LETART – Randi Shirley had better watch out. It she keeps hitting her targets, she’s going to earn the same nickname Sitting Bull bestowed on Annie Oakley – “Little Sure Shot.”
Shirley, 14, is a rising star in the fantasy-meets-reality pastime of cowboy action shooting. Dressed in Old West cowboy garb, “Rimfire Randi” engages steel-plate owlhoots and outlaws in timed, stylized shootouts.
To succeed at the cowboy action game, participants must shoot fast and accurately. In a typical gunfight scenario, Shirley might be assigned to engage six targets with her first revolver, four with her shotgun, five with her rifle and six more with her second revolver. Every missed target carries a time penalty. If Shirley’s time beats all the other shooters’ times, she wins.
Lately she’s been winning – a lot.
Last September, shooting in the Buckarette Division for girls 13 and under, Shirley captured the Single Action Shooting Society’s West Virginia state championship. She later finished second in her division at the Mason Dixon Stampede, the organization’s northeastern championships.
Her West Virginia win came with a bonus. All 16 of the match’s division winners held a “Top Gun Shoot-off” to see who could come away with bragging rights. Shirley won her shoot-off with the other women-division winners, and then took on the winner of the men’s shoot-off. In a battle of killer aliases, “Rimfire Randi” beat “High Noon Henry” hands down.