Competitive Shooting

Top Shot All-Stars — Threading the Needle

Son-of-a-gun. Wouldn’t you know it, the week after I pick my top four, one of them gets eliminated! That surprise elimination was about the only interesting thing about this episode though. Sometimes it seems the producers take a creative break and just throw something together, like, “Hey, let’s have them shoot tin cans off a fence this week.” Makes it feel like a placeholder while they’re building the really cool challenge for next week. I hope that’s the case. So this week the competition for the remaining 10 shooters was to spin a wheel with a (as Adam noticed) Colby-esque silhouette on it. Whatever orientation the silhouette was in when the wheel stopped was how that shooter had to make his shot. Each competitor was strapped onto a large wheel, spun a few times, and stopped in a position matching the silhouette. After that, the fun stopped.

From this point it was a very straight-forward bullseye match, using a Ruger Single-Six .38 caliber revolver to see who was closest to center. Chris won this one, with Kelly maintaining his impressive first/second streak. The bottom four went to the proving ground, and last night it was Adam, Brian, Gary, and Jamie. Those of you following already know what that means, but let me finish the story.

At the proving ground, they used the Colt Peacemaker to shoot bullseyes to see who would go to elimination. Brian and Adam shoot well, sending Gary and Jamie to face off.

The elimination is another challenge from TS1, wherein the shooters must shoot through a series of seven tubes that reduce in diameter from three inches to one-and-a-half, with exploding charges at the ends to mark a hit. Gary and Jamie lined up for this head-to-and at the signal, got off to a quick start, blazing away with the Beretta 92F, a weapon I am intimately familiar with! Gary got off first, but Jamie caught up quickly, and they went neck-and-neck through six tubes. Both men took several shots at the smallest tube, which is a pretty tight shot, but in the end, Gary fired the winning shot, eliminating Jamie from the competition.

Too bad, I had Jamie picked as one of my final four. He was a versatile shooter, familiar with a variety of weapons, and accustomed to competition pressure, but it just wasn’t his day. Congrats to Gary for surviving elimination, but let’s hope they juice the competition up for next week.

Who do you predict will stay or go home in the next episode? Tell us in the comment section.

About the Author:

Daryl Parker

Daryl Parker is a combat veteran and retired U.S. Marine. He is also a 2002 Rifle Gold Medalist, Texas Peace Officer, firearms and law enforcement instructor, and standout marksman from History Channel's Top Shot (Season 2). Parker is the author of Sacrifice of the Season, The Death of More and Journey of Fear.
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