Hi, everyone. I want to begin with two milestones that Illinois shooters have reached. Douglas Porter has shot 25,000 singles, and Danny Bartlett has shot 25,000 handicap targets. Well done, guys.
The northern zone trapshoot was held at the St. Charles SC over the Sept. 9-10 weekend. The winners of the singles, handicap and doubles events were Tad Horton, Sierra Spareburg and Kent Kruse, respectively. Out-of-zone winners in the same order were Mike Westjohn, Madison Franklin and Westjohn. The weather was great; good shooting occurred, and a good time was had by all.
The following weekend, Sept. 16-17, the southern zone shoot was held at Sparta. Good weather prevailed again, with good scores shot all weekend. The singles, handicap and doubles were won by Pete Vonburg, Brock McVaigh and Frank Haynes, respectively. The out-of-zone winners, in the same order, were Fulton Manning, Mike Walker and Don Sappington.
I believe I have told you that the shell of the new ISTA Hall of Fame is up. On the inside there are stud walls with no finishing work done. The reason for this is we have run out of money. To raise more funds, the board of directors has created a raffle. The prize of this raffle is a $15,000 Kolar Combo trapgun. The tickets each cost $100, with the goal of raising $25,000 to finish off the HOF. This figure should allow us to get to the point of hanging pictures and displaying memorabilia in the building. We are finally in the homestretch. On behalf of the board, I would like you to consider buying at least one ticket to help the cause. We are all part of a long-extended family that will be on full display in this new building. It would mean a lot to me too, on a personal note. The drawing will be at the annual meeting during the state shoot in June 2024.
Congratulations on some tremendous shooting by Illinois shooters at the Southwestern Grand. Landon Sievers won the Singles Championship, and Wyatt Williams won the HOA. Great job, gentlemen.
Over the next few months, I will let you know who is on the All-State Team and the All-American Team from Illinois.
Shoot well, have fun and support your local clubs.
Hello, Iowa! With our state shoot behind us and registered shoots winding up here in Iowa, I want to thank everyone who attended our state shoot and all of our local club shoots for a great year. Congratulations to all who earned trophies at the state shoot. I hope each and every one of you had a great time. I enjoyed talking with many of you and look forward to seeing you again next year.
Congratulations to all of our youth shooters who attended the AIM Grand Nationals in Sparta this year. What a great job by our many talented young men and women, and many of you stayed for the Grand American and took home trophies from there as well. Again, congratulations!
I have many more news items and accomplishments from our members that will be in next month’s edition of Trap & Field. I wish everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving.
By the time you read this, the MTA in Mason is done for the season. The Fall Team Shoot was well attended, with about 105 teams participating. The winning team shot 495×500, which is always excellent shooting. The recent ATA President Darryl Hayes was on that team. I ran into him at a gun store (imagine that), and he noted that 48 years ago at the first Team Shoot, his dad was on the winning team. Thursday and Friday of the Team Shoot, the persistent drizzle kept some shooters from the trapline, but it really wasn’t that bad. The Fall Brawl was the following Saturday, and lots of young shooters shot well. There were two 100s, both of those registered by shooters from Ida.
This winter, improvements are planned to continue at the MTA. There will be more skeet houses constructed, with the goal of getting to 10. There is beginning to be serious talk about replacing the clubhouse/cafeteria, but I don’t expect that for a few more years. The heating, ventilation and air moving systems, the insulation, and the kitchen all need upgrading. The trophy area and the Hall of Fame area are too small. Well, since that’s almost all of the building, you get the idea.
There are still many great events at clubs around the state this calendar year, so keep your head on the stock and get out and shoot.
- B. Lewis
Greetings from the North Star State. By the time you read this in your November issue of Trap & Field, the shooting season in Minnesota will be wrapped up with the exception of the jackpot shoots. Many of you will have been in the duck blind, chasing a wily rooster pheasant, and sighting in your rifle for the upcoming firearms deer season. Hopefully all of you who participate in hunting activities, have safe and successful seasons.
Six Minnesota shooters made the trip to the KTA in Sedgewick, KS, for the 45th Southwestern Grand. The weather was about as perfect as you can have for six straight days with very little wind and highs in the upper 70s and low 80s. There were four trophy winners from the Gopher State, Eric Munson, Abigail Malecha, Troy Haverly even yours truly was the victorious veteran in the Handicap Championship. Other than the long road trip, the KTA is a great place to shoot.
Closer to home, the 61st annual Steer and Calf shoot was held in St. Cloud Sept. 9-10. Winner of the steer on Saturday was Bradley Bible, and the calf was won by Scott Arvig. On Sunday Ava Klassen defeated Jack Sprat Knaus in a shootoff for the top prize. Years ago there was actually a steer and a calf in a corral on the grounds until one escaped, and shoot management thought better of how the prizes were delivered after the round up! There were 109 shooters participating on Saturday, and 81 competed Sunday.
The following week the Big Ole Shoot was held at the Shooting Park in Alexandria. Decent weather greeted the shooters who participated. This is generally the last registered shoot for the season in Minnesota. You can see complete results in the Gun Club Scores section of this copy of Trap & Field for both the Big Ole and the Steer and Calf shoots.
The MTA held their fall meeting in St. Cloud at the Steer and Calf Shoot. The board approved the decision to hold the 2024 Minnesota State Shoot June 25-30 with registered targets on Tuesday that will count for All-American points. There will be 1,300 targets that count for points at next year’s state shoot. The Central Zone will be held in Owatonna July 26-28.
It is hard to believe that another shooting season has come and gone, but time keeps marching on. Next year is a milestone for me as I can move into the ranks of the senior vets in May! It just doesn’t seem possible. However, the option of not becoming a senior vet is not very inviting!
Now is the time of year to think about changes in our equipment; get our reloading components together, so we are ready to reload when winter sets in; and dream about the green grass that is basically gone from the Minnesota landscape as you read this.
Paul T. Cyr
For ATA Delegate Randy Jones
The Fall Festival at Middletown SC is in the books. They had great weather for the four-day shoot with a lot of sunshine and a little bit of wind, but I will take a little wind over cold and rain any time. They had a good crowd; it’s always good to see everyone. Congratulations to all the trophy winners.
