The Redstone skeet shooting team has captured more awards in annual competitions.
Six skeet shooters representing Redstone Arsenal attended the Alabama State Skeet Championships held at the Red Eagle Gun Club, Childersburg, May 31 to June 2. The championships included individual, two person and five person team events. The Redstone Base Club Team included Layne Merritt of CCDC Aviation & Missile Center, Mark Haughs of CALIBRE Systems, Gary Hunter, now of Kratos Defense, and Larry Krutsinger of the Army Materiel Command, all retired military; and David Thompson of Madison. Other competitors from Redstone Arsenal included Alan Cotney formerly of AMC (retired military), Roy Jorgensen formerly of AMC, and Bill Hale of Kratos Defense (retired military).
The competition included more than 65 shooters from the state of Alabama. During the three-day competition, shooters shoot 100 doubles targets (two birds thrown simultaneously) and 400 standard targets (a combination of doubles targets and single targets). Standard targets are shot 100 at a time using the 12, 20 and 28 gauges and the 410 bore shotgun. The high overall champion is determined by the total number of targets broke using the four guns.
The competition began with the doubles event with Gun Champ award going to David Thompson. Retired Military Champion Runner-Up went to Haughs and Retired Military third to Krutsinger. The two-man team of Haughs and Krutsinger won the two-man retired military championship. Also the two-man retired military team of Merritt and Hunter placed third in this event.
In the 12 gauge event, the top scores consisted of three 100x100s with Redstone shooter Merritt shooting one of the perfect scores of 100 and through a lengthy tie breaker shootoff process Merritt ended up third in the 12 gauge event, also capturing Retired Military Champion. Krutsinger, shooting a 96, finished second in A class. Merritt and Hunter won the two-man retired military team championship. The Redstone five-man Base Team of Haughs, Hunter, Krutsinger, Merritt and Thompson won the 12 gauge championship.
For the 20 gauge event, besides Merritt shooting another perfect score, two other Alabama shooters shot perfect scores of 100. Again through a lengthy tie breaker shootoff process, Merritt ended up third in the 20 gauge event and securing the Retired Military Champion. Thompson shot a solid 98, with Hunter and Krutsinger shooting 97x100s. Krutsinger also placed third in the Retired Military category. Hunter and Merritt again won the two-man retired military team championship with Haughs and Krutsinger placing third in the two-man retired military team. Again the Redstone five-man team of Haughs, Hunter, Krutsinger, Merritt and Thompson finished as the 20 gauge champions.
In the 28 gauge event, four 100 straight were shot in this event. This time from the Redstone five-man team, Thompson shot one of the 100s straight. With the regulation shootoff, he did not win the gun champ honors but became the gun champ for his AA Class. Krutsinger finished second in the AA class. Through a spirited shootoff for A class second and third with Hunter and Haughs both shooting 97s, Hunter finished second in A class with Haughs placed third. Hunter ended up claiming the Retired Military Champion with Haughs placing runner-up. Haughs and Krutsinger again won the Retired Military two-man team and Hunter and Merritt finished third. The Redstone five-man team of Haughs, Hunter, Krutsinger, Merritt and Thompson finished in the 28 gauge champions runner-ups.
In the 410 event, Merritt placed third with a solid 96x100, also claiming Retired Military Champion and Haughs finished second in B Class with a 93, landing third in the Retired Military Champion category. Thompson landed second in his AA class with shooting a 90. With Hunter shooting a 90, he just fell out of the top five B class rankings. Hunter and Merritt took two-man Retired Military Runner-up and Haughs and Krutsinger landed two-man retired military third. Again the Redstone five-man team of Haughs, Hunter, Krutsinger, Merritt and Thompson finished as the 410 gauge champions.
The High Overall Championship is determined by the combined scores of the 12, 20, 28 and 410 events. Merritt placed third in the HOA championship with his 387x400. Thompson landed top of his AA HOA Class with a very sound 386. Hunter and Haughs after a HOA shootoff B Class for places fourth and fifth, who both had a 377x400, Hunter finished fourth overall, and Haughs finished fifth. Krutsinger landed fourth in his HOA class of A. Merritt won the HOA Retired Military Champion and Hunter placed third. Hunter and Merritt won the HOA two-man team championship, with Haughs and Krutsinger placed third in the two-man HOA Retired Military Champions. The Redstone team of Haughs, Hunter, Merritt, Krutsinger, and Thompson finished as the five-man team HOA champions. It should also be noted that the Redstone Skeet Team (Haughs, Hunter, Krutsinger, Merritt), again won the 2019 Base/Club Team High Overall Championships at the Armed Service Skeet Championships shoots held in Richmond, Virginia. This win is the Redstone five-man team’s fifth championship award since 2012.
In addition to the main titles, Redstone members won a number of concurrent awards, which consist of age categories, and retired military events shot concurrently with the main events.
This current team has been representing Redstone while on active duty and now retired military shooters in the Armed Forces Skeet Championships, Alabama Skeet Shooting Association shoots, as well as other shoots across the country for 10 years. The 2020 Armed Forces Skeet Championships will be at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
The Alabama Skeet Shooting Association had a huge honor of inducting Krutsinger at the ASSA annual skeet championships into the ASSA Hall of Fame. He has been dedicated to promoting the sport of skeet shooting for 40-plus years, competing/introducing/instructing new shooters young and old to skeet across the country and various military installations.
The Redstone Arsenal Skeet team expressed their appreciation to Outdoor Recreation for the sponsorship and support of the annual Armed Forces Skeet Championships.
Individuals interested in learning, improving or competing in skeet shooting or improving their field shooting should call Outdoor Recreation at 876-4868 or visit the ASSA website at www.alskeet.org for skeet shoot events and contacts.