One of the more interesting pieces of info to come out of this year’s Bianchi Cup was Larry Potterfield’s announcement of a $100,000 prize for the first person to break 1900 with a Production gun at Bianchi Cup. For the two people that don’t know who Larry is, he’s the owner of MidwayUSA, and a huge sponsor of Bianchi Cup and the shooting sports in general. This is a pretty cool prize, and it shows Larry’s commitment to growing action pistol and the new Production Division as well.
For those that don’t know how Bianchi scoring works, the match consists of exactly 192 rounds. No more, no less. Each shot has a maximum value of 10 points, for a perfect match score of 1920. With an 8 inch 10 ring, that score is often achieved by shooters in the open division, who can use electronic sights, barricade wings, and other mechanical enhancements for their pistol. No metallic division (similar to Limited) shooter has ever shot a perfect 1920, although a few have come very close. In the 2009 Cup, three metallic shooters were over the 1900 mark, which had never been done before. The Production winner in ’09 shot an 1806, and in 2010 the Production winner shot an 1853. As you can see, scores are getting better – but to shoot 190 perfect shots out of 192 is a tall order.
I think that this will drive more “Pro Shooters” to Bianchi’s Production Division. That’s a good thing, because as the Pros go, so goes everyone else. With Dave Sevigny and a big chunk of Team S&W shooting Production, it will be interesting to see how many big names land in that division next year with $100,000 on the line for a near perfect performance. It will test both the skills of the shooters and the mechanical accuracy of their guns – a good Bianchi gun should be able to shoot 2-3 inches at 50 yards, and with the addition of allowing match barrels at the Cup for Production, I think we’ll start seeing 2 inch Glocks and other guns. The 2011 Cup and the $100,000 Production Bounty are definitely going to be interesting…and I think I’ve got my next goal after the Quest for Master Class!