April 21st, 2021

CMP Warns Against High-Pressure Loads in Garands and 1903s

CMP .30-06 ammo ammunition safety warning M1 Garand m1903 1903a3 50000 CUP high pressure

The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has issued an ammunition safety advisory to all users of M1 Garands, M1903s, and M1903A3 rifles. Ammunition that is loaded beyond 50,000 Copper Units of Pressure (CUP) and using bullets weighing more than 172 grains should be limited to modern rifles, and NOT USED in old military rifles aged 70+ years.

CMP .30-06 ammo ammunition safety warning M1 Garand m1903 1903a3 50000 CUP high pressure

After this warning was issued by the CMP, the California Rifle and Pistol Association (CRPA) provided further safety recommendations for owners or older firearms:

CRPA Ammunition and Older Firearms Guidelines
Many of us have either purchased or inherited firearms in excess of 25 years of age. The issue … noted as an example by the Civilian Marksmanship Program in regards to certain ammunition leads as they apply to the M1 Garand is not isolated to that particular firearm. The CRPA… has seen similar issues exposed with other [older] firearms when using modern loads. We strongly advise you to check with the manufacturer for recommended load limitations before purchasing modern ammunition for an older firearm.

CRPA also recommends these safety procedures:

Have a gunsmith check your older firearm for safety prior to using it.

Take a reloading class to help develop a safe load for your older firearm.

Inspect older ammunition for defects such as a green patina or rust build up on the cases or crystallization on the projectiles. If defects are observed, the CRPA suggests disassembling the ammo into components for proper recycling and disposal.

Storage of Ammo for Older Rifles
The CRPA also cautioned that you should be cautious about older ammo that may be decades old, including old milsurp ammunition. The CRPA advises:

1. Store ammunition in a cool, dry, location where little temperature fluctuation occurs.
2. If storing ammunition in an air/watertight ammo can, utilize water absorbent silica packs and place packs in the can with the ammunition.
3. Conduct periodic checks every 12-24 months and replace the silica packs as needed.

CRPA Notification provided by EdLongrange

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April 19th, 2021

Air Rifle Marksmanship Programs for Young Americans

air rifle cmp youth training programs jrotc Civilian marksmanship

To thrive, the shooting sports need more young competitors. Let’s face it, for some disciplines the average age of competitors is getting older. To reverse this trend, we need to get young people involved at an early age. One of the best ways to train young marksmen is with air rifles. Air-powered rifles fire low-cost ammo, training can be done indoors, and air rifle programs have a great safety record.

Air rifle shooting is practiced as a sport in more than 150 countries. Target shooting helps young people develop fine motor control, coordination, and mental discipline. In the USA air rifle shooting is a popular high school and youth club sport as well as an NCAA Championship sport.

air rifle cmp youth training programs jrotc Civilian marksmanship

The largest and fastest-growing segment of junior shooting today uses a class of target air rifles called “sporter air rifles”. Sporter air rifles are characterized by their light weight (5-7 lbs.), low cost (typically $180 to $600), basic target features (adjustable sights, adjustable length stocks, adjustable sling attachments), and suitable accuracy (good sporter rifles should be capable of consistently shooting tens on standard competition targets).

air rifle cmp youth training programs jrotc Civilian marksmanship

Resources for Youth Air Rifle Programs
If you would like to start an air rifle program for your school, club, or organization, the Civilian Marksmanship Program is a good place to start. The CMP provides a variety of helpful resources, including a free Air Rifle Marksmanship For Youth Brochure (shown below):

air rifle cmp yout training programs jrotc Civilian marksmanship

Precision Air Rifles for NCAA, World Cup, and Olympic Competition

Olympic Air Rifles

Olympic Air RiflesWhile sporter air rifles are most commonly used in youth programs, elite young competitors may “graduate” to expensive precision rifles used in top-level championship programs. Air rifle shooting is an Olympic sport, with separate air rifle events for men and women. Air rifle target shooting participants fire 4.5 mm (.177 cal.) air rifles in three different shooting positions at targets 10 meters away. These precision air rifles are also used in top-level NCAA and World Cup competitions.

The National 3-Position Air Rifle Council provides coaches, instructors, parents and youth with the rules, instructions and information for Junior 3-position competition.

Air Rifle Shooting Is Very Safe
Air rifle marksmanship is one of the safest of all youth sports. The injury rate for air rifle shooting is 0.0017 per a/e (athlete exposure) per year. This ranks far below injury rates for all other youth sports for which statistics are kept. The CMP currently enrolls over 2,000 high school rifle teams and over 1,000 junior rifle clubs. More than 250,000 young people participate in these programs. Every year more than 1,500 junior air rifle competitions are conducted in the USA. In the last 10 years, these organizations and competitions reported only six minor injuries resulting from the improper handling of air rifles.

Air Rifle Ranges Can Be Created Indoors at Relatively Low Cost
Air rifle ranges are easy to build and low in cost. Air rifles used for target shooting fire small pellets at velocities of 400-600 FPS that generate just 5 ft-lbs of energy. This means a target backstop made of 1/8” sheet steel or even a box filled with several layers of cardboard or newspaper can easily capture air rifle pellets. A room that is at least 40 feet long and 20 feet or more wide, covered with ordinary wallboard or wood with no exposed windows, can serve as a range. The additional protective measures required for firearms ranges are not required for air rifle ranges.

Olympic Air Rifles

WEB RESOURCES: To learn more about air rifle marksmanship, visit these web sites:

Civilian Marksmanship Program | National Three-Position Air Rifle Council | USA Shooting

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April 14th, 2021

Talladega 600 Southern Classic on Shooting USA TV Today

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

After being postponed due to storm damage from Hurricane Zeta, the CMP’s 2020 Talladega 600 event was rescheduled to January 2021. It was completed successfully in Alabama, drawing scores of competitors. It was great to see marksmanship competition resume at the famed Talladega Marksmanship Park.

Today, April 14, 2021 Shooting USA TV features the Talladega 600 held this past January. Shooting USA notes: “Competition is back, as America gets back to normal again. For the Civilian Marksmanship Program, the opening event this year was the Talladega 600 that brought competitors from across the country with their rifles and pistols, all glad to be back shooting … at the Talladega Marksmanship Park, the home range of the CMP[.]”

Shooting USA noted that this event was a welcome return to normalcy: “After a year of cancelled competition, the Talladega 600 offered days of shooting in matches for most everything you might own, from rimfire to High Power. That had shooters from across the country emptying their gun-safes, and driving down to Alabama to shoot.”

SHOOTING USA TV Air Times
View Shooting USA on the Outdoor Channel: Wednesdays 9:00 PM (Eastern and Pacific); 8:00 PM Central.
NOTE: If you miss the 4/14/2021 broadcast, you can still view the show on Vimeo for a small 99-cent fee, or just $1.99 per month unlimited. LINK HERE: Shooting USA on Vimeo.

