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"Shoot where it was" - That was then....


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So, it has been many, many years since I posted anything here other than to ask for help from other shooters (and they have always been great in that regard) so it is with more than just a little trepidation that I venture forth with an opinion post.  And folks, keep in mind that this is just MY OPINION and i'm not trying to start a mutiny.  

 

When I started (1997) and right up through today, it was/has/is accepted practice to coach a shooter who is actively shooting a stage to "shoot where it was" if a target goes down prematurely.  I have heard many reasons for this practice but in my mind, none of them are fair to the shooter.  I have heard match officials say that it really didn't bother the shooter (like they can read their mind) so it doesn't matter.  I have heard that it's just too windy to give everyone a reshoot.  To me none of these are legitimate reasons.  I don't care who you are or how many years you have been competing, once you have committed a stage to memory and started your run, a missing target is a surprise - it's an unplanned event.   Let's face it, the mere act of the TO yelling directions at you is enough to make you pause.  

 

Todays top shooters can regularly post 10-13 second stage times.  Even a small hesitation counts.  To me, if a target isn't reliable then it's no longer match-worthy and if the club/match insists on using it, then if it malfunctions the shooter should be at least offered a reshoot.  

 

For a match to be "fair" or at least as fair as possible the stages have to be consistent which means the targets have to be consistent as well.  I don't know why we would continue a practice which doesn't reflect the much more advance skill level of today's shooters.

 

Just my $.02 worth.

 

Dang It Dan

 

 

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Howdy JEDI Dan.

 

Your points of discussion are valid, in my opinion.

 

A missing target can be a distraction.   I've also thought that a Reshoot would be the best and most appropriate 

action.

 

..........Widder

 

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I see several problems with this.  1) Cost -  CAS is not a growing sport and to ask a club to replace targets that are not 100% reliable (which is what I think  you are asking for) is not realistic.

2_ Is there a shotgun KD that exists that IS 100% reliable?  I know our club has at least five types of shotgun knockdowns and while I rarely see one go down without being shot at, it does happen and with KD's that are expensive and rather new. 

3) If the other choice is a reshoot, then can that be rationalized for matches that have a time constraint? 

4) What about wind as an outside force that knocks the target down during the run of the stage?  This is an outside sport for the most part. 

5) Stuff happens, whether it's a bad call by a referee during the Superbowl that can potentially cost a team millions of dollars or a target going down during a shooter run.  It could be raining during your run and not another shooter's run.  Does having fresh paint on the target help?  Is there an advantage or disadvantage to being the first to shoot on your posse.  The bottom line is that Life is inherently unequal.  

 

 

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In my 11 years of shooting SASS matches I can't recall ever seeing a shooter 'shoot where it was' without some hesitation, however small.  I don't think there's any question that targets falling is a distraction for the shooter.  

 

I think offering the shooter the choice of a reshoot in that situation is a good idea.

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@Dang It Dan 13202 I can see your point and since I’m not a top shooter I don’t have a dog in the fight.  But, when I TO I try to judge my shooter and know what they like.  Some like to know when a KD is up, some need coaching, etc, so if I have a fast shooter who knows what they’re doing I keep my mouth shut for fear of breaking their concentration.  I think (maybe incorrectly) that they already know if a target is accidentally down to shoot where it was and don’t need my input.  But, like I said I see your point and I guess it could be considered TO interference which is worthy of a re-shoot.

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I must agree that any unexpected event, such as an expected target not being present is a distraction. A T.O. letting go a unexpected green fart could also be considered a distraction. I guess that a restart or reshoot might be considered if indeed the shooter was impeded.

 

The list of possible distractions is endless. The wind whips up the end of a blanket covering the loading table and it distracts the shooter, a Coyote way down range chasing a rabbit comes into the shooters view and distract him, or Uncle Joe walks by in the backfield and Billy Bob yells "Hey" causing the shooter to look. It is endless. About the only one of these endless possible distractions that is directly covered in the rule books, and expected for all to know and understand, is the one that says if a target is down, shoot where it was. For some it might take a 12 sec stage and make it a 13 sec stage. For some it might mean taking a 29 sec stage to a 32 sec stage. My dad told me a long time ago. "Life is basically unfair"... well at times so is CAS.