With the weather turning colder, it’s time to break out the coat and brave the weather to get those targets in. I would like to take a moment to wish everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving. If you are traveling over the holidays, please be safe out there. With Christmas around the corner, everyone needs to get their list together, so Santa can get to work on them. I have already turned mine in, and he just laughed. Please remember to visit your local clubs to support them during these cold months.
“Hey, Mike, I need to get my lawn chair out of your truck before you leave the shoot today.” Mike replies, “You want to get your lawn chair out of my truck?” As I was replying, “Yes,” Mike points to my lawn chair that is right behind me, the one that I just took my shooting bag off of. We both began to laugh pretty hard. All week long the laughs were abundant. I even said to another lady shooter, “My squad makes me cry.” She said, “That is not nice to make you cry.” I said, “The reason they make me cry is because we laugh at each other so much.” My story there is one you can relate to, the laughs with your buddies, the laughs that make you cry because you are laughing so hard. Cherish those moments, cherish your friends, cherish the hanging out with your buddies.
The Southwestern Grand in Kansas had three Wisconsin shooters show up to claim trophies: Dave Mansel, Sage McKeough and Sandra Jo Jack. The Missouri Fall Handicap weather was no sun almost for the entire week with scores all over the board. I do have to recognize Keith Ditto of Kentucky for his outstanding scores shooting his PFS for the week. Taking home trophies were Jenny Mitchell, Lady I handicap; McKeough, 100 singles and Singles Championship 198; Sandra Jo Jack, 100 singles and Singles Championship 199; Doubles Championship, Brent Heikkinen 97, Jack 93.
William (Bill) Candell from Eau Claire, A Class, shot his first 100 straight in singles at Sauk Prairie TC to tie Dwight Fitzsimmons. Both shooters tied for HOA, with Dwight winning. Congrats to both of you for shooting so well.
Remember to read the WTA minutes. There is a lot of information that all of the shooters have a voice in. Remember to help winterize your local clubhouse. Yes, winter is coming fast, and there is a lot to get done at clubs.
Send Wisconsin facts, funs and wins to me at email@example.com.
Sandra Jo Jack
For ATA Delegate Kevin Doerring
Hello from the Atlantic Provinces.
The Highland GC in Yarmouth, NS, held another great Atlantic Provinces ATA Provincial Shoot Aug. 31-Sept. 3. In attendance were shooters from the Atlantic Provinces and visiting shooters from Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Alabama.
Congratulations to all winners and this year’s Atlantic Provinces champions. The 2023 singles, doubles and high-all-around champion is Troy Coldwell and in the handicap, it’s Lloyd Litwin. Alberta’s Shawn McNeil was open winner in the singles, Ontario’s Bob Morphy was the doubles and all-around open victor and Ontario’s Frank Schneider won open handicap. A full shoot report with the event highlights, results, scores and pictures is available on www.shootatlantic.com.
Alabama’s Larry and Claire Sexton made the trip from Alabama to attend this year’s shoot. Larry has been working on competing in all ATA state and provincial shoots, ATA Zone shoots, Satellite Grands and the Grand American. The 2023 Atlantic Provinces ATA Provincial Shoot completed Larry’s ATA bucket list. Larry also won two awards at this year’s shoot: open senior veteran in the Singles Championship and open runnerup in the handicap. Congratulations, Larry!
The Atlantic Provinces ATA Provincial Shoot will return to the St. John’s R&GC located near Holyrood, NL, in 2024. The gun club is located about 40 km west of St. John’s, the capital city of the province. At the Atlantic Province Trapshooting Association’s annual general meeting, shooters requested that the board consider a four-day shoot with 200-target days instead of the traditional 300-target preliminary day. The argument was made that the revised format will give visiting shooters more time to enjoy the local attractions. The board agreed, and the 2024 shoot will be held over four days Aug. 29-Sept. 1. A warm-up shoot will also be held the day prior to the tournament.
The Atlantic Provinces Trapshooting Association also held their election of officers during their annual general meeting. All board members were voted in for another term. Andrea Bassan will continue to serve as president, ATA Delegate and Canadian Trapshooting Association Delegate. Troy Coldwell remains as vice president, Janaya Nickerson will continue as secretary and Doug Blades as treasurer. Jamie LeBlanc will also continue to serve as ATA Alternate Delegate.
For more information on the Atlantic Provinces Trapshooting Association, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit shootatlantic.com.
Well, tropical storm Ophelia had her way with the East Coast of the United States Sept. 23-24. I thought I would be writing about the 2024 New Jersey northern zone today, but all the managers of all three clubs hosting the event took a rain check. It was pushed off into October, and hopefully all of you will be reading about it in the December issue of Trap & Field. It was Sept. 26, and it is still rainy and windy here in New Jersey, still feeling the effects of Ophelia as I write this!
A blood drive was held at Pine Valley GC July 29 in honor of fallen police officer Robert Shisler of Deptford Township Police Department, who was killed in the line of duty, thwarting a burglary. Forty-two units of blood and four units of plasma were collected at the range. John Wilson reported that the Red Cross called him the following Monday to report that their expectations were exceeded by 150%. Several shooters were turned away, including myself, due to medications we were taking, otherwise the total number would have been higher. A thank you goes out to all who made the blood drive a success.
A big thank you must go to George Petronis of The Gun Shop in Vincentown, who has continued to be a generous sponsor of NJSTA for the last 25 or so years. Thank you, George! You made a couple of dozen shooters at the Garden State Grand incredibly happy for winning a flat of shells, picked randomly by squad number and position. It was a very appreciated prize for them during these terrible inflationary times we are all living through.
Pine Valley held their Club Shoot Sept. 2-3. The food was spectacular, as always, with a roasted pig, fresh Jersey corn and tomatoes, supplied by Stella Farms, which is right down the street, and a sheet cake put things over the top. The 200-bird singles event was won by Scott Kalnas. Open winner was Larry Grabowski; open senior vet, Robert Kappe; club vet, Eduardo Bulaong; ladies’ winner, Lori McClure; A, Rangel Queiroz; open A, Ricky Fortner; B, Andrew Stewart; open B, Nino Campagna; C, Robert McClure; open C, David Cossaboon; D, Joe Campese; open D, Merlynn Wegter. The club handicap winner was Kalnas, Bulaong took vet, and Lori McClure took lady. Robert McClure won 19-21, Steve Ligato claimed the open 19-21, Paul Dimeglio took 24-25 and Charles Lehmann Jr. landed 26-27. The doubles winner was Kalnas; second, Bob Jarvis; third, Charles Lehmann Jr.; fourth, Thomas Johnson; fifth, Ligato. HOA was Kalnas.