About the Talladega 600 — Southern Classic

The Talladega 600, “A Southern Classic”, is held annually. Though typically fired in November, the 2020 Talladega 600 was rescheduled to January 2021, due to storm damage from Hurricane Zeta. This year, matches included Garand, Springfield, M1A, Carbine and Vintage/Modern rifle events, and versions of prestigious National Trophy Rifle Matches. There was also an Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) match, 4-Man Team match, and .22 Rimfire Sporter match.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 November match

NEW Garand Benchrest and Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Matches
Two new types of matches were conducted at January’s Talladega 600: a Benchrest Garand Match and a Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Match. Competitors at these events can use sandbags to support their rifles. The Benchrest Garand match was very popular, and is likely to become a regular event.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

Pistol Matches Were Popular
The Talladega 600 included .22 Rimfire EIC and Service Pistol EIC matches, along with As-Issued 1911 and Military & Police matches.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

CMP Talledega D-Day Garand Match
State-of-the-art Kongsberg target systems are used at the CMP’s Talladega Marksmanship Park.

About Talladega Marksmanship Park
The 500-acre CMP Talladega Marksmanship Park is one of the most advanced outdoor shooting facilities in the Western Hemisphere. The facility includes a 600-yard rifle range, a 100-yard multi-purpose range, and a 50-yard pistol range, equipped with Kongsberg electronic targets and scoring monitors. Since the 54 targets at each line register hits and calculate the scores instantly, no pit duty is required at Talladega. The park regularly hosts rifle, pistol and shotgun events throughout the year.

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March 22nd, 2021

Talladega Spring Classic in Alabama Was a Success

Talladega Spring Classic 2021

Over the past six days the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) conducted a major spring shooting event — the Talladega Spring Classic held at the Talladega Marksmanship Park in Alabama. This year’s event was a success, with participants enjoying a wide range of pistol and rifle competitions, plus training courses.

Talladega Spring Classic 2021

Talladega Spring Classic 2021TALLADEGA SPRING CLASSIC 2021
Spring has sprung! From March 16 through 21, the CMP has hosted a major series of rifle and pistol matches at the CMP Talladega Marksmanship Park in Alabama. The March 2021 Spring Classic event at Talladega included a mix of both new and traditional rifle matches, along with pistol competitions, and a variety of training courses.

On the rifle firing lines were Service Rifles, Vintage Military Rifles, and Rimfire Sporter Rifles. And there were even M1 Garands being shot from the bench. In the pistol areas, both rimfire and centerfire matches were held.

Talladega Spring Classic 2021

Spring Classic Featured New Benchrest Garand Match
The Talladega Spring Classic featured traditional matches plus some notable new events. Debuting this year was a Benchrest Garand Match. In addition there was a new Mid-Range 3×600 Rifle Match, and new Pistol 2700 Match. Along with the new events, the Spring Classic including CMP staple events including: Rimfire Sporter Rifle Match, .22 Rimfire Pistol EIC, Service Pistol EIC, and GSMM (Garand/Springfield/Vintage and Modern Military) Rifle matches.

Talladega Spring Classic

There were also multiple training sessions including: Long Range Rifle Clinic, Team CMP 600-Yard Clinic, Rifle Marksmanship 101 Course/M16 Match, and Pistol Marksmanship 101 Course/M9 Match. These classes allow participants the opportunity to learn marksmanship from skilled, certified instructors.

Talladega Spring Classic 2021

Talladega Spring Classic 2021

CMP Western Games Cancelled 2021 Phoenix Arizona Ben Avery Shooting Facility

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March 10th, 2021

2021 National Matches Will Be Held at Camp Perry this Summer

Camp Perry National Matches 2021

Here’s great news for rifle and pistol competitors — the National Matches will return to Camp Perry, Ohio in 2021. The National Rifle and Pistol Matches have been part of Camp Perry tradition since 1907. After being cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Matches will be held again, but with some important changes:

— No First Shot Ceremony
— Squadding Reduced to Half Maximum Capacity
— Limiting Firing Points
— Social Distancing and Mask Wearing
— No Public Awards Ceremonies

REGISTER for National Matches Starting April 1, 2021

Registration for the 2021 National Matches opens April 1, 2021. Learn more about the event and get updates on the CMP.org Website.

Camp Perry National Matches 2021

Camp Perry National Matches 2021Housing and Lodging — In the summer of 2021, Camp Perry on-base housing and RV spaces WILL be available. Visit the Camp Perry Lodging Conference Center website for more details and reservation links. This offers very affordable lodging and/or camping options. A barracks bed starts at $16.10/night. Reserve a 4-person hut for $58.65 per night.

Small Arms Firing Schools — We’re informed that the Small Arms Firing Schools (SAFS) are still on the schedule for 2021, with a reduced number of spots available. The CMP suggests you sign up early if you wish to participate.

Camp Perry 2021 National Matches

Key Changes to Camp Perry National Matches for 2021

First Shot Ceremony: Due to the complexity of dealing with COVID concerns, the First Shot Ceremony, which typically serves as the formal opening event of the National Matches, will NOT be held this year.

Squadding: Squadding/participation for all events will be restricted to half maximum capacity. Competitors will be placed at every other firing point for distancing purposes. For those events squadded on the line, social distancing and masks will be required while squadding is taking place.

Awards Ceremonies: In order to prevent crowds, the traditional awards ceremonies will NOT be held in 2021. That also applies to competitor receptions held prior to the awards.

NM Welcome Center (In-Processing): Several check-in desks, appropriately spaced, will be available for arriving guests. A limited number of individuals will be permitted into the building at a time and will be required to be seated in chairs, six-feet apart.

Camp Perry National Matches 2021

Running the National Matches with Safe Protocols
The CMP is partnering with the Ohio National Guard to remain up-to-date on CDC guidelines, to provide an environment that is as safe as possible for guests of Camp Perry, while also staying true to the events and customs that have made the National Matches a celebrated destination for marksmanship enthusiasts for over a century. With the evolving regulations of COVID-19, CMP staff members are hard at work updating the National Matches to fit the modern era. Procedures for the 2021 National Matches include revisions to safety regulations (such as social distancing and mask wearing), limiting firing points, squadding protocols, in-processing, awards and other details.

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio
CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

The CMP would like to thank all individuals for their cooperation as we navigate the most efficient ways of hosting our events and ensuring the safety of our staff and supporters. We’re looking forward to seeing everyone back on the shores of Lake Erie for more marksmanship memories and fun in 2021!

The Caveat — Cancellations Might Occur if Health Guidelines Change
The CMP has posted: “Although it is CMP’s hope to hold our upcoming events, please keep in mind that we may have to cancel due to COVID-19 issues. For those events that we do conduct, we will follow the appropriate state’s guidelines and recommendations. We continue to monitor the venue states’ guidelines and adjust our procedures based on those guidelines and common sense.

Directions to Camp Perry:

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March 5th, 2021

New Camp Perry Rifle Matches Scheduled for 2021

Camp Perry Petrarca Viale Range electronic targets

Good News — Camp Perry is BACK for 2021!

