Your First Registered Shoot

Questions about shooting a Registered Competition?

Clay target shooting is what we are all about, whether it’s shooting at your local clay club, competing at registered shoots and championships, shooting for England and indeed, at the pinnacle of our sport in the Olympics! Whenever we go shooting, we all want to do our best, break as many clays as possible and ideally beat our shooting buddies so why not take the next step and take part in a registered shoot?

We have shooting clubs and ground around the Country who regularly hold registered shoots in the Sporting, Skeet and Trap disciplines so there’s normally something going on not too far away. However, there are some things you need to know when you decide to start your journey into registered competitions.

Firstly, you need to be a Full (competition) member, so please make sure you have the correct membership level. If you are a Clubman member, you can upgrade at any time to Full membership so just call the CPSA and they will sort it for you over the phone! Each discipline has it’s own unique set of rules so it’s worth having a quick read of our technical rulebook which you can download from our website here.

We operate a classification system with our registered shoots (a bit like a Golf handicap) so that when you are shooting, you are effectively shooting against others of a similar ability. Our classes range from C Class up to AAA Class, although typically AAA Class only comes into play in major championships. You can read more about classifications here: What are classifications? - CPSA. We also have categories such as Colts (U16), Juniors (16 – 20), Seniors (21 – 59) Veterans (60+), Ladies and Disabled, but all of these are typically only seen at championships were there is a large entry, and the prize money can be shared across class and category.

When you book on to do your first registered shoot you will be Unclassified. You need to shoot 300 targets in a discipline in order for us to calculate your scores against the national averages and apply a classification to your record. For example, if you shot a 69ex100, 74ex100 & 72ex100 in three English Sporting registered shoots, your average would be 71.66% which would put you in B Class. Now, every three months we re-calculate those national averages (called issue periods) and you receive a formal classification. This all might sound complicated, but don’t worry, it all goes on in the background and you can track your scores and progress via our website. We update the shooting grounds directly with any classification changes every three months.

So, what do you next? Check our Fixtures page on the website or within Pull! magazine and look for any registered shoots coming up within comfortable driving distance. Check whether or not you need to pre-book your place in a squad with a set starting time or whether you can just turn up on the day and pay for your entry. This is important as quite a few clubs operate a strict booking time so that they can manage the entries, and this is typically the most efficient way of completing your round within a sensible time.

When you book on you will be asked whether you are shooting competition or targets-only (often referred to as Birds only) and there is a difference with the entry fee between the two of around £5.00. This £5.00 per competition shooter is called the prize fund and is paid out to the winners in each class, dependant upon how many have entered. Targets-only means you are not eligible to win any prize money, but your score is still recorded and sent back to us for classification purposes. Often people starting their registered shoot journey will go targets only to ease themselves into registered shooting gently, but you are welcome to enter competitions if you wish. 

Once you have paid your entry fee, you will either be part of an organised squad or free to go off on your own or with friends and start shooting. There will be a person either with your squad or on each stand who will operate the traps and score for you so if you are shooting on your own, don’t worry, they will handle everything, just focus on your shooting! Once you have finished your round, it is imperative that you hand in your score card back at the clubhouse so that your score is recorded and then registered with us.

That’s about it but if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call us, or ask when you check into shoot or just ask another shooter. We are a very friendly bunch and always happy to explain the rules and etiquette when shooting registered competitions.