The Lady Bird Shoot was held Sept. 4, Labor Day. It highlights the women in our sport of trapshooting. KayLynn Hamilton took the Singles Championship, Lori McClure was second, Kolleen Adams third, Holly Fellows fourth, Danielle Baldwin fifth and Julie Ericson sixth. The male winners in the singles were Bob Jarvis, A; Charles Lehmann Jr., B; Fred McDonald, C; and Jack Godwin, D. In the handicap event, Kolleen Adams was first, Lori McClure second, Holly Fellows third and Sofia Granata fourth. Leading the men were: 19-21, Ligato; 22-24, McDonald; and 25-27, Jarvis. The doubles winners were: Jarvis, first; Godwin, second; Ken Hassis, third; McDonald, fourth; and Sofia, fifth.
The Jersey Devil Shoot was held later this year, Sept. 16-17, instead of in August. Scott Kalnas led the 200-bird singles and preliminary doubles on Saturday, Kalnas and Bob Jarvis were tied for the Doubles Championship on Sunday, with Scott winning the shootoff. Christopher Palmer and Gene Ferrence were tied in the handicap, and Chris won after a shootoff. In the Event 5 singles, three people tied for high gun: Ray Padovani, Kalnas and Granata. Scott won the shootoff, with Sofia and Ray taking category trophies.
Jeff Whalen reached 50,000 singles targets. Congratulations!
If you have an idea for an article or just a question, I may be reached at 732-546-7910 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Eastern Zone Vice President
Hello from New York State. I hope everyone had an enjoyable summer and now are enjoying the fall colors and change of the season.
The 38th annual Northeastern Grand American is now history, being held Sept. 6-10. The tournament was up 1.32% from last year. A total of 648 shooters competed in the championship events on the weekend, and the shoot was a Competition Factor 4 for All-American points.
John Kirksey of Maryland was the singles champion with 200 straight and a shootoff with runnerup Walter Mader Jr. of Ohio. John Kirksey also won the Doubles Championship with 100 straight, and Michael Fontello of Delaware was runnerup with 99. Gary McKeown of New York was the handicap victor with 98, and Thomas Walter Jr., also of New York, was runnerup with 97. In the high-all-around, Urban Womer was the winner with 389×400, and in the high-over-all, Herbert Lewis was the champion with 1,155×1,200. All trophy winners can be viewed on the New York State ATA webpage, www.nysata.com, and in a future issue of Trap & Field Magazine.
The annual meeting of the New York State ATA was held Sept. 7. The election of officers and directors took place. Rob Oswald became the new president of the New York State ATA. Cathy Flint, Cam Zuller and Jonathan Karp remain as secretary, treasurer and legal counsel, respectively. Joe Regan is the western zone vice president, and Dan Tartick and Chris McEwen are the western zone directors. Chris Pollichemi is the central zone vice president, and George Hart, Brian Luther and Wayne Wilcox are the central zone directors. In the eastern zone, Sal Schiavo is the vice president, and eastern zone directors are Vince Barranco, Ed Mezger and Mike Palazzo. Elected at the New York State Shoot held this past July are Alternate Delegates Todd Hosbach and Dennis Bobbette. I remain as New York State Delegate.
Appreciation and thanks must be given to Jim Wright for all his years of service to the New York State ATA. Jim is a dear friend, and he was an excellent president of the organization. Jim did a tremendous amount of work over the years, and we all wish him the best.
Thanks must be given to all the officers and directors of the New York State ATA and workers, cleaners, Mary Zuller for running the kitchen, cashiering staff, Wayne and Joyce Morris, Ray Greb, Don Neilson and everyone else for making the tournament a success. Special thanks to Greg Pink for his guidance in helping with the computers and operating of his SOS Clays cashiering program. The people involved are a wonderful team.
Effective Sept. 1, 2024, the annual dues for the clubs to remain as registered ATA clubs have increased to $50 per year.
Congratulations to Salvatore Barone for registering his 25,000th doubles target. Well done.
If anyone would like to have something written in one of these articles, please contact me at Trapshooterdavec@yahoo.com or phone me at 585-519-9543. Please stay healthy, safe and in good spirits. May God bless you all.
Greetings from Ontario, Canada.
Congratulations to Ontario shooters who were named to the 2024 All-American Team. All are category shooters, and they include: Chris Tsementzis (junior gold), Verne Higgs (sub-veteran), Lloyd Beecraft (veteran) and Paul Shaw (senior veteran).
The pursuit of All-American points is a passion for a great many ATA shooters. For the most part, to earn points, a shooter has to be good, but in addition it is important to compete in lots of competitions. The best seven count, and you can throw away the rest. The bigger the tournament, the larger the potential point yield. Planning your shoot calendar is becoming increasingly more strategic. In other words, to earn All-American points, a shooter has to be good and smart (or lucky in some instances).
On the topic of “lucky,” I want to discuss briefly things that shooters and their non-shooter spouses sometimes do as a form of recreation. Years ago when the Grand American was held in Vandalia, ladies could participate in daily bingos. It was relatively rare to attend casinos because years ago, there were few places to legally participate in gaming activities (Las Vegas and New Jersey were notable exceptions). Now, many shooting venues charter buses for the ladies to go to nearby casinos, and many go on their own. Our former Ontario Delegate, Andy Murdock, brought his wife Tina with him. We seldom saw her because she was at a casino, and Andy joined her after shooting was done for the day. Gaming isn’t for everyone. Many prefer to read, watch TV or do other things. Keep in mind, gaming is a form of recreation, and it costs money. It can be expensive entertainment. In Ontario, winnings are not taxable, and losings can’t be written off. In the USA, any winnings at $1,200 and above are taxable, and for Canadians, they take 30% right off the top. If a machine hits $1,199, you keep it all. If you hit $1,200, they pay you only $840. But look at it this way, there is pretty diligent oversight in the U.S. There is no such motivation for casino oversight in Ontario. If casinos cheat, they get fined. That unfortunately is just the cost of doing business with some Ontario casinos. Gamblers pay the price.
