A disabled shooter takes aim on NRAblog

Air gun sectionals shot by disabled shooters have traditionally been held seperate from the sectionals for able-bodied shooters. This is about to change.

Both competitions are run exactly the same as one another according to the same rules and being held side by side will help "legitimize" one another Air Gun Coordinator, and recently-crowned Disabled Shooting Coordinator, Jessi McClain told me.

"Holding both sectionals together will help competitors from each side learn about the other," said McClain. "Becoming better informed and acquainted with fellow competitors will help bring the air gun community closer together."

The NRA Disabled Shooting Services Program offers services that enable thousands of Americans with physical disabilities to enjoy a variety of shooting activities, including competitive events and hunting.  A special authorization card is required to be able to shoot with a special adaptive device or from a different position, however.

The National Indoor Championships, NRA's biggest competitive shooting matches, are coming up soon in January and are held through March (April for juniors). Contact NRA's rifle department at rifle@nrahq.org if you'd like to participate in one.  

NRA's Disabled Shooting ServicesAnother weekend means another road trip for NRA Disabled Shooting Services. Competitive shooting is one of the few sports where people with physical disabilities and handicaps can compete side-by-side with their able-bodied counterparts. Although the shooting sports provides an equal opportunity for these competitors, limitations may exist that require them to compete with a special adaptive device or from a different position.

NRA’s Disabled Shooting Services has created a way to make it easier for disabled shooters to shoot in NRA competitions thanks to a Special Authorization Card. But what exactly is the “special authorization” that disabled shooters are receiving? As Jessi McClain, our Disabled Shooting Services Coordinator explains, it allows them to shoot from a modified position based on the type of disability or handicap.

“Physical limitations may prevent a shooter from getting into a certain position to compete. For example, a paraplegic can’t shoot from the standing position, so they would use an adaptive shooting position when competing,” explained McClain.

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With the 2011 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup less than 2 weeks away, here's a feature on Trevor Baucom, a service disabled veteran who recently joined Team Smith & Wesson at Annual Meeting. He'll be making his competitive debut at the Bianchi Cup, so here's more info on Baucom and his journey to "The Cup":

Smith & Wesson® Welcomes Disabled Veteran To Shooting Team
Blackhawk Pilot Trevor Baucom Joins Team S&W at NRA Convention

Disabled veteran Trevor Baucom SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (April 28, 2011) – Smith & Wesson Corp., announced today that Texas native Trevor Baucom, a former United States Army Chief Warrant Officer #3 (CW3) and Blackhawk helicopter pilot, has joined the ranks of Team Smith & Wesson as the Company’s first disabled veteran shooter. During a special ceremony in the Smith & Wesson booth at the National Rifle Association (NRA) Annual Meetings in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Baucom will be introduced as the newest member of the team and will discuss his plans for competing in the upcoming NRA Bianchi Cup.

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Lars Dalseide appears on NRANews.com A flurry of phone calls on Friday afternoon led to the appearance of NRAblog contributor Lars Dalseide on NRANews.com.

"It was great to be back in the studio and see the guys," said Dalseide. "The only odd part was being in front of the camera instead of behind the scenes."

Before he came to work at the National Rifle Association, Lars was a producer for NRANews. Then his days were spent researching stories, booking guests, and producing the live show. Now things are a touch different.

"On Friday's show, for example, I was able to promote the National Rifle & Pistol Championships, the National Police Shooting Championships, Disabled Shooting clinics, POMA, and more," said Dalseide. "If there's a choice between producing the show and appearing on the show, I'll take appearing every time."

Pictured to the right along side NRANews producer Cameron Gray, Lars ended up staying for the entire show. Before long, he started to creep back into his old producer shoes.

"I was helping with the guests, taking a few calls, and even started making camera suggestions," Dalseide recalled. "That's when I knew it was time to step back. The guys who run the show today do an incredible job. The last thing they need is me mucking up the works."


NRANews received a number of calls regarding this interview. You can now view the Lars Dalseide interview on YouTube: www.youtube.com/watch?v=N87yIvCCbNk

From the Wellsville Daily Reporter, a spotlight on the Scio Rod & Gun Club:
Shooting for the disabled at Scio Rod and Gun Club

The Scio Rod and Gun Club is taking aim at helping the disabled get the chance to shoot a rifle.

Tuesday night the club under the direction of President Bill Hadsell and other members, flew the red National Rifle Association (NRA) flag over it firing range to let those around them know that the firing range, located off the Vandermark Road and bordering farm land, was in use.

A line of about 10 disabled riflemen were trying out their aim, some with the Club’s rifles and others, like veteran competition shooter Tracy Schmitt, of Scio, were using their own rifle. His, with a nifty variegated stock, was being sited in using a special (tiny) target. However others, like Steven Weatherell of Friendship, were using regular NRA regulation targets and shooting from a fixed stand at 50 yards.

