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Clay Pigeon Targets - Shooting Disciplines

There are many types of clay pigeon shooting the shooter to take part in and enjoy.  The main formats/disciplines of the sport are listed below.

World Sporting

World Sporting is an affordable cross between Fitasc and English Sporting. Using up to 3 traps per stand, and shooting sequences from the traps available in a similar way to compak sporting. On a 100 target shoot between 10 and 13 stands will be used.

This system offers the clay shooter a far more realistic and varied representation of targets as in Fitasc but at about half the cost and can be shot in the same time frame as normal English Sporting.

The main difference from standard English Sporting being the ability to shoot reversed sequence report pairs and the ability to select the best simultaneous pair/s on a three trap layout. This creates a more realistic sporting shoot as you rarely shoot the same target or sequence twice.

Backed up with the unique handicap pro system World Sporting Clay Pigeon Shooting offers the shooter a fairer chance of competing at their level and rewards those that improve or maintain their standard of shooting.

Full details can be found on the main site World Sporting Clay Shooting

Fitasc Sporting

Fitasc, the name is an acronym of Federation Internationale de Tir Aux Sportives de Chasse. FITASC is an international form of Sporting Clays and enjoys a following the world over. Many would argue that it is the ultimate challenge in clay target shooting, and a World or European title is the pinnacle of anyone's shooting career.

Competitions are typically 100 targets made up of four rounds, or "Parcours". Bigger events will have over 150 targets, whilst the European and World Events are staged over 200 targets, 50 shot each day.

There are two variations in the format, known as "old system" and "new system". The new system accommodates more shooters but requires considerably more traps, whilst the old system is still more favoured as the purest form of the sport.

The old system comprises five traps on a layout with three different shooting positions. The positions are marked by a 1 metre diameter hop placed on the ground. A squad of six shooters shoots the sequence of targets from Peg 1 and then moves on to Peg 2, then Peg 3. The downside of this system is that only one squad can be 'in action' on a particular layout at one time.

The new system will still have three or four shooting positions on each layout, but each position will have its own set of traps. This means that a squad can be shooting from each position at the same time. This system allows more shooters to compete in a day but costs are increased considerably. World and European Championships will always be set on the new system with a mandatory requirement for eight layouts or Parcours.

On arriving at the stand, the squad is shown the targets they will shoot. The first shooter will shoot all their singles from that stand and will then step off to allow the next shooter to move forward. The doubles is then shot with shooter number 2 starting, number 1 having dropped to the last person to shoot. On the next layout, number 3 shooter will lead off and so on. This means that a different shooter starts each time. Double targets can be simultaneous, on report or trailing, "raffael" in FITASC terminology.

On single targets, full use of the gun is allowed and a kill is recorded whether the first or second shot breaks the target. For the doubles, there is no requirement to fire one shot at each target and a competitor may fire both barrels at one of the targets if they wish. There is no penalty for doing so and the target will be scored if broken with either shot.

English Sporting

In its early form, English Sporting usually presented the shooter with two different targets. The targets used were normally quartering targets, crossers, driven, overhead, rabbits, springing teal amongst others the course creator might feel is challenging. Today, As the most popular form of clay shooting, English Sporting provides a shooting environment that offers different layouts and a constant challenge.

The targets can be launched as singles or pairs. The pair would consist either of one target, then the second being launched the instant a shot is fired or both targets fired at the same time.

An average competition may comprise of around five stands used to shoot around 30 targets. Differing variations allow more targets and stands to be used and in a large competition there may be as many as 12 different stands and 100 targets.

There is no set way of selecting stands and shooters can select in a random order if they wish. However squadding is sometimes popular with fixed shooting times, a pre-determined order relates to what order stands should be used, this is used mainly when shooting in large competitions. The shooter has an option to call for the target with the gun in or out of their shoulder.