I raise this topic because my wife Bev and I enjoy games of chance but also recognize that you appear to have better odds of winning south of the border. I am not an advocate for gambling but find it fascinating to watch people at casinos—more and more are elderly, have ambulatory, respiratory and other medical problems. They arrive on their motorized wheelchairs and for a few hours can leave their problems behind. They are part of a crowd and never need to interact with anyone. They enjoy their “high” just like trapshooters, for the most part, enjoy their “high” on the trapline and during the après-trap. Many look at us (trapshooters) skeptically. Why do we enjoy it? Like the casinos, we are in another world for a short while filled with drama, disappointment, ecstasy and most often satisfaction.
Once again I need to report the death of another member of the Alabama Trapshooters Association. Fred Scherock, who just shot locally at Dixie TC, died unexpectedly at his home in August. Please keep his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.
It’s a new year for trapshooting, so get out and support your local clubs and get some targets in before it gets cold.
Over the river and through the woods! Thanksgiving is just around the corner, so y’all better be getting ready to eat! I hope everyone has a very happy Thanksgiving and also a very safe holiday.
Joke of the month: “The second kick of a mule has no educational value.”
Word of the month: Tar—A round inflatable object that sometimes goes flat. “You shouldn’t drive that car without a spare tar.”
Please keep our troops in your thoughts and prayers. Without the men and women of our armed forces protecting this country, we would not be able to enjoy this great sport. When you see a soldier, thank him or her for their service.
If you need my help or have any news to report, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hello all from the most Southern, Northern state!
Florida trapshooting is about to begin our shooting season, and by the time you read this, it will be in full swing. Please refer to Gun Club Scores in this issue or shootscoreboard.com for club shoot scores. Thank goodness, it is finally cooler.
Recently I have been asked, “How can I make it into the Trap & Field Magazine?” Good question. A few ways come to mind, and the first being you or your gun club representative contact me about your outstanding achievement! Another is by ATA recognition. For example, shooting your first straight or making AA or AAA and 27-yard line status!
Congratulations to the Florida state shooters who made the All-American Team: Cody Meredith, sub-junior first; Lorrie Bumsted Valois, Lady II second; Brendan Doorly, sub-veteran second; Lewis Knack Jr., veteran second; Mark Zauhar, senior veteran second. What an honor!
Imperial Polk GC results from Sept. 17: singles: A, Chris Molina; B, Bob Delong and Dave Muzzy (tied); C, Dave Ure; D, Charlene Muzzy. Combined winner (singles and handicap): Delong. Doubles: B, Molina; C, Muzzy; D, Delong. A big thanks to Linda Kidd, Eli Joiner and Mary Jo Helm for a great lunch. They had three new shooters. If you have never shot at Imperial Polk, you owe it to yourselves to go. Great folks, dang good food (with desserts).
Flagler GC results from Sept. 2: singles: winner, Molina; A, Jake Jacobs; C, David Murphy; D, Patrick Galloway. Handicap: winner, Mike Reynolds. Doubles: winner, Molina; senior vet, Jacobs; B, Don Kerce; C, Reynolds.
ATA Rulebook changes for the 2024 target year:
Section VI, D., 10.
From: “The number of contestants starting the event will be the number used for the earned yardage table.”
To: “The number of contestants completing the entire event will be the number used for the earned yardage table.
Section VI.,11. (NEW)
“Gun Club Management is responsible for reporting the number of contestants completing each entire event.”
Section X, C
From: : “ . . . From the $3.00 daily fee”
To: . . . “$4.00 daily fee”
Section X., G.
From: “The ATA donates $3,000.00 in added money to be awarded to each Zone tournament. Zone officials may determine the division of the ATA added money for Zone tournaments in the Singles and Doubles class championships and in the championship events of Singles, Handicap, and Doubles. It shall be made available to all ATA registered shooters regardless of location unless the money is specifically restricted to Zone residents at the discretion of the various ATA zones and it must be so stated in the Zone programs”
To: “The ATA donates $3,000.00 to each zone to be used at their discretion.”
From: “ATA daily fees are reduced to $1.50 per registered shooter.”
To: “ATA daily fees are reduced to $2.00 per registered shooter.”
I will try to keep all of you informed and entertained with what’s going on in Florida. I want to especially recognize shooters and clubs.
My e-mail is email@example.com.
Thanks for the opportunity to serve.
November is the time when we celebrate Thanksgiving. It is my hope that you and your loved ones are all well and that you have a happy Thanksgiving with family and friends. We all truly have so much to be thankful for, including the freedom to shoot trap and take part in our sport. I am sure all of us have so many memories of Thanksgivings past. Times with family and friends making memories to last a lifetime. It seems that the seasons have shifted (but our memories are selective). When I was a kid, my fondest memories of Thanksgiving were centered around family. It was often cold enough for us to butcher hogs, which required all the family working together. Squirrel season would be open and enough leaves getting off the trees to hunt them with our dog. Squirrel hunting with my older brothers, my dad and my uncle with the dog my dad trained made memories I will never forget. Also, first deer season opened around Thanksgiving, so people could enjoy hunting over the holiday. Back then we only had two deer seasons, one around Thanksgiving and another centered around Christmas and New Year’s. That was before we had primitive weapon season, bow season, early velvet season, late primitive weapon season, etc., etc. Now it seems you can deer hunt from late September to the first of February. When I was a kid, we hunted with dogs, my dad always had a good pack of dogs. I was a kid when deer were just coming back to my area of the state, and I can remember when someone seeing and/or killing a deer would make the local paper. The Clarke County Tribune, touted as covering “Clark County like the Dew,” would gladly run pictures of deer harvested, especially a person’s first deer. Back then it was big news when someone killed the then rare deer in Clark County. In parts of the county, seeing tracks was a big deal. Of course, in those days, the local paper would run pictures of the first cotton bloom in the county, the first open boll and the first bale ginned by one of the gins operating back then. A simple time for sure. Nowadays in Clarke County, deer are so plentiful they are almost considered pests, and cotton planting has disappeared in that area, along with all the gins. Hunting deer with dogs has all but disappeared in that area too. Days gone by. I hope reading this has triggered some special memories for you and Thanksgiving. It is truly a special time for reflection and looking at the many, many things we all have in our lives that we should be thankful for.
