When it comes to technical gunslinging, Gabe White and Scott Jedlinski (Modern Samurai Project) are near the top of the heap, if not the top of the heap. In the training world, the only real distinction between the two is Scott is the red dot guy, and Gabe is the iron sights guy. The cool thing is that they have ranked standards in their classes, and that is what we are talking about here.
Gabe White Standards
Gabe White has pins that he awards in his classes based on shooter performance on a set of standards. The highest rank is the Turbo Pin. Gabe has 4 standards, or tests that he uses, all shot at 7 yards.
- Bill Drill – This is the same Bill Drill that everyone knows about, six rounds to a USPSA A-zone. To get the Turbo Pin, this has to be done in 2 seconds. Gabe goes so far as to list his theoretical breakdown of the drill. He expects a 1-second draw from concealment and 0.20-second splits. That is a flat 2 seconds, so really need a couple of hundredths in there somewhere.
- Failure to Stop Drill – This is the typical failure drill, with 2 rounds to the body and 1 round to the head. Gabe’s Turbo Pin time is 1.70 seconds.
- Immediate Incapacitation – This is two rounds to the head zone of the target. It is more about the draw to, and engagement of, a low probability target than it is head shots. Par time is 2 seconds.
- Split Bill Drill – The split Bill Drill as Gabe calls it consist of 4 rounds to the body A-zone followed by 2 rounds to a 4” circle in the head of the target. Par time is 2.60.
There is a time bonus for shooting from concealment on Gabe’s standard. A quarter of a second gets added to the standard for runs made from concealment. So, a 2 second Bill Drill has to be shot in 2.25 seconds or less to get a Turbo Pin if shooting from concealment.
Modern Samurai Project Standards
Scott Jedlinksi, also uses standards in his class (no surprise there given the title of the article). The highest level is the black belt. The MSP standards are intended to be shot from concealment, so there isn’t a time bonus for running legit gear. The par times are what the par times are. Scott does allow what I call a “cheater start” though. It isn’t really a cheater start, it is just being smart and setting ourselves up for success by prepping for the draw without it looking like we are prepping for the draw.
- 3&2 Drill – Draw and fire 3 rounds to the A-zone in the body, then 2 rounds to the A-zone in the head box, which Scott uses a 3”x5” card for. Black belt time standard is 2 seconds.
- One Shot Drill – This is essentially a draw test. Draw and fire 1 at the A-zone in the body. The par time is 1 seconds.
- Bill Drill – The same Bill Drill as Gabe White, draw and fire 6 to the A-zone in the body of the target. Par time is even the same, 2 seconds.
- One Shot Drill at 25 Yards – A repeat of drill #2, except at 25 yards this time, and with a half second added to the par for 1.5 seconds total.
So, who’s standards are harder? If you notice, they share a lot of similarities. That should say something about the skill of the instructors, and what they believe to be possible. This is very high-level shooting. Gabe set his standards based on what he believes a Grandmaster level USPSA/IPSC shooter should be able to pull off. That says something.
We can try to hash out who has the harder standards on paper, but I think that is really not the right way to do it. The right way to do it is to take a shot timer, a couple hundred rounds of ammo, and hit the range, which is what I did. I was running a Sig P250 (don’t laugh too hard), out of a JM Custom Kydex Wing Claw 2.0, and shooting Federal 147gr Syntech ammunition. Every test was shot from concealment.
I shot through all of the standards for both instructors. I was able to hit more of the Turbo pin standards than the MSP Black Belt standards. It really came down to the 0.25 seconds bonus time for shooting from concealment on Gabe’s standards. That quarter second is what got me by for all of them. I was only able to get one of the MSP standards, the 3&2 Drill at 3 yards. Mostly because it is close enough that it is really all about hand speed. The sighting can be pretty rough and still pull off the needed hits. Scott’s 25 yard one shot drill in 1.5 seconds absolutely destroyed me. I was within a tenth or two on all the rest, but not even close on that one. It has earned the title of being my nemesis at the moment.
So who do you want to see in the showdown next? What other instructors have some high-level standards for their classes? Drop your suggestions in the comments section.