WON Landing Page OCT 2022

Babbs in the Woods: Sydney surges at Bianchi

I’m home from being on the road on business in five states since the start of April, winding up with a couple of days in Columbia, Mo., at the 2010 Midway USA/NRA Bianchi Cup. I can’t help but think about what my pal, Deb Ferns, says about women in the outdoor shooting sports. To paraphrase her, they make it a lot more interesting to watch than just a bunch of guys shooting guns. I’m sure the guys would agree, too.

Sydney Surgi in her Women's Outdoor News hat.

This year’s match displayed a little drama and a whole lot of action and those stories – particularly involving the women of the Bianchi – will be appearing here during the course of the next few blogging weeks. Take 19-year-old Sydney Surgi, for example. Her parents, Tammy and David Surgi, own Secure Firearm Products, an extended family-owned and run business in southwest Missouri that develops and manufactures a high-quality line of products for shooting sports professionals and enthusiasts. My husband and I use their high security firearm cases when we fly with firearms. In fact, The WON sponsored Sydney this year.

Sydney surged this year from her performance last year at the tournament. She went from a score of 800 to a score of 1698.

She also went from shooting a revolver with a 6-pound trigger pull to a custom semi-auto Colt 1911 that sported a much lighter trigger pull at 2.12 pounds. She only had the gun in hand for about a week before the competition, so she practiced with a similar weight .22 cal semi beforehand. She also went from using metallic sights to a red-dot optic. Big difference. Oh, and had it not been for Secure Firearm teammate Karl Piper, who supplied her a new comp and Jay Della Bella for doing on-the-site gunsmithing, Sydney’s gun would not have seen any action at the tournament, either.

Cool and calm on a hot day -- Sydney Surgi. Photo by Barbara Baird.

She squeezed practice on the range in between classes at Missouri State University and military studies, as she is on a scholarship with Army Reserve Officer Training Corps, Bear Battalion. She is studying animal science, but hopes to qualify to make the Army marksmanship team (just like Julie Goloski-Golob maybe?) someday.

As this was her third year at the match, Sydney knew about the pressure. In fact, she’s shooting another match right now near San Luis Obispo, Calif., the 19th Annual International Revolver Championships. So that means she’s switching back from a semi-auto to a revolver.

Something tells me this young woman’s attitude – of being able to switch from shooting a revolver to a semi-auto and back to a revolver in competition – says a lot about her personality: a get-it-done, get-it-done-now and do-it-well attitude. We like that in a woman and we especially like it in a future officer of our Armed Services. In fact, she took second place in the Open Marksman category of the competition.

Sydney is concerned though, about the lack of participation by women in the shooting sports competitions, particularly the Bianchi. She said, “We need more women shooters and more young women shooters!”

We couldn’t agree more. Make ready and load, Sydney. It’ll be up to you and your generation soon to recruit, because frankly, my generation isn’t shooting at this target fast enough.

Twitter: http://twitter.com/babbsbaird
Facebook: http://facebook.com/babbsthewon

Brian Shields, one of the officials at Bianchi, watches as Sydney Surgi shoots at moving targets. Photo by Barbara Baird.

  • About Barbara Baird

    Publisher/Editor Barbara Baird is a freelance writer in hunting, shooting and outdoor markets. Her bylines are found at several top hunting and shooting publications. She also is a travel writer, and you can follow her at https://www.ozarkian.com.


The Conversation

  • Babbs says: June 4, 2010 at 7:17 am

    Glad you like the hat, Bill, because I have one for you here that you can have when you come to fish our great state this month!

  • Bill Bowers says: June 3, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    A hearty congratulations to Sydney Surgi (and good luck at the California match this weekend, too!), and thanks to Babbs for another witty, well-written and wonderful column.

    And hey, we’re loving her hat, too!

  • Tammy Ballew says: June 3, 2010 at 10:38 pm

    Sydney, you make all us mommas proud! My hat’s off to your parents too for their support of your passion and skill.

  • Julie Golob says: June 3, 2010 at 8:02 pm

    Way to go Sydney! So proud of you and look forward to seeing you this weekend!