Have You Heard About The National 50 Benchrest League Yet?

The National 50 Benchrest League is an unique shooting experience. It’s a precision shooting sport where shooters can compete with both air rifles AND .22LR rimfire!

From its inception just last year – in 2020 – the National 50 Benchrest League has grown steadily to include clubs across the USA. Now there’s affiliated clubs from California to North Carolina and from Arizona to Michigan. If you’re interested in real precision shooting and like to challenge your shooting abilities, it could be a great new interest for you.

And yes, .22 rimfire is included in the “unlimited” category. So here we have a situation where airguns can compete with firearms on a level playing field – and even win!

I spoke to Mike Niksch who’s a leading light in setting-up the N50 League. If you recognize the name, you’re right. This is the same Mike Niksch who owns Thomas air rifles.

Mike explained to me that the idea behind this 50 Yard League is to bring shooters together in an inclusive manner. It’s possible to be competitive in the pellet class even without a high end rifle, he said.

The League recently had its first National Championship that was held at the NRA Whittington Center in New Mexico. This is an outstanding range, Mike told me, because it’s very open and provides consistent wind conditions across all firing points. That really levels the playing field, he says!

In fact, Mike won first place in the Pro Slug/Rimfire class using a special Thomas slug gun he has developed. (Although he was too polite to tell me this himself). Congratulations Mike! What a great guy…

National 50 Benchrest League

The National 50 League has “Pro” and “Sportsman” classes. Air rifles from .177 to .30 caliber are included, with a maximum of 100 Ft/Lbs of Muzzle Energy. PCPs can be shot tethered to a large tank if required. In fact, Mike has used the Regman external regulator that was featured in HAM recently, for just this purpose and with great success!

There’s no restriction on scopes and guns may be supported by a one-piece rest, two-piece rest, bags or a bipod.

For more information about the National 50 Benchrest League, check out the website at national50.org. There’s full details of the rules and a Club Registration page so that you can start shooting N50 locally.