If all goes as planned, at the Board of Directors meeting next month they will approve new rules for NRA Service Rifles. These follow closely, but not identically to, CMP rules. If approved, Service Rifles will now be authorized to compete with scopes that were manufactured to a maximum power/size of 4.5x34 mm. The High Power Committee did not address the issue of scopes on other firearms so only Service Rifles will have approval at this time.
The High Power Rifle Championships will also experience some additional changes in 2016. This will include all disciplines, Across the Course, Mid-Range, and Long Range. More use will be made of Block Time and infiltration, convertible sighter shots, and fewer and more efficient pit changes. Across the Course and Mid-Range will also be fired in three days rather than four, with team days additional.
Changes might also be forthcoming to Camp Perry in 2017 as CMP evaluates the use of electronic targets. Should CMP decide to install electronic targets at Camp Perry, all championships will utilize those targets and all paper targets will be discontinued. This is a monumental change that is welcomed by some and not by others. This is an inevitable evolution in the shooting sports. Just this week, I have been informed of at least two clubs that will be changing to electronic targets as well.
The Smallbore Championships will remain in Bristol for at least one more year. There is the potential for the championships to return to Camp Perry in 2017 should the electronic targets be installed. This will be addressed with the Smallbore Committee at the appropriate time.
The Black Powder Cartridge Rifle Silhouette and Black Powder Target Rifle Championships have once again been combined. We have done so at the request of many competitors but we were unable to secure the best time frame to do so. The championships will be held back-to-back July 18-30, 2016 at the NRA Whittington Center. We will be looking at securing dates later in the year for 2017 and beyond.
The Action Shooting Committee has also approved changes to the 2016 Bianchi Cup format. Everyone will shoot the standard four event/1920 course of fire and all awards will be locked in. However, to compete for the “Cup” the top finishers in Open, Production, Metallic, Women, Juniors, and Seniors/Grand Seniors will fire an additional 1920 in one day. Their two scores will be added together to determine their final finish in the Grand Aggregate of 3840 possible points. An exciting finish will be available with the top two competitors shooting simultaneously on the upper mover to determine the overall champion.