FALLON — The Cowboy Fast Draw Association (CFDA) is again hosting its annual signature event The Fastest Gun Alive – World Championship of Cowboy Fast Draw. Fallon, Nevada is the host city for its 15th year, at the Churchill County Fairgrounds, Oct. 6-9.
Cowboy Fast Draw is a western-themed shooting sport which features wax bullet ammunition allowing competitions to be held almost anywhere. Safety is always the highest concern. Six-guns and holsters are from the old west time-period and the competitors dress in period themed clothing as well. It’s a very colorful sport with shooters adopting aliases to compete under, in the spirit of the old west.
The Cowboy Fast Draw Association moved this event from Deadwood, SD to Fallon in 2008, “The Fastest Gun Alive” has turned into a major tourist attraction for Fallon. Hundreds of competitors and vendors from across the nation spend most of a week in Fallon. Plus, spectators travel from Northern California, Nevada, and several other states to watch a great competition and learn about the sport.
The event this year is moving into the new Rafter 3C Arena, which is a 75,000-sqaure foot indoor event center. On hand will be food vendors as well as crafters featuring western-themed artisans and western vintage clothing.
The Fastest Gun Alive Tournament attracts more than 250 of the fastest guns from across the United States, Canada, Switzerland and France. This event has been covered nationally on the Outdoor Channel, History Channel, Travel Channel, plus the Northern Nevada Media, including all four network affiliates.
Men, Ladies & and Youth compete in separate divisions. Educating as many people as possible in the safe and proper use of firearms is one of the Cowboy Fast Draw Association’s primary goals. CFDA, the sport’s sanctioning and rules authority, has established Range Officer and Youth Safety Training Programs.
The competition is an elimination format with the bouts determined by “luck of the draw”. Six-guns are never pointed at anyone; instead, both shooters stand side by side with each having a 17” metal plate target 15’ downrange. A digital timer signals a start light on each target simultaneously and both shooters must react to the light, draw, fire and hopefully hit their target faster than their opponent. Hip shooting these targets at competitive speeds is very challenging, as speed and accuracy are equally balanced.
According to Quick Cal, Director of CFDA and Match Director, “It’s not always the fastest shooter who wins, but rather the shooter who keeps a cool head and a hot hand.”
It takes three winning shots for a competitor to guarantee moving to the next round, the loser receives an “X” and once a fourth X is received, they’re out of the running for the coveted title of, “The Fastest Gun Alive”.
The Magnificent 7 Finals, Sunday around high noon, are always very exciting to watch, sometimes a match can be decided by as little as one thousandth of a second. Spectators are welcome. There is an excellent view to see the hits on the targets and the blazing times on audience displays.
The main event’s preliminary rounds are held on Friday and Saturday, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Admission is free all three days. On Saturday only (Oct. 8) you can even try Cowboy Fast Draw.
For more information on the sport and the Fastest Gun Alive, including informational videos, go to: www.cowboyfastdraw.com.