Galleryrifle

Galleryrifle Shooting in the UK

GBGR Team Captain 2023 – Nominations Sought

Nominations are sought for the role of “Captain of the Great Britain Gallery Rifle Team”, for next season. Appointments run annually, from Jan to Dec, although traditionally the appointments can last for two (or more) years, subject to re-endorsement by the NRA Council, on the recommendation of the GR&P Working Group.

It is recognized that the selection and appointment of the captain for a Great Britain team is a highly important decision. To be appointed captain is a great honour but it is also a great responsibility. The ability to create a winning team is not the only criterion needed for a successful captain. The manner in which the team conducts itself, both on and off the ranges, will affect the standing of the NRA, target shooting and indeed the country. It is therefore vital that the person selected should have the appropriate personality and skills to carry out all aspects of the task in the appropriate manner. The selection process, while being transparent and fair, should result in the appointment of someone who meets these requirements.

The criteria for selection along with appropriate Nomination forms and Shooter CV forms can be found over on the NRA website.

GB Teams for the 2022 IGRF World Championship

IGRF LogoThe Great Britain teams for the IGRF World championships to be held at the Phoenix 25 meeting, (May 26th-29th 2022) have been announced.

The Small Bore Team

Chris West
Jonny Cormie
Keith Cox
Jake Mossom
Keith Kilvington
Reserve: Mel Beard

The Centre Fire Team

Chris West
Jonny Cormie
Keith Cox
Gary Bowden
Rob Wheeler
Reserve: Andy Summers

I’m sure that all of the squad wish the two teams the very best of luck.

Gary Bowden
GB Captain

Phoenix 25

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Phoenix 25

phoenix-2022With the lead up to the 25th Phoenix Meeting more than underway – less than two weeks at time of publication – the early part of the 2022 season has got off to a flawless start. Compared to 2022 and 2021 it could be argued that this was perhaps inevitable but even whilst the schedule was being compiled in late 2021 it was still by no means clear what was going to happen. COVID has also not gone away – a fact that has to be remembered.

Quite a few calendared GR&P competitions are held in the immediate weeks before the Phoenix. Since the JSPC hosted event in Scotland results have been posted for the following events: (All 2022 results are published over on the 2022 Results page.)

All will have contributed to rankings and classifications. It should be noted that the Ranking Tables have now caught up with themselves and are showing a rolling season listing which for all events are now showing a full calendar year of shooting. Not all meetings offer all events  so the number of events available will vary for all the gun types.

 

The 2022 JSPC Spring Open

JSPC shooters - 2022The 2022 JSPC Spring meeting was successfully held over the weekend of the 9-10 April at it’s traditional location – the Colmsliehill Range near Lauder.

The JSPC Website details the full match report, results and photos. As part of the weekend an official Home Countries Scotland v England rifle match was hosted as well as an informal LBP/LBR match. England managed to take 6 fully versatile shooters North to be able to compete in all gun types for all matches.

Results are below and over on the JSPC site. Many thanks to the JSPC for hosting the match – it was enjoyed by all.

Full individual results and aggregates

Home Countries Scotland v England Rifle match

Home Countries Scotland v England LBP/LBR match

The Imperial GR&P meeting

Imperial-22The Gallery Rifle & Pistol Imperial Meeting will take place at Bisley from Thursday 14th July to Sunday 17th July 2022 with some slight modifications to its format.

  • The meeting will run four days  (Thursday to Sunday) rather than the traditional 5 days (Wednesday to Sunday) of previous years.
  • Medal matches now require just a single score to count rather than two.
  • Prizes for medal matches will be awarded down to bronze in accordance with prize list D main Bisley bible.
  • Muzzle loading events reduced to three events – Advancing, Scott and Granet.

The format of the meeting and details of all competitions is defined in the 2022 GR&P handbook

Apart from the above modifications the the meeting is largely to its usual format and comprises of two general types of matches:

  • Unlimited Medal matches: These competitions are based on many of the events run at GR&P events throughout the year comprising of Advancing Target, America Match, 25m Precision (Scott), Grannet, Imperial Silhouette,T&P1 and Multi-Target. They can be entered as many times as you like between Thursday to Sunday, your best score will count for medal qualifications.
  • Squadded trophy matches: These competitions take place at squaddded times on the Saturday and Sunday of the meeting, and mostly mirror the unlimited events. NRA medals and numerous traditional trophies are awarded for these events.

Alongside these individual events, there are also the usual variety of aggregates and concurrent team matches to get involved with.

