practice Range (Columbia Range) Hosted by Green Valley R&P Club
Tuesday 22 May
Range Closed for Match Preparation
Tuesday 22 May
Registration (Holiday Inn)
Wednesday 23 May
Opening Ceremony (Range)
Wednesday 23 May
Competition Begins / First Shot (Range) 9:30am*
Thursday 24 May
Competition Continues (Range)
Friday 25 May
Competition Continues (Range)
Saturday 26 May
Colt Speed Event (Range) Colt Celebrity Pro-Am Event (Range)
* All times are subject to change.
NRA Competitive Shootingâ€” Exercising our Second Amendment Rights For more information, go to www.nrahq.org/compete or head to the NRA Blog at www.nrablog.com
GREEN VALLEY RIFLE & PISTOL CLUB
he Green Valley Club's informal origins date back to the 1930's with target shooting on â€œGreen Valleyâ€? Drive in Columbia, Missouri. The organization was formally incorporated in 1955 and the original Wyatt Lane shooting range was purchased that same year.
The Columbia, Missouri area played a major role in the creation of practical shooting as a discipline. It was here that IPSC was started. The first IPSC champion, Ray Chapman, went on to establish the Chapman Academy in Hallsville. The Chapman Academy was purchased by the club in 1994. The club annually hosts the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup, attended by top national and international shooters. Other sanctioned events include Missouri State IDPA Match, State Bullseye match, Glock regional match, and the Cameron Cup Action Pistol match. The Hallsville facility has several ranges, including two movers, a Bianchi barricade, two 50-yard Bianchi practical ranges, a 250+ yard rifle range, and a falling plates range. There is also a dedicated classrooom building with running water, bathrooms, and a kitchen.
Aerial photo by Tim Oliver.
Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club - Map of the Hallsville Ranges
DIRECTIONS TO GREEN VALLEY PLEASE READ THIS!
Arrive Early Plan your trip so that you are at the venue well before the scheduled start of the event. Gates open prior to the start of competition at Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club. Dress Appropriately Dress for hot, humid weather, with the occasional rainstorm. Remember to wear suitable footwear, as you may have to walk uphill, or on uneven surfaces. Use good judgement. Be Informed At the venue, look for wayfinding signage, listen to announcements, and read the bulletin boards â€“ this will provide you with the information you need to make the most of your experience. Is there something you need to know? Do not hesitate to ask a NRA staff member or volunteer for help. Spectators Eye and ear protection is REQUIRED and must be worn by all in and around the firing line. Stop by the NRA Booth for FREE ear protection or stop by the Vendor Area Sponsors for more selections. 8
EXPLORE COLUMBIA, MO
olumbia is the fifth-largest city in Missouri, and the largest city in Mid-Missouri. With a population of 108,500 as of the 2010 Census, it is the principal municipality of the Columbia Metropolitan Area, a region of 164,283 residents. The city serves as the county seat of Boone County and as the location of the University of Missouri. The college town is known by the nicknames "The Athens of Missouri," "College Town USA," and "CoMO."
Over half of Columbians possess a bachelor's degree and over a quarter hold graduate degrees, making it the thirteenth most highly educated municipality in the United States. Columbia was settled in Pre-Columbian times by the mound-building Mississippian culture of Native Americans. In 1818, a group of settlers incorporated under the Smithton Land Company purchased over 2,000 acres and established the village of Smithton near present-day downtown Columbia. In 1821, the settlers moved and re-named the settlement Columbiaâ€”a poetic name for the United States. The founding of the University of Missouri in 1839 established the city as a center of education and research. Two other institutions of higher education, Stephens College in 1833 and Columbia College in 1851, were also established within the city. Located among small tributary valleys of the Missouri River, Columbia is roughly equidistant from St. Louis and Kansas City. Greater St. Louis is 70 miles to the East, and the Kansas City Metropolitan Area is 100 miles to the West. Today, Columbia has a highly diversified economy, and is often ranked high for its business atmosphere. Never a strong center of industry and manufacturing, the city's economic base relies on the education, medical, technology and insurance industries. Studies consistently rank Columbia as a top city in which to live for educational facilities, health care, technological savvy, economic growth, cultural opportunities and cost of living. The city has been ranked as high as the second-best place to live in the United States by Money Magazine's annual list. Residents of Columbia are usually described as "Columbians."
Learn more about visiting Columbia at:
TRAVEL & ACCOMODATIONS
Transportation to and from the venue is most easily done by automobile. Parking is extremely limited at Green Valley, so the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup Staff encourages competitors and spectators alike to car pool as much as possible. Follow signage and attendants to proper parking areas.
There are two major airports nearby: Lambert International in St. Louis and Kansas City International, in Kansas City. Both are about 120 miles from Columbia. Columbia Regional Airport is located at 11300 S. Airport Rd., Columbia, Missouri 65201. For further information on interstate transportation of firearms see www.nraila.org. For Airline Transportation of firearms see www.tsa.gov, as well as the web site for the airlines you are traveling.
The Holiday Inn Executive Center in Downtown Columbia is the Official Hotel of the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup. The Bianchi Cup HQ Office is located here, as well as the Western BBQ on Friday night, and the Awards Ceremony on Saturday night. The Holiday Inn Executive Center offers a favorable rate for Bianchi Cup attendees. Be sure to mention your affiliation while making your reservation. Competitors, spectators, and press should make sure to contact the hotel of your choosing as early as possible, as other events in the Columbia area during Memorial day weekend tend to make accommodations tight in the area at that time. For Toll Free Reservations call: 1-800-HOLIDAY or call direct at 573-445-8531. For Hotel reservations go to this web site: www.holidaycolumbia.com Be sure to allow yourself ample time to get to and from the range. The Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Clubâ€™s Hallsville facility is located about 20 minutes from the Holiday Inn Executive Center. Please be mindful of yourself and others during your Bianchi Cup experience.
Left: A candid moment with Julie Golob & Match Director Larry Mead. Center: Jessie Harrison with her 2011 Womanâ€™s Division Cup. Right: NRA staffers prepare for a social event.
2012 BIANCHI CUP EXPERIENCE
he National Rifle Association is committed to ensuring your Bianchi Cup experience is both extraordinary and authentic. To deliver on this commitment, we have taken significant measures to protect against counterfeit merchandising practices. Even so, we encourage you to follow these guidelines below to ensure you enjoy the Real 2012 Bianchi Cup experience.
