Most of the honors reserved exclusively for women went to Karla Roberts, a 37-year-old Missourian who currently rules the roost much as Carola Mandel, the winsome Cuban import, did 20 years back. After a weak start in the .410, Roberts won the 28-gauge in a three-way shoot-off, lost in a three-way shoot-off in the 20-gauge event, then won the 12-gauge and overall with a total of 542. While reigning women do not have to worry about men invading their exclusive competition, they do have to be concerned about insurgents in their own ranks.
In the 12-gauge, 18-year-old Patty Loyd, a little-known left-handed class B shooter out of Wichita, gave Queen Karla a start. Because Patty is naturally right-handed, when she first shot three years ago she did poorly until she realized her left eye was dominant and switched her gun over to oblige it. After shooting 90-93-96, scarcely better than her class B rating in the first three guns, suddenly blam, blam, on consecutive days in the 12-gauge Patty hung up perfect scores. But as they say about the 12-gauge, it is the 50 birds on the final day that separate the knaves from the king and the maids from the queen. On the last 50, Lefty Loyd, pretender to the throne, lost two birds to end up one point behind Queen Karla and settled back to being maid for another year.