Enter the Imperial GR&P meeting here

 

Phoenix 2022

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25th Phoenix Meeting: Thursday 26th – Sunday May 29th

phoenix-2022

Packed full of competitions for GR&P, Target Shotgun, Civilian Service Rifle, as well as F Class, Sporting Rifle, and Muzzle Loading Firearms

The World Championships: In addition to being the 25th Phoenix Meeting, the National Shooting Centre will also be hosting the IGRF and ITSF World Championships! Awards will be presented to both Individuals and Teams

Visit the NRA website for more information and to enter

GR&P Rules – Key Changes for 2022

The 2022 Edition of the GR&P Handbook includes a variety of changes. Most are clarifications, correction of typos and so on. However, all competitors and range crew need to be aware of the key changes below. The section/paragraph number shown for each is taken from the new Handbook; please pay special attention to the highlighted elements.

A3.2.10 A belt mounted holster may be used with an LBP or LBR. Such holsters may be right or left- handed. The holster must cover the gun’s trigger. Shoulder or cross-draw holsters are not allowed, nor are holsters from which the LBP/LBR is released by inserting a finger within the trigger guard

B3.8 After finishing a Practice / Stage

B3.8.1 When a competitor has finished firing for a practice or stage they should unload their firearm, lock it open and stand with it pointed at the target line until it has been cleared by an RO

B3.8.2 When the RO has cleared the firearm, they will tell the competitor what to do next. Depending on the firearm and the event being shot, the instruction might be to bag, case, holster or go muzzle- up

B3.8.3 Even when the individual competitor has been cleared by an RO, they should NOT begin to pick up magazines, cases, etc. until the range has been declared safe by the CRO. They should also refrain from doing anything which could distract other competitors who may still be shooting

Note: the bit about not distracting those still shooting also applies to range crew!

B6.1 Ready position

B6.1.1 The ready positions for GRSB and GRCF are:

  • a. 45 degrees: The rifle is loaded with a round in the chamber and held in both hands with the butt in the shoulder and the barrel pointing towards ground at an angle of 45 degrees
  • b. Parallel: The rifle is loaded with a round in the chamber and held in both hands parallel to the ground, pointing at the target array, at waist height
  • c. Trail: The rifle is loaded and held parallel to the ground in the strong hand only, arm extended. Normally for this start position the gun will have an empty breech, i.e. loaded but not made ready
  • d. Benchrest: The rifle is loaded with a round in the chamber, parallel to the ground, pointing at the target array with the butt in the shoulder. The competitor’s head must be upright, looking over the sight. The weight of the rifle must be fully supported by the rest

Note: several new Benchrest events have been introduced. These replace the previous “Adapted” events and are open to all shooters.

B6.2 Moving between positions

B6.2.1 The rules for each event are shown in the relevant event conditions. Some practices require the competitor to start in the standing position but then adopt a different (e.g. sitting, kneeling) position when the targets face to indicate the start of the practice. In such cases, the competitor should:

  • a. Load but not make ready in the standing position
  • b. When a target faces, adopt the shooting position, then make ready and shoot

Note: This particularly affects Timed & Precision 2, 1500 and 1020.

GB Team News for 2022

To all GB Team shooters and supporting people – a message from the team captain.

I’m delighted that you’ve agreed to be part of the 2022 GB GR Team Squad. After a couple of shakey years, this is the big one and I’m optimistic that we’ll get to shoot our international competitions, including the World Championships at the Phoenix. With this year being both the 25th Phoenix and the World Championships, it should be a great meeting. The International is being held on the Sunday morning and Ash will be the CRO.

To help us get some training in, the NRA have kindly offered us a bay on Melville Friday morning before the SAW. This is the same time that RO’s will be shooting, so if you’re an RO as well, then Mark Haigh will help you fit your squadding in around your RO duties. We will also be able to train the Wednesday before the Phoenix. Whilst some may not be able to make it, please be there if possible and we will make the most of the practice. Our first international match will be the World Championships, somewhat less than ideal, but it’s the same for everyone and we want to win! In the meantime, take your practice opportunities when you can.

The formal squad announcement will be in the Spring NRA Journal and gbgr.org website; also informally on various Social Media sites and below.

Welcome aboard and I’m looking forward to a great year.

