Heading in to Day Two of the Bianchi Action Pistol Championships, favorites and contenders battle for the top

Chris Cerino shooting Falling Plates at the 2013 NRA Bianchi Cup in Missouri

Columbia, Missouri - With day two of the MidwayUSA/Bianchi Cup well under way, those resting atop the leaderboard realize their position is precarious at best. A stray shot, sudden gust of wind or an equipment malfunction is all it takes for fortunes to go from boom to bust.

More on opening scores from the NRA Bianchi Cup ...

Koenig nearly-perfect on Practical but remains off the leaderboard

MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup in Columbia, Missouri

Columbia, Missouri - Scores are out for the first day of shooting at the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup and they're just what we expected as defending Champion Doug Koenig captured the Practical Event lead with a 480-45x. Just three x-ring hits short of a completely perfect score, Koenig made the most of his opening day.

Despite his practically perfect performance, Koenig is not in the lead. He isn't even in the top five. It's not a performance issue, it's a procedural one.

More on Bianchi Cup Day 1 scores...

The first of the Bianchi Cup's four core events is the Blade Tech Practical Event

Bianchi Cup Practical Event shooter

Columbia, Missouri - The Bianchi Cup isn't your regular pistol championship. It's an action pistol championship. Shooters need to be a little more mobile than in more classic "stand and shoot" competitions.

The tournament for the silver cup trophy is comprised of four different matches: Practical, Barricade, Falling Plate and Moving Target. Over the years, however, new courses of fire have been added around the core matches like the Colt Speed Event, Celebrity Pro-Am and FNH 3-Gun Challenge.

More on the Bianchi Cup's Practical Event . . .

Shooters ready! The 35th Annual Bianchi Cup action pistol championship has begun

MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup defending champion Doug Koenig at the Practical Event

Columbia, Missouri - 14-time Bianchi Cup Champion Doug Koenig has graced the pages of NRAblog many a times. And if he keeps up the pace during his campaign for number 15, you're going to see even more of him. That's the way the tournament and coverage begins.

The MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup is back in Columbia, Missouri. The Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club is bustling with controlled chaos as a record 268 shooters run through the four historic stages.

More on the 2013 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup . . .

The NRA Bianchi Cup, sponsored by MidwayUSA, officially kicks off Wednesday

Competitors greeted with lessons from today's top pro shooters

Rob Leatham joins in a welcoming hug during a recent Bianchi Cup Championship

Columbia, Missouri - The easiest part about participating in the Bianchi Cup is the travel. About 1,000 miles from the East Coast, 1,700 from the West Coast, it's about as close to middle of the country as an NRA National Championship gets. If you decide to go by way of plane, and have all your TSA documentation in line, there's still a two hour drive once you reach the nearest commercial airport. That's the easy part. The hard part is mustering the gumption to enter.

More on tuning up for the 2013 Bianchi Cup. ...

From the Safariland Group - Team Safariland’s Shooters Rob Leatham and Jessie Duff Take Champion Titles at 2013 USPSA Single Stack National Championship

Jessie Duff Take Champion Title at 2013 USPSA Single Stack National Championship Ontario, California – Safariland® applauds Team Safariland shooters, Rob Leatham and Jessie Duff, for their remarkable wins at the 2013 USPSA Single Stack National Championship held May 9 - 11 at PASA Park, Barry, IL. Both sporting the Safariland ELS belt system with a USPSA adaptor mount, Leatham triumphed with his 17th Single Stack National win while Duff competed in her first Single Stack National and was respectably crowned as the ladies champion.

"This was my first time shooting Single Stack, so I didn't know what to expect,” said pro-shooter Jessie Duff. “But, I enjoyed the match, the stages and the group of ladies I shot with!" Duff, wearing the 5197 Range Series holster, won four out of thirteen stages.

More on Team Safariland's wins at the Single Stack Nationals ...

Columbia, Missouri - The MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup is a championship like no other. The richest, most prestigious action pistol tournament in the world. Three days of speed and accuracy you won't see anywhere else.

Top shooters from around the world trek to Columbia, Missouri every year to see who'll come out on top. But go there and you'll find more than the competitors. You'll find sponsors, fans and a whole lot of media.

In fact, it promises to a veritable who's who of shooting media showing up to the Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club next week. A few will even step from behind the camera to throw a few shots down range.

More on Shooting USA at the Bianchi Cup...

2012 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup champions appear on giant flags thanks to sponsor Action Target

2012 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup Champions

Fairfax, Virginia - Last year's MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup winners are going to have a little more to brag about when the 2013 match starts next week.

Thanks to sponsor Action Target, the winner of each major category in 2012 now has a giant, 15-foot banner with their photo and winning score. These banners will be on display throughout Columbia, Missouri's Green Valley Rifle & Pistol Club to remind other shooters who they're going up against . . . and the returning champions of the expectations they're pressured to meet.

More on the 2013 MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup flags...

Shooting Sports USA rummages through the range bag of one of the shooting world's greats

Bruce Piatt at the 2012 Midway & NRA Bianchi Cup

Fairfax, Virginia - Between NRA Action, Tactical 3-Gun, Sportsman Team Challenge and Masters, professional shooter Bruce Piatt is a busy guy. Barb Baird from Women's Outdoor News recently caught up with the five-time Bianchi Cup champion to glean some insight from this shooting genius, specifically: What's in his range bag?

Bruce Piatt will be the first to tell you that he is living the dream. As a sponsored professional shooter, he routinely takes the lead or immediately challenges the leader.

More on what's in Bruce Piatt's range bag...

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