Olympic Shooting Sports - We need to revive them


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wacki
August 15, 2008, 11:41 PM
Saw this page on Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shooting_at_the_Summer_Olympics

I can't help but think that reviving the 300m and 1000m shooting sports that used to be at the Olympics would be very very good for the image of firearm owners.

With nearly 200,000 people attending Switzerland's feldschiessen competition you would think that the sheer popularity of the sport in countries like America and others would grant it access to the Olympics. It's certainly more popular than curling anyway.....

Having long range shooting an Olympic sport would help stop complete bans on firearm ownership. I mean, what politician wants to be labeled as banning Olympians?

Also, any idea what the best shooting event would be for spectators to watch? I could see Patrick Flanigan style trick shooting being a hit for TV viewers. He currently holds the record in shooting 12 clays at a time. Or competition in revolver speed shooting:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJSBtNaCOxk&feature=related

Getting something that's fun to watch would certainly be beneficial for the sport.

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Stevie-Ray
August 16, 2008, 02:18 AM
I'd love to see steel shooting in the Olympics.

Kind of Blued
August 16, 2008, 02:32 AM
I think it would take a progression in the right direction, but Olympic IPSC and 3-Gun would be awesome.

We would have to start elsewhere however. I'd imagine NRA-style service rifle competition would be a good stepping stone, but many (most?) people around the world can't legally own an AR-15.

Thernlund
August 16, 2008, 02:38 AM
I was watching trap shooting last weekend and I had the same thought about 3-gun. That would be awesome.


-T.

Sergeant Sabre
August 16, 2008, 03:42 AM
A long-range silhouette competition would be sweet

Calibre44
August 16, 2008, 04:47 AM
wacki wrote: Having long range shooting an Olympic sport would help stop complete bans on firearm ownership. I mean, what politician wants to be labeled as banning Olympians?


Sadly mine doesn't have a problem with it. Our .22 pistol team have to train abroad which is expensive so they don’t train enough and as a consequence are crap.

For the 2012 games in London the Gov are granting 50 ‘special licenses’ for the pistol team to own their own guns. This might look like progress but it isn’t and a lot of us UK shooters hope they throw the licenses back in the Gov’s faces to show the world just how stupid and ineffective our handgun laws are. Why should a few elite shooters get licenses and not the rest of us? – where are the next generation of Olympic shooters going to come from.

To make matters worse the Gov is building a ‘state-of-the-art shooting facility for a cost for 18 million (approx $36 million) and then they plan to demolish it after the games – absolute madness:fire:

Howard Roark
August 16, 2008, 04:59 AM
IPSC got to be an exibition game for the Olympics back in the 90's. They came up with non-huminoid targets just for the purpose of trying to get IPSC in the Olympics. I guess it didn't take. Targets that look like any thing will not fly in the Olympics. Running target started out as Running Roebuck, a full sized moving image of a deer shot at 100 meters with centerfire. It was reduced to running boar and shot at 50m with a rimfire. Then reduced to a tiny boar target shot at 10m indoors with a pellet rifle. Then it was not politically correct to shoot at an animal and the target was changed to a bulleye target. Running target was dropped from the Olympics in about 2005 all together.

Center fire of any kind won't be back in the Olympics because of the issues/cost of building ranges in every Olympic venue. The smallbore and shotgun complex (Wolf Creek) (http://www.thecitizen.com/archive/main/archive-011109/south%20fulton/sf-03.html) built for th Atlanta Olympics was shut down and gutted shortly after the games because of lack of interest and funding. 300m shooting lives on as CISM (http://www.cism-milsport.org/eng/b1_sport/18_shooting/01-main-shoot.html) and international competition. I'll be shooting a 300m match at my club next month.

Shooting in the Olympics will always be a stepchild. Cliff dwellers do not get the historical importance of organized shooting. People running around shooting loud spacey looking guns fast and accurately scares the hell out of them. Air guns and shotguns aren't so bad. One can duck hunt with a shotgun, right?

Alas, I am not without solution. The shooting community needs to support and promote the shooting sports we already have. We just had the American high power Olympics, The NRA/CMP national matches at Camp Perry (http://www.nrahq.org/compete/nm_campperry.asp). There was almost no press coverage, as usual. The ATA will have it's nationals in a few weeks. It needs to be on TV. If these sports as well as IPSC, SASS and others were full up with competitors and covered by the press it would go a long way promoting our cause.

myrockfight
August 16, 2008, 05:52 AM
It would be incredibly productive to get a large retailer, such as Walmart, to sponsor a national shooting event. I know there are a lot of people who wouldn't agree with Walmart, but it would help. It hits the right demographic and those that don't agree with it would not likely boycott or avoidence due to the retailer's superior availability in many areas.