Gary B – 2022 GB Captain

 

The 2022 GB Gallery Rifle Squad

Captain: Gary Bowden
Vice Captain: Phil Wood

Shooters:
Peter Watts
Keith Cox
Chris West
Rob Wheeler
Andy Summers
Jake Mossom
David Guest
Mornè van Dalen
Keith Kilvington
Gerry Betteridge
Jonny Cormie
Robert Tonner
Mel Beard
Steve Lamb
Jim Starley

New members (for 2022):
Laura Warwick
Joseph Pugh
Peter Keegan
Dave Morrow

GB Admin Committee:Ash Dagger
Charles Murton
Jacky Lamb
Gary Bowden
Phil Wood

Supporting Team:
Jim Smith
Neil Francis
Dave Holt
Chris West
Sophie West

NRA E-League

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NRA E-Leagues

nra-shooting-leaguesThe NRA recently announced a new way to compete in NRA competitions: the NRA E-League; the perfect bolt-on to your practice sessions!

The E-League is a modernized postal league that offers shooters from across the UK the opportunity to engage in competitive shooting, in a way that is complementary to practice/club sessions, and will aid the individual in working towards entering club or NRA competitions in the future,

To enable them to test the structure and design of the league, they will be running a one-off pilot round for the Civilian Service Rifle and Gallery Rifle disciplines.

The Round will run from 1st March – 31st May:
For Gallery Rifle they will be offering League tables in each of the following classes:

  • Gallery Rifle Centrefire
  • Gallery Rifle Centrefire Classic
  • Gallery Rifle Smallbore

A new ‘Civitas’ Medal will be awarded to the highest placing competitors in each of the classes, and in addition, to the 1st place competitor in the following sub-classes:

  • Under 17
  • Under 21
  • Under 25
  • Serving Member of HM forces
  • Ex-Serving Member of HM forces

For more details on the league please head over to the NRA website.

LBP/LBR Survey

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LBP/LBR Survey

The NRA recently conducted a survey seeking  shooters views on proposed changes to the competition classes for LBP/LBR’s. From the feedback received, it was evident that any changes will require a lot more thought, as replies raised a number of questions that hadn’t been considered in the original proposal. Therefore, there will no changes to the classes for 2022. Further work will be undertaken during 2022 to frame a potential proposal for the future. In the interim, we carry on as before.

Thank you to all the shooters who took the time to voice their opinions

The GR&P Working Group

General Range Etiquette Enhancements for 2022

There will be some documented enhancements (or perhaps reminders) to range etiquette in the 2022 handbook which will relate to what competitors should be aware of within the constraints of any competition event timings whilst they are shooting ‘on the line’.

For any competition or event there is usually a set time for competitors to complete the stage or course of fire. Within that time window all that should happen is the course of fire should be completed. Depending on the detail it is recognized that some competitors will complete some courses of fire quicker than others. This is more pertinent if the line is split between the various gun types and, of course, how long the stage timing is.

Any shooters completing a stage or practice quicker than the allocated time or finding themselves part of a split line where different gun types being shot need to be aware that they should not do anything other than wait until the whole line has finished shooting, the range officers have cleared the whole line and the range has been declared clear before doing anything else. Only at this point can they engage in activities regarded as ‘tidying up’. This would include picking magazines or cases up, locating score cards or anything else which would potentially distract a fellow competitor on the line.

Range Officers should remind competitors of this before the stage or detail and should refrain from interacting with any competitors to clear them down ‘early’ before the whole line has competed the course of fire.

Notification of Rule Change for 2022

Please note there will be a rule change implemented for the 2022 season which will impact the following events for rifle shooters.

  • The 1500 match
  • The 1020 match
  • The T&P2 match

The rule change is a slight enhancement of the “Changing Positions” rule which outlines that firearms must be unloaded when moving between positions. Traditionally, and up until now, this has not included any move from standing to kneeling after the initial instruction to load has taken place. This is the rule change. The initial move from standing must now take place with an empty chamber and only when the competitor is in the kneeling position can they make ready. It will impact the following competition practices:

  • 1500 practice 2
  • 1500 practice 3
  • 1500 practice 5 stage 2 and practice 5 stage 3
  • 1020 practice 2
  • 1020 practice 4
  • T&P2 practice 2
  • T&P2 practice 3

Range officers may wish to adapt their initial commands to highlight this procedural change to competitors for the above practices. The traditional command “Load and Make Ready” for the these particular competition practices will no longer be valid.

The 2022 Calendar of Events

2022-calendar

The 2021 Austrian Open 1500

Austrian 1500 Open

The Austrian Open 1500 took place over the first weekend of October in Hopfgarten im Brixental. With Covid 19 travel restrictions lifting five people made the journey to Austria. We took three different paths through Europe: Doug Green travelled via Hull, Neil Jones and Ken Williams via Dover and I traveled from Portsmouth to meet Andy Pain, who lives in France.

