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The Paper Plate Pistolero Challenge

Note from Matt: I’m reposting this challenge on July 19, 2022. The news talking heads are focusing a lot on a 22-year-old concealed carrier who intervened at the start of a spree shooting event over the weekend. The citizen had no military or law enforcement background, but drew his Glock and fired 10 shots from a distance of 40-50 yards and killed the would-be shooter before he reached a kill count that would constitute a “mass shooting.”

This event highlights a lot of things, but one of them is the importance of stretching your training beyond the typical 7-10 yards most people practice for. While this challenge originally called for 25 yards, I think there’s value in taking the target out to 50 yards (or alternatively using an NRA B-6) and seeing if you can keep all shots in the outer grey circle.

Paper plates were some of the very first targets I ever started shooting at. They’re convenient, easy to obtain, and come in a variety of sizes to reflect various accuracy levels. The Everyday Marksman community recently got interested in posting a few more Marksman Challenges, and so I figured we could do with a pistol-themed one harkening back to the simple paper plate.

For this challenge, I’m not requiring you to go out and buy plates or anything. Instead, I put together a simple target representing an 8″ plate. I like this size because it’s the same as so many of those classic Dixie plates, but also because 8″ is the size of the black on an NRA B-6 target used for 50-yard bullseye.

The target consists of two circles. The outer grey circle is 8″ in diameter. The inner black has a diameter of 4″. When placed at 25 yards, the inner black circle represents the 50-yard target. Click the photo below to download, or from this link

Click to download the official target

The Paper Plate Pistolero Challenge Instructions

Completing this challenge is simple: fire a single string of 10 shots at a target placed at 25 yards. This must be done from a standing position without any support. Any shot that breaks the outer edge of a circle counts as a hit. 

Level 1 is placing all 10 shots within the larger grey circle.

Level 2 is placing all 10 shots within the inner black circle.

Level 3 is placing all 10 shots within the inner black circle, but only shooting with one hand

For this challenge, you are expected to use a traditional handgun and not a braced pistol. We aren’t drawing any distinction between cartridge, action type, or the use of optics. 

Good luck, have fun! Don’t forget to post your results in the Discord server so you can earn credit and rank up.

Bonus Challenge

If you have the space to try it, post this target at 50 yards and try to keep all shots within the outer grey circle. We’ll call this a Level 2+ and level 3+ achievement. Keep in mind that at 50 yards, the mechanical accuracy of the gun starts playing a much larger role as well.

Make an effort to stretch out your pistol shooting to 50 yards, if your range allows it, on a regular basis. The things it teaches you about your gun and marksmanship fundamentals are important.

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Matt is the primary author and owner of The Everyday Marksman. He's a former military officer turned professional tech sector trainer. He's a lifelong learner, passionate outdoorsman, and steadfast supporter of firearms culture.

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Good challenge Matt! 4″ inner circle close to ’10-Ring’ center size on full size silhouette targets we used to shoot in PPC (Practical Pistol Course – 60 rounds at different distances 7 – 25 yds. under time. Exclusively designed for the ‘issued’ revolver and course of fire included a reload). You didn’t put any time restrictions on your challenge – which is probably beneficial for most people – 25 yds. isn’t a distance most handgun owners for ‘self defense’ practice. This distance exercise will bring many ‘pistoleros’ back to the fundamentals of handgun marksmanship. PPC was the standard training course… Read more »


Hey Matt – still agree this is an excellent training regiment. Twenty-five yards seems long at a shooting range for many shooters but in reality – outside of the range it isn’t that far. I suggest ‘walking off’ 25 normal strides from everyday objects like vehicles, people and building doors and windows to put things in perspective and always keeping in mind surroundings, bystanders and personal skill limits. I think I know which ‘armed citizen response’ you are referring to and it’s the status quo of the mainstream media to downplay if not entirely ignore this young man’s valiant and… Read more »


Gabe Suarez talks a lot about being able to shoot the distance of at least the length of a grocery store aisle…and taking head shots at that distance also. A lot of what he preaches seems pretty ruthless, but we live in some crazy times.


I was on a thread the other day where the author was calling for a target made by an obscure company, and a deck of cards by said company to be used as a common drill. I’m sure a you know the company. No buyers. NRA targets are more common and a step in the right direction, but still not widely available. My personal favorites are the ubiquitous shoot and see targets, sold near gun counters everywhere, but they are not exactly cheap. I like the idea of targets that can be sourced economically from every tiny town’s grocery store.… Read more »

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