LAS VEGAS, Jan. 24, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — As the cold night air descended upon Las Vegas, one of the largest tournament circuits for competitive shooting caught fire. Last week, the 3-Gun Nation (3GN) tournament series held their championship “shoot-off” at the Clark County Shooting Complex in Las Vegas, Nevada. The “shoot-off” is a competition in which competitors use AR-15 style rifles, semi-automatic pistols and shotguns as they race against one another on a parallel course of fire. At stake? A $50,000 cash payday.
Keith Garcia of San Ramon, California defeated Barry Dueck of Huntington Beach, California, two bouts to none in a final showdown to claim the 2012-2013 3-Gun Nation Championship, winning $50,000 from Leupold Tactical Optics and NRA Sports.
Garcia, a law enforcement officer, is one of the most successful shoot-off competitors to date, as this was his third 3GN shoot-off victory. However, Garcia had yet to qualify for 3-Gun’s biggest day.
“I was disappointed last year when I didn’t make the 3-Gun Nation finals,” Garcia said. “I was on a mission to get to the shoot-off this year. It was a very talented field and I’m proud of the effort. It took everything I had to beat these guys.”
To qualify for the final event, the country’s top 64 shooters competed in a series of 3-Gun matches held all over the country. Much like the NASCAR-circuit, shooters dress in jerseys which display their respective sponsors. Their race equipment? Highly tuned firearms built for speed and accuracy.
After the smoke cleared, only 28 qualified for the season-ending tournament. Securing a first-round bye in the 28-man bracket, Garcia was solid in his second-round win. In the following rounds, Garcia settled into a groove, ripping off win after win, setting up the final showdown with Dueck.
Barry Dueck was equally impressive during his run through the tournament, with an opening-round win over shooting legend Jerry Miculek and then a second-round victory over Adam Popplewell, a veterinarian from Ponder, Texas. From there, Dueck pulled off the biggest upset of the tournament with a quarterfinal win over tournament favorite Daniel Horner, of the United States Army Marksmanship Unit.
Dueck, riding extremely accurate rifle shooting, along with his Grand Master-level pistol skills, then knocked off the tournament’s number four seed, team FNH USA’s Greg Jordan in the semi-finals, setting the final match-up with Garcia. Ultimately though, the night belonged to Garcia, who showed fierce determination and focus, most notably in the final round when the competitors had $50,000 on the line.
“3-Gun is like the ‘X-Games’ of competitive shooting,” said 3-Gun Nation President Pete Brown. “Each one of the shooters out there were master-level marksmen from all walks of life who trained their whole lives for this. It’s amazing to watch the level of athleticism and focus each of our shooters display.”
To see more of this sport, and excerpts from the 3-Gun Nation championship, visit www.3GunNation.com or tune in to the Sportsman Channel Thursdays at 10:00 p.m.
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