SAHFTA Rules 2018


1.1. All shooting activities must be carried out in accordance with the SAHFTA rules.

1.2. Any air rifle is allowed as long as it complies with current national legislation for airguns and has a power output less than 16,3J (12 ft/lbs). The power output can by checked by random or compulsory chronograph test at any time before, during or after the competition. (For 2018/2019 season 14 ft/lbs will be allowed in the springer class) (Any higher power rifles, are allowed to partake, but cannot score for national leagues.

1.3. Each course must have safe place for checking and adjusting airguns – The ZERO RANGE. It is necessary to register and sign safety declaration form before entering the Zero range. Using the Zero range is allowed only for the shooters competing. It should be large enough based on the number of shooters.

1.4. All shooters must self-familiarization with the SAHFTA rules and attend a safety briefing at each event to be held immediately before the session they are shooting in.

1.5. When a single blast of a whistle is heard all shooting must immediately stop. Shooters must discharge their rifles into the ground, away from the target, at a safe distance and angle. Targets must NOT be sighted or the gun shouldered during a cease fire.

1.6. After hearing two blasts of the whistle, firing may re-commence after you have visually checked it is safe to do so.

1.7. Rifles must be cased or carried with the muzzle pointing down at all times when not in use, this includes rifles carried on a sling.

1.8. Do not cock your rifle until you are ready to take shot.

1.9. No gun should be cocked or loaded between lanes. Multi-shot rifle must have the magazine removed, and be in a visibly safe condition. Every member of a group should ensure theirs & their shooting partner’s activities are carried out in a safe manner.

1.10. NEVER rest the rifle muzzle on your foot. When getting down or up from a prone shots always be aware of where your rifle muzzle is pointing, it should remain pointing down or down-range at all times, ask your shooting partner for their assistance in handing, or taking, your rifle from you if you find it difficult getting up or down safely.

1.11. All Juniors (under 18 years old) must be under the direct supervision their parent/guardian on the day.

1.12. In the case of any dispute, the Chief Marshal can be called, and their decision is final.

1.13. If you are approached by a marshal for any reason i.e. shooting technique or safety please do as they have asked as remember they are there to make sure the course is shot safely and fairly.


2.1. Each registered shooter will receive the scorecard which fills in by details of equipment for event (Name, Surname, Manufacturer and type of Rifle, Manufacturer and type of Scope, Magnification, Backlight and Parallax used for the event, Manufacturer, type and size of Pellets)

2.2. Once the first shot has been taken, NO adjustments may be made, in any way, to the rifle, stock or scope.

2.3. The courses always have category Open, and then can be divided into subcategories:

2.3.1. Springer

2.3.2. Ladies

2.3.3. Veteran (age 60+, at the day of the course)

2.3.4. Junior (age under 18, at the day of the course)

2.3.5. U/13 Juniors (Allowed take all shots of rests) (Not able to qualify for national colours)

2.3.6. Team (max. 6 shooters, top 4 of them will count into team’s results)

2.3.7. High power (Rifles up to what the hosting club allows) (No included in national league)

2.4. The scoring will be 2 points for a knockdown, 1 point for faceplate hit and 0 for a miss of the target. The target MUST fall to earn a maximum 2 points.

2.5. Under no circumstances may a target be shot at more than once by a shooter, nor are any practice shots of any kind allowed during the course of fire.

2.6. Regardless of any circumstances such as forgetting to load a pellet, not shutting the loading bolt or if the trigger is pull before you are locked on target, if the gun goes off (air released) the shot is considered as having been taken and will be scored accordingly. If this does happen, the competitor should make sure the pellet has left the gun by dry firing safely into the ground over the firing line with the consent of their shooting partners.

2.7. When a target has been downed the shooter must gain confirmation of the knockdown from a fellow group member before the target is reset.

2.8. Only a member of your shooting group is permitted to record your scores on your scorecard. Under no circumstance is a shooter allowed to score his/her own scorecard. If an error is entered on any scorecard the shooting partner who made the mistake must seek a marshal who will amend this error for you & sign the back of the card.

2.9. Upon completion of the course one of your shooting partners should sign your scorecard, this is to signify that they have checked the card & agree with its scoring, the shooter should always check that their scorecard is correctly filled in & signed before handing it in as they are the ones who will be penalised for any irregularities.

2.10. Shoot off will always take place in the event if a tie for 1st to 3rd place in all classes in the Open Class. The targets used will be 1×15-20mm, 1×25-30mm and 1×35-40mm hit zone target (each target being placed within the standard ranges for that hit zone size). Each person will shoot all three targets from the kneeling position, if any competitors are still tied they will then shoot the targets in the standing position. If after this no winner is established then there will be sudden death shoot off. If a large number of shooters are tied for a placing, the organisers may decide to use a count back to decide other placings.


3.1. In general

3.1.1. Sitting shots ARE NOT ALLOWED, this is defined as the shooters backside being in contact with the ground, or sitting on your foot folded under your bum as the shot is taken.

3.1.2. Crouching shots are not allowed, this is defined as two feet on the ground with the upper part of the legs being supported by the calves or foot area.

3.1.3. The peg must be touched by some part of the body/rifle as the shot is taken. Moving any of the course fixtures is not allowed, these include the firing line, shooting pegs or any supports (Bails/structures), and anyone found doing so will be disqualified from the competition.

3.1.4. The trigger finger must be behind the peg when the shot is taken.

3.1.5. The rifle butt must be outside your clothing when taking a shot & it cannot be supported by any straps/pockets etc.

