Trapshooting is one of the three major disciplines of competitive clay pigeon shooting (shotgun at clay targets). The targets are launched from a single “house” or machine, generally away from the shooter. It differs from skeet shooting where targets are launched from two “houses” in somewhat “sideways” paths that intersect in front of the shooter.
Trapshooting is typically shot with a 12 gauge shotgun. Smaller gauge firearms (e.g. 20 gauge) can be used, but no allowance is given. Trapshooting is shot at either single or double target presentations. This refers to the number of clay targets which are launched simultaneously. Trapshooting shotguns can be adjustable. Stocks may have a “Monte Carlo” (fixed, raised “comb”) configuration and/or include a comb height adjustment, a butt plate adjustment for length, angle or both, with typically having longer barrels (30-34 inches), possibly with porting and featuring tighter chokes to compensate for the longer distances at which trapshooting targets are broken. The majority feature interchangeable choke tubes as opposed chokes of a “fixed” constriction.
Common accessories include wearing a vest or pouch that will hold at least 25-50 cartridges or “shells” for singles and/or doubles events. Most ranges and clubs require eye and ear protection, as FSC does. American Trap typically uses lead shot ammunition, with shot sizes (for lead shot) ranging between #7 ½ and #9.
Commands from the scorer and other shooters are as important to squad timing. To start a squad the shooter will ask if the squad and puller are ready (calling “Squad ready?” then “Puller ready?”), followed by asking to see one free target, traditionally saying, “Let’s see one.” Especially during official and competitive events the scorer will call missed targets with a command of: loss, lost, etc. When the first shooter has fired their final shot of the position the scorer will sometimes call “end” or “ready” and will command “all change” or “please move” after fifth shooter has fired their last shot. The shooter on position five then moves behind the rest of the shooters on their way to the first station and will signal when he is ready to the first shooter who is now on station two. The standard call for a target is “pull,” but many shooters like to use their own variations of “pull,” or words that will help them concentrate on the target.
Additional information about the ATA sanctioned events and about the competitions & history please see the ATA website http://www.shootata.com/