[su_dropcap style=”light” size=”5″]T[/su_dropcap]he popularity of shooting competitions can be dated back hundreds of years. There is just something about the thrill of competition and improving your shot under pressure. With the 2016 season well underway we wanted to catch up with pro shooter Tim Norris to ﬁnd out how to get started, found a sponsor and ideas on what equipment to use.
American Shooting Journal Tell us about some of your competition success.
Tim Norris I was in the top ﬁve for the Ruger and NSSF Rimﬁre Challenge World Championships from 2008 to 2014. I was also the 2013 Briley West Coast Steel Championship riﬂe champion.
ASJ How did you get started in shooting?
TN I was 8 years old the ﬁrst time I pulled a trigger. I was on a family camping trip in the mountains just outside of Phoenix, Ariz. My father put a 1911 in my hands, helped me support it and bang! It was the greatest thrill of my life up to that point, and I was forever hooked.
ASJ So, your parents clearly encouraged you?
TN Yes. My parents saw how much I enjoyed it and knew how important it was for me to learn ﬁrearm safety and discipline. They enrolled me in a hunter-safety course. Then it got good. My Christmas gifts between the ages of 9 and 10 were ﬁrearms: a .410 shotgun, .22 riﬂe and .22 pistol. I still have those guns today, and every time I handle them they bring back fond memories.
ASJ What made you want to continue?
TN When I was 18, I joined the US Navy and spent six years on active duty. The Navy is where I was introduced to a new world of really fun ﬁrearms, from the M14 to the M2 Browning and everything in between.
ASJ Thank you for your service, Tim! When did you decide you wanted to compete?
TN In 1988 I joined a local club that ran a combat-pistol match every month. Combat shooting, as it was referred to in less politically correct times, was still a fairly new sport and as such was still evolving rapidly. Back then there were few veteran shooters, let alone pros around to draw experience from, so I just had to jump in with both feet and hope for the best.
ASJ What was your ﬁrst competition like for you?
TN My ﬁrst tournament-level competition was the 1991 World Speed Shooting Championships, and it was intimidating. Back then you would pick up the leading shooting magazines and read about the pros and world championship events, and it looked like a lot of fun. The problem was that I didn’t have a clue what it took to compete, so again as before, I jumped in head ﬁrst and hoped that the water was deep enough, but not too deep.
ASJ What did you learn from your ﬁrst event?
TN At the ﬁrst Steel Challenge, there were 30 pros and the other 250 competitors were just like me. Most of us who shoot competitively started just like this, and we continue to compete for the love of the sport. It has become less daunting after a few trips to the shooter’s box. Even though we were novices we had a reliable support network.
ASJ What type of events have you competed in over the years?
TN Over the years, I have shot many diﬀerent kinds of competition, but I am most active in NSSF Rimﬁre Challenge, United States Practical Shooting Association – pistol and riﬂe – and 3-Gun. I love to compete because it pushes me to improve, and I get to hang out with some of the greatest people around.
ASJ When did you get sponsored?
TN In 2009 I realized a lifelong goal of becoming a sponsored shooter and have been on the Volquartsen Firearms team ever since. One of the best side eﬀects of being sponsored is the ability to teach clinics for novice shooters to help them enter the world of competitive shooting.
ASJ It’s great that you take the time to help others. I know you said you are very involved with the NSSF Rimﬁre Challenge. I have heard wonderful things about those events. It is a .22 riﬂe and pistol program created to introduce new people to the shooting sports and provide a pathway to competition. Everyone will want to know what types of ﬁrearms you shoot with and why.
TN I use a 4½-inch Volquartsen Scorpion pistol with a custom Volquartsen compensator, a C-MORE Systems railway dot sight with an 8-minute dot. The sight is attached to a Bearcave Manufacturing 90-degree mount. The pistol has Hogue 1911 stocks that are modiﬁed to ﬁt, and the magazines have a VC spring-loaded magazine ejector. My riﬂe is a Volquartsen Ultralight with a Boyd SS Evolution stock, C-MORE Systems RTS red-dot sight with a 3-minute dot. The sight is mounted scout-riﬂe style on the front end of a VC Picatinny scope mount and has an Alchin Gun Parts rimﬁre riﬂe compensator. I shoot Fiocchi 22FHVCRN high-velocity ammo.
ASJ Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to us today, Tim. Keep us in the loop on your progress – we will be watching.
TN Will do. Thank you.
Editor’s note: If you have questions for Tim Norris, please send them directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.