Buy real, prevent counterfeit – The trade in counterfeit merchandise is not only illegal but also puts consumers at risk. By purchasing official MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup merchandise, you will be supporting not only the 2012 Bianchi Cup, but future cups, and NRA Competitive Shooting. Tickets – Protect your Bianchi Experience – Tickets are only required for formal events at the Bianchi Cup Headquarters hotel, the Holiday Inn Executive center in downtown Columbia. Tickets are not required for entry into Green Valley for spectators. Tickets are required for the Western BBQ, and the Awards Ceremony. Tickets may only be purchased from NRA at the time of registration. Tickets bought elsewhere may not be valid and may not be accepted for entry to 2012 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup events. Play Fair – The official sponsors, licensees, and government partners of the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup have made significant investments to ensure the successful staging of the 2012 Bianchi Cup. In return, they have the exclusive right to promote their association with the Cup. We ask that if you are not already, become a patron of these companies. They are essential to the future of this sport. Inside the venue, out of respect for the athletes and the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup, any activity or protest of political subjects is prohibited. Spectators who do not comply with these rules may be denied entry and any fees will not be refunded.
http://www.facebook.com/NRABianchiCup @nrabianchicup on Twitter http://www.youtube.com/nrabianchicup
Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, & YouTube. www.midwayusa.com
THE BARRICADE EVENT
SPONSORED BY SAFARILAND
From within shooting boxes and behind barricades, a shooter fires at targets on either side of the barricade at different distances and under varying time limits. PROCEDURE
At each stage there wil l be a six (6) foot high, two (2) foot-wide barricade. They wil l be placed in a line, one directly behind another. Each barricade wil l have a clearly marked two (2) foot-wide by three (3) foot long firing area on the up range side. The competi tor must be wi thin the firing area at the “COMMENCE FIRE” signal and no portion of the competi tor ’s body or equip ment may touch outside the firing area u ntil the com peti tor has finished firing the designated rounds. The barricade wil l be considered to be wi thin the firing area and may be used as support. There wil l be two (2) targets downrange. One wil l be placed three (3) feet to the left of the center line and one three (3) feet to the right. The st arting posi tion wil l be wi th the firearm holstered and the palms of both hands on the face of the barricade. The starting signal wil l be the turning of the targets preceded by the verbal commands “READY“ and “ STAND BY.” Rounds: 48 Targets: NRA AP l targets Range: 10, 15, 25, and 35 Yards 2011 Open Winner: Richard Siebert 2011 Metallic Winner: Robert Vadasz 2011 Production Winner: Bruce Gray
480-48x 474-33x 478-26x
Tori Nonaka competes in the Barricade Event.
THE OLIN “OLI” C. BARJENBRUCH FALLING PLATE EVENT
SPONSORED BY UNIVERSAL COIN & BULLION From the appropriate shooting line, the shooter fires at 8-inch round, steel plates arranged in banks of six at distances from 10 to 25 yards under varying time limits. PROCEDURE
There wil l be six (6) target plates placed one foot apart, edge-to-edge. They wil l be four (4) feet above ground level to the bottom edge. The starting posi tion wil l b e wi th hand gun holstered and both hands held shoulder high. The starting signal wil l be an audible type (whistle, horn, etc.) preceded by the verbal commands “READY“ and “STAND BY.” Rounds: 48 Targets: 8” Round Whi te Metal Plates Range: 10, 15, 20, and 25 Yards 2011 Open Winner: Travis Hayton 2011 Metallic Winner: Jerry Miculek 2011 Production Winner: Rob Leatham
480-101x 480-73x 480-65x
Jessie Harrision competes in the Falling Plate Event.
The Falling Plates combine speed and accuracy.
THE PRACTICAL EVENT
SPONSORED BY BLADE-TECH From the appropriate shooting line, the shooter fires at distances from 10 yards to 50 yards under varying time limits.
The Competi tor stands facing 2 targets downrange. The Tops of the targets wil l be approximately 6 feet above ground level and 3 feet apart, edge-to-edge. The starting posi tion wil l be wi th the firearm holstered and both hands held shoulder high. The starting signal wil l be the turning of the targets preceded by the verbal commands “READY“ and “STAND BY.” Rounds: 48 Targets: NRA AP l targets Range: 10, 15, 25, and 50 Yards 2011 Open Winner: Doug Koenig 2011 Metallic Winner: Robert Vadasz 2011 Production Winner: Dave Sevigny
480-48x 476-29x 471-24x
The Practical Event in 2011.
THE MOVING TARGET EVENT SPONSORED BY SIG SAUER
From within shooting boxes at distances ranging from 10 to 25 yards, the shooter fires at a target moving from left to right with the target being exposed for only 6 seconds. PROCEDURE
The t arget wil l move from behind a barricade, travel sixty (60) feet in six (6) seconds, and then disap pear behind another barricade. There wil l be a clearly marked, three (3) foot square firing area at each stage. The firing square wil l be at the center of the sixty (60) foot run of the target. The competi tor must remain wi thin the firing square for the complete firing se quence. The starting posi tion wil l be wi th the firearm holstered and both hands held shoulder high. There wil l be no audible signals. When the competi tor is ready to fire, both hands must be raised to the starting posi tion. The signal to commence firing wil l be when the target appears from behind the barricade. Rounds: 48 Targets: NRA AP l target Range: 10, 15, 20, and 25 Yards 2011 Open Winner: Doug Koenig 2011 Metallic Winner: Robert Vadasz 2011 Production Winner: Enoch Smith
480-43x 478-33x 478-29x The Mover requires speed and accuracy.
THE COLT SPEED EVENT
SPONSORED BY COLT PROCEDURE
The competi tors shal l occupy separate, three (3) foot S quare firing areas, which shal l be six (6) feet a part edge to edge. A stationary timer stop plate shal l be posi tioned ten (10) yards down range of each competi tor. Four knock down plates shal l be spaced three (3) feet a part edge to edge. Al l five (5) targets shal l be posi tioned in a fan to the left of the left side competi tor, and to the right of the right side competi tor. The targets may be placed at varying heights at the discretion of the Tournament. The starting posi tion shal l be wi th each competi tor standing upright, the firearm holstered, and both hands held shoulder high. The starting signal shal l be an audible electronic signal (whistle, horn, etc.) proceeded by the verbal commands, “READY” and “STAND BY.” A maximum of twenty (20) seconds wil l be utilized per firing sequence. Targets: Speed Plates Distance: 10 Yards
2011 Open Winner: 2011 Metallic Winner: 2011 Production Winner: 2011 Women’s Winner: 2011 Junior Winner: 2011 Senior Winner:
Doug Koenig Jerry Miculek Rob Leatham Jessie Harrison Tiffany Piper Chuck Thomey
Jessie Harrison competes in the Colt Speed Event.
Julie Golob competes in the Colt Speed Event.
2011 Bianchi Cup competitors & volunteers.
COLT CELEBRITY PRO-AM
Competitors and well wishers at the 2011 Celebrity Proâ€“Am: (from left to right) Bo Bice, Mark Wills, Joyce Rubino, Mike Guerra, Kenda Lenseigne, Scott Carnahan, Julie Golob, Rob Leatham, John Bianchi, Jerry Miculek, Chris Cerino, Iain Harrison, Caleb Giddings, Maggie Reese, Dave Sevigny,Randi Rogers, and Yamil Sued.
he 2011 NRA Bianchi Cup featured several celebrities participating in a celebrity pro am along with some top notch Bianchi competitors. This Saturday event is well attended and is a fan favorite. Top Shot competitors Iain Harrison, Chris Cerino, Maggie Reese, and Caleb Giddings competed in 2011. Attendees in previous years have included country music star Michael Peterson; stars of film and television Tim Abell (Soldier of Fortune, We Were Soldiers), (Patrick Kilpatrick (Minority Report), Marshall Teague (Armageddon, Road House), Michael Talbott (Miami Vice), Bo Bice (American Idol), and new for 2012, Mark Christopher Lawrence (Chuck). Cowboy mounted shooting sensation Kenda Lenseigne has competed since 2009 and won each year!
