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Wild West Gunslingers in the Modern Age


May 29, 2012 by csukach

The 37th Annual Territory Days in Old Colorado City, Colo., featured a fast-draw shooting competition pairing the skills of modern-day cowboys (and cowgirls) against one another for title of Fast Draw Champion.

Audio Transcript: 

Yippie:  I’m Yippie Kiyeah and I’m a cowgirl and I happen to do Fast Draw.  Fast Draw is the imitation of the Wild Wild West, like in a gunfight, and we compete with targets and timers to find out who’s the fastest and who can win.  My husband was last year’s champion.

Announcer:  Now let’s hear it for Bonnie Ringo.

Bonnie:  Bonnie Ringo and I’m from Monument, Colo.  What we do is we rope off an area and we get all the cowboys that’s in the area and want to compete with each other.  They come out, they bring their Colt 45 pistols and their holsters, and then they go into the ring where safety is everybody’s outside the ropes and only the cowboys are inside.

And then the person in charge of the competition he says, “Okay what we’re going to do is, we’re going to have this match—two out of three competition—so whoever hits the target and has the fastest time, two times out of three, is the winner for that particular match.”

So we go over to where the ammunition is and we load in five blank cartridges—put them in our gun—and then we’re ready.  And he’ll call out the names of the two people that shoots against each other.

We walk up—we got a station one and a station two.  The distance we’re shooting today is 13 feet apart.  We’re 13 feet from the shooter to the balloon.  And what the announcer will do is, he’ll say, “Shooters, are you ready?”

Announcer:  Are the shooters ready?

Bonnie:  And he wants to make sure you’ve got your gun loaded, you’ve got your stance, you’re ready, you’re lined up with the balloon.  And he sees both shooters has acknowledged they’re ready.  And then what he’s going to say is…

Announcer:  Field’s yours.

Bonnie:  “The field is yours.”  And whenever he says, “The field is yours,” he’s going to push a little button and release it.  And when he releases it, sometime between two seconds and seven seconds, a little light’s going to flash right above the balloon you’re shooting at.  And as soon as that light flashes, you’re supposed to draw your gun, cock it, aim it and shoot and hit the balloon, if you can.  And if you do hit the balloon, the person with the fastest time is the winner.  And you do that two out of three times and that’s what the Cowboy Fast Draw Match is all about.


  1. Mike says:

    Good stuff…which one of your categories does this fit under? Somewhere between “thoughts” and “such?”

  2. csukach says:

    “Observations,” of course!

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