There WILL be shooting matches at Camp Perry in 2021, with safety protocols in effect to prevent COVID transmission. The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) will host a variety of Garand, Springfield, Vintage and Modern Military (GSMM) rifle matches during the 2021 season at the historic Camp Perry National Guard Training Facility in Ohio. There will be matches at both the Petrarca Covered range and the Viale outdoor range. Registration for all matches is now open. Competitors of all skill levels are welcome to attend these recreational events. Knowledgeable CMP staff members will be on hand at all events. Space will be limited, so sign up soon.

Camp Perry Petrarca Garand modern military spring match

Garand, Springfield, Vintage and Modern Military at Petrarca Range
A series of GSMM matches will be held at Camp Perry’s Petrarca Range using Camp Perry’s advanced electronic target system. The use of the KTS (Kongsberg Target System) targets means faster competition time (with no need for pit duty) and extra convenience for competitors who can rely on the instant and accurate shot monitors, located beside each firing point. Dates for the 2021 GSMM events at Petrarca Range currently include: May 22, June 26, and September 25.

Camp Perry Petrarca electronic targets

CLICK HERE for more information about the Petrarca Range and its electronic target system.

High Power Matches at Viale Range
In addition to the Petrarca matches, a set of High Power rifle 800 Aggregate and Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) events will be held on Camp Perry’s outdoor Viale Range, June 26-27, 2021. The CMP explains: “The matches are ideal for those in the quest for a Distinguished Rifleman Badge as well as those with a love for modern military rifle shooting.” The Viale matches will utilize CMP’s High Power electronic targets.

Camp Perry Petrarca Viale Range electronic targets

Availability of Petrarca Range for Public Shooting Practice
Along with organized competitions, Camp Perry’s Petrarca Range is open for public shooting each Monday, with advanced reservations. Opening day for Petrarca Range’s Open Public slots begin March 15, 2021. Every Monday, by appointment only, guests may use Petrarca during the hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., March through May and September through November. During the summer months (June through August), Petrarca is open from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.

Please note: During the National Matches scheduled July 12 – August 14, Petrarca Range will be open throughout the week but only after firing is complete on Rodriguez Range. Guests to Petrarca must adhere to current CDC guidelines, including masks and social distancing.

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February 3rd, 2021

High Power Rifle Competition on Shooting USA Today

Shooting Usa service high power cmp rifles

This week’s Shooting USA TV episode features CMP High Power competition. High Power Rifle, sometimes called XTC from “Across the Course”, is a shooting sport using centerfire (aka “fullbore”) target rifles. Major High Power matches are run by the CMP and NRA, as well as state rifle groups. The sport is divided into classes by equipment, and popular classifications include Service Rifle, and Open Class. This episode of Shooting USA focuses on High Power competition at the Talladega Marksmanship Park in Alabama.

This episode of Shooting USA airs Wednesday, February 3, 2021, 9:00 PM Eastern and Pacific, 8:00 PM Central on the Outdoor Channel. Shooting USA is also available On Demand via Vimeo.com.

This week Shooting USA TV features CMP High Power competition from the Talladega Marksmanship facility in Alabama. High Power is a challenging discipline that requires high accuracy in the rifle and great marksmanship skills in three positions — standing, sitting/kneeling, and prone. The CMP competition involves slow- and rapid-fire at 200, 300, and 600 yards in all three positions. There are separate Service Rifle and Open divisions.

Service Rifle High Power

Young 15-year-old Tyler Fisher from Arizona shot superbly at the 2020 CMP Western Games Match in Phoenix (Ben Avery). His impressive marksmanship secured second place overall (and High Junior) at the Western Games EIC Match shooting Service Rifle, a subclass of High Power.

High Power highpower cmp shooting use rifle

Camp Perry AR15 Tubegun High Power Space Gun Tubb 2000 Rifle Standing
High Power Open division Tubb 2000 with a shortened handguard, and custom hand support bracket forward of mag well.

HIGHPOWER CLINICS
The CMP conducts a number of High Power clinics each year. The CMP offers a pair of High Power clinics in conjunction with the U.S. Marine Corps Rifle Team and members of the Remington-Bushmaster rifle team. There is a Junior Clinic as well as an advanced High Power clinic. Both focus on service rifle disciplines.

USAMU PRO TIP: Bullseye Pistol Competition

In addition to the High Power rifle feature, this week’s Shooting USA episode has a good USAMU Pro Tips segment about bullseye pistols. Staff Sergeant Ryan Franks with the USAMU Service Pistol Team shows the fundamentals of bullseye shooting, the classic pistol competition shot from a one-handed standing position. In this Pro Tip, SSG Franks focuses on proper stance and grip.

Shooting usa usamu bullseye pistol competition grip stance handgun


Shooting USA Garand Presidents 100
Shooting USA will air Wednesday, February 3, 2020, at 9:00 PM Eastern and Pacific (8:00 PM Central) on the Outdoor Channel. Shooting USA is also available On Demand via Vimeo.com. Watch a single episode for $0.99, or get a full-month subscription for $3.99 and watch as many shows as you like with limited commercial interruptions.

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January 25th, 2021

Vintage Military Rifle Shooting — New Book by Gary Anderson

Gary Anderson CMP Director shooting vintage military rifle training book

CMP Guide to Target Shooting with Vintage Military Rifles
The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has released VMR: Target Shooting With Vintage Military Rifles, a new book by Gary Anderson, Director of Civilian Marksmanship Emeritus. Gary himself was a world-class marksman who earned two Olympic Gold medals in rifle shooting.

The CMP says this 284-page illustrated book is “likely the most comprehensive manuscript ever written about the methods of training and competing with popular American and foreign vintage military rifles.” Fans of vintage military rifles will likely find this 18-chapter book “to be the most complete coverage of the topic, from a competitor’s and historian’s point of view”, said Christie Sewell, CMP Programs Chief.

Anderson definitely has the credentials — he won Olympic Gold Medals in Tokyo and Mexico City in the 1960s. Gary also set multiple U.S. and international records. The originator of the CMP’s competitive vintage rifle program, Anderson set out to present a detailed manual covering all aspects of shooting vintage military rifles. The book covers 1903 Springfield, U.S. Krag, 1917 U.S. Enfield, M1 Garand, M1 Carbine and many more, including rifles from “across the pond.”

Target Shooting With Vintage Military Rifles Topics:

Origins and Fundamentals of Marksmanship
Operation, Cleaning, Loading & Unloading
Sight Adjustment, Zeroing & Fine Tuning
Highpower Rifle Match Procedures
Firing Rifles in Competition
Prone, Sitting and Standing Position Building
Using a Scorebook/Databook
Strategies for Improvement
Critical Value of the Sling
Rifle and Range Safety

Gary Anderson CMP Director shooting vintage military rifle training book

Purchase Online at CMP E-Store
This new Gary Anderson book is sold through the CMP E-Store for $29.95. You can also print out and submit the CMP Publications order form (order item NLU # 792, $29.95). The CMP stores in Alabama and Ohio will also carry the new Gary Anderson book.