From left to right: Randi Rogers, Joyce Rubino, Maggie Reese, Julie Golob, and Kenda Lenseigne.
Founded in 1986, Action Target, Inc. is a privately owned business headquartered in Provo, Utah that employs approximately 200 people. Action Target is a leading global supplier of superior shooting range products, equipment, design, manufacturing and training for law enforcement, military, and commercial ranges. Action Target has installed thousands of gun ranges in the United States and in over 25 other countries around the world. Learn more at www.actiontarget.com
BETTER EQUIPPED. BETTER PREPARED.
Aimpoint is the recognized worldwide leader and orginator of red dot sighting technology. After more than 35 years of working closely with military weapon systems experts, experienced hunters, and marksmen around the world, Aimpoint red dot sights remain the No. 1 choice for combined speed and accuracy. Learn more at www.aimpoint.com
Blade-Tech Industries is the leading manufacturer of custom, production thermoplastic, injection molded tactical holsters, knife sheaths and magazine pouches. Blade Tech also produces its own line of high quality field knives. Blade-Tech also manufactures OEM equipment for 5.11 Tactical, Taser International, Gunsite Academy, Cold Steel, Spyderco, Al Mar, Micro-Tech, Ka-Bar, Camillus, Strider, Buck, Boker, Gatco/Timberline, Ontario, Mission, Chris Reeve and Gerber/Fiskars. Learn more at www.blade-tech.com
Whether you are interested in testing your loads or your shooting skills for speed and consistency, Competition Electronics has a product to suit your needs. We have been producing quality shooting products in the USA since 1982. Our goal is to provide a long lasting product that is serviceable and affordable. Learn more at www.competitionelectronics.com
Founded in 1836, Colt is best known for the production of the Colt .45 revolver, or Peacemaker. It has made many civilian and military designs used in the United States, as well as many other countries. As a company, Colt firearms has always been an innovator, a pioneer – implementing mass production techniques, designing for parts interchangeability, always striving to improve production methods. Today, Colt operates just a few miles away from Samuel Colt’s original Hartford, Connecticut armory and continues to maintain its position as one of the world’s leading gun manufacturers by blending state-of-the-art technologies and modernized manufacturing methods. Learn more at www.colt.com
Federal is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Minneapolis, Minnesota-based ATK. Federal manufactures a complete line of shotshell, centerfire and rimfire ammunition and components. Federal Premium® Ammunition is the company’s flagship brand and focuses its competitive advantage on cutting edge technology. Leare more at www.federalpremium.com
The Otis Technology Breech-to-Muzzle® Cleaning System is widely regarded by experts as the most advanced gun cleaning system in the world. It offers many gun cleaning advancements and refinements developed for the military and competitive marksmen and hunters. All of our products and components are manufactured and assembled in a 67,000 square foot facility in Lyons Falls, New York. Learn more at www.otisgun.com
Safariland is a major designer and manufacturer of equipment for sporting, military, law enforcement, investigation and public safety personnel. Their current product offering includes holsters, duty gear and restraints under the Safariland and Bianchi brands. For more than 45 years Safariland™ has produced some of the finest and most innovative products for the law enforcement, competitive shooting and military industries. Learn more at www.safariland.com
For over 60 years Sierra Bullets has been dedicated to the manufacture of the most accurate bullets in the world. Hunting and target bullets for rifles and handguns are the only products we make and we work hard to make them better than anyone else. This commitment to performance has established a “Tradition of Precision” for which Sierra is known throughout the world. Learn more at www.sierrabullets.com
SIG SAUER® world renowned firearms are the weapons of choice for many of the premier global military, law enforcement and commercial users. High quality, ultimate reliability and unmatched performance have always been hallmarks of the SIG SAUER brand. Learn more at www.sigsauer.com
Smith & Wesson is the largest manufacturer of handguns in the United States. Founded in 1852, their pistols and revolvers have become standard issue to police and armed forces throughout the world. They are a manufacturer of quality firearms for enthusiasts, hunters, and Military & Police professionals. S&W offers a full line of pistol and revolver handguns, tactical rifles, handcuffs and firearmsrelated products and accessories. Learn more at www.smith-wesson.com
Universal Coin provides clients with professional numismatic consultation and analysis for all their coin collecting and investing needs. Led by world renowned numismatic expert Mike Fuljenz, they are experts in their field. Universal is the Official Coin & Bullion dealer of the National Rifle Association. Learn more at www.universalcoin.com
Woolrich relies on end users in law enforcement (ESU/SWAT), executive protection, military operations and civilian concealed carry for their recommendations and requirements for their clothing. With an eye focused on our specialized customers’ rigorous demands for functionality, mobility, durability and comfort, Woolrich Elite Series Tactical is also looking ahead. Our products will focus on continuing to exceed these requirements while striving to change the face of Tactical/Concealment wear. Learn more at www.woolrichelite.com
2011 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup Champion—Doug Koenig Doug Koenig’s record setting performance was rewarded with his 13th overall Bianchi Cup title. In another historic showdown with arch-rival Bruce Piatt, Doug was able to edge him out and further secure his place in history with the most ever Bianchi Cup championships.
The 2011 Metallic Champion Rob Vadasz clinched his third title against shooting legend Jerry Miculek. Rob, of the U.S. Border Patrol Shooting Team, also won the Metallic title in 2008 and 2010.
The 2011 Women’s Champion Jessie Harrison clinched her second consecutive title, cementing her status as a new force to be reckoned with at the Bianchi Cup. Jessie co-hosts the popular Friends of NRA television show.
The 2011 Junior Champion Tiffany Piper was also Second Place in the Woman’s Division. This is the second consecutive Junior Division win for the native New Zealander. She has a bright future ahead of her in Action Shooting!
The 2011 Production Champion was Bianchi Cup legend Rob Leatham. This was Rob’s first Production Division title, to go with his five metallic wins. Rob is one of the world’s greatest marksman and an annual contender at the Cup.