Generally, in our part of the world, fall and early winter weather can be very pleasant for shooting trap. I assure you; it is far more pleasant now than it was in July and August. Fall and early winter are excellent times to build registered targets. Our weather generally turns wet, winter, cold and wetter as we move into mid/later winter and into early spring. Get out and shoot when the shooting is good. If you look around, there are several excellent places to shoot ATA targets in Mississippi. Capitol GC in central Mississippi, Starkville GC in northeast Mississippi and Coast R&PC in south Mississippi all have monthly trapshoots set on the ATA calendar. Visit the ATA site for dates and programs.
All-American Team announced: The 2024 ATA All-American Team was announced a little bit ago. We are fortunate to have three of our Mississippi shooters making the team. Congratulations to Joy Hollis, Lady II first; Jonathan Baker, junior second; and Larry Rickman, chair. Congratulations again for representing us so well.
I will again remind you shooters that the fall and winter are excellent times to catch up on your equipment maintenance. Now is the time to get that adjustable comb you have been wanting, or to replace that weak top-lever spring, or replace that locking block, etc. Do not wait until just before important shooing events to catch up on preventative maintenance, cleaning and lubrication.
A reminder that the 2024 Mississippi State Trapshoot will be held May 23-26 at Capitol GC between Jackson and Clinton. Preparation of the program has started, and shoot plans are being made. Please make plans to attend.
Everyone be safe, and I look forward to seeing you on the trapline.
Unfortunately this column has to open with bad news. Our friend and longtime shooter, Jerry Tuten, has passed. Jerry started as a skeet shooter then converted to trap about 20 years ago. He was a squadmate for many years and a regular at practice day until his volunteer church program took over. Jerry was a gentleman and very seldom had a crossword or complaint. Jerry never could pass up a Remington 3200; he must have owned a dozen of them. He faced his fight with cancer straight on with no grousing, a real man. Jerry will be missed. Rest in peace, my friend.
With the Grand behind us, all of our clubs are back on a full schedule of Big 50s and 300-targets-per-day schedules. Get out and shoot. Shells are more available, and prices have moderated slightly. Make sure you have enough targets registered to avoid penalty classification.
Once again I want to thank Garry Welch for organizing “Palmetto Trap” on Facebook. He’s doing a great job. If you have a shoot you want publicized, contact Garry.
Shoot well and often.
The following is an article written by Darlene Superville for the Sept. 7 edition of The Tennessean about Captain Larry Taylor, son of Tennessee Hall Of Fame member R. L. Taylor.
“Captain Larry Taylor received the Medal of Honor in recognition of his ‘conspicuous gallantry, his profound concern for his fellow soldiers, and his intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty,’ Lieutenant Colonel Ann Hughes said at the White House ceremony.
“Taylor, 81, was a First Lieutenant during the Vietnam War and was honored for completing a daring rescue mission in the dead of night in 1968.
“He and another pilot, flying in a Cobra helicopter, which Biden described during the ceremony, as the ‘newest, fastest, deadliest Army helicopter at the time’ responded to a call from four soldiers who were surrounded by enemy forces after an earlier recon mission.
“The plan was to provide cover for the soldiers while a rescue helicopter made its way there, Biden said, but once Taylor and his co-pilot arrived at the pitch-black scene, they learned that no rescue unit was coming.
“After taking several hits to his helicopter while attempting to help cover the four soldiers on the ground, Taylor found himself low on ammunition—and time.
“ ‘Lieutenant Taylor received a direct order: ‘Return to base.’ His response was just as direct: ‘I’m getting my men out,’ ’ Biden said. ‘Lieutenant Taylor would perform the extraction himself, a maneuver never before accomplished in a Cobra.’
“Taylor landed the helicopter while still facing enemy fire and instructed the patrol team to grab ahold of the aircraft however they could.
“ ‘They turned around and jumped on the aircraft—a couple were sitting on the skids, one was sitting on the rocket pods, and I don’t know where the other one was but they beat on the side of the ship twice, which meant, Haul ass. And we did.’
“The pilot then found a safe, friendly area to land the Cobra and the four soldiers disembarked, their lives ‘undoubtedly’ saved, Hughes said at the White House ceremony.
“ ‘We took them down there, and I landed, and I left my wide landing lights on and so the four of them ran out in front of the helicopter and then they turned around and lined up, all four of them, saluted, and then ran for the lights,’ Taylor said to reporters last week, per CNN.
“ ‘When duty called, Larry did everything—did everything to answer,’ Biden said at the ceremony. ‘And because of that, he rewrote the fate of four families for generations to come.’
“ ‘That’s valor,” he continued. ‘That’s our nation at its very best.’
“During his time in the military, Taylor flew more than 2,000 missions and received more than 50 combat decorations, including the Silver Star, 43 Air Medals, a Bronze Star and two Distinguished Flying Crosses, according to an Army report.
“On receiving the Medal of Honor, he said: ‘That’s the ultimate. You can’t get any better than that. I’m thankful that we were able to get the [soldiers] out that night, and all four of them became lifelong friends.’ ”
This is an inspiring article for Veterans Day. Join me in congratulating Captain Larry Taylor. Thank you, sir, for your service.
As we head into late fall here in Louisiana, I always note how the light changes so much as we go through the fall and winter. It gets so much flatter, and I really have a harder time seeing the targets and not to mention the shadows and dark spots in the backgrounds for those clubs that have trees for their background. My average would be a lot better, I think sometimes, if I just didn’t shoot in the late fall and winter and wait for spring to return. But fall and winter are my favorite seasons, so I don’t want to give up that pleasure of shooting and just getting out of the house when the weather is cooler. Plus, the shooting this time of year helps to support the gun clubs.
The last shoot of the target year snuck in on the last weekend, Aug. 26, at the Mill Creek GC. Fourteen shooters participated on a very hot Saturday! It was just one of those days where everyone melts and offers thanks for the nice breezes that kept everyone from overheating. Luke Maestrini continued his good shooting as the singles winner with 98, followed by Dan Booth with 96 and Bo Shaw with 95. Handicap winner was Thomas Smith IV with a 92 from the 25 followed by Dan Booth with 91 from 20, and Luke Maestrini with 90 from 23. Doubles victor was Luke Maestrini with 89 followed by Landon Johnston with 87 and Cole Maestrini with 86. AIM coach Stephen Skipper’s birthday was celebrated with a birthday cake, cupcakes and ice cream and was a nice treat. An Annie Oakley was held just for fun with John Morgan Byrnside hanging on to win. Hat shooting celebrations came next with all the new straights being celebrated that resulted from the AIM Grand shoots with too many hats shot to individually note.