Gary Anderson CMP Director shooting vintage military rifle training book

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January 3rd, 2021

Sunday GunDay: The M1 Garand That Came for Christmas

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program M1 Garand Christmas Rifle
We think everyone should have a Garand in their gun collection…

In our AccurateShooter Forum, you’ll find a popular thread: “Anybody Get Gun Stuff for Christmas?”. One notable post featured a very special Christmas-week arrival — an M1 Garand barreled action. A Forum member received this CMP-sourced barreled action from a friend and then transformed it with a stunning wood stock and other components. We’d say this is a very successful and handsome holiday project. And get this — the skilled owner, who works as a volunteer armorer, assembled his new M1 Garand in record time: “Well, it took three weeks in-transit for my [Christmas] gift to myself to arrive, but I picked her up at 1400 hours yesterday. Had her built into a complete rifle by 1530….”

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program M1 Garand Christmas Rifle

CMP Civilian Marksmanship Program M1 Garand Christmas Rifle

If you would like to put together a handsome M1 Garand like the Christmas rifle shown above, you’ll need to start with a barreled action. You can order these, as well as complete M1 Garand rifles, from the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP). Below we explain how to order an M1 Garand from the CMP, and how to select the right grade for your needs and budget.

If you have questions about assembling a Garand, contact us and we will put you in touch with the builder of the Christmas M1 Garand rifle. He is a CMP-trained armorer who works to maintain ceremonial rifles for VFW, American Legion, and Disabled Veterans Posts throughout Kentucky.

Ordering an M1 Garand from the CMP — Qualifications

Garand Turkish Turkey Philippines

How to Order an M1 Garand from the CMP
To purchase an M1 Garand through the CMP, you must be an adult U.S. Citizen, and a member of an affiliated organization who has participated in a “Marksmanship Activity”. This basically means you need to join a gun club and participate in a clinic or match. Proof of club membership and citizenship is mandatory for all ages. However, the marksmanship requirement is waived for those over 60 years of age. M1 Garands must be ordered by mail or through official CMP Auctions.

CLICK HERE for Garand Ordering Information | CLICK HERE for Eligibility Requirements

CLICK HERE for Garand Grading Information

Here are two videos that explain the procedure for ordering an M1 Garand from the CMP. Along with mail-order sales, the CMP has two stores where M1 Garands can be ordered over the counter and then transferred via your FFL (in compliance with state law). The three CMP stores are located in Anniston, Alabama, Talladega, Alabama, and Port Clinton (Camp Perry), Ohio.

Ordering a Barrel — If you already have an M1 Garand, but the barrel has seen better days, you can order a pre-chambered Criterion barrel in .30-06 Springfield. Criterion tell us: “This is a direct replacement barrel for the M1 Garand rifle, manufactured to mil-spec print #6535448. It has the original G.I. contour and Parkerized finish. Receiver threads are timed, all milling cuts are made, and all M1 Garand barrels are hand-lapped.” NOTE: Each barrel is .010 short-chambered and should be properly headspaced by a qualified gunsmith. These Criterion .30-06 replacement barrels, priced at $259.95, are legal for use in Service Rifle and John C. Garand matches.

m1 Garand Rifle Barrels CMP Criterion

If you want to re-chamber your M1 Garand to .308 Winchester, the CMP eStore sells brand new Criterion-made barrels in .308 Win for $199.95. These authentic-profile barrels are chambered and headspaced within .010″ of finished size, with final fitting to be done by a competent gunsmith. The barrels are also externally Parkerized to match your vintage M1 Garand.

New Criterion M1 Garand (.308 Win) RIFLE Barrel, 4140 Chrome Moly Steel
Item: 065CRI/308 | Price $199.95

How to Maintain the M1 Garand

Once you have an M1 Garand in your collection, you’ll want to keep it in tip-top condition so it works flawlessly for vintage military matches and fun shoooting. Below we’ve linked two good SSUSA articles on M1 Garand maintenance. Following that you’ll find two excellent videos covering M1 Garand Disassembly, Cleaning, and Lubrication. Finally there are links to recommended print manuals for the M1 Garand.

M1 Service and Maintenance
Shooting Sports USA (SSUSA) published an excellent article on Service and Maintenance of M1 Garand Rifles. This offers some smart tricks, such as using smoke from burning masking tape to darken the front sight post. There is also an older SSUSA article that covers basic cleaning and servicing and also explains how to upgrade the performance of your Garands. READ Article HERE.

M1 Garand maintenance procedures

M1 Garand Disassembly, Cleaning, and Lubrication

Recommended M1 Garand Service Manuals

Among the many M1 Garand manuals available, we recommend the CMP’s U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1: ‘Read This First’ Manual. This booklet covers take-down, reassembly, cleaning, lubrication, and operation. The manual comes with CMP rifles or can be purchased for $3.25 from the CMP eStore. The author of Garand Tips & Tricks says: “It’s one of the best firearms manuals I’ve seen and I highly recommend it.” The CMP also offers many other M1 Garand print resources including:

M1 Garand Owner’s Guide (125 pages, Scott Duff)
M1 Garand Complete Assembly Guide (155 pages, Walt Kuleck & Scott McKee)
Complete Guide to M1 Garand and M1 Carbine (296 pages, Bruce Canfield)

M1 Garand match instruction video War Department

Jim thompson m1 garand essential practical historical guide book

Do you own an M1 Garand, or have you always wanted to acquire one of these legendary semi-auto battle rifles? Well then here is a valuable new resource: The Essential M1 Garand: A Practical and Historical Guide for Shooters and Collectors. This new book by Jim Thompson covers the history of the M1 Garand, and offers practical advice for Garand owners, along with complete parts lists. The book includes annotated military and National Match manuals, a troubleshooting chart, and a section on hand-loading for the Garand. The final Section addresses common questions about the rifle and offers detailed instructions for maintaining this wartime classic. First published in February, 2020, The Essential M1 Garand is available in Print Paperback and Kindle eBook versions. View Table of Contents.

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December 21st, 2020

Maybe Santa Will Bring an M1 Garand This Year…

CMP marksmanship program M1 Garand store order rifle vintage .30-06

If you ordered from the CMP this month, perhaps an M1 Garand may arrive as a Christmas gift this week. We think every serious collector should, as some point, have one of these historic rifles in their collection. The CMP has, in the past couple of years, received over 90,000 Garands from overseas arsenals, so there are plenty to be had currently. This article explains how to order an M1 Garand from the CMP, and how to select the right grade for your needs and budget.

Garand Turkish Turkey Philippines

CLICK HERE for Garand Ordering Information | CLICK HERE for Garand Grading Information

How to Order an M1 Garand from the CMP
To purchase an M1 Garand through the CMP, you must be an adult U.S. Citizen, and a member of an affiliated organization who has participated in a “Marksmanship Activity”. This basically means you need to join a gun club and participate in a clinic or match. Proof of club membership and citizenship is mandatory for all ages. However, the marksmanship requirement is waived for those over 60 years of age. Garands must be ordered by mail or through official CMP Auctions. CLICK HERE to Start Order.

