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Time to Tighten Up the ATA Classes?

Discussion in 'Uncategorized Threads' started by JBrooks, Aug 3, 2008.

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  1. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    The question is, "Is it time to tighten up the classification system?" Due to improved equipment, ammunition and coaching, more people can shoot better averages and the occasional high score. At most it shoots, often times it takes 100 straight to win B class and a sometimes C class. In fact, occasionally a supposedly D shooter will put up a 98, 99 or even 100.

    This leads to claims of sandbagging and misclassification. It also leads to aggressive increases in the classification of some shooters based upon known ability even though the Rulebook references known ability primarily in those instances where a shooter does not have at least 1000 registered targets in the current or previous year.

    In the five class system, the A class starts at 94 and goes clear to 96.99. However, because each percentage point in average is geometrically more difficult to achieve the closer you get to 100, a shooter who averages 94.25 is nowhere near as capable as a shooter who averages 96.75. Classifiers instinctively know this and often will bump the high A average shooter into AA. However, he now has to compete with shooters who average 98% plus who are by definition geometrically better than he.

    I think it would be interesting to see a study as to what the results might be if the classification system was reset as follows:

    AA 97% +

    A 96%

    B 95%

    C 94%

    D below 94%.

    These would also hold true in a six classification shoot by just adding AAA at 98% +. Of course, classifiers would have to disregard known ability provided that the shooter has at least 1000 targets on which his average is based.

    I think that this would eliminate a great deal of disparity among shooters in a particular class. Further, it would make it more difficult for a shooter who tries to manage his targets to stay at the upper range of a particular class to sandbag a win because even if he was in the upper range of that class all the members of the class would be separated by less than one target.

    I know this throws a lot more people into D class so perhaps a true novice class could be added that would only be available to those new shooters until they either shoot 500 targets or win a novice class trophy.

    What do you think? Oh, BTW, if you don’t shoot ATA targets what you think is of little interest to those who do, but I am sure you will share anyway.
     
  2. Ed Y

    Ed Y TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    So what do the "under 88" have to win?

    Ed Yanchok
     
  3. snglfoot

    snglfoot Member

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    Jbrooks,,,your system smells to high heaven,,you have completely made it imposible for the "true D, C, and B shooters" to have any chance to win,,,what about us. I have been shooting for 6 years (reg.), and I can sitll only manage a very low B class from the 21 yd. line. This will do nothing to change those who shoot above their avg. to win at the larger shoots, or where the money is.
    Go back to the drawing board,,this would not be fair as you have presented it.
    Norman
     
  4. jimbotrap

    jimbotrap TS Member

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    Yes, but Mr. Brooks system would eliminate the "dreaded sandbagger". That is at the expense of all other shooters. Maybe the AA could be raised slightly but others are in order. - Jim
     
  5. maclellan1911

    maclellan1911 TS Member

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    I have tossed this one around, If you win a state, zone or grand you must shoot next higher class for remainder of target year and or When time to shoot state/zone/grand the following target year you class up? those that continue to shoot scores to stay well with in their class and then repeatably seem to win class with higher than average scores and happen to play all the opptions? Hmmm. Any way I feel if you win a state, zone, regional or grand the following year you must shoot up a class. smaller shoots it is up to management,
     
  6. Jawhawker

    Jawhawker TS Member

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    Your system may work in your area but back east its completely different. That is why the break points for handicap reductions began. I'm not sure that your revised with slight mods wouldn't work but not across US as presented. But I do believe at present AA should be raised.
     
