Outdoor Articles

The Amateur Trap Shooting Association

by Pursue The Outdoors on November 30th, 1999 in Competition Shooting

Nothing Amateur About It!

First, you have to join to shoot registered targets in tournament competitions. The ATA alone gives you access to over 1,250 gun clubs holding registered shoots. There are more than 6,000 formally conducted tournament shoots taking place in the USA & Canada with the ATA alone not counting the PITA’s shooting schedules. Bet you didn’t know that! And you’ll find competition shoots in your own home town or just a skip and a bucket away. Believe me you will be very surprised to see what has been going on in or near your own town and never heard a thing about it. After all, you don’t overhear people talking, “Hey, lets go trapshooting!” Despite the sport’s private nature, you will be pleasantly surprised how welcome you and your entire family will be when you arrive. And you will even be more surprised to see just who is attending these shoots!

And did you know there are 8,000,000 clay target shooters? Yes, millions. So if you thought clay target shooting was an obscure sport you are right to say it is an unpublicized sport…but would be an oversight to assume it is a sport nobody is interested in. A low profile keeps the ATA membership ranks in the 110,000 member range. This figure will certainly rise as the word is getting out fast about this new sport. The sport is decades old, but new to so many people who have no knowledge of the sport’s existence. It has always been a reserved sport for the well-heeled. See the article, “What Is Trap Shooting.”

The ATA assigns your classification and handicap yardage scores, etc. Membership allows you to win trophies and prize money. Now for $15 per year that’s one heck of a good deal especially in today’s expensive economy. What can you buy today for $15 that will last a year and award you recognition and money? So it’s an investment well made. And you’ll never get a better fun value factor. Have you checked out the membership fees for golf clubs? Many are thousands of dollars and you never get a chance to play against the pros.

Now, tell me one sport where the average person can walk in off the street, plank down $15 and shoot against professional players? Only trap shooting allows you this privilege. Certainly, many shooters feel this a disadvantage, though the positive side is it can bring you up to the professional shooter’s skill levels. And, you most certainly do not need to place into 1st, 2nd or 3rd place in a shoot to win money! The option system will reward you regardless of your final score. Just break good scores on one or two traps and you’ll be seeing some cash in the handicap game. And…you get four chances to break a good trap score on every handicap event! The ATA rules manage the money, so the payoffs are distributed fairly and accurately.


So now we have some neat benefits just for joining the ATA; the ability to shoot against the pros and earn money even when you lose. Amazing sport! Those are the rules now. Anything could change, but the money will always be there for the trapshooter regardless of rule changes…trap shooting is a money game. Always was and always will be.

But there is more! You can buy insurance for your gun with the ATA and they are implementing more benefits for members every year. You can find out about them when you join.

Now, once you get into this sport and join-up with the ATA. You get the opportunity to approach the pros, sit and chat with them, have your photo taken, etc. Can you do this with any other sport? Hardly!

Plus, you can ask the pros questions to get tips on shooting to enhance your skills and even take lessons from them too! Again, you can’t do that with other sports. Just try it with golf and see how far you’ll get. You’d be lucky to receive an autograph, very lucky, never mind a smile and a handshake. In trap shooting you will not see a rope barrier to keep you away from the professional Hall of Fame and All-American shooters. Frankly, the sport does not discriminate between amateur and professional…all are treated equally. All have equal access to facilities and to each other. You can’t beat that kind of social environment the ATA promotes!

And then there’s the World’s largest shoot, The ATA Grand American. A worldwide event attracting over 100,000 shooters and spectators. You don’t see that on the TV news! But who cares? We don’t need the media to have fun!

The ATA has it’s own magazine, Trap & Field Magazine. For approximately $25 per year you’ll receive a fine magazine full of shoot results, photo’s of wining shooters, shooting tips and advice, and much more.

So that’s just part of it. You’ll have to experience the exhilaration for yourself. The time to join is now!

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