FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA – For the past 30 years, the National Rifle Association has celebrated action pistol as one of the premier disciplines in shooting sports. Its masterpiece, the NRA National Action Pistol Championship, also known as the NRA Bianchi Cup, will crown another superstar this year in Columbia, Missouri, May 21 to 24. Year after year the NRA Bianchi Cup brings more than 200 of the world’s top pistol marksmen to the Green Valley Rifle and Pistol Club’s Chapman Academy Range. The sizeable cash and prizes awarded to the winners ranks this tournament one of the richest in the sport.

“The NRA Bianchi Cup showcases the top pistol marksmen in the world,” said John C. Sigler, President of the NRA. “NRA competitive shooting programs and events play an important role in NRA’s overall success in providing law-abiding Americans with a variety of exciting and demanding opportunities to exercise their Second Amendment rights in a safe and secure venue. Championships like this demonstrate the importance of securing the world of competitive shooting for generations to come.”

Since its inception, the NRA Bianchi Cup has retained its original course of fire, consisting of four matches: Practical, Barricade, Moving Target and Falling Plates. Speed and accuracy is the key to winning the Championship. Each event is timed and is worth 480 points, equaling a total of 1920 possible points.

Action pistol competitors are permitted to use a two handed grip, and competitors must start with their guns holstered. During the course of the matches, participants fire at turning cardboard silhouette targets, moving targets, and steel plates that must be knocked down to count as a hit. This type of competition makes the match more appealing to spectators.

The defending champion, Doug Koenig of Alburtis, PA, will return once again. In 2007 he won his tenth NRA Bianchi Cup — but his first since 2005. Bruce Piatt, Carl Bernosky, Rob Leatham and countless others are expected to return for this historical year.

An invitation match called the Bianchi International Speed Event concludes the tournament. The top-scoring competitors from the open championship join the top-scoring four women, junior and senior competitors in an elimination contest which measures the contestants’ accuracy and speed. This year’s competition will also include the first-ever Ray Chapman Speed Star Event, a tribute to one of the competition’s designers.

For more information about the Bianchi Cup and Action Pistol events, contact Tom Hughes at or call him at NRA Headquarters at (703) 267-1478 or (800) 672-3888, extension 1478.

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