Toby Bancroft Memorial GC hosted the first shoot of the new target year Sept. 9. It was a small crowd due to a charity sporting clays shoot being held on the same day, which drew several of our regulars. Bo Shaw won singles with 87. The group decided to call it a day after singles and headed home to yard work and college football games.
Red Chute SSC hosted its first shoot of the year Sept. 10. Jim Jenkins won singles with 95 followed closely by Sean Taylor with 93 and Mike Lawler with 92. Ed Gunter was the big winner in handicap with a 92 from 20 followed by Dakota Buckley with 85 from 19. Jim Jenkins led the pack in doubles with 90.
Sept. 16 saw the Mill Creek GC host its first shoot of the year on a lovely day with mid 80 temperatures that provided a whiff of fall in the air. The LA AIM was hosting an Introduction to AIM at a different club, so the crowd was smaller than normal. Jim Jenkins won singles with 98 followed by Sean Taylor with 90. Handicap was won by Jim with 89 from 27 then Brooks Barnett with 86 from 19, and Sean Taylor with 85 from 20.5. Football games and other activities resulted in doubles not being shot.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you have a wonderful holiday; it’s probably my favorite holiday of the year.
Check out our website, www.latrap.org. There’s information on registered shoots of interest to our shooters, the scores/winners of our Louisiana shoots and information on all the gun clubs in Louisiana that host registered shoots. Feel free to drop me a note to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any news or comments that you would like highlighted.
Fall is officially here, and another Missouri Fall Handicap is in the history book. On behalf of the MTA Board of Directors, I would like to thank everyone who attended our shoot. Thanks to MTA manager Chip Stamper and his staff, along with Mark Hoffman (trap mechanic) and Gary Parker from Target Shotguns, things went well with many great scores posted. A special thanks to Marg Graf for sponsoring the fish and chicken dinner on Friday evening and all the other sponsors that support MTA. Between the forecasted weather prior to the shoot and now that our shoot is sandwiched between two Satellite Grands, the attendance suffered somewhat. Having said that, no one got drenched while shooting, and speaking with several shooters, there was an abundance of positive comments on the target presentation this year. MTA has always and will continue to do everything possible to provide the best legal targets possible for the shooters. I would like to mention that earlier this year a target issue was brought to the attention of White Flyer, and they came to the table to remedy the issue. Thanks to Josh Taylor and the White Flyer folks for stepping up and making the necessary adjustments to the targets. I would also like to thank David Hart (MTA youth director) for all his hard work putting the AIM Fall Shoot together in conjunction with the Fall Handicap. It’s great to see that many of the youth shooters are not only shooting singles but are now shooting handicap and doubles targets.
As I said earlier, many great scores were posted at this year’s shoot with some milestones accomplished and many that completed first-time straights. A couple of shooters, Rodney Johnson and Aiden Master, completed their first 200 in the Singles Championship, well done to both. Congratulations to Aiden on winning the shootoff to claim the Singles Championship. Sunday’s Doubles Championship brought two shooters to the line, Jordan Ziercher and Justin Cavett, after posting 100s in the event. Congratulations to Jordan on winning the shootoff after three rounds to capture the Doubles Championship title. In the Missouri Fall Handicap Championship, Illinois shooter Leah Tedrick posted the lone near-perfect score of 99 to win outright. Congratulations, Leah! Congratulations to Keith Ditto on his 100 from the 27 in the Bob Graf Handicap on Friday. During the shoot, Missouri shooter Tom Rombach shot at his 500,000th combined singles, handicap and doubles targets. By the way, that’s well over 15 tons of lead shot and more than two-and-a-half trailer loads of targets. Many other great scores were posted during the shoot. Look for complete results in a future issue of Trap & Field.
As most clubs in the Midwest are winding up their registered shooting season, some are already making plans for next year’s shoots. With the technology available today, there are more avenues available to promote and advertise shoots than ever before. Club managers, please reach out to your state association or your ATA Delegates, as they can usually be a source for information regarding registered shoot announcements available through the ATA. If anyone has anything they would like to have reported or has any concerns, please contact me at email@example.com or 816-863-9003.
I believe I may have shared this passage before but here it goes again. NKJV 2 Timothy 2:5—And also if anyone competes in athletics, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules.
Shoot often, shoot well and be safe!
The OTSA had their annual Red Earth Shoot the second weekend of September. The grounds were looking good, mowed and cleaned up. Meals were served both days, thanks to our first lady Kathy Grove. The food was great, and the desserts were awesome! We were a little short on trap help, so several board members alternated in scorekeeping and keeping things running smoothly. The targets were very good and consistent (I believe converting the throwing bands to springs was a definite improvement). The shoot was well attended, and everyone had a good time. Woody Barnes was champion of the 200 doubles Saturday, and Cambridge Miller was handicap winner with 95. Sunday’s program began with 200 singles and then 100 handicap. A young man from Kansas, Brody Lenington, dominated the day Sunday, breaking 199 in the singles and 93 in the ’caps, claiming champion in both events. Class winners in the singles were: Jeff Trayer, David Gatlin, Jeff Barker, Paul Hooper and Richard Coit. Yardage group winners were: Mitch Wyatt, Kelly Thacker and Jeff Trayer.
The Tulsa GC is in the process of installing lights over two trapfields. This is largely due to a grant awarded from the ATA Gun Club Fund. This is an awesome program the ATA has in place and is driven by all who buy tickets for the raffle each year. We’re all looking forward to having lights up and plan to shoot Big 50s this fall and winter.
The Heartland Grand was well attended again this year, including several Oklahomans. David Bacon II was winner in his class in Event 4 doubles and again in the Singles Championship. Billy Pierce prevailed in shootoff and claimed B class winner in the Event 7 singles. Angie Cavett broke 97 in the Event 17 singles, claiming high gun in her class.
