Crawfish Cup winner, SFC Adam Sokolowski is the 2018 NRA Bianchi champion! READ MORE
SOURCE: Various news outlets
With a perfect score of 1920-176X, SFC Adam Sokolowski of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) is the 2018 champion of Colt’s NRA Bianchi Cup, the NRA Action Pistol championship event. Additionally, Sokolowski won the Multi Gun Championship with a score of 3822-329X.
Mark Blake was second, ending up in a points tie with 18-time Bianchi Cup winner and perennial “top gun” best-bet, Doug Koenig; scorecard review broke the tie.
Sokolowski won Midsouth Shooters Supply Crawfish Cup earlier this year, and became now the third time the winner of this event went on to claim the NRA championship. We’re very proud that the Crawfish Cup has attained that status: if you can win here you can win there…
SFC Sokolowski holds another distinction as an NRA Action Pistol champion: he is the only shooter who has won all three Bianchi Cup divisions — Open, Metallic, and Production (and the first-ever perfect score in the Metallic [sights] division. This man can shoot a pistol! And all that in just four years on the circuit.
Rob Vadasz is the 2018 Metallic champion with 1912-155X, his sixth win in this division. Second place Metallic was Enoch Smith (also 2018 World Action Pistol Metallic Champion) 1907-150X. Third was Roman Hauber with 1906-141X.
In the Production division, Sokolowski’s AMU teammate SFC Patrick Franks took the championship home to Ft. Benning with a 1894-136X. Franks previously won back-to-back Bianchi Metallic Championships, as well as having earned a NRA National Precision Pistol Championship. Second went to legendary action pistol shooter Rob Leatham of Team Springfield Armory with a score of 1862-129X. Seiichi Ishikawa followed Rob in third place with 1822-109X.
Anita Mackiewicz, now a three-time champion, won the Women’s Championship with a score of 1911-153X. Second place went to last year’s winner, Cherie Blake, 1910-137X. 2016 champion Tiffany Piper finished third with 1903-154X.
Read complete coverage by John Parker HERE and HERE
We’re excited to be heading back to Lake Charles, Louisiana for the 2017 Midsouth Shooters Crawfish Cup! Familiarize yourselves with this illustrious Action Pistol Championship with our previous articles by Clicking here, and here.
Last year, we saw Bruce Piatt take the cup in a dramatic finish to what was one of the most exciting Crawfish Cup competitions yet. Team Black Nitride took all three top spots with Tony Holmes, and Doug Koenig taking second and third, respectively. Midsouth Shooter, Kevin Angstadt took home the fourth place prize.
We also saw greats like Vera Koo, and Team Yackley compete hard, and take home honors of their own. Tim Yackley won the Junior Division, and Vera achieved Grand High Lady!
Every year, The Crawfish Cup becomes more than an NRA Action Pistol event. It’s a place where greats come to hone their skills before the Flagler and Bianchi Cup Championships, and it’s a place where amateurs and professionals can compete side-by-side. The undercurrent of the shoot is always one of friendly competition, and conversation. It’s a warm environment for every shooter involved, and it’s not just the oppressing humidity of a Louisiana late spring.
The 2016 Bianchi Cup is scheduled to run through May 28, 2016 at the Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club in Hallsville, Missouri. It is one of the crown jewels of shooting competition, and since its inception in 1979, the event has changed the landscape of competition shooting forever. First prize money in 2016 is $12,000, $2,250 for 2nd place, and $1,500 for third. Here are a few more fast facts about the Bianchi Cup:
1) Two men are primarily responsible for creating the Bianchi Cup: Ray Chapman and John Bianchi. The latter is the better known of the two, with Bianchi’s name long established as a holster maker, law-enforcement officer, and Hollywood cowboy. But as a law-enforcement officer and IPSC champion of the 1970s himself, Chapman was likewise integral in the creation of the event. Chapman passed away in 2008. The current shooting site at Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club was formerly called the Chapman Training Academy.
2) The Bianchi Cup course of fire is a mixture of IPSC, Police Pistol Combat, and NRA Conventional Bullseye pistol-shooting styles. In 1984, the formal name of the event became the NRA Bianchi Cup, National Action Pistol Championship.
3) Citizens of any country may win the MidwayUSA & NRA Bianchi Cup Championship, except by those whose countries restrict participation and winning their championship to their own citizens.
4) The first of the four match sections is the Practical Event, followed by the Barricade Event, the Falling Plate Event, and the Moving Target Event.
5) Competitors are cautioned not to pick up dropped firearms unless under the direction of a tournament official. Dropping of an unloaded firearm and subsequently picking it up creates two safety violations and is reason for disqualification. Dropping an unloaded firearm is not sufficient reason for disqualification by itself, so competitors should contact a tournament official before picking up a dropped firearm.
To see results of this year’s competition, click here.
2016 marks our first venture into action pistol, and it was an amazing experience, filled with great people. Action pistol is a sport, in every sense of the word. It takes a ridiculous amount of dedication, discipline, and attention in order to be a competitor.