They may even have enough clout to get it televised. If they couldn't get a channel like Spike TV, they could always film it themselves and distribute it in their own stores.

I don't know how viable that actually is. I am just brainstorming. The bottom line is shooting needs to get some good exposure. That is something we are severely lacking or is non-existant all together after you take out the "coolness" factor associated with guns in Hollywood films and television.

Heck. Gander Mountain, Bass Pro Shop, and Outdoor World would benefit tremendously from being the main sponsor of such an event. I would definitely go out of my way to purchase goods from a retailer or producer that got a large shooting event on TV. It seems like such an obvious move on their part, I feel dumb saying that because it should exist and I am just not seeing it around. I'm afraid someone will chime in and say, "Well so-and-so is the main sponsor of the xxx shooting games," and no one watches and/or supports it so they folded.

I would think I would have heard of such a thing though. :confused:

bluetopper
August 16, 2008, 10:33 AM
What has happened to the average pistol target shooter in this country?

It seems now the rage is all tactical, dressing up in black garb, and seeing how many rounds you can stuff in a magazine.
And to sell guns the manufacturors have had to abandon making target pistols anymore which used to be a large market 40-50 years ago.

Target/bullseye shooting is a fine art which takes years to hone.
It would also help if NBC would show the shooting sports on prime time also.

ilbob
August 16, 2008, 11:06 AM
I am a bullseye shooter. Of a club with 350 members we typically get about ten people shooting our matches, and one or two of them are not members.

Its just not interesting to most shooters. I don't see any benefit in trying to force people to participate in an activity they don't enjoy.

FCFC
August 16, 2008, 11:41 AM
Alas, I am not without solution. The shooting community needs to support and promote the shooting sports we already have. We just had the American high power Olympics, The NRA/CMP national matches at Camp Perry. There was almost no press coverage, as usual. The ATA will have it's nationals in a few weeks. It needs to be on TV. If these sports as well as IPSC, SASS and others were full up with competitors and covered by the press it would go a long way promoting our cause.
Agreed on the need to support the competitions that are going on out there.

The press/media/TV coverage will not come until it's newsworthy. There is little chance of that happening now, although the U.S. culture is becoming more and more open to guns and normal gun activities. Eventually, some media will "discover" IPSC or SASS or IDPA, etc., and give it some limited, then major airtime. Maybe.

It would move it along considerably if some famous movie or sports star somehow participated and excelled in some form of gun competition. That would give it a big bump. Somebody like Tom Cruise, Tiger Woods or, even better, Angelina Jolie....:what:

wacki
August 16, 2008, 12:53 PM
Idea for an Olympic challenge:

Pat Flanigan style shootout -

whatever the world record is (this case it's 12 clays) the users will go 10 rounds of 12 "hand thrown" style clays. Best score takes the gold. That would be a ton of fun to watch.

That and a 6 shooter speed reload like in the youtube video above would certainly be two shooting sports that would be worthy of prime time TV.

wacki
August 16, 2008, 01:01 PM
I guess the first step is getting this stuff on ESPN. If lumberjack - wood cutting- can get on ESPN then so can shooting. The firearm community has been negligent in supporting the sport and getting it on TV.

Another event that might be fun on TV - 1000 meter gong shoot.

Old Grump
August 16, 2008, 01:39 PM
Liberal big city Olympic officials from gun restricted countries keep giving the Olympic games to anti-gun venues so the chances of getting gun sports revitalized through the Olympics is slim nil and none. My heroes and people I shot with but not in the same class were shooters like Lones Wigger and Gary Anderson now are long in the tooth and their grandchildren hopefully are keeping on the family tradition. Sadly the Olympic committee's seem to look at shooting the way you and I would look at a wood tick, just a small annoyance they have to put up with but they wish would go away.

ilbob
August 16, 2008, 02:00 PM
The olympic versions of the various shooting sports are not all that interesting to most US shooters. That would seem to be the biggest barrier.

Darth Muffin
August 16, 2008, 02:07 PM
I'd love to see IPSC as an olympic sport. Can you imagine the US's "dream team" for that?

skinewmexico
August 16, 2008, 02:36 PM
What has happened to the average pistol target shooter in this country?

