The Ruger Hawkeye FTW Predator rifle in 6.5 Creedmoor.
The Hawkeye FTW Predator rifle design began with extensive on-range consultation with SAAM (Sportsman's All-weather, All-terrain Marksmanship) shooting instructors at the world-renowned FTW Shooting School in Barksdale, Texas. The SAAM instructors were impressed with the proven accuracy of the Hawkeye Predator and the quick handling of the Gunsite Scout rifle. With their input, Ruger engineers designed a rifle that combines the trigger and action of the Hawkeye Predator with the adjustable buttstock design found on the Gunsite Scout rifle. The result is a perfect combination of ergonomics and long-range accuracy needed in a fast handling predator rifle.The new FTW Predator combines elements of the GUNSITE Scout with the proven Hawkeye Predator platform. Given that the 2 bolt action rifles I have the most rounds through in the last 5 years are the GUNSITE Scout in .308 and my Guide Gun in .300 Win Mag, the purchase makes perfect sense. The last time I was at FTW I saw and handled Hawkeyes in 6.5 Creedmoor that were "school guns." In fact, Dianna Liedorff used one of the school guns in an episode of SHOOTING GALLERY from FTW you'll see later this season. The 6.5 Creedmoor is crazy accurate. Here's my friend Bruce Towsley's piece and the Hawkeye Predator from AMERICAN RIFLEMAN a few years back, along with Scott Rupp's hunting take on the cartridge.
The FTW Predator features a 24-inch barrel at 1:8 twist.
I've been thinking about a 6.5 Creedmoor since I watched Dianna on my last trip to FTW. I have to be honest with you guys…250+ rounds of .300 Win Mag out of a 20-inch Guide Gun with a muzzle brake over 3 days just plain beats you up. The last drill at FTW, engaging multiple targets in failing light at distances from 300-800+ — a drill in which I'd excelled on a previous visit with a .308 AR — left me flailing. After the drill Tim Fallon, who runs FTW, suggested I come back with something less of a cannon next time…"you'll learn more," he said, "if you're not pounded to death."
I'll go with a Burris XTR II 5-25X, a scope I'm familiar, and very happy, with.
So I'm really looking forward to this rifle! Meanwhile, I'll keep working with .22s, especially the .22 Ruger American bolt gun.
BTW, speaking of long range rifles, take a look at what's coming from Springfield Armory: