Transplant Down Under moves from Service to Fullbore rifle for America Match

Australian shooter Aubrey Sonnenberg waits for the results of the 2012 America Match at Camp Perry

With the 2013 NRA National Championships right around the corner, we bring you a shooter from last year's long range high power championships:
Port Clinton, Ohio - When the Australian Long Range Rifle Team traveled halfway around the world to compete at NRA's National Rifle & Pistol Championships in Ohio last year, they did so with one purpose in mind … team building. Fresh off hosting the World Championships in Brisbane, they packed up more than a dozen or so shooters for a swing through the North America. First Camp Perry, then the Canadian Fullbore Rifle Championships, then back home.

Getting to the states was no easy trick. But it was a necessity. After all, the 2015 Long Range High Power World Championships will be shot on the same grounds as the National Championships at Camp Perry. The grounds one Aussie shooter, Mr. Aubrey Sonnenberg, shot on back in 2005. But that's not where it started.

More on Australian Long Range High Power Rifle shooter Aubrey Sonnenberg ...

Singer takes six fans to Cambodia to see the sights and ranges

Fairfax, Virginia - Singer, songwriter, NRA Life Member, world traveler and professional shooter. All labels applicably applied to our Australian mate Steve Lee. Now we can add tour guide to the list.

More on Steve Lee's "I Like Guns" Cambodia tour ...

Georgia's John Whidden won the 2011 Queen's Prize rifle title

John Whidden, an American from Georgia, is hoisted in the winner's chair after willing the 2011 Queen's Prize at the World Long Range Rifle Championships in Brisbane, Australia

You know what was happening this time last year? We had a contingency of Americans travel to Australia for the 2011 World Long Range Rifle Championships at the Belmont Shooting Complex.

What you're witnessing above is the celebration following the Queen's Prize match. American John Whidden is hoisted in the air after winning with a score of 399-046X.

See all the coverage from the 2011 World Long Range Rifle Championships here.

Australia Rifle team to take on Canadian Rifle Championships

Ron Whalen, Captain of the Australian Rifle Team Port Clinton, Ohio - Yesterday marked the end of NRA's National Rifle & Pistol Championships in Camp Perry. Those still stirring round the base included staff, volunteers and much to my surprise — the Australian Rifle Team.

A surprise because it was only that morning I discovered a portion of the team was bunking a few doors down from me. Exchanging pleasantries while they packed the team rental van, I then discovered yet another surprising fact. They were not headed to the airport for the long flight home. No, instead, Captain Ron (pictured above) Aubrey and the rest of the team were about to embark for Ottawa.

More on the Australian Rifle Team's trip to Canada ...

Rifle teams from across the globe compete in America Match at NRA Championships

Team flags from Great Britain, America, Japan and Australia fly during the America Match at NRA Championships

Port Clinton, Ohio - Scores from the first two round of today's America Match at the NRA Long Range Rifle Championships finds the Great Britain Rifle Team in the lead by two points.

Starting with targets at 300 yards, eight-man teams from the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Canada and Australia fire 120 shots per round before moving to the next distance. Once the day is done, teams will have shot from distances of 300, 800, 900 and 1,000 yards. The 300, according to some, just might be the most difficult.

More on Great Britain Rifle Team's early lead ...

Rifle team from Australia makes mark on NRA Championships

David Waters of Australian Rifle Team prepares to shoot at Camp Perry during 2012 NRA Chmapionships Port Clinton, Ohio - The excitement surrounding this year's NRA Long Range Rifle Championships isn't just about the individual title, there's also the America Match to consider. Teams from across the globe have traveled here to Camp Perry for that very match … including a team from Australia.

"Right now we're in a team building process," said Australian Palma Rifle Team member David 'The Wagon' Waters. "Cycle shooters through, step outside the square, push the boundaries and see what we can come up with as a team."

Their ability to work as a team has been put to the test so far. In matches such as the Roumanian Trophy Team and Herrick Trophy Team, they're best overall finish is 5th … behind teams from America, Great Britain and Canada.


The U.S. Palma Team after the final day of competition at the 2011 World Rifle Championships in Brisbane, Australia

Dave Cloft, a member of the U.S. Palma Team and a shooter for the US Army Reserve, sends NRAblog another report on the World Rifle Championships.

Brisbane, Australia - There was very, very stiff competition and the conditions on the range tested our coaches and shooters thoroughly. After two long days of shooting, we found ourselves bested by Great Britain and South Africa. While we did not win gold, this was still a tremendous accomplishment for our team, and it was an honor to be among the best rifle shooters in our country and from around the world.


Dave Cloft, a member of the U.S. Palma Team and a shooter for the US Army Reserve, sent NRAblog the following report on the World Rifle Championships.

U.S. shooter and coaches at the 2011 World Championships in Australia Brisbane, Australia - The Palma Match, or the World Championship of Long Range Rifle Shooting, is the most prestigious team event in the shooting sports. Shooters worldwide train and compete for four years for the honor to represent their Nation both as Individuals and Team members. The first Palma Match was held in 1876 at Creedmoor range in New York, and resulted in a win for the United States.

The Palma Trophy is a 7 ½ foot tall Tiffany creation with a copper eagle and silver laurel wreath atop a panel mounted on an ornate steel shaft, bearing the word “PALMA.” The original trophy sat outside the U.S. Secretary of Defense’s office; however when the Palma matches were suspended between the Great Depression and World War II and with the move the Pentagon in the 1940’s the original trophy was somehow lost. A replica now exists and travels around the world every four years. The trophy is presented “in the name of the United States of America to the rifleman of the world,” for which an official Palma match must require USA among the competing Nations.


Richard Jeens of the Great Britain Palma Team wins the World Long Range Rifle Championship in Brisbane, Australia

Brisbane, Australia - Great Britain's Richard Jeens won the Individual World Long Range Rifle Championships with a final score of 725-049X. Ceremonially hoisted in the air by his fellow competitors at the Awards Ceremony (thanks again to US Palma Team member Dave Cloft for the above picture), Jeens was all smiles with a title that remains in his position until the next Championships in 2015.


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