The Southwestern Grand at the KTA was another awesome shoot. Attendance was up enough to raise the Competition Factor to 5. It did rain all day Monday, but for the rest of the week, the weather was fair with only light winds. Shelby Skaggs started the shoot breaking all her targets in the first event and continued to shoot very well all week. Shelby posted a perfect 200 Thursday and then 199 in the Singles Championship. Kya Funkhouser had a good shoot, posting 100 straight in the Event 7 singles. Kya was very strong in handicap, breaking 98 in Event 6 and 97 in Event 8. Michael Gates trophied in Event 8 handicap, breaking 95 and again in Event 11 with the same score. Ron Bliss was vet champion, breaking 96 in Thursday’s handicap. Dason Harman was sub-junior winner in Event 9 doubles. Alexis Pletcher and Aaron Broyles were both class winners in the Singles Class Championship. In the Singles Championship Saturday, Jacob Diller ran 200 straight and prevailed in shootoff for junior gold champion. Pat Stacey was AAA runnerup with 199, and Shay Skaggs was Lady I runnerup with 198.
Congratulations to Billy Pierce on attaining 50,000 doubles and to Stanley Crawford on 100,000 singles. Also congratulations to Ellis Toews on attaining 100,000 combined targets. The ATA and the OTSA appreciate your dedication to this game. Recently the ATA All-American Teams were announced. Congratulations to all who worked hard and shot well to obtain a position on one of these teams. We are proud of the 10 Oklahomans who are on the 2024 All-American Teams. Keep up the good shooting, Oklahoma! See you at the next trapshoot.
Howdy from Texas!
After the Grand American, I try to slow down a little and get caught up on things at home and kind of take a break from shooting. I love shooting, don’t get me wrong, but I feel a break is needed to keep my “want to” fresh and going.
I attended the Southwestern Grand in Wichita, KS. As usual, KTA put on a fine shoot, with some top shooters posting some top scores. Texas was well represented with 36 shooters. I am also just returning from the Zone III shoot in Iowa Park, where we all found out that it is still summertime in Texas. Just the Zone II shoot in El Paso and the Bair Hatcher Memorial Shoot in Ft. Worth before I get my break.
I would like to recognize Matt Nicol for shooting at and breaking (I assume he broke it, but when asked, he said “no comment”) his 50K doubles target at Metro GC near Angleton. Ronald Todd shot at (and I assume broke) his 25K doubles targets at Stockdale GC and our current TTA President Steve Bradbury shot at and broke his 25K doubles target at the Zone III shoot in Iowa Park. Congrats to these shooters!
I have always looked forward to reading the newest edition of Trap & Field, especially the section involving Hapless Harry, Mark Manager, Ollie Oldtymer and the crew written by Dave Kaiser. I thought it gave good examples of rules applications at shoots. Well sadly, Mr. Kaiser passed away in 2021, and consequently, the missteps of Hapless Harry did also. I spoke with Mr. Kaiser several times on the phone commenting on some of his articles and telling him of some of my own personal experiences and observations. I think he used some of my stories as the storyline for his article. I really learned a lot from him and those articles. That being said, I would like to occasionally describe something that I witnessed at a shoot I was attending where the rules were either properly or improperly applied.
The first thing I would like to address is foot positioning in the shooting station. I see all kinds of stances, and most are legal but some are borderline, and others are blatant violations. The most common violation that I see is the shooter standing with both feet at either the inner or outer edge of the station. Neither foot is touching the “imaginary straight line” and both feet are on the same side of said line. This is illegal per the following, taken from the 2023 ATA Rulebook:
Section VII Official Scoring E. No Target 10. “When firing, the contestant’s feet must be behind the firing mark at 16- yards, or behind the mark for the Handicap yardage assigned to him/her, depending upon the event being participated in. The contestant must stand with at least one foot on an imaginary line drawn through the center of the trap and continuing through the center of the post or have one foot on each side of the line. Exceptions to the rule contained in the second sentence of this paragraph may be granted by the referee/scorer due to inequalities in the shooting platform and shall be granted for wheelchair contestants. Wheelchair contestants shall position their chair so that the center of mass of their body is over the place where they would stand as required by this rule if no chair were used. If a contestant fails to follow this rule in its entirety, the referee/scorer shall rule any target fired at and broken a “NO TARGET,” but if fired at and missed, the referee/scorer shall rule the target “LOST.”
I hope people take note of this now instead of forcing a shoot official to correct them in the middle of a shootoff.
In closing, I would like to encourage you to volunteer at your local club and support youth shooters. Our youth are the future of our country and our sport. Should you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to me or one of the current TTA officers. We will be glad to help if possible.
Thanks again for your support, and I will see you at the next one!
Labor Day weekend has many different meanings for many people. For us trapshooters, new target year!
Time to start planning for the upcoming shooting season. Arizona shooters got to kick off the new season with a three-day opener, shooting green targets at Casa Grande T&SC. Temperatures weren’t too terribly bad, and there was a pretty good turnout.
Northern Arizona SR hosted an event the following weekend, with a few shooters escaping the heat of Phoenix for cooler weather. Temperatures were fantastic, and the targets and fields were great. Well worth the trip up for a fun day of shooting.
As the High Country clubs start the winterization process and finalize their fall shooting, several other clubs are going to be getting busy and starting to put on shoots. Anyone interested in finding an upcoming shoot, can visit the Arizona State Trapshooting Association at www.aztraps.com and check out the Event Calendar on the front page. Several clubs will be throwing shoots as well as marathon events in order to help shooters meet minimum target requirements for the upcoming Autumn Satellite Grand American in November.
A reminder to Arizona shooters who are interested in the Arizona State Team, the process has changed a bit this year. Shooters will need to fill out and submit an application to the state association. Details are also on the www.aztraps.com website.
The 2024 All-American Teams were posted up, and several Arizona shooters made the team. Congratulations to Sophie Nostrom (Lady I first), Jimmy Heller (vet second), Tim Robb and Gerry Williams (senior vet first) and Jim Copsey (senior vet second).
Lastly, congratulations go out to Arizona shooters Darrell Goen and Greg Spiczka. Darrell made the 27-yard line at the Clark Co. SP. He tied for first place in the handicap on Sept. 23 out of 40 shooters. Greg earned his punch to the 27-yard line at the Pleasant Valley TC. Welcome goes out to both shooters to the fence!
This month I’d like to start out by recognizing a milestone for one of the Idaho shooters. Joe Hollifield just crossed the 50,000 singles mark. Congratulations, Joe! If Joe only shot one ounce loads, then he shot more than one-and-a-half tons of lead from the 16-yard line. And we’re not even talking about his doubles or handicap!
I have to correct a typo error in last month’s article. I said that the Pocatello GC threw 1,100 targets at their annual Gun Shoot. I believe I was off by a factor of 10. (oops).