 

Snakebite

Edited by Snakebite
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Having had this happen to me a few times, I actually see it as an advantage. I don't have to actually hit the target, just shoot it that general direction and they are counted as hits. Any experienced shooter knows how to handle this situation. An inexperienced shooter probably will not, as I did the first time it happened, but I was shooting 40 second stages, a reshoot would not have made a difference. The few times I have done a reshoot, I shot worse than the first run, not worth it.

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I was at a match recently where the wind was blowing downrange rather strongly, and plates on a plate rack were falling. The fix was to prop up the frame with a couple 2x4's under the rear legs. This created a problem between wind gusts with the plates not falling reliably when hit with a light bullet/load combination that would normally take them down. Leave it alone and shoot where it was? Keep shooting til the plate goes down? If a bullet hits the plate but it doesn't go down, invoke the Buckaroo rule and call it down? 

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Placing 26th instead of 24th out of out of 45 shooters because of 3/4 of a second pause due to confusion about a missing target isn't going to ruin my day.

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14 hours ago, Dang It Dan 13202 said:

So, it has been many, many years since I posted anything here other than to ask for help from other shooters (and they have always been great in that regard) so it is with more than just a little trepidation that I venture forth with an opinion post.  And folks, keep in mind that this is just MY OPINION and i'm not trying to start a mutiny.  

 

When I started (1997) and right up through today, it was/has/is accepted practice to coach a shooter who is actively shooting a stage to "shoot where it was" if a target goes down prematurely.  I have heard many reasons for this practice but in my mind, none of them are fair to the shooter.  I have heard match officials say that it really didn't bother the shooter (like they can read their mind) so it doesn't matter.  I have heard that it's just too windy to give everyone a reshoot.  To me none of these are legitimate reasons.  I don't care who you are or how many years you have been competing, once you have committed a stage to memory and started your run, a missing target is a surprise - it's an unplanned event.   Let's face it, the mere act of the TO yelling directions at you is enough to make you pause.  

 

Todays top shooters can regularly post 10-13 second stage times.  Even a small hesitation counts.  To me, if a target isn't reliable then it's no longer match-worthy and if the club/match insists on using it, then if it malfunctions the shooter should be at least offered a reshoot.  

 

For a match to be "fair" or at least as fair as possible the stages have to be consistent which means the targets have to be consistent as well.  I don't know why we would continue a practice which doesn't reflect the much more advance skill level of today's shooters.

 

Just my $.02 worth.

 

Dang It Dan

 

 

Hey Dan, congrats for Florida.

Personally for me, I'd rather have the targets up for me to shoot so I don't have to think about anything. I do agree also that clubs should be doing all they can to keep good targets and maintain them to be consistent. 

   But, I'd also say if you have to "coach" the shooter to shoot where it was, they're not shooting 13 second stages. That tells me a reshoot isn't going to make too big a difference. I know it doesn't take much to make a difference in placement(I was first loser this past weekend by .21:ph34r:) but it won't make them 13 seconds either. 

   On the other side of the coin, and I'd like your take on this is I see some clubs giving reshoots for the wind blowing wrong. Well, maybe not that bad but say for instance a gun or ammo malfunction. I think there's good and bad with that. The good is people have a better time at their monthly not having to worry about a malfunction. The bad is that it doesn't prepare you for a big match because there won't be any reshoots for that. Our club will only give a reshoot for things described in the SHB as being warranted. I happen to agree with that. What side of the fence are you on?

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Downed targets can be an advantage.  As a black powder shooter shooting shotgun targets I often shoot the first target in a pair and then guess where the second, obscured target is, hitting the second target most of the time.  If the second target is already down all I have to do is hit the first one and then quickly pull the trigger knowing the downed target will be scored as a hit.  At EOT on a windy afternoon I shot an array of six shotgun targets where two had just blown down and was grateful .  (The EOT crew recalibrated those shotgun targets after my posse shot.)

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Let me clarify,

 

I am not talking so much about monthly matches, I am aware of the cost of a good target.  I am talking about State Championships and above - matches that mean something to folks who put in the work.  I know you can't control everything including the weather and even good targets will malfunction from time to time.  I am talking about offering a reshoot to those effected.  If their attitude is that it didn't bother them, they can decline.

