Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - 36

FEATURE // NATIONAL LONG RANGE

After fourteen years of training,
practice, heartbreak and success,
SSG Tyrel Cooper emerged
victorious for the 2013 Long
Range Championship.

PHOTOS AND STORY BY LARS DALSEIDE

RIFLE
2013 NATIONAL LONG RANGE

CHAMPIONSHIPS

T

he final summer
days of NRA’s
National Rifle and
Pistol Champions
are reserved for
the big guns—the high powered, long range rifles. Shooting
at distances up to 1,000 yards,
where a whisper of wind turns
two-fisted bullseyes into heartbreaking sevens, is not for
the faint of heart. Conditions
in recent years have been
bleak, with 20-mph winds
blowing in one direction at
400 yards, and from another
direction at 900. And then
there is the rain and heat.
This is the life of a long range
shooter—A “wind shooter.”
36 SSUSA SEPTEMBER 2013

SSG Tyrel Cooper won this
year’s National Long Range
title. But it came down to
the last relay, on the last day.

It is the life that SSG Tyrel
Cooper of the U.S. Army
Marksmanship Unit (AMU)
has been living for 14 years.
Getting his first taste of competition at his father’s Police & Fire
Games in California, he found
his way into the Army and on
to the AMU soon after high
school. He’s been working for
a chance at the national long
range title ever since.
Day one of the NRA Long
Range Championships is the
Saturday following the acrossthe-course matches. After
morning roll call, half the
shooters board the shooter
shuttle to expedite the long
trip to the target pits.

With a 150-12X fired in the
initial shoot-off (long range
matches culminate in a daily
shoot-off), Cooper jumped out
of the gate with the Remington
Band of Brothers title and the
overall lead. It would be a fleeting victory, however.
The leads changed on day two
when the AMU’s Shane Barnhart
was near perfect. Firing alongside “Coop” and AMU teammate
Brandon Green, Barnhart managed to accomplish something
unique: Finishing first overall
at the end of day two, but not
qualifying for the daily shoot-off.
“No idea how that happened,”
said a good-humored Barnhart.
“You wouldn’t think it was



Shooting Sports USA - September 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Shooting Sports USA - September 2013

Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - Cover1
Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - Cover2
Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - 3
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Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - Cover3
Shooting Sports USA - September 2013 - Cover4
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