Press release – 13 February 2016

Mr Brian and Mrs Denise Welker, winners of $250k record breaking auction

An exquisite .275 Rigby rifle, built by London gunmaker John Rigby & Co. as a tribute to Jim Corbett, has broken records at this year’s Safari Club International Convention (SCI) selling at auction for $250,000, making it the most valuable bolt-action rifle ever sold in more than 40 years of SCI auctions.

Bought jointly by American SCI members Brian and Denise Welker, the husband and wife were thrilled to have won the commemorative rifle. “Corbett has always been very special to us,” explained Brian, adding: “We have followed him for many years and read all his memoirs. This was not an impulse buy, we had studied this rifle closely and I knew I was going to bid for it.” Denise added: “Three of our sons were also here with us tonight to see their father win this rifle, which made it even more special.”

As well as the rifle, Rigby’s Lot included a limited edition five-book set of Corbett memoirs, a magnificent display credenza crafted by Julian & Sons and an original oil painting depicting the last moments of the Champawat man-eating tiger by renowned artist David Southgate.

Rigby’s Managing Director, Marc Newton, commented: “I am absolutely delighted with this result. Not only will the proceeds help SCI continue to work for hunting and conservation, but it’s also a huge endorsement of the work carried out by the team at Rigby. This project was a real labour of love for everyone involved, and has resulted in the best bolt-action rifle Rigby has ever made – a fitting tribute to Jim Corbett. I’d like to thank my team for all their hours of hard work, and wish Brian and Denise a long and exciting future with the rifle.”

SCI’s President Larry Higgins added: “The incredible generosity of Rigby and SCI members shows that SCI is the leading organisation when it comes to raising the funds needed to protect hunting and the rights of all hunters.”

For more information on John Rigby & Co., visit:

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