Here are two videos that explain the procedure for ordering an M1 Garand from the CMP. Along with mail-order sales, the CMP has two stores were M1 Garands can be ordered over the counter and then transferred via your FFL (in compliance with state law). The three CMP stores are located in Anniston, Alabama, Talladega, Alabama, and Port Clinton (Camp Perry), Ohio.

CMP marksmanship program M1 Garand store order rifle vintage .30-06

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December 15th, 2020

16-Year-Old Katrina “Three-Peats” at Big CMP Air Rifle Event

Teen three peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

Report by Ashley Brugnone, CMP Staff Writer
After earning wins in 2018 and 2019, Katrina Demerle, 16, returned to Camp Perry in 2020 to claim her third overall win in the precision class during the CMP’s Gary Anderson Invitational (GAI) air rifle event. This teen’s GAI win was a major triumph — not only did she achieve a notable “Three-Peat”, but she set a National Record in the process.

Katrina earned her third straight GAI title with a record-breaking score in the 2020 GAI match. Not only did Katrina achieve an unprecedented three-peat during the match, she also fired a new National Record Precision Individual 3×20 plus Final score of 701.4 — only dropping three points in her qualifying round.

Katrina Wins GAI with Brand New Pardini Air Rifle
Katrina’s performance was notable under any circumstance but was especially remarkable during the GAI match, as this was only her second time firing her Pardini GPR1 in competition: “I’ve only had it for a few weeks. With this new gun, my scores have come up a little bit and have been repeatable.”

Teen three peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner
CLICK HERE for large Pardini GPR1 photo.

Katrina is lucky enough to have a range set up right at her house, allowing her to keep up with regular practice, despite the pandemic and its effects. Committed to maintaining her performance level, she has also been firing in any matches she can find — competing nearly every weekend since September.

She traveled to the GAI with her father, Butch, who excitedly watched as his daughter took each shot toward her third win. “I think I’m more nervous than she is,” he said as Katrina prepared for her Finals.

With each shot and each “10” added upon her score, Butch’s anxiousness grew, knowing very well Katrina could be making history. He held his breath as she fired her last pellet downrange – a 10.5 and her ninth “X” out of 10 total shots. A quick glance from the firing line back at her dad, a smile and a sigh of relief were shared between the two as her goals were realized through her extraordinary composure. “I told her I wanted her to beat 700 – and she did,” he said, proudly.

Teen three peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

Gary Anderson Invitational Match
The annual GAI match is conducted by the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) at its two 80-point electronic air gun ranges: the Gary Anderson CMP Competition Center at Camp Perry, Ohio, and the CMP South Competition Center in Anniston, Alabama. The junior 3×20 sporter and precision air rifle event allows competitors at both locations to compete against one another, even while miles apart, as their scores are compared to determine overall winners.

270 junior athletes competed in the 2020 event, firing record shots at prone, standing, and kneeling positions. A 10-shot Final for the top eight competitors usually follows, but the 2020 GAI’s unconventional schedule led all competitors to an additional 10 shots to act as a Finals score. Instead of one weekend, the GAI was extended weeks out to allow social distancing within the facilities.

Teen three peat GAI Gary Anderson Invitational air rifle match Katrina winnner

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December 8th, 2020

Coaching Young Rifle Shooters — Gary Anderson Book

Gary Anderson Coaching Juniors Training Manual CMP

Young shooters are the future of our sport. We need to encourage young people to try shooting and develop an interest in marksmanship at a young age. Thankfully one of America’s legendary shooters, DCM Emeritus Gary Anderson, has created a great training resource, published by the CMP.

Gary Anderson’s book, Coaching Young Rifle Shooters, fills an important need. Anderson, one of the most successful American marksmen in history, has created a fully-illustrated guide to help parents and coaches train young shooters. This 187-page, full-color book is the most comprehensive instructional guide of its kind currently in print. In his training guidebook, Gary provides coaches with the tools needed to develop young shooters and improve their skills. In his 11 years of international competition, Gary won two Olympic gold medals, seven World Championships, and 16 national titles.

Gary Anderson Coaching Book

Coaching Young Rifle Shooters
By Gary Anderson

Instructional and teaching guide for coaches and parents who work with beginning and intermediate junior rifle shooters.

187 pages, full color.
Fully Illustrated.
$19.95 plus S&H

CMP Store
Item NLU 758

Order through the CMP E-Store.

About Gary Anderson
DCM CMP Gary AndersonGary Anderson served as the Director of the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) from 1999-2009, and is now DCM Emeritus. At the 1962 World Shooting Championships in Egypt, Anderson won four individual titles and set three new world records. At the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, Gary won the 300m free-rifle Gold Medal, setting a new world record in the process. At the 1966 World Shooting Championships in Germany, Anderson won three additional world titles. At the 1968 Olympics, Gary won a second gold medal in the 300m free-rifle event.

Gary retired from active international competition after the 1969 World Championships in Spain, where he set a 50m, three-position world record. After his “retirement” from international competition, Gary competed in the National High Power Championships, winning the President’s National Trophy in 1973, 1975 and 1976. Over his competitive career, Anderson won two Olympic Gold Medals, seven World Championships, and sixteen National Championships. No American has ever won more major shooting titles.

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November 22nd, 2020

CMP Announces 2021 Program for Sale of Model 1911 Pistols

CMP 1911 Pistol lottery Service Grade Field Rack application procedure

Military pistol collectors take note — you will soon be able to order classic military-issue Model 1911 pistol from the CMP. The Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) will begin accepting orders to purchase CMP 1911 Type Pistols at the beginning of the new year. Orders will be accepted from January 4 to March 4, 2021. NOTE: All 1911 requests must be made through the mail. No 1911s will be available in CMP stores, and no in-store orders will be accepted. For CMP 1911 Pistol Order Forms and additional INFO CLICK HERE.

The CMP’s Historic Model 1911 Handguns
In 2018, the National Defense Authorization Act granted the first transfer of 1911s to the CMP for sale and distribution. Arguably one of the most iconic handguns ever produced, the M1911 served as the standard issue handgun for the U.S. Armed Forces from 1911 to 1985. The single-action, semi-automatic pistol uses .45 ACP rounds and is comprised of a comfortable, basic design.

New orders for CMP 1911s will not be accepted before January 4, 2021, or after March 4, 2021. Any packets received or postmarked outside of those dates will be discarded. Only one CMP 1911 order form per customer per envelope may be submitted. Those who have already purchased a CMP 1911 through the CMP RGN system or the Auction site will NOT be eligible to purchase a second 1911 at this time.