We had arranged with the organizer, Pepi Laiminger, to meet at the range the afternoon before the shoot for some much-needed practice – most of us had not shot a pistol since we last attended Hopfgarten in 2019. The first few shots were a little shaky, but we soon settled down and I was pleased to see that my sight settings from 2 years ago were still valid.

Line of Shooters

It was a real pleasure to see so many friends over the weekend and to be shooting again on Hopfgarten’s well organised mountainside range. Most of us took part in 6 or 7 events over the weekend with matches being held for both Revolver and Pistol 1500 together with an optical class and the various short 48 shot matches for 4-inch revolvers, 2.75-inch revolvers, 5-shot revolvers and “stock” (i.e. fixed-sights) semi-auto pistols. The Austrians run the Police Pistol 1 match, which is normally shot with a “stock” 9mm semi-auto pistol, in several different classes, including “super magnum” and rifle.

With all this shooting going on and the number of different guns we use it’s easy to get confused but I think we only had one occurrence of “right gun wrong ammo” and this was very quickly resolved. The Austrian ROs run the two available ranges very efficiently to get the maximum number of shooters through and manage to do this without the shooter feeling rushed. Shooting finished by 5pm and by 6pm prize giving started.

Trophy

Prize giving is always fun in Austria; Manfred Hörl keeps the whole thing moving along at a good pace. The trophies are unique and make a welcome addition to any trophy shelf. Due to the lack of practice none of us managed a top three this year but we did all achieve at least one certificate for being in the top 10. The free raffle for the prize table is the highlight of the weekend and we are pleased to report that we went away with enough of the locally produced cheese and ham to see us through to next year.

I would like to thank all the Austrian organizers, ROs and helpers for, once again, inviting us to take part and for all the help they give us with firearms and ammunition; without their assistance we would not be able to attend. Next year’s trip is already being organized so we will return to Hopfgarten in 2022.

Medals

Full results can be found at www.wa1500.org

David Harris
SLG Bisley e.V.

The Gallery Rifle and Pistol Classification System

[As published in the Winter 2021 NRA Journal]

Anyone who has ever shot a Gallery Rifle & Pistol (GR&P) match in the UK will probably appreciate the fact that events are shot in classes or divisions. Not all events are classified – some do not have the competitive numbers to justify being divided as such and some events are simply not shot often enough. Generally the most popular events for the main GR&P gun types are defined as classified.

At time of writing the following events are listed as classified.The following classification structure was ratified for the start of the 2020 season when some of the more popular events had their number of classes increased and the less popular events had their number of classes reduced.

  • Timed and Precision 1:  GRSB, GRCF – 5 classes;  LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • Timed and Precision 2:  GRSB, GRCF, LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • Multi-Target: GRSB, GRCF – 5 classes;  LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • Phoenix A: GRSB, GRCF, LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • The 1500: GRSB, GRCF – 5 classes;  LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • The 1020: GRSB, GRCF – 3 classes
  • The Bianchi: GRSB, GRCF, LBP, LBR – 3 classes
  • Advancing Target: GRSB, GRCF – 5 classes;  LBP, LBR – 3 classes

Note:- classes apply independently to the gun types. Namely: GalleryRifle Centrefire (GRCF), Gallery Rifle Smallbore (GRSB), Long Barrelled Pistol (LBP), Long Barrelled Revolver (LBR)

In any of the above events competitors will have an existing classification of X, A, B, C  or D which will be based on scores recorded in previous classified meetings. A classification of U  may also apply and means a competitor has not shot the event before or they have dropped out of the classification window (see below).

 

The Philosophy

The philosophy is simple enough. Like many other sports, the GR&P classification system enables competitors to shoot numerous events within a class or division, therefore only against others of similar ability. The intention is to create an environment in which everyone has a chance to achieve their personal goals and compete against others of similar ability or experience. It also produces a general comparative measure against which to gauge individual progress and improvement by promotion, and now demotion, through the classes.

 

The Theory

The GR&P competitive circuit defines classified meetings. These meetings are run to national standards and scores for the events any competitors shoot are recorded and used to generate a shooter’s classification. It is the responsibility of the meeting organizers to record and submit these scores to the national system appropriately.

Technically, competitors will always enter a meeting with a classification, even if that classification is U. This is the division they will compete in for the respective events at that meeting. Anyone entering a competition for the first time will be placed immediately into the class their score maps to at that meeting. 

