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Shotgun Team

 

The world’s top skeet, trap and double trap shooters make up the USAMU Shotgun Team.

The Shotgun Team competes in Interservice, national, international and Olympic competitions. The team’s most important matches include the World Championships, National Championships every summer, World Cups and the Olympics. Shooters aim for targets moving up to 65 mph using 12-gauge shotguns.

TRAP

            In trap, shooters move through a series of five adjacent shooting stations. At each station, competitors mount their 12 gauge shotguns, call for the target, and fire up to two shots per target. The targets, four-inch clay disks, are thrown from an underground bunker a minimum distance of 70 meters and at speeds of up to 65 miles per hour.

            Trap has been a men's Olympic event since 1900, with the exception of two Games (1988, 92) during which it was open to both men and women. It becomes an Olympic event for women in 2000.

            The Guns: Trap is shot over longer distances than the other Olympic shotgun events. Consequently, a trap gun's barrel is longer (30-32 inches), producing greater accuracy for the distance. Trap guns also have a tighter "choke," meaning the barrel narrows at the muzzle end to prevent shot pellets from scattering before they're within striking distance of the target. World-class trap guns (e.g. Perazzi MX8, Beretta 682) can retail from $1800-$7000.

            Course of Fire: The match consists of 125 targets, shot in five rounds of 25 over two days. Three rounds are fired on day one; two rounds plus the final are shot on day two.

            Perfect Match Score: 125 is perfect, 121 is world-class.

            Finals: After the 125-target match, the top six competitors advance to a 25-target final round. Medals are awarded based on aggregate (match plus final) scores.

            Perfect Aggregate Score: 150 targets.

SKEET

            In skeet, shooters move through a semicircular range featuring eight shooting stations. At each station, single and/or double clay targets are thrown at least 65 meters from the high (10 feet) or low (three feet) house on either side of the range.

            The four-inch clay disks travel at up to 55 miles per hour, and competitors may fire one shot per target. Competitors hold their 12 gauge shotguns at hip level until the target appears, which can be anywhere from 0-3 seconds after their call.

            Skeet has been a men's Olympic event since 1968, with the exception of two Games (1988, 92) during which it was open to both men and women. It becomes an Olympic event for women in 2000.

            The Guns: Skeet guns have open chokes, which spread shot pellets at a wider radius. The barrels measure 26-28 inches in length. World-class skeet guns (e.g. Perazzi Mirage, Remington 3200, Krieghoff K-80) cost from$1800-$7000.

            Course of Fire: The match consists of 125 targets, shot in five rounds of 25 over two days. Three rounds are fired on day one; two rounds plus the final are shot on day two.

            Perfect Match Score: 125 is perfect, 121 is world-class.

            Finals: After the 125-target match, the top six competitors advance to a 25-target final round. Medals are awarded based on aggregate (match plus final) scores.

            Perfect Aggregate Score: 150 targets.

DOUBLE TRAP

            The men's and women's double trap events were first-time additions to the Olympic program in 1996. Competitors fire 12-gauge shotguns from each of five adjacent shooting stations. At each station, four-inch clay targets are thrown two at a time from an underground bunker at speeds up to 50 miles per hour. Competitors get one shot per target.

            The Guns: World-class double trap guns (e.g. Beretta 682, Perazzi) typically retail for $1800-$7000.

            Course of Fire: Men fire three rounds of 50 for a total of 150 targets, Women shoot three rounds of 40 for a 120-target total.

            Perfect Match Score: For men, 150 is perfect and 135 is world- class, For women, 120 is perfect and 100 is world-class.

            Finals: In both events, the top six competitors advance to a final-50 targets for men, 40 for women. Medals are awarded base on aggregate (match plus final) scores.

            Perfect Aggregate Score: 200 for men, 160 for women.

FOR ALL EVENTS:

            Clothing, Equipment, Accessories: Shotgun shooters typically wear vests with ammunition pouches and extra padding where the gun is shouldered. Most competitors have vests for cold and warm weather, priced anywhere from $80-$150. Glasses are used for safety and to enhance target-tracking ability. Competitors have various colored lenses for different weather conditions. For example, a bronze lens is appropriate for sunny weather, while a yellow or light orange lens would be best for overcast skies. Shooters pay about $120 for glasses, plus $50 for each additional pair of lenses. Some competitors affix blinders to the sides of their shooting glasses to keep wind out of their eyes and prevent distraction from side motion.

 

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Page created on: October 15, 2001