 

I'll also say this, almost every other action sport offers the shooter a reshoot if a target goes down prematurely and they manage to keep their matches moving in the process.

 

Dang It

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22 minutes ago, Dang It Dan 13202 said:

Let me clarify,

 

I am not talking so much about monthly matches, I am aware of the cost of a good target.  I am talking about State Championships and above - matches that mean something to folks who put in the work.  I know you can't control everything including the weather and even good targets will malfunction from time to time.  I am talking about offering a reshoot to those effected.  If their attitude is that it didn't bother them, they can decline.

 

I'll also say this, almost every other action sport offers the shooter a reshoot if a target goes down prematurely and they manage to keep their matches moving in the process.

 

Dang It

Mostly because they are shooting paper or if steel and a target goes down, they do not score shots fired as hits, so they have to give a reshoot. I often see references to "other shooting sports" do this or that and keep the match moving... I have never sat on my butt waiting more that at a USPSA or IPSC match. One of the things I like most about CAS and WB is the Posse system moving stage to stage, always busy, if you aren't shooting, picking, spotting, RO, LTO, ULTO, etc. then you're refreshing your SG belt, checking your equipment getting ready for the next stage, helping out someone else who is having problems. It's a Posse effort and everyone pitches in. Those other shooting sports, not so much.

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Club level matches can decide on reshoots or not but SASS sanctioned matches above allow a reshoot for "range failure" at the shooters choice.  SHB 1-2022, page 20.

Our club wants everyone to have fun so we encourage "shoot were it was" but offer a reshoot if the shooter wants one. 

Edited by Caladisi kid
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am i a top shooter, no, i don't consider myself one, but i have beaten those that are top shooters on stages and speed events.  your kidding yourself if you think that a upper class shooter gets surprised by a target not there.  the more stages you shoot, the easier it is to take in what is on the stage and what is not.  its more of an individual reaction. to me if it falls it doesn't matter. if anything i shoot faster because i don't have to focus on a tight sight picture.   to me granting a reshoot would be a callosal waste of time.  we are not shooting in a sterile world . the stages will never be exactly the same for everyone.   if you want that you will have to repaint after every shooter and have it indoors so everyone has the same environmental influences and lighting changes.   part of the challenge of the sport is overcoming and adapting to the unexpected.

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In my opinion, if a club has decided to host a SASS Sanctioned Championship match, there should be a certain standard of the targets used.  (i.e. knockdowns that can be calibrated to fall when shot by the loads being commonly used by SASS shooters)  This should be thought about in advance of the club putting their name in to host a sanctioned match.  If the club in question does not have the proper equipment, they should either make the commitment to purchase and/ or repair the equipment or not host the match.  One bad experience could turn shooters off to spending the type of money required to attend a big match.  

 

As far as affecting top shooters, I think this is the wrong approach.  We should consider all shooters and attempt make the stages as consistent as possible for all levels.  Everyone can compete for something, whether their category or overall, or even just beating their time from previous years.  

 

I am not as experienced as many of the shooters commenting on this post but I have traveled around a bit and shoot matches outside of my state.  One thing I have seen a few times is that the matches seem to forget that we are in the entertainment business.  If a majority of shooters are not entertained, then the match will get bad reviews and affect future attendance.  Clubs should not use the sanctioned event to benefit certain shooters or categories.  This is only entertaining those few shooters who shoot those categories or styles.  And is very frustrating for the others.  Again, entertain the masses , not the minority.

 

As far as reshoots, I agree that if there is a prop or target failure, the shooter should be given the choice to take a reshoot.  I personally know many shooters who, given the choice, will not take a reshoot for fear of having a worse stage.  But if they are given the choice, then it is on them and not the match conditions that decided this.  

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For what it's worth, in other action matches if a steel popper is not reset or falls prematurely a reshoot is not offered, it is mandatory, to insure everyone shoots the same match as much as is possible. None of this shoot where it was stuff. I've occasionally seen terrible backups on stages at all the different types of action matches, usually at the bigger ones.