Our group arrived in Lake Charles, LA to a torrential downpour. Thankfully, the clouds parted shortly after our arrival. In 2015, the competition, as well as the competitors, weren’t so lucky…
This year was blessedly cooperative weather-wise. The wide field of 87 competitors, ranging in all ages, and pistol varieties, were eager to get their feet wet on the course of fire, so to speak. Greeted by the range master, as well as the lead range officer, George Mowbray, and Gary Yantis, the heart and soul of the match. Their experience and expertise are only matched by their hospitality, and their willingness to impart any knowledge one wishes to gain about anything Crawfish Cup.
Gary and George, both pro pistol shooters with decades of experience between them, have built an amazing match thus far. In 2015, the match saw 70 competitors, with Bruce Piatt taking home the cup. 2014 had a similar field of competitors, with the Midsouth sponsored shooter, Kevin Angstadt raising the cup. 2013 had world class shooter Doug Koenig adding the Crawfish Cup to his trophy case. Every year saw outstanding competitors, and George and Gary making sure every competitor had a safe, fair, and fun competition. Having them to work with in preparation for 2017 only fuels our desire to exceed the progress we made this year in providing the best experience for every competitor on the road to the prestigious Bianchi Cup.
Something that makes the Crawfish Cup special is the field of competition. We had the immense pleasure of meeting great people at every turn. Please head over to the competitor profile section to meet a few shooters from all over the U.S. Each one brought something special to the match. Also attending this year were the three members of the Yackley 5ive, Tim and Sean Yackley, and their mom, competitor Becky Yackley. These bright young men are the future of action pistol. We got the chance to bounce a few questions off them prior to the match:
Tim and Sean Yackley are not only involved in every aspect of action pistol, they take their dedication beyond Crawfish and Bianchi Cup, and into long range shooting, 3-gun, all the way down to working the reloading bench. When asked about their level of commitment to the shooting sports, they said, “One of the things that really makes us love shooting is seeing what we’ve been able to do with all the little things we’ve done: we don’t have anyone training us, it’s a lot of our own work, over years. As kids, it’s neat to see the tiny bits of work we do with each other turn into a great performance – stuff like working on particular skills and seeing that help each other in a match, or taking a small piece of advice someone gave us on say, shooting barricades, and seeing it play a role in something we figure out and can grow from – those things really make the little parts of everything we’ve done, with help from lots of people come into play.”
These Lucas Oil Outdoor sponsored shooters are already making a name for themselves. Tim Yackley took home first place in the Master Category, at age 13! Proof positive of a stellar career in shooting sports, and a definite presence at The Crawfish Cup.
Team Cerino stands out, and it’s not just because of Michelle’s tiara. Chris and Michelle are fierce competitors, and have a great rapport with every other shooter they encounter, adding a level of fun to each section of the match that we had no idea could exist in such a regimented structure.
Vera Koo is not only a shooter of legend, she’s a true ambassador to the sport. Earning High Lady, and Grand High Lady this year at the cup was a great achievement. Beyond that, she donated $300 of her own money to be divided up, and given as door prizes to other shooters.
See, it’s the elements that lie underneath the surface of the competition. These acts of comeradery, generosity, and respect are what propel The Crawfish Cup to the next level.
Check out part 2 for more on the individual matches, competitor interactions, and information on the 2016 Crawfish Cup and their sponsors!
Have you participated in Action Pistol, or any other shooting competition? Tell us about it in the comments below!
The 2016 Crawfish Cup has grown by leaps and bounds this year, and it’s all thanks for the sponsors who gave generously to the competition. Sponsors help make shooting sports possible through donations of products, money, or improvements to the range.
At the time of this article, there are 90 competitors, with 19 of those competitors shooting the Aggregate Match. You’ll be able to follow all the action with live updates at the Crawfish Cup’s website. Click Here to check it out!
Our event sponsors top our list:
Secure Firearm Products: Moving Targets Event
TK Custom: Practical Event
Lucas Oil: Falling Plates Event
Western Powders: Open Gun
Briley Custom: Barricade Event
The Special Categories:
“What-Ya-Say” Hearing Protection: Ladies Awards
Zero Bullet Company: Junior Category
Communications Provided by:
LRC Wireless (Louisiana Radio Communications)
Platinum Level Sponsors:
Montana Gold Bullets
Gold Level Sponsors:
Silver Level Sponsors:
NRA Competitive Shooting
Graf & Sons
Bronze Level Sponsor:
Boyd’s Hardwood Gunstocks
Finally, there’s just us, Midsouth Shooters Supply. All we wanted to do was see the event take off like it deserved. Not only is the event a great build-up to Bianchi Cup, but it’s a great match in and of itself. Further more, it’s ran by some of the best people you could meet in shooting sports. Come to Lake Charles, Louisiana and see for yourself. At least stay long enough to enjoy the crawfish boil.
Follow the action of the cup HERE. Enjoy the site, look at the pictures from matches past, and stay tuned for pictures from this year as we’ll be uploading those during the matches. Also, check out the competitor profiles here. There are some great contenders attending this year. Doug Koenig, Bruce Piatt, and Kevin Angstadt are all past champions, and will be in attendence. You’ll also see some relatively new faces like Tracie Rushing, and some legends in the sport, like Carl Bernosky!
We’ll have more to come soon. Thank to you, and thanks to the sponsors that make events like this possible.