August 21st, 2008

World Muzzle-Loading Championships in Australia

Beijing isn’t the only location where shooters from many nations are competing this month. The United States Int’l Muzzle-Loading Team turned lead bullets and shot into gold, silver and bronze medals at the 23rd World Muzzle Loading Championships, held August 11-16 in Adelaide, Australia. 205 competitors, representing 17 nations, vied for honors with a variety of muzzle-loading arms, ranging from matchlock muskets to sophisticated percussion target rifles and pistols. Both original antiques and modern replica guns are used, competing in different divisions.

Muzzle-loading championships

Top honors were taken by Dr. Michael Arnette, whose score of 93 in the original division of the “Lamarmora” 50-meter offhand percussion rifle-musket event not only won the gold, but set a new world record in the process. Arnette took the same gun to the 100-meter line for the “Minie” prone match, shooting well enough to help a team of Arnette, Allan Godshalk, Gary Crawford, Frank Kapper, and Tony Ulisse take 3rd place in the “Grand Prix de Versailles”, an aggregate for military longarms that is often considered the overall world team championship. An equally strong performance was turned in by Harry Sparks, who took both gold and bronze in individual shotgun events.

CLICK HERE for Photo Gallery from Adelaide

The World Muzzle Loading Championships are held biennially, with Pacific and European Zone Championships in the off years. The 24th World Championships will be held in Portugal in August 2010. CLICK HERE for more info on precision long-range muzzle-loader shooting.

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