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57 minutes ago, Smokin Gator SASS #29736 said:

For what it's worth, in other action matches if a steel popper is not reset or falls prematurely a reshoot is not offered, it is mandatory, to insure everyone shoots the same match as much as is possible. None of this shoot where it was stuff. I've occasionally seen terrible backups on stages at all the different types of action matches, usually at the bigger ones.

With all due respect, we are not any other discipline.  That is a dead argument in my opinion.  We are different and should remain so.  They have professional shooters with money on the line.  That, in and of itself, changes the dynamic completely. 

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Doubt that target already down would impact my time to any noticable degree. But then I'm a 30 sec. shooter:P. If anything I'd be faster due to not having to aim. Remember, the only way you're taking home a Cadillac, is if you drove one there! I play this game because I think it's fun and I like the people and comraderie.

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Since 2003 I have shot many state & regional matches from top to bottom of the US and been to EoT twice.  I have seen exactly 1 rifle/pistol target go down due to... whatever... while a shooter was engaged in the stage.  Shotgun targets, maybe a half-dozen.

 

While a shooter was engaged in the stage.

 

So for those that argue that the reshoot takes too much time... that dog won't hunt. 

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Seems to me like this situation is already covered in the existing target rules. The shooter can request a re-shoot in case of target failure or

just make sure he/she fired the required number of rounds. (Rifle, revolver or shotgun). Shooters choice.

Edited by Yusta B.
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1 hour ago, The Outlaw Travis James said:

With all due respect, we are not any other discipline.  That is a dead argument in my opinion.  We are different and should remain so.  They have professional shooters with money on the line.  That, in and of itself, changes the dynamic completely. 

 

Some SASS members would like our matches and shooters to be considered on the same level of competition as other action  shooting. Others prefer it to be looked at as a lesser competition.

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1 hour ago, Yusta B. said:

Seems to me like this situation is already covered in the existing target rules. The shooter can request a re-shoot in case of target failure or

just make sure he/she fired the required number of rounds. (Rifle, revolver or shotgun). Shooters choice.

You have touched on the very thing I was trying to illustrate.  If you have say 20 knock down targets, the shooter isn't counting shots, they are looking for available targets.  If no targets are standing, the shooter thinks they are through and moves on.  Couching them at that point impedes them.  Calling them back for "one more round" costs them time even though it is not technically improper coaching.  Here is the crux of the problem.

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QUESTION:   What would some of you think if the target that prematurely falls is a 'Sequence' target?

In other words, what if target #3 falls and the shooter engages #4 with his/her 3rd shot.   How many of you would then

think that its insignificant?

 

I would guess that most of you would want a RESHOOT instead of a 'P' and probable MISSES for unfired rounds.

 

Shooting "where it was" is a good sound-bite, but what if that 'sequence' target ain't there and you don't realize it at the time

of shooting that 'string'.

 

..........Widder

 

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Some good arguments have come up, including the previous one by Widder.  To take the thought to it's conclusion, we also ought to paint targets between shooters so there is no question on hits and misses.  As it is now, scoring in this game is subjective, not objective.

 

I'm not being facetious or offering up a straw man argument.  I've often thought at the bigger matches, folks should shoot freshly painted targets so that there are no questions on hits/misses. 

 

There are some boulders that may not be worth pushing.

 

Dan, hope you and the family are well.

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14 minutes ago, Doc Shapiro said:

I'm not being facetious or offering up a straw man argument.  I've often thought at the bigger matches, folks should shoot freshly painted targets so that there are no questions on hits/misses. 

 

I do agree with your point, 100%...

 

However....

 

That would knock our current host of the world championship out as they have stages with a common firing line. Can't easily go downrange and paint with a common firing line.

 

Other ranges that host championship matches will also suffer from the same thing.

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Just now, Branchwater Jack SASS #88854 said:

 

I do agree with your point, 100%...

 

However....

 

That would knock our current host of the world championship out as they have stages with a common firing line. Can't easily go downrange and paint with a common firing line.

 

Other ranges that host championship matches will also suffer from the same thing.

 

Exactly.  I'm fully aware of that.  Hence my final comment about some boulders not being worth moving.