PAST CHAMPIONS Bianchi Cup Winners
Metallic Division Champions
1979: 1980: 1981: 1982: 1983: 1984:
1998: 1999: 2000: 2001: 2002: 2003: 2004: 2005: 2006: 2007: 2008: 2009: 2010: 2011:
Ron Lerch 1816-062x Mickey Fowler 1889-085x Mickey Fowler 1890-088x Mickey Fowler 1903-145x Brian Enos 1903-612x Brian Enos 1910-257x
NRA National Action Pistol Champions 1985: 1986: 1987: 1988: 1989: 1990: 1991: 1992: 1993: 1993: 1994: 1995: 1996: 1996: 1997: 1998: 1999: 2000: 2001: 2002: 2003: 2004: 2005: 2006: 2007: 2008: 2009: 2010: 2011:
Rob Leatham 2034-155x W. Riley Gilmore 1916-144x John Pride 1912-151x John Pride 1918-163x Lemoine Wright 1914-152x Doug Koenig 1920-157x W. Riley Gilmore 1920-166x Doug Koenig 1920-169x Bruce Piatt 1920-170x Brian Kilpatrick, Australia 1920-173x John Pride 1920-174x John Pride 1920-179x Mickey Fowler 1918-184x Ross G. Newell, Australia 1920-163x Bruce Piatt 1920-181x Doug Koenig 1920-180x Bruce Piatt *1920-185x (High Score) Doug Koenig *1920-185x (High Score) Doug Koenig 1920-184x Doug Koenig 1920-184x Doug Koenig 1920-183x Doug Koenig 1920-177x Doug Koenig *1920-185x (High Score) Bruce Piatt 1920-177x Doug Koenig *1920-185x (High Score) Doug Koenig 1918-185x Bruce Piatt 1920 – 181x Doug Koenig 1920-179x Doug Koenig 1920-187x
Stock Firearm (Production) Champions 1994: 1995: 1996: 1997:
Bruce Gray-Category Winner 1883-112x Rod Jones- Category Winner 1810-105x Bruce Gray-Category Winner 1889-125x Steve Sweeney-Category Winner 1850-115x
Production Division Champions
Chad Dietrich 1905-125x Fred Craig 1863-127x Rob Leatham 1897-145x Vance Schmid 1896-130x Rob Leatham 1884-136x Frederick Craig 1886-128x Rob Leatham 1905-144x Rob Leatham *1910-153x (High Score) Rob Leatham 1902-145x Rob Leatham 1902-153x Rob Vadasz 1902-138x Rob Leatham 1909-145x Rob Vadasz 1904-146x Rob Vadasz 1908-143x
Women’s Division Champions 1980: 1981: 1982: 1983: 1984: 1985: 1986: 1987: 1988: 1989: 1990: 1991: 1992: 1993: 1994: 1995: 1996: 1997: 1998: 1999: 2000: 2001: 2002: 2003: 2004: 2005: 2006: 2007: 2008: 2009: 2010: 2011:
Edith Almeida 1821-073x Edith Almeida 1652-045x Edith Almeida 1304-077x Sally Van Valzah 1765-091x Lee Cole 1761-096x Lee Cole 1957-119x Christie Rogers 1759-096x Lorna Pavelka 1787-088x Christie Rogers 1836-111x Yoko Shimomura 1882-129x Christie Rogers 1885-124x Janina Tenace, Australia 1888-134x Lorna Pavelka 1899-142x Judy Woolley 1898-148x Judy Woolley 1906-148x Dewi Hazeltine, Australia 1908-150x Sharon Edington 1899-140x Sharon Edington 1906-142x Anita Mackiewicz, Australia *1914-148x (High Score) Vera Koo 1894-137x Robyn Estreich, Australia 1902-157x Vera Koo *1910-137x (High Score) Vera Koo 1905-151x Vera Koo 1894-141x Vera Koo 1886-136x Vera Koo 1894-149x Vera Koo 1897-143x Julie Goloski 1903-139x Vera Koo 1870-136x Julie Goloski Golob 1907-138x Jessie Harrison 1906-163x Jessie Harrison 1912-153x
2009: Dave Sevigny 1806-101x 2010: Kyle Schmidt 1856-121x 2011: Rob Leatham 1883-132x
BIANCHI CUP HISTORY
The Bianchi Cup was directly responsible for the creation of factory-sponsored shooting teams. Before that, shooters had been individuals, some from organized shooting clubs, according to John Bianchi’s biography John Bianchi: An American Legend 50 Years of Gunleather. “But none of the manufacturers had an organized, factory funded team using their guns and accessories,” explains John Bianchi. There has been a mandatory entry fee since the first Bianchi Cup. Another Bianchi Cup institution has been the gift bag. Still given out to this day, this bag of action The Bianchi Cup prize table in 2011. he Bianchi Cup has been held the week shooting goodies has value that far outweighs any enbefore Memorial Day weekend every trance fees into the prestigious Cup. year since its inception in 1979. It was the first tournament that turned the sport Over the years, the Championship became internationof competitive shooting as a whole from ally recognized. Top shooters from all over the world amateur to professional status by offer- have been attendance. International competitors have ing the winner a large cash prize in addition to trophies. hailed from Austria, Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, Before NRA took control in 1984 the overall winner Japan, Lithuania, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nortook home the entire cash purse of $30,000 in addition way, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, the Republic of South to the Bianchi Cup itself. The awards purse for the Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, and the United Kingdom. Eventually this would lead to the establish2011 Bianchi Cup Championship was over $220,000. ment of the NRA World Action Pistol Championship, The Cup has its origins in the law enforcement shoot- an sister event rotated to sponsor countries every two ing community. Former police officer John Bianchi of years. The next champiholster maker Bianchi International, founded the Cup onship will be held Fall as a Law Enforcement Training Match. Bianchi sought 2012 in Germany.
a match in which law enforcement training methods and tactics could be practically applied in a competitive shooting environment. In conjunction with 1975 IPSC Champion Ray Chapman, he got exactly what he wanted. Due to the relatively unrestricted equipment rules, there have been insights gained that can be practically applied to law enforcement applications. The inaugural Bianchi Cup was held in May 1979 by Bianchi International, and was known as the Bianchi Cup International Pistol Tournament. NRA designated the Bianchi Cup as the NRA National Action Pistol Championship in 1984 and assumed operational control of the tournament the next year. Bianchi International presented the Bianchi Cup to the NRA in 1985. The Cup is awarded annually to the NRA National Action Pistol Champion.
In 2007, after stagnation for several years, circumstances brought the Cup again to the forefront of the action shooting calendar. The combination of new leadership and sponsorship from companies such as MidwayUSA and Colt helped bring the Championship out of the doldrums and back again to becoming a showcase for cutting-edge firearms technology. Inaugural Bianchi Cup Poster.
The landscape of the competition has changed since 1979. The match has become much more sophisticated with highly accurate pistols used, as opposed to the conventional guns and holsters that John Bianchi intended. For the 30th Anniversary, that all changed.
an’s Division and Tiffany Piper in the Junior Division join established names like Doug Koenig and Bruce Piatt in the winner’s circle. NRA continues to improve the Cup in the original spirit of John Bianchi’s vision. The already generous awards schedule has added additional prizes over the years for Newcomers, Juniors, and the Grand Senior category. Sponsorship from major corporations such as MidwayUSA, Safariland, Blade-Tech, Colt, and Sig Sauer have helped make this possible. John Bianchi summed it up with his legendary words, “the Cup has stood the test of time.” Fewer words have been more true.
With the creation of the Production Division, the Cup has become one of the An invitation from 1982. fastest growing disciplines in the action shooting community. According to John Bianchi, “As the years passed it has become more and more sophisticated with specially built guns, and holsters designed especially for competition use that are just platforms to rest the gun in. Both the guns and holster platforms are totally impractical in the non-competitive shooting world, and this isn’t the way I wanted
the Cup has stood the test of time... — John Bianchi
the Bianchi Cup to go at the beginning. I began talking with Tom Hughes, the current match director, and Larry Potterfield from MidwayUSA in Columbia, Missouri, John Bianchi presents a plaque to Bianchi Cup Coordinator Tom Hughes in 2011. and we came to the conclusion that we had to get back to basics. We needed a program for youth shooters and for production guns.” The results are clear, as the Bian- Portions of this article are taken from John chi Cup Production division has grown every year since Bianchi’s biography, “John Bianchi: An its inception. American Legend 50 Years of Gunleather,” by
Dennis Adler. The book is available for pur-
Record-setting sponsorship in conjunction with steadily increasing numbers of competitors have energized the chase at the 2012 Cup or you can buy it online Cup. Rising stars such as Jessie Harrison in the Wom- at www.frontiergunleather.com www.midwayusa.com
A Tribute to Olin Barjenbruch
t the 2011 Bianchi Cup competition, we unexpectedly lost Olin â€œOliâ€? Barjenbruch, a dear friend and dedicated volunteer. It was two days after his 64th birthday.
A veteran of the Vietnam War (U.S. Army), Oli split his time between managing the Barjenbruch family farm and working in the University of NebraskaLincoln's and University of Missouri's Archaeology Departments. "He was a good man and a dedicated volunteer," said NRA National Pistol Manager Tom Hughes. "His 30 years of service to the NRA won't soon be forgotten." Oli was one of the best-loved volunteers at the Cup. Born in Norfolk, Nebraska, Oli was known for his love of history, archaeology, and gun collecting. He was an active member of the NRA and a dedicated volunteer as a long-time member of the NRA Bianchi Cup Protest Committee. On Saturday night at the awards ceremony, Oli was posthumously honored with his 30 year service award and a moment of silence. Barjenbruch was laid to rest at the Missouri State Veterans Cemetery in Jacksonville with full military honors. Many were blessed to have known Oli, and many will miss him, especially those who were part of his Bianchi Cup family. His generosity, loyalty and hard work will always be remembered by our staff, volunteers, and competitors. There will always be a void in the Bianchi Cup family without Oli.
Olin Carl Barjenbruch 1947-2011
Trying to keep track of your favorite NRA Competitive Shooting discipline? The best way to do this is by following the NRABlog. NRA has recently redesigned the site with a new look and NRA Competitive Shooting encourages you to visit! Go to www.nrablog.com and learn more!
The quickest way to get coverage you want of your favorite NRA Competitive Shooting Disciplines is to follow nrablog.com The newly redesigned NRABlog.
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View NRA Competitive Shooting Publications online for FREE at
Also please read Shooting Sports USA, our digital magazine. Go to www.shootingsportsusa.com www.midwayusa.com
John Bianchi was a soldier, a police officer, a competitive shooter and, of course, the world’s foremost holster maker. In this excerpt from an American Rifleman article by Dennis Adler, we learn more about the man who would become the namesake of the Bianchi Cup.
here are only a handful of brand names that are recognizable anywhere in the world, regardless of the language spoken; IBM, Coca-Cola, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari and Bianchi are among them. While it may seem extraordinary that a holster should share international familiarity with legendary names in computer technology, refreshments, luxury and sports cars, there have been more than 40 million Bianchi holsters, gun belts and accessories produced. Not bad for a man who started out handcrafting holsters for sale on his kitchen table in 1958. John Bianchi’s success story is what the American Dream is all about, but success so often comes with a price, and as those who read Bianchi’s biography, “John Bianchi—An American Legend” will discover, his life has not been without adversity. His story is compelling, much like Bianchi himself when you sit and talk with him. His boundless enthusiasm for his lifelong careers; and we use the plural because he has had several of distinction, has made the Bianchi name legendary.
John Bianchi in 2011, here he presents an award..
Bianchi was fascinated with both the Old West and military history, and when he finally decided there was very little chance of him becoming a cowboy— “I didn’t have a horse,” he quipped—he tried to enlist in the U.S. Army. He was only 15. “It was 1952, shortly before I joined the National Rifle Association, and I walked into the Army Recruiter’s office and said I wanted to sign up.” When the recruiter asked his age, Bianchi firmly avowed, “I’m 17, sir.” John looked down and chuckled
at the memory. “He says, ‘You don’t look 17. Go get your birth certificate.’ So I went home, couldn’t find it and went back to the recruiter. He says, ‘You know kid, why don’t you go down to the National Guard, they don’t look as closely as we do at your age.’ So I went, picked up the enlistment forms and brought them
IBM, Coca-Cola, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari, and Bianchi...
home. After a while I talked my dad into signing the papers and I filled in my birth date as 1935 instead of 1937. It was probably the most rewarding part of my youth. I served in the National Guard for two years and when I turned 17 went on active duty in the Army for another three years.” When Bianchi left the Army late in 1957 he decided to follow in his dad’s footsteps and go into law enforcement, but also stay in the Army as a reservist. That was the first pivotal decision he would make in his life. Forty years later John Bianchi would retire as a major general, but in 2001, following the attacks of September 11, he was called back to duty.
U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Dennis M. Keneally, who assumed command of the California Army National Guard after 9/11, remembers that the first call he made was to John Bianchi. “I asked him to come out of retirement and take command of the California State Military Reserve. I remember thinking; ‘I couldn’t blame him if he said no.’ He had already given more than most. However, not to my surprise, he never questioned my request, he simply responded. The next day he was in my headquarters in uniform and looking as if he had walked off a Hollywood studio set or off a recruiting poster. His presence alone was like a flashing marquee. In short, he had charisma and the intangible quality of a remarkable leader. Although lost in history, Maj. Gen. Bianchi contributed immeasurably to the success of our mobi-
Bianchi at the 2011 Cup with some friends from down under.
AN AMERICAN LEGEND ternational terrorist threat, kidnapping of officials became a major concern of all intelligence agencies. At one point I was called upon to design and custom-make men’s trouser belts with concealed transmitting devices so they could be tracked. The belt was a new idea and worked well for several years.”
