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Cowboy fast-draw championship takes Ellicott by storm

Posted at 6:11 PM, Jul 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-10 15:15:06-04

ELLICOTT — Ellicott is the new home for the Colorado State Championship and Four Corners Territorial championship in the sport of cowboy fast draw; it's a sport so quick—if you blink—you'll miss the action.

Mid-July saw enthusiasts of the old west flock to Ellicott in order to try their hand at being the fastest gun around; this means drawing, aiming, and firing down range within a few tenths of a second.

Those extremely proficient in the sport can hit their target within 3/10ths of a second, if not even quicker. Competitors shoot with a .45 colt using wax bullets and shotgun primers and take aim at a target that's at least 15 feet away.

The sport coming to Ellicott was a process that started in 2020 when Rick Driver saw something strange, "I saw a bumper sticker that said cowboy fast draw, and I said, what?"

At the time, Rick's son had no sports to play due to COVID precautions, so Rick latched on to this idea and they both started competing in the old west-styled sport.

The only problem was that they were having to travel long distances to practice in any kind of capacity. The fix was, of course, to build their own fast-draw shooting range.

The firing range construction took a couple of years and created a new club, The Dirty Face Gang of Out West Gunslingers.

With the creation of the range and the club also came the adoption of a cowboy nickname, Dirty Rotten.

Once the project was done, Rick jokingly says that he was volunteered to begin hosting the State Championship and Four Corners Territorial championship.

Overall, the sport is organized and overseen by the Cowboy Fast Draw Association (CFDA) which has about 70 clubs across the nation and beyond. The motto of the club is, "Safety first, fun second, competition third."

The Cowboy Fast Draw Association, LLC is the largest organization devoted to the Sport of Fast Draw to ever exist. We have signed up over 3,000 members as of 2012. Our Motto is: Safety First, Fun Second and Competition Third. Not that our competitions aren’t important, we shoot hundreds of events a year for prize money, prizes and titles. It’s just that we place sportsmanship and fun above the competition itself, and place safety above all.

Rick "Dirty Rotten" Driver says that not only has the sport been a great deal of fun, but also that it's been beneficial for him and his family, "You know, we spent a lot of time together building this place, so absolutely; it's something that none of these guys are going to forget."

To learn more about the sport of cowboy fast draw or the CFDA, click here.