Safariland Expedition

Team Talks: Doug Koenig

Having the ability to switch out gear quickly and easily in competition can make all the difference. The Safariland ELS (Equipment Locking System) competition rig is used by Team Safariland member Doug Koenig for its speed and adaptability.

“It’s extremely versatile, and you have to have that versatility if you’re going to compete in the shooting sports today,” says Doug Koenig, winner of national and world championships in practical shooting, action shooting, all-around competitions, rifle events and steel shooting. Check out his demo on how the ELS locking system kit works with the Model 032 ELS competition belt and Model 014 Open Class competition holster.

The ELS rig is ideal for providing a mounting platform for any Safariland tactical or competition accessory for quick transfer to the two-hole mounting platform of the ELS competition belt. In addition, the Model 014 holster allows you to rapidly and easily make adjustments, so it can be used for multiple guns.

“I don’t have to reset the holster, have a separate holster and have that all set up,” says Koenig. “It’s just one system, one setup, and the gun is always in the same position. That way my draw doesn’t change, whether I’m shooting USPSA, Steel Challenge or NRA Action.”

One of the reasons Koenig loves using the Model 014 holster is that “It’s all about being consistent, fitting my body and fitting the system that I’m using,” he says. “It has adjustments for the cant, inside and out, and front to back so it really fits the shooter.”

Why is the perfect fit so important for competition shooting? If the pistol isn’t in the correct spot on your body—for example it’s canted too far forward or in or out—every time you draw and your finger hits the trigger in a different spot, you’re not going to get consistency.

“For accuracy it’s important to have consistency, it’s not necessarily about the speed draw, it’s about the gun being in exactly the same place every single time I draw the pistol,” he explains.

Add and remove accessories just as quickly with the ELS competition belt. “I can have single mag pouches, I can put on double mag pouches, I can put on AR 15 pouches, and once you put the receptacle in, it just slides in and you can adjust them on the belt.”


Over the past 30 years, Doug has won more major championships than any other shooter in the world, thus earning the title of “The World’s best All-Around Shooter.” Doug has entered and won national and world championships in practical shooting, action shooting, all-around competitions, rifle events and steel shooting.

His shooting titles include:

  • Winner of more than 70 National and World Championships
  • 2016 NRA World Shooting Champion
  • 2016 Florida Open Carry Optics Division
  • 10-time World Champion
  • 2-time Gold Medal Rifle winner at ESPN Great Outdoor Games
  • 18-time Bianchi Cup winner
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Team Talks: Rob Leatham

If you want to win, you’ve got to be fast and accurate. To help you improve your competition shooting we asked one of the most winning pistol shooters of all time to give us his top tips.

Rob Leatham is an 8-time IPSC World Champion, an 11-time NRA Bianchi Cup Champion, a 17-time Single Stack National Champion and a 30-Time USPSA / IPSC National Champion.

In a word, he’ll tell you the key is consistency. And consistency leads to speed and accuracy.

“We all think accuracy is maybe just an element of the gun or maybe your trigger pull. But that isn’t completely true. The reality is, when the gun goes from not being in your hand when you’re carrying it in your holster, to when you’re going for your draw, nothing’s more important than that initial contact point to get you a grip. That’s what allows me to shoot accurately.”

In Leatham’s USPSA production rig, he uses a Safariland Model 5197 Open Top Competition holster with a USPSA kit for competition adaptability, a Model 032 ELS Competition belt, and Model 771 Open Front Single Magazine pouches. Leatham advises that consistency is the route to becoming faster and more accurate. The advantage of the compact and lightweight 5197 concealment holster is that you can mount it up exactly how you want, with the right angle, height and cant to get a perfect and consistent draw, time and time again. Leatham adds, “It’s because (the holster) holds the gun perfectly, it holds it in the right place, and it’s fast as hell.”

5197 Holster Features

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Detent in trigger guard for reliable weapon security
  • Genuine SafariLaminate construction
  • Low cut sides for ease of draw and added comfort
  • USPSA Kit is user adjustable for cant angle; can even be worn cross draw
  • IDPA approved

When Leatham’s not competing, he provides firearms instruction for the United States Military, various federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and civilian competitors.

His shooting titles include:

  • 30-Time USPSA / IPSC National Champion
  • 8-Time IPSC World Champion
  • 10-Time USPSA / IPSC National Senior Champion
  • 11-Time NRA Bianchi Cup Champion
  • 8-Time Steel Challenge Champion
  • 6-Division USPSA National Champion
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