John’s reputation and that of his company were growing exponentially. In 1979 he launched the first Bianchi Cup pistol match. Today, it is the MidwayUSA and NRA Bianchi Cup, the crown jewel of international shooting competitions. By the early 1980s he had risen to the rank of lieutenant colonel, and rekindled his childhood lization and deployment of troops to Afghanistan and love of the Old West by adding a line of Western holIraq.” In 2004, Maj. Gen. Bianchi retired a second time. sters and gun belts to the Bianchi catalog. Along the road to 40 million holsters, gun belts and accessories bearing his name, Bianchi made quite a few Just about every holster Bianchi has designed, or some detours, each of which contributed not only to his suc- variation of it, is in use today somewhere in the world. cess but to the entire firearm culture in America. While As for the M12 it became the most successful military he was a member of the Monrovia Police Dept. in the holster ever devised and is still in use by the U.S. more late 1950s and early ’60s, his first customers were fel- than 25 years later, while Bianchi Int’l (which John sold low officers. “I’d make a holster at night, take it to work in 1987 and retired from in 1992) continues to offer cithe next day and sell it. I was making traditional-style vilian UM84 versions in a variety of configurations and belt holsters for some of the detectives, and that’s when colors for the Beretta 92FS and other models. I realized there was a need for high-performance concealment carry holsters, which, for the most part, didn’t Looking back on the development of the UM84, Biexist.” As a result of John’s ingenuity in holster design, anchi admits that it was the most demanding, expenhe broke more ground in concealed-carry holster devel- sive design project in the history of the company, but opment by the late 1960s than anyone in the preceding through the years its technology led to the development 50 years. His early product line was marketed under of the Ranger line of synthetic holsters, belts and accesthe name “Combat Action Holsters ‘Protector Brand’ sories and the AccuMold Elite police duty gear in use by John Bianchi.” It included the No. 2 Speed Scabbard today. Like many things throughout Bianchi’s life the for the Colt M1911. “This was the first commercially UM84 went beyond the profit motivation and truly besuccessful, high-production concealed carry holster came a labor of love. “Our goal was to design a holster for the Model 1911. It’s been in production for over 50 that would be in service for the foreseeable future, and years,” Bianchi said proudly. we achieved that goal,” he said. By the early 1970s, Bianchi had become the person everybody came to when special products were needed, and that eventually included the U.S. government. He was asked to do work for the Executive Protective Section of the State Department, which employs the agents who travel with foreign dignitaries, the secretary of defense, secretary of state, et cetera. Bianchi was contracted to make special briefcases that held secret communications and miniaturized tracking devices. “When events in the Middle East began to surface as an in-
“Voids beg to be filled,” said Bianchi. After about a year in retirement, he established Bianchi Frontier Gunleather, specializing in handcrafted Western holsters and gun belts. It is now in its 17th year. And that is the stuff legends are made of. Dennis Adler is the author of John Bianchi’s biography, “John Bianchi: An American Legend 50 Years of Gunleather.” Learn how to purchase the book here, or pick it up while at the 2012 Bianchi Cup. www.midwayusa.com
A FIRST-TIME SHOOTERS STORY
Brian “Gunny” Zins, takes time out from his busy schedule to chronicle what it is like to shoot the Bianchi Cup as a first-timer. As a bullseye shooter, he has his own unique perspective on the match.
The author shoots the Falling Plates.
or no training, I performed well when I showed up. I was not a fan of Action Shooting since I am a firm believer that pistols are “handguns” and not “handsgun” and meant to be shot with one hand. Not to mention that a much closer proximity to the target was not all that appealing to me. After shooting at a 3” 10 ring at 50 yards, 7 yards seems to be a waste of time and ammo. Not to offend the action guys out there, I do have a respect for the scores you post and speed in which you are capable of attacking various stages of fire.
A local Virginian and friend, Martin Johnson, had invited me out to practice with him prior to the Bianchi Cup, so that at least I would have the opportunity to see firsthand what to expect and get a little a trigger time few short years ago (2009) while I was in. Well after a day of shooting the Bianchi Cup stages, the National Manager of Pistol Programs I knew that Doug Koenig and Bruce Piatt had nothing for the NRA Competitive Shooting Di- to worry about just yet. I knew that NRA Action Pistol vision, previous Director Mike Krei, was the culmination of speed and accuracy, but I had no encouraged me to shoot the NRA Bianchi Cup Action idea what I was really getting into. Pistol Championship. Well as a competitive shooter, albeit a fundamental Bullseye guy, who was I to say no to Coming from the Bullseye world with a love for the the opportunity. Not only did I get a better understand- mastery of fundamental pistol marksmanship, I am ing of NRA Action Shooting, which at the time was the pleased to say that the Bianchi Cup for over 30 years main reason I shot, after all NRA Action Shooting did now has been able to combine speed and accuracy. The fall under my purview as the Pistol Manager, but I had different stages of the Bianchi Cup all require one to a great time and learned that not all Action Shooting is shoot from the holster, shoot fast and my personal favorite, with accuracy. the same. The folks who have been competing at the Bianchi Cup for several years were very pleasant to be around, very accommodating to a Bullseye shooter. As a NRA National Conventional (Bullseye) Pistol I hope that some champion I have a love of fundamental marksmanship of them take up the and precision. I have shot USPSA and other competi- invitation to come tions similar to Action Pistol in the past and with little out and shoot a Tom Hughes, the NRA Action Pistol Coordinator at the time, made my job as NRA National Pistol Manager so much easier; he attacked the diminishing entries at the Bianchi Cup and turned it around to an amazing level of entries. Not to mention all the sponsorship and prizes Tom has accrued for The Cup and now as my successor as the Pistol Manager at the NRA National Pistol Championships at Camp Perry.
Brian is a 10 time NRA National Pistol Champion.
Conventional Pistol National Championship with me someday. The Cup I found was so much more than just a shooting match. It was refreshing to see that the Cup, much like a trip to Camp Perry, really is a reunion of great Americans as well as our shooting friends from around the world. There are many social events scheduled to get to know everyone there, such as the Competitor Social, Western BBQ, and of course, the Awards
don’t be afraid to jump right in and go to the Bianchi Cup...
Brian “Gunny” Zins Accomplishments • 10-time NRA National Pistol Champion • Runner-up, Top Shot Season 2 • 30 National Records in NRA Indoor & Outdoor Conventional Pistol Shooting • Former competitive shooter for the United States Marine Corps shooting team • Trained with the FBI • United States Marine Corps Instructor in combat marksmanship
Photo courtesy of D'Arcy Egan, The Plain Dealer.
Ceremony. There are also plenty of side events that are just fun to shoot and give someone bragging rights even if they do not win their class or category. Also through Tom Hughes tireless efforts, it was great to see the celebrities that he was able to get to not just show up, but also compete in the Cup. Recent celebrity attendees at the Bianchi Cup have included Michael Petersen, Marshall Teague, and Bo Bice. Since my participation in the Bianchi Cup, I have explained to many of my Bullseye friends that if they wanted to shoot an action game, the NRA Bianchi Cup is the best Action Shooting game in town. Many of them have even attended the match and thoroughly enjoyed their experience as well. So if you are looking for a change from the same old action game of running and gunning and worrying about your “tactics”, or a change from Bullseye, NRA Action Pistol is the way to go and don’t be afraid to jump right in and go to the Bianchi Cup, trust me you will enjoy yourself.
