Splitting bullets on axe heads and upside down revolver shots on History
Looking to maintain momentum from the blockbuster return to the television airwaves, History Channel’s Top Shot All Stars took off on Wednesday night with a trick shot bonanza. Host Colby Donaldson, teeth ablazing, smiled and welcomed the remaining fifteen competitors back to the hills of California.
With the help of guest expert Taran Butler, the All Stars split up into three teams of five to figuring out the who and the how. Who would take the shot and how would they actually accomplish it.
The challenges numbered four. An Annie Oakley homage of shooting a rifle backwards with the help of a mirror, shooting a corn cob pipe out of a mannequin's mouth, hit a paint can dead center so it launches a can sitting on top of it up in the air and hit that can too while closing the competition by hitting gallons on the opposite sides of an axe head with a single bullet.
All appeared confident with their chances.
"Pete went three for three with the Annie Oakley shot, Joe went three for three with the pipes, and even Chee had practice knocking the bowling pins down," multiple NRA National Pistol Champion Brian Zins said on the show. And how was Brian's practice session?
"Being an 11-time national bullseye champion, I shoot little things at far distances."
Divided in teams of grey blue and red, teams were tied at ten points a piece thanks to the heroics of Jamie Franks. Picked last overall, Franks was the only one able to go three for three on the paint can challenge. An impressive display for the guy who's seen more elimination rounds than just about any other competitor.
"Part of me just wanted to say 'In Your Face'," said Franks. "I would really be surprised if I was picked last (again)."
The final round had the trickiest shot of them all; the splitting a bullet on the tip of an axe head. Zins went a disappointing (at least to him) one for four on the axe head. William Beathards, our favorite hey diddle diddle, dropped a little further for a zero for four display. Then Alex Charvat, structural engineer, stepped up to the firing line. With all his lack of experience, Charvat went two for four … enough for the win. Team Blue would go to the Proving Ground.
Disappointing for a trick shot episode, the Proving Ground was a simple sixty yard rifle shot with an 1860 Henry Rifle. Our favorite NRA Certified Instructor Gabby Franco ended the day with the top overall shot. Season 1's Blake Miguez and Season 4's Kyle Sumpter ended up on the outside.
Another trip to Taran's kitchen prepared the boys for elimination. A three round event shooting a revolver upside down, knocking a gumball of a golf tee and simultaneously shooting a revolver in both hands at two separate targets.
USPSA Grand Master Miguez performed well with the pistols. One for three on the upside down revolver and one for three on the simultaneous shooting. Unfortunately for the corporate lawyer, he had a big o-fer on the gumball trick. Kyle's bag was mixed as well. Two for three on the upside down, one for three on the gumball and zero for zero on the simultaneous. They were in need of a tiebreaker. It was back to the gumballs.
Shot one was a hit for Blake. It was and it wasn't. Problem was that the shot hit the tee as well as the gumball. No good. And that's as close as he got.
Nailing gumball number one, Police Commander Sumpter saved his bacon for another day.
"What this does is give me more confidence going into future challenges that I know that I can step up and shoot when I need to."
Finding your sweat spot is an incredible feeling. The one single golf swing the feels like nothing but ended up inches from the cup. The bat sending the ball clear over the right field fence. Hitting the gumball when it counts. That's what it's all about.
Especially on Top Shot.