George Snellenberger – 1990

George Snellenberger
George shot his first registered target in January, 1956. He has so many wins that it is difficult to compile them. From 1956 to 1969 he shot as an Indiana resident, living next to the Michigan border most of this time. He lived within Michigan borders in 1970 and 1971 – in Virginia from 1972 through 1975 – in Ohio in 1976 and 1977 – and back to Michigan from 1978 to present time. He won the state championships with 200’s in Indiana in 1961, 1962, and 1966 – Virginia in 1973 – Ohio in 1977 and 1978 – and Michigan in 1984 and 1989. George went into the ATA Hall of Fame in 1982, the Indiana Hall of Fame in 1981 and now the Michigan Hall of Fame in 1990.
In 1961 George Snellenberger engaged in a 500 bird tie-breaker with Dan Orlich at the Grand American for the Champion of Champions crown after they shot out six others with 100 in the program. They were declared co-champions after the additional 500 targets, shot over several days. This shoot-off has never been equaled on or off the grounds.

Snellenberger is still adding championships to his totals. Up to 1982 he had 26 Grand trophies beginning with four in 1960 when he smashed all 600 16-yard targets in the three 200-target events. George and his wife, Kitty, set a record husband-wife competition in 1970 when they totaled 395 points at the Grand. George missing one. George had won 29 state championships from Indiana, Virginia, Ohio, and Michigan through 1982, including all four ATA titles in Virginia in 1974. George became the third person in Ohio history to win singles back to back, but the only one to do it with 200’s. That was in 1977 and 1978.

On Monday of the 1979 Grand, Snellenberger entered the 50th 200 straight singles score of his career. He is one of four gunners to have more than one singles run of more than 1,000, breaking 1,012 in a row in 1960 and 1,080 two years later. He entered four yearly singles averages of 99% or higher on a minimum of 2,500 targets. He has one 100 from the back fence and four 100’s in doubles. George became the second man in ATA history to complete a Grand Slam in his career (100 doubles, 100 singles, and 100 from the 27-yard line).

George was named to first-team All-America in 1961, 1962, 1963, 1965, 1966, 1970, 1973, and 1974 and on second team in 1968, 1969, and 1975 – he received honorable mention in 1967.

George Snellenberger has done all of this and yet he considers himself a week-end shooter. No doubt he will complete many more wins before he hangs up his guns.

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