Match Director

Roger Estes

(703) 409-0497

About Highpower Metallic Silhouette:

The sport originated in Mexico. It began with the use of various live animals at various distances, to metallic cut-outs at specific distances.

It is believed to have begun around 1914 by the followers of Pancho Villa. There was a dispute between two men and the squad leader Juan Martinez had the idea of them shooting at long range at a steer that had been taken for food. The each would shoot alternately and the first to kill his steer would be the winner. That contest was enjoyed and began to be repeated with other animals at other distances. After the Mexican Revolution the contests continued throughout different regions of Mexico.

After the conclusion of World War II, the thought that it was too inhumane to use live animals in such a sport caught on. This was the birth of the name “Silhuetas Metallicas” and its first match in 1948 held in Mexico City using the metal silhouettes of the animals and not live animals. Don Gongalo Qguilar organized that first match and in 1952 was the person behind the organization of the “Silhuetas Metallicas Nacionales” in Mexico City, or the Mexico National Championship of Metallic Silhouette. The targets there were “Gallinas” (Chickens) at 200 meters, “Gualotes” (Turkeys) at 385 meters and “Borregos” (Sheep) at 500 meters. Later, in the mid 1960’s the “Javelina” (Pig) at 300 meters was added.

Eventually around 1960 the Northern League or “La Liga Del Norte” of Mexico started to draw some attention of the people living in the Southwestern United States. They started crossing the border to compete. There were some competitions being held in Southern Arizona but in April 1968 the first formal Metallic Silhouette competition in the United States was held at the Tucson Rifle Club.

In November 1972 the NRA sponsored its first Rifle Silhouette Championships and officially recognized it as a shooting discipline.

Today Metallic Silhouette is an international sport with several categories of competition. It is governed by the International Metallic Silhouette Shooting Union (IMSSU). Eighteen countries are members of the IMSSU they are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, USA and Zimbabwe.

This is how each bank of five targets are done…………

You rifle begins unloaded in a “Benched” position, you cannot be holding it or touching it in any way. You can have no more ammunition with you than is needed in your relay, or 5 rounds maximum per pre-loaded clip if it is clip fed. If you are shooting 10 rounds in each relay, you have a maximum of 10 rounds with you, or a maximum of two clips with 5 rounds in each clip.

“READY” command is given, You then can load your rifle with your first bullet or snap in your clip and you can adjust your scope. YOU CANNOT SHOOT YET!

15 seconds later the “FIRE” command is given. You then have a total of 2 minutes and 30 seconds to shoot one shot at each target. After the 2 minutes and 30 seconds the command “CEASE FIRE” is given.

While firing, you must shoot only one shot at each target and in the correct order from left to right. Any shot done incorrectly is counted as a miss even if a target is knocked down. If you miss a target, you move to the next target. If you accidentally discharge your rifle, if for any reason a round is discharged, it is counted as a shot and you move to the next target. If you nick a target and move it, it is not a hit unless it is moved off the pedestal. If it is a two footed animal, Pig or Ram, if one foot moves “completely” off the pedestal, it is a hit. If the bullet ricochets, spins, tumbles, does a back flip and then the intended target is hit and knocked down, it is a hit. If you have a miss-fire shell, one that fails to discharge, or your gun malfunctions, you declare an “Alibi” for that shot, and any other occurring during that bank of 5 targets, fired as described below, immediately following the “CEASE FIRE” for that bank of 5 targets, you are allowed this privilege only once in a match. Also, if your gun malfunctioned, you may replace it for the remainder of that match, or repair it if it will not delay the match, and use an “Alibi” for each shot in that bank in which it malfunctioned.

ALIBI: You will be allowed the 15 seconds after the command of “READY” to prepare your rifle and 30 seconds to fire after the “FIRE” or command.

NOTE: During a relay, a minimum of 30 seconds will be allowed between the command “CEASE FIRE” of the First set of 5 and the command of “READY” for your next set of 5 in that relay. After each relay is complete there is usually a few minutes delay for targets to be reset.

Shoot-offs for ties: You will be allowed the 15 seconds after the command of “Ready” to prepare your rifle and 30 seconds to fire after the “Fire” command. This will repeat until the tie is broken.

Center fire rifles must have a minimum caliber of .243 (6mm). The ultimate choice of caliber comes down to a trade-off between the rifle’s felt recoil and the ability of the bullet to retain sufficient energy to topple the targets

MORE TECHNICAL DESCRIPTIONS……………. Here are some more technical descriptions from the rulebook that describe equipment and clothing.

Spotting Scope -The use by the coach of a telescope or other optical device to spot shots is permitted.

Clothing -Commercial type trap and skeet vests (sleeveless ) and shotgun shooting shirts are permitted as well as clothing normally suitable for existing climatic temperatures. Shooting coats, unnecessarily heavy clothing, or anything on the person that would provide artificial support such as clothing having excess padding or stiffening material or which restricts or supports the body in the shooting position may not be worn. Any dispute regarding clothing will be submitted to the Jury for decision.

Sleeveless leather, vinyl, heavy fabric or multiple layered vests that may be considered or construed to be unnecessarily heavy or to provide artificial support are permitted if they can be closed over a gauge made from 4 inch thin wall PVC pipe, not less than 30 inches in length, passed through the entire length of the vest, and opened or vented from the bottom edge to a point two inches above the crest of the hipbone.

Open Bolt Indicators – An Open Bolt Indicator is required in all NRA Silhouette competition to indicate the bolt is open.

Eye Protection – All competitors and other personnel in the immediate vicinity of the range complex are required to wear eye protection devices.

Ear Protection – All competitors and other personnel in the immediate vicinity of the range complex are required to wear hearing protection devices.

Oh, did I mention that this is all done in ‘stand up shooting’,  the off hand position?

I hope you come and join us for all of our matches. They will be a ton of fun!

– Roger Estes

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