Gold Medal Concours d'Elegance of Fine Guns

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Gold Medal Concours d'Elegance of Fine Guns



9th Gold Medal Concours Results


The -9th-
Gold Medal Concours d'Elegance of Fine Guns

Proudly Presented by the NRA
And in association with
B. Searcy & Co. • Dan Walter Cases • Turnbull Restoration • Ruger

The 9th GMC took place on 14 May, 2005, in conjunction with The National Side by Side Festival, at the Northbrook Sports Club in Hainesville, Illinois. Despite less than perfect weather, the Concours drew excellent participation in a new region, with approximately 70 fine and historic guns and rifles entered for display and judging.

In marked contrast to Concours on the East and West Coasts, GMC IX drew very few English guns, and none by Purdey, H&H or Boss. American makers Winchester and L.C. Smith were unusually well represented--the former not only with a superb small collection of Model 21 guns but also by a lavishly embellished Model 1895 rifle in .405Win. However, another star of the show was in fact English: an extraordinary and massive double-barreled 6-bore flintlock rifle, built around 1780 by Mortimer of London. According to its owner, Conrad Sundeen, the rifle was commissioned for an expedition to the Arctic, at a time when no one knew exactly what to expect but evidently it was thought best to be ready for anything. (Judging by the near-new condition of the rifle, either the expedition never took place or the Mortimer was excused from duty.) On the shotgun side, entries ranged from several very fine 8-bore doubles by makers such as W.W. Greener to a wispy Watson Bros. "naturalist's" hammer side-by-side with 22-inch barrels chambered for the two-inch .410 cartridge.

For the first time there was an overlap in the top three GMC awards. The NRA Cup and the Boothroyd People's Choice honors both went to an unusual, possibly unique and historic 28-bore side-by-side shotgun by Pauly. The Concours is commissioning further research on the gun, and results will be published. The Pauly and the Norman Blank Best in Show winner (below) will be invited to be displayed at the National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, Virginia.

The by-invitation NRA Foundation breakfast hosted by the Concours was well attended, as usual. The featured attractions were Doug Turnbull, who spoke about his company's re-discovered historically accurate finishing techniques for vintage guns; and Jerry Bersett, a trustee of the NRA Foundation.

High-quality digital photographs of the winning guns (and many others) are available from the GMC and will be posted on GoldMedalConcours.com. Once again, Steve Helsley and Dan Mayers, the GMC photo crew, worked many hours to make this happen.

With appreciation and thanks to the judges (David Moore, Jack Dudley, Ray Roy, Roger Sanger, Silvio Calabi) and to the Concours sponsors (NRA, B. Searcy & Co., Dan Walter cases, Turnbull Restoration, Ruger), The following are the special-award and class winners at GMC IX:

THE NORMAN R. BLANK BEST IN SHOW AWARD--named in honor of the late California gun collector Norman Blank and determined by the judges:
John Dickson & Sons 12-bore triggerplate round-action side-by-side game gun (non-ejector) No. 3929 (1886)
Stephen Davis

THE NRA CUP--awarded to "the gun or rifle of greatest historical significance to the development of sporting firearms"; and THE BOOTHROYD 'PEOPLE'S CHOICE' AWARD--named in honor of the late British gun writer Geoffrey Boothroyd and determined by popular ballot:
Simeon Pauly 28-gauge SxS gun No. 175 (possibly 1812) This may be the oldest 28-gauge shotgun known. It is a breechloading centerfire design, thought to be decades ahead of its time. The shotgun is highly embellished and with a very short (approx 10 inches) buttstock, and was purchased from the estate of Napoleon Bonaparte at a Paris auction in the late 1800s. The present owner is Nick Tooth.

THE GRAND COLLECTION AWARD
Tod Dawson, for his small but superb array of high-grade L.C. Smith guns (See The Honored Marque for more info and gun pictures.)

