The Ballinger Belt 

The Ballinger Belt is the New Zealand National fullbore Championship.  Started in 1861, it is the oldest sporting championship in New Zealand.   The National Championship wasn't first called the Ballinger Belt, it got it's name when Arthur Ballinger won it outright in 1907 and donated it back with the name change.  Todays championship format concises of three days shooting plus a final, firing a total of one hundred and fifteen counting shots, over distances ranging from 300 to 900 yards.  The three things you need to win the Belt is:

  • Very accurate rifle.
  • Mental toughness.
  • More luck than the others.


Ballinger's who have won the Belt. 

1879         William Henry Ballinger,  Wellington.

1893         Arthur Samuel Ballinger, Wellington Guards.

1895         William Henry Ballinger, Petone Rifle Club.

1897         Arthur Samuel Ballinger, Wellington guards.

1907         Arthur samuel Ballinger, Petone Rifle Club.

1969         Ian Roy Ballinger,  Sydenham Rifle Club.

1996         Graeme Roy Ballinger, Levin Rifle Club.

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William and Arthur Ballinger, on the occasion of their tie for the Ballinger Belt.  Arthur won the shoot off.


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Ian Ballinger  1969, just after winning the Belt





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Graeme Ballinger winning the Ballinger Belt in the rain with a record score, 574 out of a possible 575.



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Graeme Ballinger, 1996 New Zealand Queens Winner, and also National 300meter Champion, being chaired and piped off the mound after the final at the Trentham rifle range.


For more information try

NRA New Zealand


CRICKET Sir Richard Hadley