Brian Zins was the NRA National Pistol Manager from 2008-2009, and went on to become runner-up on Season 2 of the History Channel’s Top Shot. He is a 10-time NRA National Bullseye Pistol Champion and now has his own line of ammunition called Gunny Zins ammo. Learn more at his website — www.brianzins.com
Learn more about NRA Competitive Shooting by visiting us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/nracompetitiveshooting www.midwayusa.com
BEHIND THE SCENES AT THE BIANCHI CUP
Jonathan Leighton has been with NRA Competitive Shooting since 2007, and has been part of the Bianchi Cup match staff in roles of increasing responsibility since 2008. Here he provides insight to Bianchi competitors on how the NRA puts on the huge spectacle known as the Bianchi Cup.
o you ever wonder how the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup seems to materialize out of thin air every year? Well, I sure don’t. I am sure my fellow staff would be inclined to agree with my sentiments. For me, it all starts when NRA headquarters staff packs a full-size Penske truck and the next thing I know I’m pointed in the direction of Columbia, MO. 2 days and 20+ hours later, I usually pull into the Holiday Inn parking lot, hopefully, with everything intact. Just like my four previous Cups, I’m the first boots on the ground every year at this prestigious match. I wouldn’t have it any other way, personally. When I get to the hotel, it’s literally crickets. Nobody with any relation to the Cup is there whatsoever. Then you start to brace yourself for the masses…
90+ degree heat and humidity before and I’ve also been freezing cold, dragging railroad ties across the Practical, wondering if I was The author with Cup guru Tom Hughes. going to die in a tornado. The weather adds variables you never thought would rear their ugly head. Improvise, adapt and overcome are the only options in the quest for success. I can’t even begin to explain everything we do to that range before competitors arrive. When that first shot goes downrange, I’ll be on a golf cart ferrying folks around the range. I mean, I got to do something.
I’m going to try and briefly summarize this whole process the best I can so it all starts with the NRA Registration Office at the hotel. That big empty room is transformed into a fully-functional office utilizing the latest in administrative technology to get the job done. The only ingredients needed to make this feat possible are sweat, teamwork, persistence and the fear of what Tom Hughes will do to me if everything isn’t squared away when he arrives in Missouri. Making the registration process painless for staff and competitors gets the match started off right.
After the Colt Speed Event on the last day, we break down the match. I tear everything on that range down and return the range to its original state, quiet with the occasional full-auto burst. I’ll admit it, when NRA arrives at Green Valley; it’s a lot like Godzilla rolling through Tokyo. We have some serious clean-up and restoration to do each year. Tearing the range down usually takes about 2 days. I typically have to pull myself away at the last minute, Saturday, to get to the awards dinner at the hotel so that should explain why I’m always leaking sweat through my suit at dinner.
Next step is the range. Green Valley Rifle & Pistol club is a special place steeped in competitive shooting history. For me, it’s an honor to be in charge of getting this range ready every year. Getting the range squared away every year isn’t for the weak or faint of heart. It takes a lot to get that place beautiful and fit for the most prestigious pistol match in the world. Everything from the banners you see to the targets you shoot is brought in for the match. Without guys like Bob Heidenreich, President of Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club, my job would be much harder. Missouri isn’t exactly a cake walk, weather-wise, in May. I have been covered in mosquitoes, driving stakes with a post-hole knocker, in
Just like when I get there every year, I’m the last guy out. We talked about the sound of crickets? Well, again, that’s all you hear at the hotel come Sunday. I hear it’s also a holiday weekend but I haven’t noticed in 5 years. Monday morning shows up and we head east to D.C. 2 days and 20+ hours later, I can get into my own bed again. Albeit, only for a night or two if I’m lucky, then it’s off to the next match.
I’ve made a lot of friends in Columbia over the years, and I’m glad to be a part of the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup. Pistol shooters aren’t all that bad is usually my consensus in the end.
What is NRA Competitive Shooting? How many people work at NRA Competitive Shooting Headquarters and what do they do? What is NRA Competitive Shooting’s top priority?
Our mission is to use all available assets to grow the shooting sports by increasing participation in new and existing programs, and to develop and promote competition knowledge, skills, and abilities. Our vision is to be the leading provider of the highest quality competitive shooting programs and services to America’s gun owners.
What is the NRA?
The National Rifle Association is an American non-profit 501(c)(4) organization which advocates for the protection of the Second Amendment of the United States Bill of Rights and the promotion of firearm ownership rights as well as marksmanship, firearm safety, and the protection of hunting and self-defense in the United States. The NRA sponsors firearm safety training courses, as well as marksmanship events featuring shooting skill and sports. Its political activity is based on the principle that gun ownership is a civil liberty protected by the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights, and it is the oldest continuously operating civil rights organization in the United States. The NRA has 4.3 million members.
NRA Competitive Shooting has its home base at NRA Headquarters in Fairfax, VA. Amazingly, a total staff of only 24 people sanction the 11,000+ tournaments, issue classifications, manage all the disciplines, and provide support to our 51 National Championships.
The folks at NRA Competitive Shooting make the rules, right?
Wrong! The rules governing NRA Competitive Shooting are actually developed by the discipline committees, which have their ranks filled by members of the NRA Board of Directors and other shooting notables. There are currently 12 different committees responsible for guiding their respective disciplines, including Action Shooting. Learn more at this web site: www.nrahq.org/compete
National Rifle Association Headquarters moved from Washington D.C. to nearby suburb Fairfax, Virginia in 1994.
Well how do I get started?
It’s easy! Simply head to our web site at www.nrahq.org/compete and check out all the information available there. Also, you can view all of our publications for free online at: www.issuu.com/compshoot
Match fees support NRA Competitive Shooting. What does NRA do with the money it earns?
The NRA is a non-profit organization, with its revenues benefitting its membership through distributions, grants, programs, and services. The money is also used to insure the National Rifle Association will have funds in perpetuity through endowments, securing the Second Amendment for future generations.
11,000 tournaments and 51 championships in the over 30 disciplines NRA sanctions more than
How many championships does the NRA sanction?
that are offered. Every winner earns the right to be called national champion. www.midwayusa.com
Q & A WITH LARRY POTTERFIELD
Founder & CEO of MidwayUSA, Title Sponsor of the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup.
arry Potterfield needs little introduction. He has become worldfamous with his helpful firearms videos on his company’s web site, which has “just about everything” you might need when it comes to shooting, hunting, or competing. We recently sat down with Larry to discuss founding MidwayUSA, the future of the Bianchi Cup, and how the shooting landscape has changed for the better in the past decade. Q: First, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. How did you go from a simple gun store owner to head of one of the biggest firearms related retailers in the business? LP: This sounds like a great opportunity to coach young people on how to prepare for life. Most importantly, I believe, one must have a good value system; this comes from the family, and nearly every one of us can take this for granted, because most parents do such a great job of instilling basic family values in their children. I was born and raised in rural Missouri. Mom and Dad never had any money, but their value system was strong and all six of us kids have been blessed with those values. Next, everything is easier in life if you have a good education – either from a trade
school or a college; in my case, I was able to earn two degrees in business. They don’t teach you all you need to know about business in business school, but they give you the basics and hopefully help you under- Larry Potterfield. stand how to learn the rest, throughout your life. Personally I am dedicated to a lifetime of continuous learning and this has served me well, as the world is constantly changing. A great life partner is absolutely essential! Brenda and I have been married since 1970; and while I typically am the one out front, no one would have ever heard of Larry Potterfield and MidwayUSA if it weren’t for Brenda. Reflecting back over 35 years at MidwayUSA, It all seems quite simple. Clearly, there is no magic formula for business success, but, with a good foundation, I believe the most important things that have led to any personal success I have enjoyed are hard work, focusing on the future, willingness to change and a continuous focus on satisfying our Customers. Q: When did you first decide to become involved with the Bianchi Cup? LP: Actually, ‘re-involved’ is probably a better choice of words. You see, for the first few Bianchi Cups, MidwayUSA received and processed all of the prizes. We carried a great selection of Bianchi Holsters and I knew John Bianchi from the S.H.O.T. show. When John and his team came to Columbia
Larry & Brenda Potterfield present Doug Koenig with the 2011 BIanchi Cup.
