Best Handguns for Action Competition Shooting

Get the most out of your competition shooting experience with the best competition pistols on the market. There are many opinions for the best gun out there for knocking down targets and taking on professional competitions, but here are the six that many experts recommend. Explore the top features of a competition handgun and find out why you need to invest in AR550 steel targets for professional-grade target practice.

Features of the Best Competition Handgun

There are many different competition divisions available for you to test your mettle. You can either select a handgun first and then find the right division, or consider the competitive shooting division you wish to participate in before picking up a handgun. Here are some basic factors to compare when shopping for a handgun:

  • Price
  • Size
  • Weight
  • Caliber
  • Recoil
  • Grip size
  • Magazine capacity
  • Accuracy

These are, of course, only a few features to compare. Competitive shooting pistols should be lightweight enough to aim quickly. The size and caliber affect which division you can enter, so you can be flexible in your purchase.

It’s all about personal preferences. Some competitive shooters prefer a heavier handgun to minimize recoil, while others like a compact, lightweight option. The type of grip and sights are also personal preferences that you can pick and choose. Some divisions allow you to add a scope to your handgun, while others force you to aim with the stock sights.

Some features, however, are essential for any competitive shooter. An easy magazine release system and safety keep you moving from target to target are a couple of important things to consider. Shaving seconds off your time can make all the difference, so an ambidextrous grip style with an easy release is something to consider to keep you shooting competitively.

Look for accessories that can upgrade your stock handgun to prepare you for a successful shooting event. Always check that you can add accessories to your handgun while still entering an event. Pick up a scope, grip, or other accessories and use them in your target practice sessions to gear up for a successful event. Compare these six highly rated handguns before shopping for accessories and targets.

Smith & Wesson M&P9

This striker-fired 9mm handgun boasts a 17-round magazine and a compact design. A 4.3-inch barrel and overall weight of 25.6 ounces keeps you nimble for competitive shooting. Choose one without a manual thumb safety feature, and aim with the three-dot sight. An integrated rail is ready for any light, laser or other accessory.

Walther Q5 Match

Walther is another dependable handgun manufacturer, so you can’t go wrong with one of these dynamic competition handguns. The 2019 Q5 Match design is specifically designed for competitive shooting. A 5-inch barrel, 8.1-inch total length, and 23-ounce weight all create a pistol ready for the range and competition shooting.

This 9mm comes with a few unique features that are ideal for competition shooting. Interchangeable backstraps, ambidextrous slide and mag releases, LPA sights, and an optics-ready build all help prepare you for a full day of bulls-eyes and gold medals.

EAA Tanfoglio Stock 2

Looking for a double-action/single-action pistol for your next event? The affordable EAA Tanfoglio Stock 2 has excellent performance and ergonomics for a competition handgun. A beavertail extension, ambidextrous safety, and a large mag release button ensure you’re ready to go for the gold. The 43-ounce weight may be a bit bulkier than other handguns, but this helps cut down on recoil. The distinctive checkered walnut grip is a comfortable feature to practice your aim and prepare for your next event.

Sig Sauer P320 X-Five Legion

The Sig Sauer P320 is a popular personal handgun, so they decided to make the X-Five Legion as a dedicated competition handgun used by several professional shooters. From the tungsten-infused grip to the 5-inch barrel, this powerhouse has the features you need for your next day at the range.

Weighing in at 43.5 ounces, this slightly heavier handgun more than makes up for its weight with adjustable fiber optic sights, a Romeo1Pro optics-ready slide, and a 17-round magazine.

CZ Shadow 2

The next level of CZ Shadow offers a new-and-improved way to shoot competitively. Thanks to a high beavertail and swappable mag release, this handgun has the features competitive shooters need. Check out the undercut trigger guard, fiber optic front sight, and serrated rear sight to keep up with USPSA shooters. The entire package weighs 46.5 ounces and features an eight-inch overall design.

Glock 34

Owning a Glock should be a requirement for competitive shooters. This iconic brand offers plenty of handgun designs to fall in love with, and the Glock 34 is no exception. A 5.31-inch barrel and 8.82 overall length give you improved accuracy. Weighing just 23.10 ounces when unloaded, this lightweight handgun has a great balance of ease of use and accuracy. Load the 17-round magazine and look for optics that help you hit your target.

Professional Targets for Professional Target Practice

The best handgun is a good start, but you’ll need a reliable target. Shoot like a pro with AR550 steel targets from MGM Targets. We’re proud to use high-quality materials and industry-leading designs to offer you the best in affordable, long-lasting targets.

Be sure to pick up targets to practice using your handgun before your next competition. All firearms operate in slightly different ways, so it’s important to fire off a few magazines before signing up for an event. If you have space to safely set up a range, or you can set up your own targets at the local range, invest in some steel targets to practice your aim.

A pop-up target or gong is a great option for a full-day shooting event. These targets give you a rewarding ping and visible movement, so you know when you’ve hit your mark. Save time with targets that reset themselves and don’t require you to walk down the range to prepare for another run.

You’ll enjoy a limited lifetime warranty with all of the standard MGM Target product lines while practicing with your competition handgun. While cardboard and paper have their place, unlike weaker steel targets, you won’t blast through an AR550 steel target with the first round. Unload magazine after magazine with no distortions and no holes in your reliable target.

These targets aren’t just for handgun target practice. Bring your rimfire rifle, centerfire rifle or shotgun and prepare for opening day or a rifle division shooting event. Use care with these firearms, as abuse can damage your targets, but you can still enjoy a longer target lifetime with AR550 steel than other target alternatives.

Order Your Targets Today

Once you have the best handgun for target shooting, it’s time to invest in quality targets. Shop for targets today to prepare for your next shooting event. Check out competition shooting targets that help you hit your target every time. Look for targets on sale to enjoy a great deal on industry-leading competition, recreational or professional AR550 steel targets from MGM Targets. Stay ahead of the competition with world-class targets and competition-ready handgun options from this list.

Featured Image: Kim Kuperkova / Shutterstock