Schmitt, who is an active member in the Scio Club said, “My being a member kind of shown a light in the club that disabled shooters couldn’t use the old range because the old shooting benches were too high and there was no concrete so we couldn’t get up here to shoot.”

Shooting since he was 12 years old, Schmitt is afflicted with a form of muscular dystrophy and is confined to a wheelchair, however that doesn’t stop him from being a certified instructor by the NRA for rifle, pistol, shotgun and range safety.

Continue reading here.

Pyramyd Air on NRAblogWhen she isn't traveling across the country for a clinic or Regional Championship, NRA Disabled Shooting Manager Vanessa Ross is still trying to find ways to support disabled shooters. Last week, that support came in the form of a discount from the world's largest mail-order air gun retailer, Pyramyd Air.

Exclusively available through the National Rifle Association, Pyramyd Air is now offering the Air Arms MPR air rifle for $750. Just contact Vanessa at disabled-shooting@nrahq.org or (703) 267-1495 for a special promotional code honored only at Pyramyd Air.

"Pyramyd Air wants to ensure that shooters of all ability levels have access to air guns to improve their shooting skills and all the benefits associated with achieving new personal goals," said Pyramyd COO Patrick Coughlin. "ThroughAir Arms MPR air rifle on NRAblog the NRA's Disabled Shooting Program, shooters will have the opportunity for continuous improvement with high-quality air rifles."

The Air Arms MPR is an air rifle that serves everyone from the junior to the senior level shooters. With deluxe diopter sights and an aluminum multi-adjustable butt assembly, this bolt action beauty is sure to turn heads and be a valuable addition to every competitor's gun cabinet.

Any disabled shooter or adaptive sports group is eligible for this discount, so get on the horn, type up an email, and contact Vanessa for this limited time offer. After a few sessions with the MPR, you won't be able to recognize that bullseye target of yours anymore.

Dwight HayesDwight Hayes is a regular at the Bracken Rifle & Pistol Range in San Antonio, Texas. With his Lone Star cap snugly in place, he goes to the range to work on guns, organize shoots, and gather with friends. It's a long way from his time as a Special Forces Weapons Sergeant at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, but it's time well spent.

"If you're in San Antonio, Bracken is the place to be," said Hayes. "Bracken and the folks at Alamo Mobility have been great to us disabled vets."

Working with disabled veterans is of great importance to Dwight. It's an attitude he developed while hospitalized after a failed High Altitude Low Opening, or HALO, jump. Having more than a Dwight Hayeshundred such jumps under his belt, this one should have been all but routine.

"I broke one of my rules," smiled Hayes. "Gotta stick to the rules."

So what are the rules?

"During a HALO jump, you're okay if you can see the road. If you see the cars, you're still okay. If you can make out the color of the car, you're still okay. If you can tell the difference between a Ford and a Chevy, you're still okay. If you can make out the gender of the driver, you're still okay. But if you can make out the license plate, then you're in trouble."

Before there's a chance to react, Dwight rocks his wheelchair with laughter and slaps my back. Apparently the story is a standard.

"They love that one back at Audie Murphy."

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The 30th National Veterans Wheelchair Games on NRAblog NRAblog is pleased to present the final scores from the Air Gun competition at this week's 30th National Veterans Wheelchair Games in Denver, Colorado. Our congratulations to everyone who pulled a trigger -- an extra nod goes to Carl Cortright and Walter Evans, Jr. for attaining top marks in their respective classifications.

Divisions for this competition were divided into two separate classifications; SH1 and SH2. SH1 are shooters who don't require the use of a support stand when firing their rifle and SH2 are shooters who do. Each category was additionally divided by gender and experience (novice, open, and master.)

SH1 Shooters
Name Class Division Results Place
Thomas Strang   SH1   Masters - Male 515   1  
Harlan Ebert   SH1   Masters - Male 496   2  
Larry Foster   SH1   Masters - Male 491   3  
Dawn Mattson   SH1   Novice - Female 371   1  
Linda Hutchinson   SH1   Novice - Female 352   2  
Christie Hill-Smith   SH1   Novice - Female 333   3  
Robin Brown   SH1   Novice - Male 487   1  
David Holland   SH1   Novice - Male 459   2  
Alberto Velasco   SH1   Novice - Male 452   3  
Chatriex Goodson   SH1   Open - Female 547   1  
Holly Koester   SH1   Open - Female 529   2  
Deborah Dones SH1   Open - Female 410   3  
Carl Cortright   SH1   Open - Male 594   1  
Hugh O'Donnell   SH1   Open - Male 488   2  
Michael Guilbault SH1   Open - Male 484   3  
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The Air Gun portion of the 2010 National Veterans Wheelchair Games are over, but NRAblog coverage of the event is not!

Stay tuned for more profiles of the folks who competed and additional photo slideshows.

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