The 2011 United States Long Range Rifle Team is in Brisbane, Australia and starts competing today in the World Long Range Rifle Championships for the prestigious Palma Trophy. Taking place at the Belmont Shooting Complex from October 8-22, 2011, the competition is 135 years old and only takes place every three to four years, with the last competition held in 2007. The United States has won 13 of the 28 Palma Matches, and they're hoping to clinch another win this year.
The course of fire is comprised of three slow fire stages fired from the prone position. The first stage is 15 shots at 800 yards, the second stage is 15 shots at 900 yards, and the third stage is 15 shots at 1,000 yards. Targets are six feet square with a
20-inch black bullseye (10-ring), and an aiming circle of 44 inches that includes a 9-ring and an 8-ring. A perfect score for each
stage is 150 points. Rifles are single-shot bolt actions equipped with iron sights, and ammunition is 7.62mm NATO/.308 Winchester caliber using a bullet weighing 155 grains.
The United States Long Range Rifle National Team members for the 2011 competition are:
Team Captain: Dennis Flaharty
Vice Team Captain/Adjutant: Dan Simpson
Vice Team Captain: Dr. Tom Whitaker
Armorer: Robert Gamboa
Head Team Coach: Emil Praslick III
NRA Advisor: Middleton Tompkins
Shooting Members: Bob Mead, Bryan Litz, David Littlefield, Gary Rasmussen, John Whidden, Justin Skaret, Kelly Bachand, Lane Buxton, Nancy Tompkins, Noma Mayo, Norm Anderson, Robert Gustin, Sherri Gallagher, Steve Cunico, Steve Hardin, Trevor Hengehold, Trevor Massey, Trudie Fay, Ty Cooper, and Wayne Forshee.
As the competition progresses, we'll be bringing you updates on the competition and more about the history of the Palma Trophy and matches. Good luck, Team USA! Here's to hoping they bring the Palma Trophy back to the States.