By Lars Dalseide | January 22 2012 08:51

Top Shot alumni Dustin Ellermann, Athena Lee and more appear at the 2012 SHOT Show

Las Vegas, Nevada - There was more to see during last week's SHOT Show then the guns and the gear. Although firearms are the primary draw for the Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor crowd, there’s also a touch of glitz and glam to be found … especially if you’re a fan of History Channel’s Top Shot.

Brian Zins, Dustin Ellerman & Daryl Parker at the SHOT Show

Being one of those fans, I made it a priority to contact as many competitors as possible ... especially those who've visited NRA Headquarters to meet with the Education and Training department or take a few shots at the range.

First to be found were Dustin Ellermann (Top Shot winner from Season 3), Daryl Parker (8th place in Top Shot season 2) and 11 time NRA National Pistol Champ Brian Zins (Top Shot runner up from season 2.) I would eventually corner Dustin for an in-depth discussion on the show’s final day, but Media Day was the last I saw of Daryl and Zins.

The original Top Shot, Iain Harrison, at the SHOT Show

Iain Harrison is the original Top Shot. Fitting, I suppose, that we found him in a shooting bay with a bazooka in hand. Turns out he was shooting off a new laser sighting system for Crimson Trace and we would NOT be testing out the bazooka. So I said goodbye to Iain, put my portable recoilless rocket antitank testing dreams on hold and moved on down the line.

Top Shot winner Chris Reed and wife at the SHOT Show

Two days later, I rounded the corner and bumped into Chris Reed (Top Shot winner from Season 2) and his wife. Chris has been a busy man as of late. He’s been making personal appearances, competing in a variety of shooting related tournaments and setting the foundation for a big move into the media world.

George Reinas at the SHOT Show

Another Top Shot alum hoping to make a big move into the media world is George Reinas (Top Shot 3rd place from Season 2.) I was never all that sure about George while watching the show. But after meeting him at the Annual Meeting last year in Pittsburgh, there’s no doubt that he’s as solid as they come.

Top Shot competitor Athena Lee at the SHOT Show

The George sighting occurred on SHOT’s final day. While scrambling to squeeze in as many photos and interviews into the remaining hour as possible, I bumped into Athena Lee (Top Shot from Season 2) on the lower level. Like a majority of the women who’ve competed on Top Shot, Athena got the short end of the stick and was eliminated in an early round. After a quick introduction, she asked her friends to wait, posed for a picture and resumed her own version of the final day scramble.

So there it is. Seven days in Vegas filled with seven Top Shot encounters. Just one of the many perks you could have experienced if you were there for SHOT Show.


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