Shooting USA - The Pro Am Match 2010
The heat is on in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in the made for TV pistol match. It's both hot competition and hot sun for the Pro Am, all steel match, that's bigger than ever with cash prizes up for grabs on each stage of fire.
The format for the Pro Am was developed over 15 years ago. Yank Price created the all-steel, par time format, for an ESPN special we broadcast in 1994. The original match was an invitational for the top professionals, with “skins” on each stage of fire. Rob Leatham was the winner back then, taking home most of the prize money.
It was fun to shoot and made for good television, but it never happened again, until Phil Strader revived the format three years ago. And it turns out the formula still works. Phil’s Strader’s revival of the Pro Am is in the third year and continues to grow with the addition of an Amateur Division shooting for choices from a $70,000 prize table.
Phil says it’s the fun of the knocking down steel, “Well, third time is the charm, I guess. It has gotten huge. People are loving it! Shooting that steel, and knocking targets down, and feeling that stress is just too much fun!”
The Pro Am format is as simple as it is fun. The courses of fire are made up of a large number of steel targets. Each target knocked down is worth a point. Each stage has a par time within which all shots must be fired. Any shots that come after the end of the par time result in penalties, minus one point for each overtime shot.
While the Amateurs shoot for choices from the prize table, the Professionals are shooting for “skins” on each stage, either in the Open Division, with optics, compensators, and higher capacity magazines, or in the two squads of Limited Division shooters. There’s money posted for each stage. The highest target count claims it. If there’s a tie, the money rolls over to the next stage, making it worth twice as much, until it’s claimed by a winner.
It makes for some very hot action in the 100 degree heat of Tulsa.
History’s Guns – The ’03 Springfield
The US Army needed a replacement for the Krag Jorgensen. Something to match the Spanish Mausers that fought Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough riders. The answer would be the ’03 Springfield, based on the Mauser Action. The design was so close to the Mauser action, the US paid a royalty to the Germans until the start of World War One.
It has been called the most famous of all U.S. military firearms, the Model 1903 U.S. Rifle, better known simply as the ’03 Springfield. Although the Army adopted it, as the name says, in the year 1903, The rifle’s roots actually run back to the late 1890’s. America was at war with Spain, and our soldiers found their Trapdoor Springfields and Krag Jorgensens were no match for the faster shooting Spanish Mausers. America won the war, but the Army found it needed a better rifle.
The Springfield Armory took the assignment of creating a new and superior rifle. The resulting design was far superior to the U.S. weapons that came before it. Loaded with a five-round stripper clip, operated with a smooth and reliable bolt, the ’03 was a tack driver in the hands of America’s soldiers.
More Information on the Shooting USA Hour
The Pro Am Experience