Sporting Clays Tips from Mick Howell & Brad Kidd, Jr.


Emily is accompanied by Mick Howell, World Champion and Brad Kidd, Jr., National Champion. They will explain target settings, tips on eye focus, and reading target lines.

Tower Shot Tips: Line of Flight

  • Downward angle makes the shooter shoot high
  • Needs a big lead since it won't lose speed
  • The bigger the lead, the more important the line of flight is
  • Identify the line of flight by focusing on the direction of the bird in the sky (picture a clock face to help you determine the direction):
Line of Flight

Quartering Target: Visual Pick-up & Hold Point

  • Because of the angle, it initially appears crossing, but when shooting you'll notice it's quartering
  • Don't let the clay "beat" your eyes and become visually disconnected
  • Consider your proximity to the machine (soft focus in the distance with peripheral vision picking up flash of target)
Soft Focus
  • Look for where the target will become the clearest the quickest
  • Once you've found your viewpoint, then you can find your hold point

Report Pair: Fast vs. Patient Hold Points

  • Outgoing targets should be shot relatively quickly
  • Long, slow, incoming targets tend to be missed because the shooter "rides" the target, becoming aware of the muzzle and measuring the lead
Report Pair
    • Incoming target: be patient and shoot at its closest point & wait to see it clearly
    • For each target: establish a good hold point, read the line & lead, know how to use your eyes to either pick-up quickly or be patient & engage in hard focus later in the flight

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