CMP 1911 Pistol lottery Service Grade Field Rack application procedure

The Model 1911 Pistol — An American Classic
Designed by J.M. Browning, the M1911 is a single-action, semi-automatic, magazine-fed, recoil-operated pistol chambered for the .45 ACP cartridge. It served as the standard-issue sidearm for the United States Armed Forces from 1911 to 1986. It was widely used in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.

CMP 1911 Pistol lottery Service Grade Field Rack application procedure

CMP 1911 Pistol Grades and Prices

Each pistol is inspected and test fired by the CMP before it is shipped. Prices for the 1911s are marked at fair market value, in accordance with CMP’s enabling legislation, at the following levels (shipping cost included):

    Service Grade, $1050: Pistol may exhibit minor pitting and wear on exterior surfaces and friction surfaces. Grips are complete with no cracks. Pistol is in issuable condition. Pistols may contain commercial parts.

    Field Grade, $950: Pistol may exhibit minor rust, pitting and wear on exterior surfaces and friction surfaces. Grips are complete with no cracks. Pistol is in issuable condition. Pistols may contain commercial parts.

    Rack Grade, $850: Pistol will exhibit rust, pitting and wear on exterior surfaces and friction surfaces. Grips may be incomplete and exhibit cracks. Pistols may require minor work to return to issuable condition but are functional. Pistols may contain commercial parts.

    Auction Grade — Sales by auction. The condition of the auction pistol will be described when posted for auction.

Selection Priority Procedures
Since these firearms are in high demand, a Random Number Generator will be utilized to provide a list of names in sequential order. Customers will be contacted in the sequence provided by the Random Number Generator. When contacted, CMP 1911 customers will select their grade of pistol (Service, Field or Rack). Customers with higher generated numbers may have fewer grades from which to choose. When the allotment of 1911s is exhausted, the remaining orders will be held in the existing sequence for all future allotments of 1911s. For questions, call CMP 1911 customer service number at 256-770-4744 or send email to: cmp1911@thecmp.org.

Background Checks Are Mandatory
As part of the CMP’s enabling legislation to supply these firearms, all customers will be subject to and must be approved by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), conducted through the FBI, to assure eligibility to purchase prior to shipment to a required Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer.

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November 4th, 2020

Talladega 600 Match Postponed — Will Be Held in Early 2021

Talladega 600 cancellation November 2020 reschedule 2021

The Civilian Marksmanship Program will postpone its November Talladega 600 rifle and pistol event due to storm damage to portions of its 500-acre marksmanship park. The annual event, scheduled for November 16-22, will likely be rescheduled in January or February 2021. The new date will be set based on what works best for the 125+ competitors who had registered for the November 2020 event. Participants will be contacted by the CMP to determine the best dates to hold the event in early 2021.

Talladega 600 cancellation November 2020 reschedule 2021
The Talladega 600 features a wide variety of service rifle, vintage rifle, rimfire rifle matches, and pistol matches plus firearms training programs.

Hurricane Zeta Damaged Kongsberg Electronic Targets
“Unfortunately, our facility suffered damage to portions of our electronic targetry when Hurricane Zeta made landfall in our area,” said Mark Johnson, chief operating officer of the CMP. “Key components necessary to repair the system ship from [Kongsberg in Norway] and the timing will not allow us to complete repairs by November 16. That takes us into the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, leaving us no choice but to move the event into next year”. Organizers hope to have the big event in January or February 2021.

Talladega 600 Will Be Rescheduled
The CMP will reschedule the event as quickly as possible to best fit the schedule of more than 125 competitors who have registered for the event. “Participants can expect contact from us soon to determine the best time slot to get the competition back on track,” Johnson said. “We recently performed a number of upgrades to our High Power range, so the timing of the damaging storms is unfortunate. We look forward to providing our participants with the best experience possible.”

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October 15th, 2020

Big Talladega 600 Match in Alabama November 16-22, 2020

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

Yes, the Pandemic is still here, but at least we are seeing major shooting events taking place again (with health precautions). One of the most popular multi-discipline matches in the Southeast, the Talladega 600, IS going forward in 2020. The CMP’s Talladega 600 kicks off Monday, November 16. A variety of matches and training sessions will run through Sunday, November 22, at the CMP’s Talladega Marksmanship Park in Alabama. CLICK HERE for registration info, entry forms, and complete match schedule.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match
The Talladega 600 will include a mix of rifle and pistol competitions for all ages and experience levels.

Matches include Garand, Springfield, and Vintage/Modern rifle events, and versions of prestigious National Trophy Rifle Matches. A rifle Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) match, a 4-Man Team match, M1A Match and the retitled Congressional 30 and Dixie Double competitions add an elite level of competition. Additionally, Carbine, .22 Rimfire Sporter, and Vintage Sniper will be held at the Talladega 600.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 November match

NEW Garand Benchrest and Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Matches
New for 2020, two test matches will also be fired at the Talladega 600: a Benchrest Garand Match and a Rimfire Sporter Benchrest Match. Competitiors at these new events can use sandbags to support/stabilize their M1 Garands and .22 caliber rimfire sporter rifles. The use of sandbags should help competitors of any age, with increased ease and safety on the firing line.

Pistol Matches Are Always Popular
Those eager for pistol events will be able to look forward to .22 Rimfire EIC and Service Pistol EIC matches, along with As-Issued 1911 and Military & Police matches.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

Rifle Marksmanship 101 Class Is Open
For an educational experience, a Rifle Marksmanship 101 Class (which features an M16 EIC Match) is also open to both new and advanced individuals looking to enhance their marksmanship knowledge.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match
State-of-the-art Kongsberg target systems are used at the CMP’s Talladega Marksmanship Park.

About Talladega Marksmanship Park
The 500-acre CMP Talladega Marksmanship Park is one of the most advanced outdoor shooting facilities in the Western Hemisphere. The facility includes a 600-yard rifle range, a 100-yard multi-purpose range, and a 50-yard pistol range, equipped with Kongsberg electronic targets and scoring monitors. Since the 54 targets at each line register hits and calculate the scores instantly, no pit duty is required at Talladega. The park regularly hosts rifle, pistol and shotgun events throughout the year.

CMP Marksmanship program talladega park 600 match

Safety Protocols in Effect
During the match, CMP staff will be monitoring and assuring safety guidelines are followed. Please note that Masks will be required when off of the firing line. Sanitation procedures will also be administered, along with other precautions to ensure the well-being of staff and guests.

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October 7th, 2020

CMP Cancels 2020 Oklahoma Games Due to COVID Concerns

CMP 2020 oklahoma rifle games matches cancelled cancellation

The Civilian Marksmanship Program has announced the cancellation of the Oklahoma CMP HP Rifle & CMP Games Matches due to considerations brought on by the COVID-19 virus. The event was scheduled for 12-18 October at the Oklahoma City Gun Club in Arcadia.

CMP 2020 oklahoma rifle games matches cancelled cancellationAll OK Games Events Will Be Cancelled
The CMP had planned a full slate of events in Oklahoma, including CMP Games rifle, EIC service rifle, multiple pistol matches, M1 Garand, vintage sniper rifle, rimfire sporter rifle, and testing of a new benchrest M1 Garand rifle discipline.

