Sharpshooters hit Silver City
Monday, 25th May, 2015
By Darrin Manuel
The Silverado Shootout roared back to life on the weekend in a cloud of smoke and a hail of gunfire.
The Grossi family brought together 95 shooters from WA, Queensland, SA, Victoria and NSW and transformed the BH Gun Club into a scene straight out of the wild west.
Spurs chimed and shots rang out across the hills as competitors darted around various courses and opened fire on targets with shotguns, 6-shooters and lever-action rifles.
It was the first shootout held since 2008, and under the new name “Silverado Revisited” the event proved that there is still plenty of interest in the western-style competition.
“We’re elated with the numbers for Silverado Revisited, we would have been happy with just 40 or 50, but the response has been overwhelming,” said long-time organiser Phil Grossi, aka Slap Happy.
“And I’d say over 45 per cent of the shooters have never been to Broken Hill before or shot at the event.
“There’s been very high standard shooting, we’ve got a lot of the top shooters in Australia here.”
Phil said the strong response augered well for the event’s future, and predicted an even bigger turn-out next year.
“We could even get 150-plus shooters at next year’s event, that’s the word we’re getting from our visitors.
“A lot didn’t come as they thought it was a one-off event, but we can say now that it’s officially a yearly event.”
The shootout’s return is mainly due to the work of Phil’s sons Kayle (aka Bodie) and Ben (aka Henry Sharps), who stepped up to take a leading role in organising Silverado Revisited.
“We sort of took the reigns and took a bit of the weight off the old man, and it’s all turned out well ... it was a bit of an eye opener to see how much work goes into it,” said Ben.
“We also got a lot of support from (BH) club members and some of the shooters even come down a few days early and give us a hand.
“It’s a fair bit of work, but it’s all worth it just to see everyone happy.
“Everyone seems to be enjoying it, and we haven’t heard a bad word yet.”
Ben said aside from being a great day out for shooters, the Silverado would also give the local economy a welcome boost.
“A lot of shooters bring their whole families along, and while they’re competing the rest of the family are out shopping.
“It’s a good thing for Broken Hill, it generates a bit of money for local businesses and pubs, and especially with accommodation.”
At day’s end Ben was judged the best overall men’s shooter while Stephanie Behrens (aka Luck E Shot) from Queensland was the best performing female.
Full results and more pictures from the shootout will be featured later this week.