Defending Bianchi Cup champion Doug Koenig poised to take lead from Harrison on the final day of competition
Columbia, Missouri – -(NRAblog.com)- As Thursday's sun set upon the Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club, Iain Harrison sat comfortably in the lead for NRA's 2013 Bianchi Cup Championship. Even then he knew the lead was fleeting.
As winner of the History Channel's first season of Top Shot, Harrison knows a little something about shooting competitions. He also knows that his final numbers are not enough. Those fresh on his heels (including defending Bianchi champ Doug Koenig) still have one more stage left to shoot while Harrison has none. When all is said and done, they will have no problem overtaking Harrison's 315 point lead.
Harrison is also firing in the Metallic category. In the Metallic category, competitors are limited to metallic sights. Though commendable, it puts him at a disadvantage when going up against those in the Open category who are shooting with optical sights. The top shooters behind him? All are in the Open category. One way or another, they are going to end the match with much higher scores.
At the head of those on Harrison's heels are Doug Koenig, Bruce Piatt and Carl Bernosky. Three of the world's best. These men are only separated by a handful of X's. Their final event for the match is the Moving Target stage. If history is any lesson, the final day of competition will end with one of their names on the cup.
This isn't the first time the championship was decided at the wire, which is why Bianchi officials always place the previous year's top shooters in the same squad. That way, they ensure a touch of tension, along with a considerable crowd, for the final event.
“It's great to watch these guys go through Moving Target one at a time to close out the championship,” said Assistant Match Director Damien Orsinger. “The suspense really captivates the crowd. It's unbelievably loud for the final shots.”
No matter who finishes on top, at least Harrison can lay claim to the Day Two lead. And at the MidwayUSA/NRA Bianchi Cup, where victories are few and far between, any victory is a good victory.
Here's where we are as the final day of competition begins:
PlaceNameScore1Iain Harrison1755-96x2Doug Koenig1440-141x3Bruce Piatt1440-136x4Carl Bernosky1440-135x5Kevin Angstadt1440-133x