Published on 24 Jun 2024

President Rossi and top ISSF officials involved in radar technology test at Lonato World Cup range


A test event involving radar technology was observed at the recent World Cup Shotgun in Lonato by ISSF President Luciano Rossi and senior officials.

The technology, which is already in use in the United States and Australia, measures the speed and distance of clay targets as they are released from trap or skeet shooting machines.

This operation is achieved by aligning a radar pistol under the throwing arm and pulling the trigger at the point of release.

The results are then compared to data already compiled to ensure that the machine is functioning correctly according to the trajectory options being used.

The ultimate aim of this innovation is to reduce the time required to test and prepare machines for shotgun competition, and to reduce the number of technical officials required.

President Rossi was accompanied during the Lonato testing by Turkey’s SSF Executive Committee member Melis Giraud, Mohamed Wahdan, chair of the ISSF Shotgun Committee and other officials and referees.

The demonstration was carried out by Jack Burch, USA Shooting’s Shotgun Committee member, and Russell Mark, the Australian team coach who won double trap Olympic gold in 1996 and silver in 2000.

“This is something new and it is something we should try,” Giraud told the ISSF. “I like it very much that we give the opportunity to try new things. We have to be open for them, and this is how we can improve our sport.

“The number one aim is to make the checks in a shorter time, and number two is to minimise the number of people who have to be involved and to minimise the human factors.

“instead of having four or five people in the range talking at each other you can just go in under the pit when you have the data ready and measure the machines one by one and complete the operation in a few minutes, whereas for us now it takes at least 15 minutes to complete one range.

“Lonato is an excellent place to prepare the data and the use of this technology. If it is successful then we should ask more people to use it.

 “So it is very good we try this but we need to test it more to find out exactly how it will serve us to make the current situation better.”

What may challenge the widespread introduction of this technology is the variation in machines and targets used worldwide.

Burch told ISSF: “I have used this technology for over 10 years in the United States to set targets for both trap and skeet.  The main advantage is consistency for the athletes.  They know that if this system is used properly the targets will be the same on all fields.  This gives them confidence in the fairness of the match.

“I believe the next step for this system is to have the ISSF Shotgun Committee develop the rules and the courses for the end users.  This will take some time with the Paris Olympics upon us.  Once this task is completed the system will need to be approved from there through each respective committee and then by the EXCO.”

Wahdan added: “This technology offers several advantages, such as ensuring that all targets in all shooting ranges fly at the same speed, regardless of wind, weather conditions, or any other factors.

“Additionally, for ranges where the maximum distance in front is less than 76 meters for trap and 68 meters for skeet, or those on a hill, the targets will still be correctly set. Moreover, the new technology will enhance the setting of targets more than just checking them, ensuring greater consistency and precision from the start…

“A challenge we will likely face is data collection. Each target, machine, and scheme must be identified, and the correct speed according to the scheme must be determined.”