  7. fssberson

    fssberson Active Member

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    Jim: You, more than anyone, know the set of circumstances that I got caught in two weeks ago. It is my opinion that the classifcation system is competely broken due to the interpretation and application of the system. I have filed a protest with the ATA regarding the situation and therefor do not want to air out the details, but in general, Why should I keep an Average Card when out of 1600 singles target this year, I was only placed 1 time at the average. I was placed in A and AA all other times [without a complaint] even though my average was a solidd 92.21 = B. Now if my classification is predetermined before I show up, I will not bother with an Average Card. Next comment: when does one lose their "reputation of known ability"? How many years of declining ability does it take? So you can make any number of changes you want, but the handicapper needs to actually follow the numbers. Finally, a shooter should not be penalized due to one good score out of 1600 targets, even a "blind pig will occassionally root up an acorn". Fred
     
  8. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    Ed,

    They would be in D class, though there are darn few under 88s shooting ATA.

    I could agress with opening up B & C by half a point each getting D to below 92.

    However, If a shooter is below 92 there are probably some solid reasons such as lack of proper fundamentals, basic gun fit, practice, flinching, eye dominance, health issues, etc, that the shooter should address if he wants to really compete at the ATA level.
     
  9. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    Nope Wank,

    I want people to get better. However, every time I go to the Club I see people accepting medocrity either out of ignorance or obstinance.

    I see guys dropping targets because they would rather flinch than get a release. I see guys dropping targets because they are going through goofy setup routines that they can't possibly duplicate 100 times. I see guys showing up to shoot ATA who never practice. I see guys who will spend thousands of dollars on guns, shells and targets but won't spend $400.00 to take a seminar from a top shooter or even pay $50.00 an hour to the local coach to correct even basic stance and hold issues. Etc, etc, etc.

    I make it a point to recruit, invite and welcome shooters to our ATA shoots. But, when people won't do what is required to be competitive and then complain about the system, they lose my sympathy.
     
  10. ec90t

    ec90t Guest

    When I shot registered targets, my singles average hoovered around 94%. My usual scores were just that 93-95. I was always classified A at larger shoot and B at a small local shoot when my average dipped below 94% like it should have been. I wasn't competetive in either class because of a B shooter having the day of his life and A shooters just blistering me.

    I quit shooting singles all together and focused on 'caps and the occasional round of doubles. I then realized that I would never get a 1000 target review because I didn't shoot singles.

    I ended this whole mess by not participating in anymore ATA shoots and not renewing my ATA membership. I won't be back until the ATA stops penalizing shooters who wish not to participate in the singles class!

    The best way to get change in any organization is to get into their pocket book. Until enough people say "enough", nothing will change.

    ec90t
     
  11. starshot2b

    starshot2b TS Member

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    Gee thanks Mr. Brooks. After suffering and struggling to get out of D Class, your system throws me right back into it. I've had a great coach, I've taken Nora's clinic and I have busted my behind this year to achieve a C Class average with a corresponding handicap average and wish to continue to move up in class and back in yardage. Your system prohibits me from doing that.

    I give up -- you people are really making it easy for me to want to give up registered targets. Why bother when everyone is worried about the "sandbaggers," first in handicap and now apparently in 16's. I can just as easily shoot league, skeet, sporting clays or bunker trap and continue to have fun and work to get better, with no worries about sandbagging, known ability and all that.

    Where I shoot, you're right - D Class shooters typically shoot really high scores; however, I could care less about "those" shooters since I'm concerned about my shooting. Known ability are 2 words that has NEVER been applied here, in the 5 years I have been shooting. I used to get all twisted up about "those" people, but have resigned myself to knowing that some people will cheat to get what they want no matter the rules in place.

    If I win I win, however, my goal is to average myself out of whatever class I'm in and get punched back (1/2 yard at a time if necessary) to my satisfaction, not yours or anyone else's. You're making my goals unobtainable.

    The system is not perfect, but it seems to me, in everything I've read, those of us at short yardage and the lower classes will suffer more than the "big dogs" or "wanna be" big dogs. If you can't shoot at the yardage you're at, take the reduction and work harder to get back where you were. Leave us alone, please.