The class a competitor lies within will depend on their highest recorded score achieved over a historic three year window and will be continuously revised during the season after every classified meeting they submit a score for. The three year window was introduced at the beginning of the 2020 season.

There is no unclassified class – if someone enters a classified competition as unclassified (U) it is important to appreciate they will immediately compete in the class they achieve their inaugural score for. Just to be clear, a new shooter can immediately be placed into X class for any event and any gun type.

As a result of competing in a classified event competitors achieving a class promoting score will be reclassified before the next meeting. Changes made at the start of the 2020 season means shooters can also be demoted – more on that below.

There is no obligation for match directors to offer their events in the nationally defined classes. Many do but numerous factors may dictate whether this would be feasible (competitor numbers mainly).  However at an official classified match the competitor’s score will always be processed appropriately. Anyone shooting a class promoting score will be competing in that higher class at their next competition.

Class boundaries are reviewed annually by the Gallery Rifle working party/sub committee and published appropriately elsewhere. Consideration is given to the balance of active competitors within a class for each gun type. The general philosophy for class divisions is to keep an appropriate number of active shooters within the divisions as a pyramid – as shown below.

  • 3 classes – X = 10%; A = 30%; B = 60%
  • 5 classes – X = 5%; A = 10%; B = 20%; C = 30%; D = 35%

2020 Changes

One common dislike with the legacy classification system was the issue of class demotions – there weren’t any! Prior to the 2020 season anybody recording a promoting score would be moved into the appropriate class and essentially remain there. It would mean a single one-off extraordinarily high score could penalize a competitor and see them competing in a higher class than their ‘real world’ average. Unless a class boundary review fell in their favour this single outlier score penalized them for the rest of their competitive career.

Another flaw with the traditional system was the fact that competitor’s classifications were based on every score ever recorded. Theoretically this could be going back to 1997 but more practically back to the mid 2000s when the discipline’s data recording practices became slightly more formalized. Like any sport, a shooter’s classification in any event should reflect their current levels of ability, skill and expertise and not delve into any historic archive. Many shooters in the classification database were no longer actively competing and people also take breaks from the sport. A classification achieved 10+ years ago isn’t really relative for today. At the end of the 2019 season the decision was taken to review the overall system whilst still keeping it as relative and as easy to manage as possible.

Without delving too much into the machinations it was decided the simplest way to address the demotion and currency / score relevance issue was to reduce the classification window to a three year period. This means the division a shooter now resides in for any event and gun type will only be based on the scores achieved within the last three years.

The window slides forward on a rolling meeting by meeting basis rather than season by season. This allows the ethos of class promotions to continue to be realized immediately, as before, but also caters for class demotions as described below. Results data will continue to be processed after every meeting to update any potential changes to a shooter’s classification. 

Sliding Window

Demotion in the new system is implied. If a competitor has not recorded a class appropriate  score within the 3 year sliding window they will be demoted to the class in which they do have a recorded score. This could be a demotion to any class, including U, depending on how current the shooter is, and what scores they are shooting in that particular event and gun type.

One consequence of the 2020 changes is a shooter can now be class demoted by essentially doing nothing. The most extreme case will be by recording no scores at all in a particular event within a three year period. In that case they will drop out of the back end of the sliding window and receive a recorded class of U. A more realistic example would perhaps be a shooter who has recorded a single X class score in an event and has never recorded one since. Once that single X class score has regressed out of the back of the 3 year sliding window they will automatically be re-classified appropriately.

 

The Practicalities

Whatever system is in place it always has to be appreciated that somebody, somewhere, is administering it. For the classification system to function, scores data has to be submitted in an appropriate format to an appropriate location. It also has to be submitted in a timely manner so it can be processed to allow shooters to compete in their appropriate class at the next competition.

The detailed mechanics of data submission is not for this article. However match directors and organisers of classified GR&P meetings should be aware that the match is not complete until results are published and data has been submitted for processing. Whatever local systems are used for capturing and publishing scores please ensure it can also export data in the requested format to fulfil these requirements.

 

The Future

Apart from season to season reviews of the event breakpoints there are no immediate plans to change the system. It would be good to classify more events but that always depends on shooter numbers. There is always a balance between slicing events too granularly and offering meaningful competition.  More automated methods of generating shooter classifications is on the aspirational horizon as well as easier ways to submit and retrieve data. 

Of course the current overseers of the classification system would always be grateful for feedback and comment. Please contact us via the usual methods.