“In seeking a sense of normalcy in its marksmanship event schedule for the balance of 2020, the CMP was looking forward to conducting match activities in Oklahoma,” said Judy Legerski, CMP Board Chairman. “Unfortunately, recent flare-ups of the COVID-19 virus have prompted us to cancel the event in the best interest of our competitors, Oklahoma City Gun Club staff and CMP personnel,” she said.

CMP 2020 oklahoma rifle games matches cancelled cancellation

“We look forward to renewing our Oklahoma rifle and pistol match series in brighter times in 2021,” Mrs. Legerski said. The next scheduled CMP highpower, pistol and games event, the Talladega 600 conducted at the CMP’s marksmanship park near Talladega, Alabama, is planned for 16-22 November.

The CMP continues to follow prudent health practices and is monitoring conditions of all future event locations. Event cancellations will be announced by the CMP on www.TheCMP.org and through social media.

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October 5th, 2020

CMP Home Range Appreciation Series — Matches Nationwide

CMP Home Range Series Matches 2020

2020 has been a pretty rotten year so far — with the Pandemic, shutdowns, riots, and, yes, cancellation of major shooting tournaments, including the big summer National Matches at Camp Perry.

But, not daunted, the CMP organized a series of shooting matches around the country, called the Home Range Appreciation Series. Over 1200 Rifle and pistol competitors shot Home Range matches in 32 states this year. In total, 11 smallbore events, 33 air rifle, 9 GSMM rifle, 13 Highpower Rifle Aggregate, 2 pistol and 4 Rimfire Sporter rifle events were fired in 32 states. Nearly 1,500 entries were recorded throughout the events, with competitors from 43 states.

CMP Home Range Series Matches 2020

Open to both adult and junior athletes, the Home Range Appreciation Series events were fired in local club matches and scored by the CMP to be compared against overall scores from participating marksmen around the nation. Matches included the White Oak 1600 Rifle Aggregate, a 200-Yard Reduced Course 800 Rifle Aggregate, a Garand/Springfield/Vintage/Modern Military Rifle Match, Rimfire Sporter Rifle, CMP Pistol 2700 (featuring .22 Rimfire, Center Fire and 45 Caliber pistols), Smallbore 3×20, Smallbore Prone 3200, and air rifle 3×20 and 60-Shot matches.

CMP Home Range Series Matches 2020

The CMP conducted a Virtual Awards Ceremony on Friday, October 2, 2020, to honor the top competitors in various discpline. A drawing for all sponsor-donated items also took place during the Virtual Awards Ceremony. You can watch this virtual awards ceremony on YouTube:

The CMP thanks all participants, volunteers, clubs and others who helped to make this inaugural event a true success. To see the top performers, CLICK HERE for full list of Home Range Match Results.

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September 25th, 2020

Competition Returns to Camp Perry with September GSSM Match

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

This is heartening — folks are shooting at Camp Perry again. Some normalcy has returned to the world (despite the ongoing pandemic). Though the CMP National Matches were cancelled in summer 2020, shooting returned, on a smaller scale, in the fall. The CMP hosted a Garand-Springfield-Modern and Vintage Military (GSMM) Rifle Match on Camp Perry’s Petrarca Range on September 14th.

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

CLICK HERE to See 200+ GSMM Match Photos »

Competitors on the line greeted each other with warm smiles and swapped stories of missed competition over the last few months – some traveling from as far as Virginia with the hopes of enjoying Camp Perry after the cancellation of the National Matches (typically an annual tradition for marksmen). Others admitted the Petrarca Match was their first time in competition since last year’s National Matches. So, for those in attendance, this event did represent a positive return to normalcy during this challenging year.

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

The GSMM Match was subject to strict health and safety guidelines. Participants practiced social distancing and wore masks when not firing. The CMP team also employed sanitation procedures for the facility.

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio
CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

The morning started off soggy as rain moved through the range area along the shores of Lake Erie, clearing off before the first relay to leave a gray backdrop. The weather quickly improved through early afternoon as the sun appeared and warmed the air, making for a pleasant return to the firing line for later relays.

CMP GSMM Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio

Winning overall in the Garand competition was Jeffrey Cramer, 66, with a 266-3X Aggregate. Jace Diezman, 59, led the Springfield category with 266-2X, as SFC Charles Novak, 55, won the Vintage Military class, with a score of 254-1X. Joe Rondon, 53, won Modern Military with a score of 281-5X over the day.

Modern Kongsberg Electronic Targets for Rapid Scoring
Petrarca Range is home to CMP Targets, powered by the Kongsberg Target Systems (KTS) of Norway. The lineup of electronic targets utilized on the range allows competitors to watch their shots on monitors located at each firing point eliminating the need for pit duty and dead range time.

CMP Petrarca Range Camp Perry Ohio
Camp Perry 2016 Natinoal CMP Matches Regisatration Open

Directions to Camp Perry:

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August 30th, 2020

Sunday GunDay: Collins Earns Distinguished Badge No. 2500

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio
William “Tom” Collins earned the CMP’s Distinguished Rifleman Badge #2500 this July. Collins earned his final EIC points at the Washtenaw Sportsman’s Club in Michigan.

One of the highest honors in competitive shooting is earning the Distinguished Rifleman Badge. This Badge was created by the War Department in 1884 to recognize members of the U.S. Army for Excellence-in-Competition (EIC) with the Army’s service rifle. Other U.S. Armed Forces soon adopted a similar program and in 1926 civilians were authorized to participate. This story is about William “Tom” Collins, 50, of Maumee, Ohio, who earned his badge in July 2020. His achievement was a landmark — Civilian Distinguished Rifleman Badge number 2500.

Collins Earns Distinguished Rifleman Badge Number 2500

Story based on Report by Ashley Brugnone, CMP Staff Writer
For over 20 years, the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) has issued Distinguished Badges to competitors who collect at least 30 Excellence-In-Competition (EIC) “leg” points — earned by placing in the top 10% of an EIC match. This story is about Ohio shooter William “Tom” Collins, who recently earned Distinguished Rifleman Badge number 2500. [Editor: To learn more about the history of the Distinguished Rifleman Badge and what is takes to earn it, read Distinguished Rifleman — the Chase for Excellence by Jonathan Ocab.]

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio

For Collins, this fulfilled a dream to join generations of elite marksmen before him. “The Distinguished Rifleman Badge has been a goal of mine since I learned about it,” Collins said. “I like to think back on the history of the badge … It makes me proud to be a part of that.”

Collins earned Distinguished Rifleman Badge #2500 in July. “Shooting is almost like meditation to me”, Collins said. “You really can’t think about anything other than the current shot. It’s very relaxing.”

He gives simple advice to other competitors hoping to one day earn a Distinguished Badge of their own: “Anyone working on it – quit thinking about it. Just shoot.”

