George Reinas promised a good episode. He didn’t let us—or his team—down.
Reinas, 26, a 2003 Cinnaminson High School graduate, is starring on Top Shot, a shooting competition show currently airing on the History Channel. Tuesday night, the third episode of the season, saw his team not only win a tough challenge, but Reinas lead his team to victory.
“I never saw the actual finished product,” Reinas said before the show aired Tuesday. “When you’re there and you’re shooting, you focus on what you have to do. You go through emotions when you’re shooting, then you get to see it on TV. It’s a surprise to watch yourself.”
Reinas and his team shot M1A rifles at four different stations that not only challenged marksmen skills, but married teamwork and swiftness. Reinas was chosen as one of the strongest competitors for this particular challenge and hit the final ammunition dump target to bring his team another win.
The now-Mount Laurel resident is a full-time combat instructor at Fort Dix and has been in the United States Air Force for almost eight years. He was recruited to his current position after running sniper training at McGuire Air Force Base. He still flies to Arkansas to teach snipers there.
He and fellow shooters were big fans of Top Shot during the first season.
“I could do that,” Reinas remembers saying.
He put in an application, went through the hiring process, showed his skills off in Los Angeles, and was chosen.
Now, three shows into season two, Reinas’ team has won two of three challenges.
“Some of the obstacles are a hard shoot,” Reinas said. “There’s a false sense of confidence. There’s some type of twist they throw at you to think outside the box. To be successful, you have to have the ability to come up with a new plan on the spot and follow through with it.”
Reinas took a risk being on the show. Many experienced shooters buckle under the pressure of the cameras and miss easy shots.
“The hardest part was being a disciplined shooter from a certain background,” he said. “You felt pressure if it was anything from your background.”
Each week, either the red team (Reinas’ team) or the blue team wins a challenge. The losing team must select two people to face off in a special elimination challenge. The winner of that stays with the team; the loser goes home.
We don’t know when Reinas goes home, or even if he does. The winner of the show is awarded $100,000 and earns the title of Top Shot.
“Either way, the biggest thing is that I made a name for myself in the shooting world,” Reinas said. “It definitely gets my name out there in what I want to do as a shooter. My whole attitude was to go out there and have fun and put out good shots or go home packing.”
Reinas has been watching the show with friends and co-workers at PJ Whelihan's in Maple Shade—a favorite spot of his.
Top Shot airs on the History Channel, 10 p.m., Tuesdays.