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13 minutes ago, Doc Shapiro said:

Some good arguments have come up, including the previous one by Widder.  To take the thought to it's conclusion, we also ought to paint targets between shooters so there is no question on hits and misses.  As it is now, scoring in this game is subjective, not objective.

 

I'm not being facetious or offering up a straw man argument.  I've often thought at the bigger matches, folks should shoot freshly painted targets so that there are no questions on hits/misses. 

 

There are some boulders that may not be worth pushing.

 

Dan, hope you and the family are well.

Locally we paint after each shooter.  Last weekend spotters went forward to check targets where there was uncertainty.  In two cases apparent misses were declared hits.  Painting is feasible when each stage is in its own berm.  Wal*Mart black spray paint is now $2 a can.  That's money well spent.

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And then there are clubs that set the shotgun targets so "LIGHT" that an airsoft gun can knock it down with one shot   BUT, when you try to reset it, it won't stay up!!!!

IT"S A SHOTGUN TARGET!!!!!  It should be set heavy enough for a standard 20ga. 7/8oz load has to "HIT IT" to knock it down.

Match directors are responsible for targets as well a stage descriptions.

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2 hours ago, Doc Shapiro said:

Some good arguments have come up, including the previous one by Widder.  To take the thought to it's conclusion, we also ought to paint targets between shooters so there is no question on hits and misses.  As it is now, scoring in this game is subjective, not objective.

 

I'm not being facetious or offering up a straw man argument.  I've often thought at the bigger matches, folks should shoot freshly painted targets so that there are no questions on hits/misses. 

 

There are some boulders that may not be worth pushing.

 

Dan, hope you and the family are well.

My argument against painting after each shooter would be time.  Calculating how much time each shooter has on the firing line and the time it takes to reset & paint targets, in the end you may have to drop the total number of shooters at the match to ensure that everyone finishes shooting prior to the next wave of shooters showing up.

Painting targets, including edges, after each stage is complete may not be perfect, but it is better for the timeline.

 

BS

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3 hours ago, Smokin Gator SASS #29736 said:

 

Some SASS members would like our matches and shooters to be considered on the same level of competition as other action  shooting. Others prefer it to be looked at as a lesser competition.

My personal opinion is I don't really care what anyone's opinion is.  I shot  this game becuase I have fun.  I am not out at the range trying to prove anything be thought of as anything.  I shot to be with my friends and have a good time shooting a match.  

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3 hours ago, Widder, SASS #59054 said:

I would guess that most of you would want a RESHOOT instead of a 'P' and probable MISSES for unfired rounds.

 

Shooting "where it was" is a good sound-bite, but what if that 'sequence' target ain't there and you don't realize it at the time

of shooting that 'string'.

 

..........Widder

 

Yep, sounds about right, shooter should be able to request a reshoot.:)

 

Jefro:ph34r:Relax-Enjoy

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1 hour ago, The Outlaw Travis James said:

My personal opinion is I don't really care what anyone's opinion is.  I shot  this game becuase I have fun.  I am not out at the range trying to prove anything be thought of as anything.  I shot to be with my friends and have a good time shooting a match.  

 

A person can have fun being as competitive as they can be or just enjoy shooting and hanging out with friends. True for cowboy or modern shooting matches.

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5 hours ago, Lone Spur Jake SASS #7728 said:

And then there are clubs that set the shotgun targets so "LIGHT" that an airsoft gun can knock it down with one shot

 

I found only one reference in the SHB mentioning setting knockdown targets:

To the extent possible, reactive targets should be set to fall when squarely hit with no more than a standard .38 Special factory load (SHB 26-2, p.20).

So, I assume this also applies for the SG knockdowns and not only for rifle and pistol targets. IMHO, the needed knockdown power should be higher for a SG target!

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Quote

Shotgun knockdowns are encouraged for good reason. Calls on shotgun hits can be speculative at times, with the “golden BB” rule too often used. Re-settable targets of some kind that go down with a good hit leave no doubt and are undisputed. Allowing shooters to “shoot until the shotgun popper is down” rather than taking a miss is in the “Spirit of the Game.” The penalty then becomes the additional time it takes to bring the target down rather than a five-secondmiss penalty.  

SASS Match Directors Guide 

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