I bought all the guns I needed for 3 gun, and it cost me about what a good bullseye pistol cost. And it's a lot more fun. And nobody here runs around in black, but thanks for the stereotypical put down. We have about 10 people out of 2000 shooting bullseye at my club, versus 80-120 shooting IDPA. A good idea would be to support 4H shooting, they still teach shooting that carries over to the olympics.

Beagle-zebub
August 16, 2008, 03:27 PM
Can you really not find any shooting competitions on ESPN2? They have so much silly crap on that channel--world's strongest man, bowling, spelling bees--that certain shooting sports would seemingly be able to draw the sufficiently-large viewership. Huh.

SoCalShooter
August 16, 2008, 03:43 PM
You can definitely tell that the media here plays down any of the shooting sports in the Olympics. I wish there was more coverage other than the 15minutes that ESPN2 gave it a couple days ago and it did not even show the American team.

However I think only a couple of shooting sports might actually be interesting to most people, like the clay or trap shooting at best, cause lets face it unless you really know whats going on and you are competing some guy using a service rifle with iron sites hitting a target at 600+ yards while prone is not really to interesting to most Americans, theres not a tremendous amount of fan fair and action that goes with it.

Hence the reason the Olympics needs to have, spotlight hunting :), and IDPA, bow hunting competition etc, cause its a matter of getting the majority into it.

Leanwolf
August 16, 2008, 04:22 PM
OLD GRUMP - "Sadly the Olympic committee's seem to look at shooting the way you and I would look at a wood tick, just a small annoyance they have to put up with but they wish would go away."

Yep. In the planning of the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, one major hangup in building the various sites was in the construction of a site for the shooting sports.

One major obstacle was the Director of the Olympics, Peter Uberoth, a "good liberal," who hated firearms and was a well known strict gun control advocate, did his very best to have all the shooting sports banned from the Olympics, and tried to stymie the planned shooting site.

He wasn't successful, but the site was placed so far from Los Angeles, that virtually no teeeveee coverage, or newspaper reporting came about.

It wouldn't surprise me a bit if some day, whatever the Olympics have become, the shooting sports will have been banned. (Much of the so-called "Olympic sports" today, are a laughable farce, anyway!)

FWIW.

L.W.

akodo
August 16, 2008, 04:52 PM
I wish that whenever the olympics is in a somewhat gun tolerant country that the IDPA or similar groups would do their damndest to have a match a half-hour drive away, and then throw a big "NOT PC ENOUGH FOR THE OLYMPICS OLYMPIC IDPA SHOOTING MATCH" or other 'attention getter' type name and signage, maybe get some coverage that way.

roo_ster
August 16, 2008, 06:01 PM
The olympics is now just another corrupt international organization.

A far cry from its martial origins.

.cheese.
August 16, 2008, 06:05 PM
martial

The Olympics is from Mars?

wacki
August 17, 2008, 10:38 AM
Then maybe we need our own Olympics. Call it the "biannual shooters Olympics" and host the first one right next to switzerlands fieldsheissen event or some large US shooting event.

Make the events fun to watch and televise it on TV. I highly doubt ESPN or even ESPN2 would turn down the opportunity to show it on TV.

This should be a no brainer promotion event for the NRA, Winchester, Remington, etc...

Justin
August 17, 2008, 11:01 AM
What has happened to the average pistol target shooter in this country?

Until fairly recently, I practiced and shot matches for both International and NRA-style Bullseye pistol and still enjoy those games immensely. However, the shift in American competitive shooting has moved into a realm geared far more towards "practical" use of a handgun. While it can be debated back and forth as to just how practical IPSC or IDPA is, it is fairly obvious that they are much more real-world oriented than Bullseye competition.

It seems now the rage is all tactical, dressing up in black garb, and seeing how many rounds you can stuff in a magazine.

At all of the run 'n' gun competitions I've been to, no one dresses up in black garb, and the rules governing either magazine capacity or length have very obviously limited the number of rounds a competitor is allowed to have.

And to sell guns the manufacturors have had to abandon making target pistols anymore which used to be a large market 40-50 years ago.

The vast majority of people who ever buy a handgun are going to buy it to have as a defensive weapon. Such weapons are reasonably priced for the average American, so it stands to reason that you would see more forms of competition involving factory stock type guns.