    If you're in D class and shoot a 98, 99 or 100, move them to B class for 1 year and go from there. If you're at the 20, 21 or 22 and shoot a 99 or 100, move them back and let them sit there for a minimum of 1 year. Then give them a mandatory reduction if needed. Penalize those that might need it -- not the entire class or yardage group.

    There has to be a way that works for everyone -- everything I've read so far, doesn't. I mean no disrespect to anyone, but I'm tired of being penalized (on paper at least) because I'm short yardage and now a C Class shooter. Oh, I don't play the options either -- never have and never will.
     
  12. Gary Waalkes

    Gary Waalkes Well-Known Member

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    ec90t, the 1,000 target review happens whenever the ATA HANDICAP COUNTER reaches 1,000. I do not understand your statement about not getting a review cause of not shooting singles. I have to challenge that statement. Please cite the ATA policy or rule.

    to Mr. JBrooks, You say that darn few D shooters are around shooting ATA. Back when the ATA published the numbers, D class shooters comprised over 28% of the shooting population. (AA was less than 9%.) To me, your remarks seem to lack evidence. your proposal has the numbers so narrow (except AA). What is that about and how does it make everything fair??
     
  13. tonygrz

    tonygrz TS Member

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    JBrooks, must be nice to be perfect. I shoot ATA registered targets for the "FUN" of it, not the money. I've been a D/C shooter for many years. I don't need for you to tell me to either get better or quit. And they said Obama talks down to people. You must run for President !!!

    Tony Garza
    tonygrz
     
  14. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    "Your system prohibits me from doing that."

    No, that would be you inability to shoot a higher average. Perhaps you would support lowering AAA to 92 so the "system" would allow you to be a AAA shooter?
    Class average ranges are just arbitrary figures,(unless we start grading on a curve).

    Trap is a bit unique in that it is geometrically harder to pick up percentage points the closer you get to 100. It is not very far in ability between 90 and 91 and 92. It is a long ways between 96 and 97 and 98.

    By narrowing the ranges, all the shooters in a class would have a better chance of winning because they would all be closer in their ability as indicated by their average.
     
  15. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    Hey Tony, where did I say you should quit? I said that people who don't perform up to a competitive standard because they won't do what is necessary should not complain about the system. I've played golf for fun my whole life. I've never had the desire to practice, take lessons, study and get good enought to compete. Consequently, when I keep score, I don't care what it is and when I hit a bad shot, so what? However, I see guys on the course who go ballistic about a bad shot but they don't go out and pound balls to get better.

    If people want to shoot ATA for fun that's great. But, they shouldn't complain about the big dogs winning all the time.
     
  16. markdenis

    markdenis TS Member

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    Classifying someone many times is very bias and discriminating depending on what state you are from among many other reasons.

    Case in point....last Sunday a friend of mine from Kentucky who shoots on the 24 yard line at present, and has never been past the 26 yard line, was told he had to shoot on the 27 because he did not have his paper average card with him. The shoot was in Evansville, In.

    I am not sure if this action by the classification person was against the ATA rules or not, but it still STINKS BIG TIME and shows what can happen when you give ignorant people a little power!

    Mark Rounds
     
  17. starshot2b

    starshot2b TS Member

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    Your D Class is basically what B/A Class is now. However, you sure have made it easier for the A class and higher folks since you really haven't made any changes there. I'm sure they appreciate it.

    I'll talk to you about being a AAA shooter when I get there; I'm no where close yet, but I'm busting my behind to get there. I have no complaints with those at the top of the heap - they got there by shooting consistently high scores. Good for them; that's where they should be. I don't want nor would I expect the "system" to put me in a class I don't belong in...same for yardage; except for penalty which would be my fault, not the systems.

    Your tone and attitude show a clear disdain for those of us who play by the rules and do our best -- whatever our average, yardage or even score, but especially us short yardage shooters and "lower" class shooters. Why is that?

