NRA Whittington Center hosts Black Powder Target Rifle.

Haven’t had your fill of rifle competition this summer? You’re in luck. NRAblog is heading out to the NRA Whittington Center in Raton, New Mexico, for the 2012 NRA Black Powder Target Rifle Championships starting next week.

The National Rifle Association’s oldest shooting discipline, black powder, also has one of the  NRA’s oldest trophies – the Castle Trophy. This trophy is awarded to the winner of the Creedmoor Match, where competitors fire 60 shots broken evenly between 800, 900 and 1,000 yards.

Black powder is pretty different from the matches we just saw at High Power. One of the big differences between the two disciplines is that on top of every condition Camp Perry shooters must deal with (except the rain… Raton doesn’t see much rain), wind affects black powder so much more since shooters need to make sure their bullets meet certain weight requirements and, once fired, that they reach a certain velocity to protect those working in the pits.

And you won’t be seeing High Power scores at the BPTR Championships, which makes high scores all the more impressive. Last year Keith “Doc” Lay won the Creedmoor Match with a 514-6x out of a possible 600. Will he repeat in 2012? We’ll soon find out.

“Competitors are beginning to arrive at the Whittington Center and we’re really excited for this year’s championships,” said Match Director Jonathan Leighton. “The next week is going to get pretty busy but will be a lot of fun. We’re going to make sure everyone has a great time.”

Image courtesy NRA Blog

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