This year instead of shooting Sporting Clays for fun and practice for hunting I have joined the CSCA (Colorado SCA) and I am attempting to become a better shooter. I am presently in “D” class, but will probably be placed in C in the next couple shoots. Although I can normally go out and shoot a course and score in the high 70’s, the stations are a lot tougher for the CSCA Shoots and I am having a tough time with Long Springing Teal, Long incomers, and Long 40 yard crossers.
I shoot a Beretta 682 with 30″ barrels and shoot all three methods. I predominantly shoot Maintained lead or Move Mount Shoot, but I think this is causing me to stop my swing or stab at the clays so I have gone more to pull away and am improving. Can you give me some pointers on how you shoot these shots. I need some help.
Also I’m in search of an instructor. Can you give me some advise on what questions I need to ask to find the correct instructor. How about the instructors NSCA Level. Do you think this matters at this time. I live in Denver, CO and based on the list in “Sporting Clays Magazine”, we only have Level II’s and I’s. Can you recommend any instructors in the area or even recommend a school to attend out of State.
It is hard for me to recommend local instructors I haven’t met. I guess that the NSCA instructors are your best bet, but you might also be able to get a lesson from one of the traveling schools.
There are no hard and fast rules of how to shoot certain birds because each presentation varies to a slight degree, but here is how I generally handle the birds you mention.
Teal: Everyone has trouble with long teal. If they are going pretty much straight up, I have had the best luck swinging up through them. I generally start my muzzle right on the trap and shoot as quickly as possible using swing-through. This works fine on a vertical bird, but not on those really sneaky “leaning” teal that you always seem to shoot over the top. With a teal that is half way between a teal and a trap target, I wait it out and shoot it at the crest or a little before.
Long Incomers: The biggest problem with these is riding the bird. Try this. Follow the bird with your muzzle as it comes in, but don’t mount the stock to your face until you are ready to shoot. When you decide to take the bird, mount and fire right away. The more time you spend with your face on the stock, the bigger the chance of missing a slow incomer.
40 Yard Crosser: I try to sustain these, but also make a point of making a good follow through. Here the follow through is vitally important, even more so than elsewhere. Also, watch the height. It is very common to shoot over long crossers, especially if you take them a bit late.
Shotgun Report’s Technoid
(Often in error, never in doubt.)