One of the biggest problems with Bullseye pistol is the amount of money you have to spend on getting a competitive setup. Even a basic setup of just a target-grade .22 and .45 is going to run well over $1500, and that's not even including the other necessary equipment such as a shooting box, spotting scope, or reloading press. You really have to decide that you like Bullseye in order to spend that kind of money on a setup that includes pistols that have only one dedicated competitive use.

That's going to be a pretty hard cost to swallow for the average guy who goes to an IDPA match and shoots his stock G17 with Winchester White Box.


Target/bullseye shooting is a fine art which takes years to hone.

It absolutely is. Bullseye is an exceedingly difficult discipline. The High Master-level and Olympic-class shooters that I've met are capable of levels of shooting that can only be described as transcendent.

But then again, so are the Grand Master level IPSC shooters I've met.


It would also help if NBC would show the shooting sports on prime time also.

Agree completely.

Justin
August 17, 2008, 11:07 AM
I'd love to see IPSC as an olympic sport. Can you imagine the US's "dream team" for that?

I would, too. However, someone would have to devise an innovative way to allow television viewers to keep track of scores in real time. When you watch beach volleyball, basketball, javelin, or practically any other decent Olympic sport, it's very easy to keep track of who is winning.

Even the judged *cough*sports*cough* are easy to keep track of score-wise.

Developing a way to keep track of scores on an IPSC-stage in real time would help move things in the right direction.

That, or it would be best to adopt a shooting sport that is already spectator-friendly such as Steel Challenge or Sportsman's Team Challenge.

STC could be an excellent Olympic sport, and it's one that has received airtime on ESPN. (Though probably just ESPN 8 - The Ocho! ;) )

wacki
August 17, 2008, 11:39 AM
I'm absolutely certain that the firearm community is missing a big opportunity here. I've shown the benelli xtrema video to people that previously had no interest in guns and it made them go "wow, that looks like loads of fun". History (e.g. Annie Oakley, switzerland) proves that sport shooting can draw crowds... and big ones. Shooting sports can make it on TV it's only a matter of customizing the sport and promoting it properly. I suspect we will need to break away from traditional paper target events if we intend on making a splash. When this happens, it will be a boon for the firerarm community and our rights to keep and bear arms in general.

Justin
August 17, 2008, 01:00 PM
Hence my advocacy for Steel Challenge or Sportsman's Team Challenge. STC uses all steel targets except for the shotgun portion, which uses clay pigeons.

That said, there are many, many administrative hurdles to overcome before you would see any new shooting sports added to the Olympics.

Shung
August 17, 2008, 01:04 PM
not mentionnionning the fact that everything that relates guns to military or leo's for sport is really badly seen by the "good thinking people" that form the huge mass of the olympic...

Sad... because many olympic sports come straight from military disciplines..

Thernlund
August 18, 2008, 02:20 AM
Having just skimmed the thread from my last post forward...

I saw someone mentioned getting SpikeTV or some channel to air shooting competitions. Here's an idea: Have a "Shooting Sports Olymics", hold it at the same time as the Olympics, and get it aired so a large audience can be reached. After a couple decades maybe the Olympic committee would roll it into the real Olympics. Isn't that pretty much how alot of stuff gets into the Olympics? Large viewership on ESPN, ESPN2, or whatever?

We just gotta show them that it's something people want to see and a viable competitive sport. But I guess that may be an issue in itself. Maybe people at large don't want to see it. *shrug*


-T.

HB
August 18, 2008, 12:03 PM
The problem with most shooting sports are that they are boring to watch if you don't know what they are doing. Even with the addition of electronic targets in the rifle and pistol events, it isn't much fun watching a guy shoot 60 shots for an hour and a half. There is no movement to keep things interesting. I shoot both 3-P smallbore and air rifle (and occasionally air pistol) and I find it boring to watch if you can't see the targets through a spotting scope. It's also hard to make it seem like a race.

I agree that a steel match or other "practical" match sans the humanoid targets would be pretty cool and easy to make watchable.


HB

Old Grump
August 18, 2008, 09:34 PM
.Cheese asked "The Olympics is from Mars?"

You are kidding right? The Olympics was a direct descendant of the martial arts, running, boxing, wrestling, throwing or tossing heavy weights and or disks, javelin throwing. Today its gymnastics, volley ball, ping pong, basketball, do I need to continue. The committee needs to be retired and a new committee set up that recognizes the origins and traditions of the Olympics.

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