BC Target Sports Association

Smallbore Rifle

Free Rifle ( 50 M Rifle )
shooting usually consists of shooting from standing, kneeling and prone positions ( commonly called 3-Position shooting and Prone Shooting). This style of competition was introduced to the Olympic shooting venue in 1948 using 22 calibre rifles shot at 50 meters distance. Until 1984, Men and Women competed side-by-side in the 3-Position event but the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles saw a separation of the match into a Woman's and Men's competitions.

Some Rules relating to 3-P and Prone shooting:

Prone: the shooter lays on the ground with his or her extended forearm forming an angle of no less than 30 degrees from horizontal. The shooter must be sure not to allow the rifle to touch or rest against any object. In the English Match ( or Prone competition) the event consists of 60 shots fired from the prone position. In International Competitions, women do not shoot a prone match but they do compete in Provincial and National matches in Canada.

Kneeling: the shooter must ensure that the right foot, right knee and left foot (for a right-handed shooter) are the only things touching the ground. The left elbow is permitted to be supported by the left knee, but the point of the elbow must be no more than 10cm in front, or 15cm behind the point of the knee. Shooters are permitted to use a soft, cylindrical roll for support on the inside of the ankle while competing.

Standing: The shooter must stand unsupported in this event, the shooter is permitted to support the extended arm with the chest or hip if he or she wishes but must not contact any surfaces other than the floor with his feet.

The Men's event consists of three 40-shot stages for a maximum score of 1200 points. One stage is shot from the prone position then the other two are shot from standing and kneeling respectively. The target used is the same one used by the prone shooters with a 10 ring slightly smaller then a dime. Each stage is a timed event with the total time covering sighters, scoring shots and equipment changeover time.

The Woman's event consists of 20 shots in each of the three positions ( for a total score of 600 points ) and uses a slightly different rifle. The woman's rifle is now called a Sport Rifle and is slightly lighter than the free rifle with a few less accessories. It is interesting to note that the women generally shoot scores which are equivalent to the men's scores with these slightly less equipped rifles. The present World Record for men's 3-Position is 1186/1200 and the Woman's record is 592/600.

Free Rifle ( 50 M Rifle ) can be shot at 50 Meters outdoors ( or indoors if range is big enough ) and 20 yards indoors ( most common in B.C.) The 20 yard indoor targets are scaled to the same proportion as the 50 meter targets. Contact one of the clubs in your area and give this sport a try. You do not need to start with a big fancy gun. A Canadian Sporting rifle can be used by just adding a sling and if you have the expertise, lower the trigger pull weight to help out. ( a Sporting Rifle trigger is set at 1 Kg while Free Rifles are set at ounces of pressure ). From there you can add accessories or purchase a used gun until you are really sure you enjoy the sport.


Running Target is another sport that exists in BC but has not caught on as much as the other disciplines.
Running Target was first fired at the 1966 World Championships and became part of the Olympic program in 1972.

The target consists of two bulls eyes and one aiming mark running at right angles to the shooter. The target is mounted on a track and travels alternatively left and right across a 1.5 metre wide opening for five seconds for slow runs and 2.5 seconds for fast runs. The rifle may be of any kind but must not weight more than 5.5 kg., must be 4.5 mm calibre, no minimum trigger pull limitations, an adjustable buttplate is permitted but it must not exceed 150 mm in length or 20 mm in depth of curvature, and the same rifle and sights must be used for slow and fast runs although the sights may include non-variable four power (4X) magnification.

The course of fire consists for 60 shots, 30 on each of two days of competition for a possible score of 600. Shooters fire from the standing position and must keep the butt of the rifle touching the body below the waistline until the target appears. On the first day, three series of 10 shots each are fired: in each series the target comes from the right five times and from the left five times. The slow runs are shot on the first day with the target crossing the 1.5 metre opening in five seconds. In those five seconds shooters must raise their rifles, establish lead, sight picture and fire one shot. On the second day, another three series of 10 shots each are fired on fast runs. During these fast runs the target crosses the opening in just 2.5 seconds.

Canadian Sporting Rifle Rules

This discipline is very popular. It was developed to encourage beginners and junior shooters in shooting events and is primarily a Canadian event. Activities range from recreational shooting at local clubs through to the B.C. Summer Games as well as Provincial and Canadian Championships. The lower cost of equipment and availability of used Rifles has made this event very popular. It is a really good learning tool for young shooters to get started into the sport and it is used to teach safety , proper gun handling and target skills all across Canada.

Targets are normally placed at 50 metres outdoors and 20 yards indoors with appropriately scaled scoring rings.

Two events are shot in competitions. The prone event consists of 60 shots for a possible score of 600 points and the 3 position event of 120 shots, with 40 shots each in the prone, kneeling and standing positions for a possible score of 1200 points.. Individual and team competitions are common also. This is similar to the event shot in the NAIG Games every two years

Last Reviewed: December 08, 2016