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio
Collins is congratulated by his friend Jamie Root after “going Distinguished”.

Collins has been shooting most of his life. Growing up in rural Ohio, he received his first BB gun around seven years old and his first .22 at age 11. It wasn’t until he joined the Army Reserves in 1987 that he received any formal marksmanship training. After he left the Reserves nine years later, he started looking toward organized shooting sports.

One day, back in 2014, he picked up his rifle and took the 45-minute drive to Fremont, Ohio, to fire in his first GSM (Garand-Springfield-Modern/Vintage Military) Match at the Sandusky County Sportsmen’s Club. It was there that he met Jesse Bragg, who was running the event.

Jesse Bragg, a retired staff sergeant from the Marine Corps Reserve Rifle Team, took Collins under his wing and showed him the ropes. Collins says Bragg seemed to want to teach more than run the match. In fact, Bragg was the one who introduced Collins to the idea of pursuing a Distinguished Badge. Collins admits that he had no clue what “going distinguished” meant. Bragg went over the terms – legging out, finishing “first leather” and other related expressions.

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio
Photo courtesy photographer Jonathan Ocab, who himself earned the Distinguished Rifleman Badge.

In 2015, Collins went to the National Matches at nearby Camp Perry, Ohio, and fired in his first President’s Rifle Match. Watching the elite shooters take their final shots inspired Collins: “Learning about the Distinguished Badge, learning about the President’s Match — I just knew that I had to get this Distinguished Badge on my way to, hopefully, getting into the President’s 100 or even the Top 20.” So Collins began traveling to GSMM competitions with his match rifle in tow, just to get in a little extra practice. It became his main focus. In June 2019, he earned his first set of six leg points at the CMP Viale Range 800 Aggregate and EIC Service Rifle Match at Camp Perry. It was a breakthrough.

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio

When I first started, I was shooting the Garand and the M1A. [But] once I realized I wanted to get my Distinguished Badge, I said, “None of the wood guns. It’s all my match rifle until I go Distinguished”.

He went on to earn eight points at his next match in July, followed by eight more in August. With one more match left in 2019 and only seven points away from the required 30 to earn a badge, his goal was within sight. But it wasn’t until the EIC match at the Washtenaw Sportsman’s Club in Ypsilanti, Michigan, in July 2020 that he was able to conquer his nerves and earn his final points: “The most rewarding thing – it’s when you get there. When you finally earn it, everybody knows it. Everybody at the range celebrates with you. All of your friends are there with you. It’s just rewarding in itself. You’re part of that tradition that spans three centuries.”

CMP Distinguished Rifleman Badge 2500 william Tom Collins Michigan Ohio

Friendships Made on the Road to Distinguished
More so than the time, effort, and skill it took to earn the badge, the journey to become Distinguished was almost as rewarding as the badge itself for Collins, given the relationships he’s made along the way:

“These guys I’ve met and hung out with — we’ve given jobs to each other, we celebrate each other’s birthdays, we know each other’s families. It’s just been a great group of guys. You always are rooting for your friends, regardless of how well you’re doing. If you’re doing bad, you root for them even more.”

Distinguished Badge-Earning Marksmen Will Be Honored in 2021 at Camp Perry
Part of the tradition of earning a Distinguished Badge is walking across the stage at Camp Perry during the National Matches award ceremony. There, badge winners are formally pinned by their peers on a stage that has felt the footsteps of prominent marksmen for over a century.

“Last year, when I got the first points, I told myself, ‘I’m going to walk this stage at Perry next year'”. Collins and all others who earned a Distinguished Badge in 2019 or 2020 will still have the opportunity to take the stage next year at the 2021 National Matches — and that’s just what Collins plans to do.

(more…)

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August 5th, 2020

Home Range Appreciation Series — Filling the Nat’l Matches Void

CMP Home Range Appreciation shooting match high power smallbore pistol 2020

In July and August we should be talking about the CMP Games at Camp Perry (Ohio) and the National Matches at Camp Atterbury (Indiana). Instead, all these events have been cancelled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Thankfully, the CMP is organizing a local match series that can provide some competitive fun in summer 2020.

To fill the void of the unfortunate withdrawal of the 2020 National Matches from the annual schedule, the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) have prepared a solution that will allow competitors to compete with one another during the summer months at their local ranges.

The CMP has created special series of matches for Summer 2020 — the “Home Range Appreciation Series”, a collection of High Power rifle, pistol, smallbore rifle, air rifle and pistol competitions, shot at local facilities, and open to both adult and junior athletes. Scores from all the CMP-sanction home range matches will be complied together, and all participants will receive a commemorative t-shirt and coin. In addition, sponsors will provide awards such as gift certificates, memorabilia, and ammunition.

CLICK HERE for Program General INFO, Rules, Event List »

Home Range Shooting Matches are Underway
Since early June, scores have been pouring in weekly for the CMP’s (CMP) Home Range Appreciation Series of events. Introduced to supplement the cancelled 2020 National Matches in Ohio and Indiana, clubs from Texas, Mississippi, Wyoming, New York and several other states have conducted an assortment of rifle, pistol, smallbore and air rifle competitions at their local ranges.

CMP Home Range Appreciation shooting match high power smallbore pistol 2020

One Home Range event was held at Hornell Sportsman’s Club in New York. “Thanks, CMP, for opening the Home Series,” said the Club’s CMP match coordinator, Joe Menichino. “We are all disappointed that the Perry matches were cancelled, and this series gives us a chance to shoot and compete.”

GENERAL INFORMATION
Each local match will be sanctioned by a CMP Affiliated club. All matches MUST be fired by September 8 and results received by September 14, 2020. All results will be final on October 1, 2020. A list of matches will be posted on the CMP website. Participants may fire in more than one event of the same discipline, but only the scores of the first event will be recorded, with the exception of the White Oak 1600 Aggregate which is two 800 Aggregate matches. This event maybe fired at different locations for competitors to complete their two 800 Aggregate matches.

SAFETY and HEALTH CONSIDERATIONS
The CMP reminds clubs to follow all state and local health guidelines and health advisories. Recommended range health practices include: limiting/spacing the number of participants who congregate for safety briefings, spacing out firing points, leaving empty firing points between shooters, ensuring participants wear masks, washing hands frequently, providing disinfectant wipes, and continuously cleaning common surfaces such as shooting benches and equipment.

  • List of Rifle and Pistol Ranges Hosting Home Range Series
  • List of Air Rifle and Smallbore Ranges Hosting Home Range Series
  • Home Range Club Sanction Application Form
  • Home Range Series Match Results
  • For questions on Rifle, Pistol or Games Matches, contact Christina Roguski at croguski [at] thecmp.org or (419) 635-2141, ext. 714. For questions about Smallbore Matches, contact Brad Donoho at bdonoho [at] thecmp.org or (419) 635-2141, ext. 730. For Air Rifle match questions, contact Katie Harrington at kharrington [at] thecmp.org or (419) 635-2141, ext. 731.

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