before the first Bianchi Cup, he asked for our support in this area. We closed the retail store in 1984 and at that time passed the process over to another local gun shop. The Bianchi Cup still came to town every
The Bianchi Cup is simply the foremost handgun tournament in the world...
year, but we were no longer involved. A few years ago, John Bianchi, Tom Hughes, and I got to talking about how things were going with the Cup, what we could do better and what kind of funding it would take. That is were MidwayUSA stepped back in, after quite a long absence, but at an entirely different level – the Title Sponsor. The Bianchi Cup is simply the foremost handgun tournament in the world, so it is logical that a company like MidwayUSA, with a vision “to be the best-run business in America” would be its major supporter. Q: What is your favorite aspect of supporting so many critical NRA Programs? LP: I’ve been a life member of the NRA since the early 1970s, but never really got to know the organization until 1992 when we started NRA “Round-Up”, and created Friends of NRA. Brenda and I have been fortunate to help the NRA with many other programs through the years. All of the NRA folks I have come to know have been dedicated to their vision of being “the foremost guardian of the right to keep and bear arms.” MidwayUSA would be a different company today, if we even existed, had not the NRA provided such great support for the 2nd
Amendment during the all the years we have been in business. Everywhere I go, people thank me for supporting the National Rifle Association, so I get a sense of gratitude from fellow citizens, plus I genuinely understand the importance of NRA’s mission and the value of our support. Q: How have you seen the sport shooting landscape change in the last decade? LP: The interest in guns and shooting is more intense now than it was a few years back. Certainly this is due, in no small part, to events like the Bianchi Cup. Guns have changed, wow! 1911s are more popular than ever, but we now have polymer-frame technology; we have AR-15 platforms and 10/22 platforms -- and Sporting Clays has played a major role in changing the shotgun sports. We have more competitions and more new competitive shooting games than anyone could have ever imagined. It is a good time for the shooting sports industry.
Potterfield with NRA National Pistol Manager Tom Hughes.
We thank Mr. Potterfield for taking the time to answer these questions. Visit MidwayUSA’s website at: www.midwayusa.com www.midwayusa.com
olly Smith has been a force to contend with in the Bianchi Cup Junior Division the last few years. The fifteen year old San Luis Obispo, California native has been shooting since she was 11. A dedicated student of the revolver, Molly has competed in the Steel Challenge and International Revolver Championship in addition to the Bianchi Cup. When she isn’t putting in training time as a member of Team Smith & Wesson at the range for her next match, Molly enjoys participating in school activities such as Mock Trial arguing for the Second Amendment. You can view her winning the “Top Pretrial Defense Attorney” award here. Molly is also a talented writer, having articles published on the Women’s Outdoor News through her “Millisecond Molly” column and her own blog called “The Molly Minute.” Molly took time out to answer a few questions for us about her shooting career and the Bianchi Cup. Q: First, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. When did you start shooting? MS: I started shooting four years ago, when I was eleven, .22 rifles with my brother on weekends at the local range. It wasn’t until I was introduced to pistols and later .38 revolvers, that I knew there was no going back! I shot my first IRC (International Revolver Championship) after shooting a revolver for about a month prior! I was so proud of my score…I didn’t come in last! Yep, I was next to last; the last place had a big “DNF” next to their name. From that point on I loved competitive shooting. The Bianchi Cup was first brought to my attention when I was practicing for Steel Challenge in 2009, a speed match. The topic of “Incredible Female Shooters” came up, and Vera Koo headed that list. She became a role-model, and when I met her I knew for sure, she’s amazing, disciplined and focused, such a great shot! Vera is an 8-time NRA Bianchi Cup Ladies Champion. With Vera as my inspiration, I thought “I want to give it a try.” Q: What is your favorite part of the Bianchi Cup? MS: My favorite part of the Bianchi Cup is knowing that I am taking part in history! This match is so extraordinary. It will forever be known, as Mr. Bianchi says, a sport of “disciplined professionals” and I like that. I love watching and getting to know other shooters. It’s wonderful to see everyone in their best shape and shooting so well! I learn
tons about shooting just by watching the top shooters. To see everyone in action is phenomenal…I tend to want everyone to win! But, really, anyone who goes to the Cup is winning in some respect!
Molly with John Bianchi in 2011.
Q: What is your training strategy? MS: To train, I watch, I listen, and I practice. I try a lot of different techniques out; I love it when someone gives me some sort of new tip and I can try it out and see if it works. I go out to the range whenever I can and dry fire at home. Dry-firing is great to keep your mind in the game and keep you focused when you’re off the range. I also like to wear weights on my wrists when I’m doing my chores so I can keep my weak arm strong for the first line on the Practical Event. Q: What is your favorite memory from your first Bianchi Cup? MS: The Bianchi Cup has been very important to me, for a fifth of my life, an entire three years! In that time I’ve had a lot of surprises
MOLLY SMITH and fantastic memories. I learned how not to allow anything to throw me off my game at my first match when I was thirteen. That first match had its challenges. On my first event, the Mover, I was so nervous. I timidly waited my turn when the Range Of- The above sequence shows Molly preparing to fire in the 2011 Falling Plates Event. ficer greeted going to be interesting, and perfect for me. me with a “You’re up, Son.” I didn’t want to embarrass him, so I said in a deep voice, “Yes, But I would have to say for the “grandest” Sir!” When I made it up to shoot, I drew my memory of my first Bianchi Cup, it would have gun, and before I could make my first shot, the to be dressing up and going to my first awards target string broke…Really! All I could do was banquet! Sitting there between Annette Aylaugh. I knew that this match was definitely sen and Vera Koo, the evening was wonderful. I received an award from Larry Potterfield that night. The generosity of Midway, the NRA and the other sponsors motivated me; I knew I wanted to give back. I decided I was going to promote this sport and to support wounded soldiers. That evening really changed my life. Q: Do you see yourself shooting the Bianchi Cup in 20 years? MS: I definitely see myself shooting Bianchi Cup for as long as I’m able to, and when I can’t shoot anymore you better believe I’ll still be out there cheering on the other shooters! In twenty years, a lot could change though… maybe you’ll see my revolver with optics!
We thank Molly for taking the time to answer these questions. Visit her blog, The Molly Minute at: http://mollyminute.blogspot.com/ Molly receiving the Junior First Place first-time shooters award in 2010.
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