SPECIAL COLLECTOR'S AWARD
Dennis Hrusosky, for his vintage side-by-side guns of Chicago-area gunmakers

THE Shooting Sportsman MAGAZINE AWARD--for "a contemporary custom-fitted game gun of less than $18,000 value that best typifies the ideal for upland hunting":
Fox Sterlingworth Upgrade 20-gauge boxlock ejector SxS No. 25990
Douglas Mann

THE VINTAGER AWARD--for "the vintage side-by-side that best exemplifies the standards and traditions of The Order of Edwardian Gunners":
Moore & Harris 12-bore sidelock non-ejector SxS guns No. 32027/8 (c. 1880) "Improved Lever Hammerless" models with crystal cocking indicators and rebated lockplates
Robert Moran, Jr.

THE Upland Almanac AWARD--"the ideal light-gauge upland gun":
L.C. Smith A2-grade 20-gauge boxlock ejector SxS No. 6725 (1912)
Frank Finch

THE GERMAN GUN COLLECTORS ASSOCIATION AWARD--for the Best German Gun at GMC IX:
Sauer & Sohn 12-gauge sidelock ejector SxS gun No. 407004 (1952)
Bruce Marsh

THE L.C. SMITH COLLECTORS ASSOCIATION AWARD—for the Best  L.C. Smith at GMC IX:
L.C. Smith Monogram 12-gauge 3-barrel set gun No. 299652 (1942)
Len Applegate

THE WILLIAM LARKIN MOORE AWARD--for the Most Outstanding Italian Gun:
F.lli Rizzini R1-E 16-gauge sidelock ejector gun No. 2268, Fracassi engraved (2003)
Dan Ongna

THE GUNNERMAN BOOKS SIDELEVER AWARD--for the Best Sidelever Gun:
Stephen Grant 12-bore non-ejector SxS gun No. 5491 (1884)
Robert Moran, Jr.
(Also see this picture)


9th Gold Medal Concours Class Winners

CLASSIC AMERICAN SPORTING RIFLE
Gold Medal--Griffin & Howe .375H&H bolt-action rifle No. 1795 (1948), Jos. Fugger engraved
Mike Schwandt

Silver Medal--Winchester Model 1895 .405Win lever-action rifle No. 72299 (1915)
Bruce Farnsworth

CLASSIC AMERICAN SIDE BY SIDE SHOTGUN
Gold Medal--Winchester Model 21 custom boxlock ejector SxS No. 16606 (1941), Alden Ulrich engraved
Daniel Menser

Silver Medal--L.C. Smith Deluxe 20-gauge ejector SxS No. 203009
Tod Dawson

VINTAGE BRITISH DOUBLE RIFLE
Gold Medal--H.W. Mortimer 6-bore double flintlock (c.1780)
Conrad Sundeen


CONTEMPORARY CONTINENTAL SIDE BY SIDE SHOTGUN
Gold Medal--F.lli Rizzini R1-E sidelock ejector SxS No. 2268 (2003), Fracassi engraved
Dan Ongna

CLASSIC BIG-BORE SIDE BY SIDE SHOTGUN
Silver Medal--W.W. Greener 8-gauge hammer SxS gun No. 49733 (1902), cased with all tools & accessories
Tom Armbrust

CLASSIC CONTINENTAL SIDE BY SIDE SHOTGUN
Silver Medal--Schüller Daly Superior-grade boxlock ejector SxS No. 26167 (1932)
Stephen Cobb


Honorable Mentions

As a mark of their respect and appreciation for participation, the judges believe that the following guns, and their owners, deserve special mention:

Watson Bros. 2-inch .410 "naturalist's" back-action hammer gun No. 175 (1891)
Paul Belpasso

A.H. Fox 12-gauge B-grade boxlock gun No. 18168
1894 Remington 'CE' hammerless 16-gauge SxS gun No. P138324
Robert & Mark Baumgarten

Winchester Model 21 collection
Daniel Menser

L.C. Smith Premier Skeet 20-gauge gun No. 53292 (1949)
Frank Finch

Photos of these guns will be posted as soon as they become available.



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