Compak Sporting

Compak Sporting allows all the usual targets from English and International sporting to be combined into a competition that can be shot in a small area. Set on a Skeet or Trap range, five firing points are available, along with extra traps. These traps can be differing types of target for example Rabbit or Springing teal these are added to a combination of Horizontal Skeet Targets.

Shooter's change firing points every sequence of targets throughout the 25 that makes up a round. Single/Double targets are fired when the shooter calls with their gun out of their shoulder.

Olympic Trap (OT)

As its name indicates, this is one of the disciplines which forms part of the shooting programme at the Olympic Games. A trench in front of the shooting stands conceals 15 traps arranged in 5 groups of 3. Shooters take turns to shoot at a target each, before moving in a clockwise direction to the next stand in the line. Targets for each shooter are thrown immediately upon his call and are randomly selected from any one of the three traps directly in front of him/her. Olympic Trap targets are set to travel 75 +/- one metre at varying elevations and with a maximum horizontal angle of 45 degrees either side of the centre line. Scoring is done of the basis of 1 point per target killed, regardless of whether this is achieved with the first or second barrel.

Automatic Ball Trap  (ABT)

A simpler and cheaper to install variation of Olympic Trap where only one trap is used and target variation is obtained by the continuous oscillation of the trap in both horizontal and vertical directions in order to give the same spread of targets as in Olympic Trap. Similarly, the targets are also thrown to a maximum of 70-75 metres.

Universal Trench (UT)

Universal Trench uses five traps per layout set in a trench 8 metres long. The front of the trench is 15 metres from the front of the
shooting positions. Looking from the shooting points the
traps are numbered 1-5 from the left, with number 3 aligned with the centre (no 3) station.

The traps must be spaced 1-1.25 metres apart. Five shooting positions, 1 metre square, are arranged in a straight line, with 1.5 metre spaces between them. The targets are set to different angles and trajectories according to official ‘schemes’ laid down by the governing body. The maximum height (measured 10 metres from the trap) is 3.5 metres, minimum 1.5 metres. In still air the targets should fly a distance of 60-75 metres.

Traps 1 and 2 will always be set to throw targets angled to the right, while 4 and 5 throw to the left. The centre trap 3 throws a straight ahead bird, plus or minus up to 10 degrees according to the scheme in use. The targets are thrown in random order but programmed so that in a round of 25 each shooter will have shot at all five traps from each shooting position, making it fair to all.


Down the Line (DTL)

Targets are thrown to a distance of 45 to 50 metres at a fixed height of approximately 2.75m and with a horizontal 'spread' of up to 22 degrees either side of the centre line.

Each competitor shoots at a single target in turn, but without moving from the stand until they have shot five targets. Then they all move one place to the right, and continue to do so until they have all completed a standard round of 25 targets.

Scoring of each target is 3 points for a first barrel kill, 2 points for a second barrel kill and 0 for a miss (maximum 75 points per round).

Variations of this discipline are: Single Barrel, Double Rise and Handicap-by-Distance. Possibly the most popular entry level discipline and competitors often go on to the most exacting discipline of Olympic Trap.

English Skeet

In this discipline a standard round of 25 targets are shot from 7 stations in a semicircle.

At the ends of the semicircle are the High and Low trap houses from which targets are released on a fixed trajectory and within defined limits.

A set combination of singles and doubles are shot from each station and scored on the basis of 1 point per target hit.

The gun position is optional (i.e. either pre-mounted or out of the shoulder (gun down) when the target is called) and the targets are released immediately upon the shooter's call.

Competitions consist of shooting 100 targets over 4 rounds.

ISU Skeet

The targets travel at a considerably faster speed than English Skeet, and the release of the target can be delayed up to 3 seconds after calling and the gun-down position is compulsory. There is also an eighth shooting station, midway between the two houses

More information on clay pigeon targets

History of Clay Pigeon Shooting 
Clay Target types and Traps  
Clay Shooting Disciplines


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