The Gold Cup National Match is a special target shooting version of the Colt M1911.


2012-2013 Version of the Series 80 Mark IV Colt Gold Cup National Match in blued steel.

The Colt M1911 Design is still considered by many to be the best automatic pistol (actually semi-automatic) available even though it is now over a century old.  This gun was originally issued to the U.S. Military in 1911 and was first used operationally in border engagements along the U.S./Mexican border, prior to WWI where the 1911 served with distinction.  The M1911 was slightly modified in 1923 to the M1911A1 which minor modifications with the most noticeable being the arched mainspring housing (neither of the guns below has the arched mainspring housing).  It stayed in that configuration through WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm.  The 1911s that remained in US military inventory were further modified by military armorers to produce versions like the MARSOC and M45 variants in use with the Marines to this day.

The M1911 combined accuracy, rapid fire, reliability, and stopping power.   However, stopping power is what the .45 is best known for.  Its standard military load with a .45" cal, 230 grain Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) bullet may not always penetrate modern body armor, but it hits so hard, that a non-lethal shot will still temporarily incapacitate almost any adversary.  Though the .45 round is powerful, the large size and weight of the standard size 1911 does an excellent job at mitigating recoil, allowing one to shoot quickly and accurately.

The 1911 is still produced in several variations by Colt to this day, with 100th anniversary editions appearing in 2011.  However, an entire industry has sprung up of companies creating 1911 variants.  This is partially due to the ease of customizing the 1911, as every part on the gun is available from multiple vendors in multiple configurations. Major 1911 manufacturers include:  Auto-Ordnance, Kimber, Para Ordnance, Remington, Rock Island Arsenal, Sig Sauer, Springfield Armory, Taurus, and Wilson Combat.  With so many manufacturers making the 1911 it would not be surprising to see it celebrate its 150th or 200th birthday and still be in production.

Considered to be one of the most accurate factory Colt 1911s, the Colt Gold Cup National Match is a special target version of the Colt M1911, .45” ACP pistol.   Starting in 1957, Colt manufactured a civilian version of the target M1911s used by the U.S. Military at the annual Camp Perry National Matches.  There have been many variations of these guns throughout the years and for a while it was called a Gold Cup Trophy.  From 1997 to 2011, these guns were only available from Colt’s custom shop.  

In 2012, Colt began general manufacture of the National Match 1911 again.  Based on the Series 80 Mark IV M1911, it was available in blue or stainless steel finish.  For 2012 to 2013, the blued versions of these guns had the following differences from a standard Colt M1911 .45” ACP:

        - Forged carbon steel National Match profiled slide, with the top being more rounded and having a matte finish.

        - Angled slide serrations.

        - Adjustable Bo-Mar style target sight.

        - Forged National Match barrel.

        - Lowered and flared ejection port.

        - Forged carbon steel frame with a flat mainspring housing.

        - Wide aluminum trigger with an adjustable over-travel stop and less than 5 lb pull.

        - Black checkered rubber wrap-around grips.

        - Hand fitted with polished internals resulting in an extremely smooth slide and trigger action.

        - Special Gold Cup National Match slide markings and the grips with silver Colt medallions. 

        - 1 Colt 8 round magazine and 1 Colt 7 round magazine included.

        - An extra spring for lightweight target loads as well as a Colt bushing tool and sight adjustment allen wrench.

The rest of the gun is the same as a Series 80 Mark VI Colt M1911, including the Series 80 style internal safety.

Specifications

Version - 2012-2013 Blued Colt Gold Cup National Match

Caliber - .45” ACP.

Frame - Forged Carbon Steel.

Slide - Forged National Match Profile Carbon Steel.

Action - Single Action Short Recoil.

Grips - Checkered Rubber Wrap Around Grips.

Barrel - 5.0” Stainless Steel National Match.

Overall Length - 8.5”.  

Weight - 2.425 lbs unloaded.

Magazines - 7 or 8 rd Detachable Box.

Sights - Adjustable Bo-Mar Style Notch and Blade.

High End - Gold Cup National Match and Low End - M1991A1 Colt M1911s

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