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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

My South African friends are asking for my advice, and I am looking in the ATA rule book for specific rules. As they know I am conversant on the rules, I am used as a resource from time to time, but I am struggling to find the specific rules to quote.

It seems one of the competitors at a recent provincial competition lodged a complaint of sorts, asking for some rule changes in the conduct of running a shoot. I have noted the complaint below as well as my proposed reply. Any advice would be appreciated.

Here are his basic complaints:

"On Saturday in the ATA Trap squad there was a young man who was using a semi auto shotgun and every time this young man shot his empty shells hit me on the leg, this was most annoying and frustrating and therefore causing a lack of concentration. I feel it is most selfish to shoot with a semi auto shotgun at such a shoot as this creates a negative experience for the shooter on the right, this is also usually youngsters who shoot with these shotguns.

On Sunday in the ATA Trap squad I was placed to the right of a young lady, it was also her birthday, she missed about half of her clays and the umpire was continually shouting lost, lost, lost, this is also most disrupting.

I can accept that Saturday could be my own doing, due time constraints, only arriving on Saturday.

I would like to make a few suggestions;

  1. A rule implemented that all semi auto shotguns be fitted with shell catcher on all national and provincial shoots.
  2. One may be allowed to excuse themselves from such a squad if positioned to the right of a semi auto shotgun shooter without a shell catcher.
  3. One may be allowed to excuse themselves from such a squad if placed with extreme poor shooters. e.g. Sunday’s shoot he was placed to the right of a young lady who missed about half her clays as mentioned above.
  4. At national and provincial shoots, squads composition should be of shooters with near or equal shooting standard."
My proposed response:

These issues come up from time to time in the USA when shooting ATA.

First of all, dealing with distractions is the hallmark of excellent marksmen and women. How one deals with outside factors says much about one’s mental preparation for the game. We’ve all had to deal with them, and the key is being able to shoot your game even with the distractions. And this stands for things like shell catchers AND shooters of lower Classification (as well as sewage pumps with no muffler on the engine, but that’s a story for a different day.)

  1. No, there is no prohibition from using a semi-automatic (auto loading) shotgun in ATA Trap competition. Some excellent ATA shooters use them.
  2. There is also no ATA rule or requirement for the use of a shell catcher or shell deflector when using a semi-auto shotgun. Though it is normal trap shooting etiquette that such a device be employed for the benefit of those on your squad.

  3. Having the shoot management remove someone from a squad over the lack of a shell catcher is a bit extreme. However, if the spent hulls are indeed pelting the person to the right on the leg, it may be in the best interest of all shooters to resquad the shooter who is being pelted, and have an open spot to the right, once it is discovered.

  4. The ATA does allow for shooters to resquad if they are not happy with their squadding. I do not know if CTSASA is as open to this as ATA, but the ATA rules allow for it.

  5. The ATA DOES allow for shooters to squad together, that is, squadding with friends; e.g. ATA would certainly allow me to squad myself with Piero, Sim, and Dennis. This is perfectly acceptable, and common practice. However the ATA, unlike CTSASA, does not have concurrent events. That is, at an ATA event, ONLY the singles will be going on at any given time, and the handicap event will start ONLY after completion of the singles event, and so on. The fact that CTSASA has multiple disciplines to coordinate, some happening concurrently, and some participants wanting to compete in more than one discipline that might be happening concurrently, may make this impractical to achieve.
 
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From a past posting.

ATA Rule Book page 16, Paragraph I - Safety, subparagraph 15: All guns used by contestants must be equipped, fitted and utilized so as not to eject empty shells in a manner that substantially disturbs or interferes with other contestants.

Some that post here supposedly don't care. The rest of us would ask for a re-squad.


As for lost, lost, lost. Does it really matter...... Shooting in a timely manner, not having a fit after each lost....
 

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That is, at an ATA event, ONLY the singles will be going on at any given time, and the handicap event will start ONLY after completion of the singles event, and so on.
That's not true. There is nothing in the Rule Book that prohibits "concurrent" events.

Many clubs, especially in the east, shoot doubles , for example, concurrent with singles.

And marathon shoots also have events running concurrently.

As noted, the other "complaint" already has a rule covering it.

Re-squadding is at the discretion of Shoot Management. Management may require that an additional fee be paid to re-squad.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks V10. I have never seen that happen. Perhaps I will say that "most often...
 

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That's not true. There is nothing in the Rule Book that prohibits "concurrent" events.

Many clubs, especially in the east, shoot doubles , for example, concurrent with singles.

And marathon shoots also have events running concurrently.

As noted, the other "complaint" already has a rule covering it.

Re-squadding is at the discretion of Shoot Management. Management may require that an additional fee be paid to re-squad.
Yep, my favorite trap club holds registered ATA marathon shoots once a month. At any given time, there will be singles, caps and doubles running concurrently. They have their marathon shoot on Saturday and regular trophy program on Sunday. Great way to get your targets in before the Grand.
 

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Doc, once again you have made the situation perfectly clear.
 

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Everyone I know that shoots an auto has a shell catcher. But I've never noticed what they do on doubles. I've never noticed them hitting me with hulls though. How about crap hitting you from the extended chokes with spiral cut in them.
 

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That's not true. There is nothing in the Rule Book that prohibits "concurrent" events.

Many clubs, especially in the east, shoot doubles , for example, concurrent with singles.

And marathon shoots also have events running concurrently.
.
Tim, I concur with V10 on this. I've been to several events like the such in the Southeast & Midwest.

Great response regarding shell catchers as "it is normal trapshooting etiquette". I, for one, usually shoot my semi auto for singles (with a shell catcher even tho it would throw shells "forward" without it). I witnessed just last year a nice Ljutic get a semi-moon indentation in the stock from a flying hull from someone not using one. I'm not willing to take that chance on damaging someone's gun or person so I switch switch to a O/U for Doubles.
 

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What V-10 and Joe said. Then there's the rule concerning the harmony of a shoot. Pelting another with spent hot hulls is certainly that! Watching missed clays flying off to the weed patch, tough!

HAP
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks guys. Part of the difficulty is in the fact that VERY FEW people use semi-auto shotguns to shoot trap in South Africa. It's almost unheard of. I can probably remember only 3 or 4 times I have seen semi-autos on the line.

One of my friends who uses a semi-auto due to neck surgery fashioned a shell deflector out of a plastic ear tag for dairy cows that he attached to the bolt handle. Works great!
 

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I do not shoot doubles but I suspect the semi auto would not be so much of an issue as the birds are either "left" or "right" and perhaps the position of the gun when firing places the hulls away from the neighboring shooter ?? Just a guess guys.... I have no personal experience at it.
Tim,
PM me a name and an address gun model and I will send the young man a shell catcher. That will get him by till something changes. His squad will be happy and so will he as he will not need to pick up hulls. Larry
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Tim, PM me a name and an address gun model and I will send the young man a shell catcher. That will get him by till something changes. His squad will be happy and so will he as he will not need to pick up hulls. Larry
Will do, and that's mighty kind of you Larry. But I don't think you'll like the shipping costs!
 

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I would look at it more like an investment Tim. No more than they weigh and no more space than they take up I suspect it might even go by mail. At any rate, some youngster will walk to the line without fear of criticism from someone beside him and will know he has done his part for sportsmanship. Treated correctly we might see him at the Olympics someday???? Larry
 

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Discussion Starter #18
It's OK, I was just confused.
 
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