Things are about to slow down here in Idaho as fall has arrived. Troy-Deary had the last ATA shoot of the calendar year, and the first of the target year Sept. 30-Oct 1. I hope they had a great turnout.
There will be a few PITA shoots, but primarily league shoots and meat shoots will dominate any organized events. Then things will kick into high gear again in January (brrr) when the Camas Prairie League starts up.
I had my first experience shooting at the Grangeville GC (Aug. 27-28). What a great club! The weather was great, the staff was friendly, and targets were fantastic. It was an extremely well-run shoot. They have five active traphouses, with one being used for practice. The background is wonderful with the rolling farmlands, and the scores were good. Being halfway up the state from my home county, I met and shot with a lot of shooters I didn’t know. This will be an annual shoot for me.
They threw about 25,000 targets in two days, with 59 shooters on the first day handicap.
There were several 100 straights in the singles, (yours truly on the first day and Dan Thompson and John Helpman on the second day.) I shot with both Dan and John when they shot their centuries. But the big news was a lone 100 straight in the handicap on the first day by Cody Vrieling! He won the big bar of silver. Great accomplishment, Cody!
In some of my previous articles, I try to compare a few rules from ATA to PITA. Here’s another one. I was approached about an issue that can and does happen. Less than a month later it happened to me. Luckily I knew how to deal with it because of the questions asked previously. So here goes. I was the squad leader and shooting with my friends Stuart Welton and Jim Bauer. On one of the posts, I lost track of how many shells I’d shot and shot a sixth target. Stuart followed and also shot a sixth target before Jim stopped the show. The scorekeeper was a young person and didn’t catch it in time to shut of the mics. What’s the ruling? According to the rules, you did not shoot out of turn, but in ATA, that shot is scored. You move to the next post, and the next shooter in turn shoots. [Section VII A. 7]. In PITA it is deemed a no target. You must rotate and shoot that shot again. [“No Target –singles and handicap, 11]. This was a PITA shoot, so Stuart and I both had to shoot again. Luckily we hit our targets. Had it been an ATA shoot, we would have kept the results of those extra shots, rotated, and Jim would have been the next shooter. Interesting, huh?
There is a lot going on out West. As this is being written in late September, pre-squad numbers for the championship events for the 75th Nevada State Shoot exceed 600 entries. As such, the Competition Factor for awarding All-American points will increase from 3 to 4. That is a huge accomplishment and the result of a ton of hard work by the NSTA board. Kudos! A full report on the 2,000+-target state shoot will be published in a future edition of Trap & Field. It was epic.
Forty + shooters lined up for the annual Fall Handicap, a 500-target all ’caps event held over two days Sept. 23-24 at the Clark Co. SC. Event 1 started under dark, windy conditions. Arizona resident Darrell Goen and Nevada junior shooter Lucci Kern shared high honors with 93. Darrell’s score got him punched to the 27-yard line for the first time. Congrats, Darrell! Lucci got punched to the 22-yard line. In Event 2, Alex Oppenheim and Kern both posted very fine 97s to share top honors. Alex got a punch to the 21, and Lucci’s second punch in two events put her back to the 23-yard line. Nice shooting by two fine young shooters. Saturday’s final event saw 27-yard senior vet Charles Storm Jr. and Vegas local Sam Ford post 93s for the top score. Again, dark and windy conditions were the rule.
On Sunday, conditions were much improved with lots of sunshine and light to no winds. In Event 4, Vegas junior Austin X. Santellan and Leticia Slinker each hit a 97 to share the high score. Santellan was punched to 21.5, and Slinker continued her fine post-Grand shooting and stepped back to the 25. In Event 5, Oppenheim posted a 95 to top all shooters, followed closely by Charles Storm IV, Jeff White, Lisa Burcalow and Murray Dominguez, all shooting 94. Oppenheim won the high-over-all with 466, concluding two days of consistent shooting. Storm Jr. was the senior vet champ, Grant Smith won the junior category, Slinker was the top lady, and White won a two-round shootoff over Don Mayall for sub-vet honors. A complete shoot report can be found at shootscoreboard.com.
Junior shooter Orion Cooper deserves a bit of recognition. He got punched to the 26-yard line on Sept. 10, shooting a 96 in a ’caps event at Redlands. He has moved rapidly toward the back fence over the course of 30 days or so and is on the 2024 sub-junior All-American Team. He is a steady, determined competitor and may be on the 27-yard line by the time this is published. Congrats to Orion and his supportive family for his success and achieving All-American status. Orion is now sponsored by a well-known recoil device/stock company who saw his talent and dedication while fitting him for a stock. Orion’s dad Robert, his biggest supporter, indicated to me that they intend to hit the road this year in an effort to get on the 2024 junior All-American Team. I have no doubt that Orion has all the talent and support he needs to achieve his goals in the coming years, including fulfilling his desire to get a scholarship to a university to shoot on an NCAA team. Big things coming!
Last note. I became Delegate three years ago. As a firm believer in not staying too long, I decided not to run again for reelection. There will be a new Delegate from Nevada elected during the October State Shoot. I’ve appreciated the support of the NSTA board and the Nevada shooters and know that the new Delegate will continue to work on behalf of the sport and the shooters in this state.
Hunting seasons are upon us. The leaves are changing colors. Most of the local shoots are over for the year. Spanish Fork held its second annual Rocky Mountain Open. I was out of town on a family vacation, so I could not attend. By all accounts, there was a good turnout with okay scores.
The Overthrust GC, on the Wyoming border in the town of Evanston, WY, held a small two-day shoot. I attended Saturday and shot the doubles marathon. Club manager Nico Elardi posted his first-ever 100 straight in doubles. Good shooting, Nico.
Next came a one-day shoot at Golden Spike GC in Brigham City, UT. Turnout was moderate with good scores.
I guess most people are ready for a break from the long season of shooting registered targets, which is the reason for small turnouts at these shoots during the first month of the target year. The weather is generally perfect this time of year, so the target presentation is also excellent.
The ATA announced All-American Teams, and Utah had five people make the team: Sean Hawley, Britt Dalton, Joe Sudbury, Grayson Stuart and Pam Wright. Congratulations to all of you.
The Utah State Teams have also been posted on the Utah State Trapshooting webpage. Be sure to look at all the information on the website.
ATA Past President