    You have no idea what my ability is or isn't and I don't need you to decide for me what it is or isn't. I also don't need you to tell me to work harder (or I'm not good enough for the class I'm in). I've done everything that you commented about to improve and I have - immensely. If you saw my average card, you would understand why I'm taking umbrage with you - I'm a 1/2 point from B class and am thrilled to pieces. Your system literally has me starting over. IMO, I've earned the right to be irritated at statements such as yours. Talking down to me and others is worse.

    This is my opinion (and I'm entitled to it).
     
  18. ivanhoe

    ivanhoe Well-Known Member

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    markdenis if your friend had this happen to him at a shoot and the person that moved him back was not member of the CHC or the EC. He should see his delegate and report this person to try and make sure it doesn't happen again to him or anyone.

    "3. A shooter’s handicap yardage may be increased at any time during
    the year including immediately before and during the Grand American World Trapshooting Championships

    a. because of earned yardage, or

    b. as a result of a review, or

    c. at the discretion of a member of the Central Handicap Committee
    or voting member of the Executive Committee.

    It also says "A shooter may not stand on a higher yardage than he/she is punched, unless assigned penalty yardage by shoot handicap personnel."

    The way I read those two sections of of the rule under the heading of Section VI The ATA Handicap System

    NO shooter can shoot from a yardage longer than he is assigned by anyone other than a member of the CHC or EC.

    It might also pay for your friend to pat attention to another rule " 2. It is the responsibility of all shooters to see that they are handicapped
    and classified properly in accordance with these Rules and/or the official
    program. Any errors made by the classification committee and/or the
    shooter must be corrected before shooting or the shooter may be subject
    to disqualification and may be subject to further disciplinary action."

    By not making sure that he had his average card with him he lost the ability to prove his yardage and live up to his responsibility. To make sure he was handicapped properly. He may be the one to face discipline for the problem.

    It would seem that when you break or bend one rule they seem to snowball don't they.

    Bob Lawless
     
  19. JBrooks

    JBrooks TS Member

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    b4me,

    Lighten up. I just threw this out for discussion. I don't understand what you mean by easier for the higher classes. This isn't a question of trying to make anything easier or harder, just trying to group people a little closer based on their ability. When you have 2+ points of average in any class the ones just over the entry average are at a big disadvantage to the ones just under the top average.

    Your comment about "my system" putting you down a class is a non-sequiter. Regardless of the class breaks, it is our average that determines where we end up. Consequently, it's not a question of going from class to class, it's trying to continually improve your average. The class movement will take place in response.

    As for empathy for lower classified shooters, I spent my time there and not that long ago. That is why I know that the current system is more unfair to them than AA and AAA. In those classes you know that the minimum acceptable score is 100 or 200 regardless of the size of the shoot.

    It sounds like you are doing the right things and working hard. It will continue to payoff for you.
     
  20. slide action

    slide action Well-Known Member

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    Gary Waalkes, He IS correct in that a shooter who shoots NO 16 yd.targets or not enough to establish a 16 yd. average WILL NOT be reviewed(this has happened to me in the past).------ The wording IS there, but cleverly hidden. Look at page D-8 para. "H". sub. para. "a" It sates as follows--"A shooter with a low purified average(the average with abnormally low scores deleted)accompanied by a relative 16 yard average,will receive a one yard reduction except. (1) No shooter will reduced more than 2 yards in any target year.(2) No male shooter 16 yrs. of age or older will be handicapped below 20 yds. without a special review, exceptions to this policy are veterns and senior veterns. (3)A shooter with a high-purified handicap average may receive a "Special Review" for possible yardage increase.------- If you read carefully it states that " A shooters handicap average must be accompied by a realitive 16 yd. average. A couple of years ago when I did not get a review with a low hdcp. average, I called the ATA office who explained this to me. From then on I vowed to shoot enough 16 yd. targets(they quoted at least 500) to me in order to be eligble for a reduction should my hdcp. scores so dictate.
     
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