Originally Posted by RobF
Problem is the host NGBs don't always publish rules, and if they do, they can do it sometimes way too late to adapt to or only in piecemeal fashion.
The EFTA have proposed in the past that rules are to be published before a country is accepted as a host.
What I think is, differences in NGB-determined rules should not be about gear. With gear I mean not only the rifle and scope and whether or not electronic rangefinding is allowed, but also rules about slings, bean bags, gloves, shooting jackets and other such stuff. If an NGB determines what can and cannot be used as a rifle sling, then people will work with these rules to the maximum extent possible - and sometimes beyond.
Dave Monck told me a story from the time he was BFTA's secretary, about a guy who appeared at a shoot in a jacket with clips, to which he would then clip his rifle sling for standing shots in such a way that he could actually have the rifle shouldered without using so much as one hand.
If an NGB has a rule that leaves enough room for such things, people will use the room available. Which is OK when it's about a national shoot (well, I wouldn't like it, but I have nothing to say), but when you're going to operate on an international level, you should have a level playing field.
To which the organising body would say "well, the foreigners are free to get the same equipment that we have". Suuuuure.
Someone, I forgot who, once argued that the WFTF rules do nothing to make the sport accessible for people on a budget, or elderly people, or people with a handicap.
This is true. But then again, the rules for the 100m steeple chase don't make it any easier for the elderly or for those with shot knees to compete on an international level.
When we started playing this game thirteen years ago, we created a set of inclusive rules that aimed at getting participation, which we called "national" classes, and for the true fanatics, we had the International Open class that would stick to the WFTF rules as much as possible, with a few exceptions which catered for our different circumstances. We had no woodlands to shoot in, so we had to think of other means to make our courses interesting - which included more reducers. Where the WFTF rules were inconclusive, we simply copied what the BFTA had thought of, since we suspected that you guys would have the most experience.
The International Open class (which is now called FT1 here) has always had a 12 footpound limit, even though there weren't any people shooting 12 footpound rifles in these days - most were over, some way over. So the National Open class would allow up to 20 footpound, because we thought that was the maximum that our Knockover targets woud withstand.
But there were no rules whatsoever for International Open that would be about gear
that were different from the WFTF or BFTA rules - and that is how I think it should be. There is no reason for an NGB to have different rules about rifle slings or bean bags or shooting gloves. If an NGB wants to allow complex strap systems for the disabled, or leg risers for people with short legs, that's fine - but not for international competitions, and I really think that WFTF should take this into account
. If I can't do kneeling shots because my knee is shot, tough luck, I'll take 'em standing if this is allowed, and otherwise I'll just have to drop them. And if I'm unable to get up after a lying shot, I should either not do HFT or I should see if there is enough interest for a version of HFT for the physically challenged.
About course layout: I haven't seen the course of the Worlds in Ebern [edit: apart from photo's and videos], but I'm a bit on the fence about whether it was too hard. One might argue that having a lot of reducers on position shots would separate the best from the rest, but apart from challenging your shooting abilities, a course should also be varied, and not emphasising a particular ability, such as being capable of kneeling and leaning backward at the same time seven times in a row.