There is a new player in the factory-loaded competition ammunition market—U.K.-based Eley has introduced several new offerings designed for competitive shooting. The company is already well-known for its excellent rimfire ammunition that has been used to win everything from Olympic medals to your local steel match.
Eley entered the center-fire market two years ago, starting with a .38 Super Comp major loaded round that was reviewed in 2020 with an Infinity Open gun, as well as a 9 mm major load that was also tested that year.
The Eley team had these new offerings on hand at the USPSA Back to Back Nationals and sent me 250 rounds of each of the new 9 mm 115-, 124- and 147-grain ammunition. Factory loaded competition ammunition isn’t something new. Several companies have recognized that action shooters are high-volume users and that many competitors no longer have the time or desire to pull the handle on reloaders to manufacture our ammunition. When more companies were entering this market space, USPSA updated its Certified Match Ammunition Program in 2018 that would allow many companies to be a part of it.
The Certified Match Ammunition Program information is online at USPSA.org and is covered in the rulebook appendixes C2 and C3. Essentially, an ammunition company can submit to be a part of the program after meeting the criteria and a test sample passes C2 and C3 review and chronograph results. Once the ammunition is on the list, competitors who wish to use the ammunition can by following the C2, C3 specifics, and will be sure to meet their declared power factor. It is great match “insurance” to have. Plus, sourcing components, finding the time to reload and testing the results can definitely be nerve-wracking for many of us.
Eley has paid attention to what is going on in this market space and jumped into the center-fire market. Killough Shooting Sports, established in 2008 by Dan Killough and now a wholly owned subsidiary of Eley Inc., is making the ammunition in the United States. Based in Winters, Texas, the Killough team is producing several offerings that are available for purchase online.
The new Eley 9 mm 115-, 124- and 147-grain ammunition was tested in several different firearms for accuracy, function and over the chronograph. I also used the Eley ammunition as part of the shooting review for the new Beretta 92X Performance Defensive handgun. I made two separate trips to the range with a bag full of guns and the ammo to do the testing. First, I went to the indoor range for accuracy and function testing, shooting all three bullet weights through the guns that I brought that day: the Ruger Custom Shop 1911 Doug Koenig, the STI Trojan 1911, the Beretta 92X Performance Defensive and the JP GMR-15.
The ammunition functioned flawlessly, with all shots taken at 15 yards either offhand or using the CED range bag as a rest. I was shooting three to five groups with each load through the various handguns and PCC that day at the indoor range. The clean-burning propellant left little noticeable smoke shooting indoors on this trip.
I followed this up with a trip to an outdoor range to chronograph the three loads through different handguns. (See the accompanying table below.) I was using an older Competition Electronics ProChrono Digital model that served me well, until I was a little hurried since it was getting dark and didn’t consider the offset with the PCC. I am now in the market for a new chrono, which is the reason there are no results from the chrono for the PCC.
If you are like me and don’t enjoy reloading ammunition, or have a hard time finding the time to load, factory loaded competition ammunition is a great option and the new Eley ammunition definitely is something to check out. All of the new 9 mm ammunition is loaded to offer consistency and predictability in both feel and performance. The ammunition is accurate using jacketed full metal round-nose bullets loaded to an overall length of 1.15 inches using clean-burning propellants. There are no compromises in safety, quality or performance with the Eley ammunition.
Eley 9 mm Competition Ammunition Chrono Results
Currently available from the Killough Shooting Sports website are these three 9 mm loads, priced at $20 per 50-round box. In addition, there are two PCC competition loads that are now available—115-grain and 124-grain—as well as the .38 Super Comp 124-grain ammunition.
Article from the January/February 2022 issue of USPSA’s magazine.