3.1.6. NO advantages are allowed for the Juniors during kneeling or standing position.

3.1.7. Each championship course will contain 3 unsupported standing and 3 unsupported kneeling positions.

3.2. Prone

3.2.1. The only part of the rifle allowed to touch the ground when taking a shot from the prone position is the bottom edge of the butt pad, if any part of the rifle stock extends below this bottom edge then the rifle must not be grounded at all during a prone shot.

3.3. Kneeling

3.3.1. The kneeling position is defined as only 3 points of contact with the ground (2 feet & 1 knee).

3.3.2. The rear foot shall be upright and straight in line with the knee, sitting on a turned foot is not allowed, but ‘laces down’ is ok.

3.3.3. A bean bag may be used to support the knee, shin or foot area only, not the buttock.

3.3.4. The rifle will be supported only by the two hands with the rifle butt in the shoulder, no other part of the body can be used to support the rifle nor can the hands be supported on any other part of the body.

3.3.5. The hands cannot be dropped to allow the wrist joint, arm or any other part of the body to support the rifle. The leading hand should also be forward of the knee, to illustrate this the supporting hand should be dropped down vertically (90 degrees to the forearm), if it contacts with any part of the knee/leg the supporting hand is deemed too far back & therefore not forward of the knee.

3.3.6. The un-supported kneeling/standing shot will be clearly designated, no other forms of support are allowed for this shot (peg/tree etc.).

3.3.7. The leading leg cannot be pulled back so the calf is supported by the hamstrings or lower buttocks, this is classed as a crouching shot & is not allowed.

3.4. Unsupported Standing

3.4.1. Only your feet may be in contact with the ground.

3.4.2. The un-supported standing only shot will be designated by a 10cm (4″) tall peg, no other forms of support are allowed for this shot (peg/tree).

3.5. Supported Kneeling / Standing

3.5.1. The above rules apply with the exception that any part of the rifle or body may be resting on the supporting tree/object. If a number of supporting objects are available, some part of the rifle or body must be touching the support marked with the peg number as the shot is taken. In addition to touching the numbered support you may also make use of any other supporting objects.

3.6. There will be no ‘impossible’ of the peg shots. All peg shots must be accessible out to the right and out to the left of the peg for left handed and right handed competitors, remember juniors are also shooting these courses – so common sense should prevail here.


4.1. The given time limit per lane are 4 minutes (1 min setup, 1 min per target) max, this time starts when you approach the peg.

4.2. Under normal circumstances a shooter is not timed but if any group is causing a hold up or the session is taking too long due to slow shooters then we reserve the right to time individuals or groups of shooters.

4.3. Shooters may be timed by a marshal without their knowledge to ascertain if they are in fact taking too long to shoot but they will not be deducted any points at this time.

4.4. Once the decision is made to officially time any shooter or group of shooters they will be informed by the marshal that they will be timed, they will be told when the clock is started and they then have two minutes to shoot the target.

4.5. If a competition is stopped during the timing the clock will be paused and 10 seconds grace given upon re-start of shooting before the clock is re-started.


5.1. Forend depth is limited to a maximum of 150mm, this is measured from the centre of the barrel to the lowest part of the rifle forward of the pistol grip.

5.2. FT style butt hooks are not allowed, although the paddle style of butt pad is allowed.

5.3. The paddles of the butt pad must not exceed 57mm (2.25″) in length.

5.4. When standing or kneeling, no part of the rifle may be in contact with the ground.

5.5. When taking a prone shot the only part of the rifle which may be touching the ground is the bottom edge of the butt pad, no other device, stock or butt pad extension may rest on the ground.

5.6. Windicators of any type are NOT allowed. The competitors are allowed to use only the nature objects found on the course to measure wind, such as dry leaves, grass, dust etc. Artificial meanings of wind measurement (hunters white powder, tapes of any kind etc.) are prohibited on the course

5.7. Scope levels cannot be used and must be removed or taped up before you start the course.

5.8. A standard rifle sling is allowed to be fitted to the stock/rifle but only as a means to carry the rifle between lanes, at no time can a sling to be used as a shooting aid.

5.9. No device may be added or designed into a stock/rifle to specifically support the stock/rifle on the peg or tree. This includes brackets, ledges, spikes, straps etc.

5.10. The objective and ocular aperture of the scope must be left as it was manufactured. It cannot be reduced in any way. Flip up scope caps must always be in an open position when taking a shot and any holes in the caps taped up while shooting the course.

5.11. Anyone found carrying out any adjustments whatsoever to a scope once the course has been started will be expelled from the competition.

5.12. Lasers are not permitted and should be removed from the rifle.

5.13. Use of any Range or angle finding equipment is prohibited for everyone on the course (include visitors).

5.14. Cell phones or walkie-talkie devices are prohibited on the championship course.

5.15. Beanbags may be carried to place guns on between lanes and may be used for kneeling shots as specified above.


6.1. Minimal diameter of the peg is 25mm. Minimal dimensions of the square peg is 25x25mm.

6.2. Targets

6.2.1. Metal silhouette “fall when hit”.

6.2.2. Faceplate must be finished in light colour (white, yellow).

6.2.3. Hit-zone (HZ) must be finished in dark colour (black, red, dark grey).

6.2.4. Faceplate for the un-supported kneeling / standing positions must be at least 20mm around the hit zones.

6.2.5. Faceplate for other positions must be at least 10mm around the hit zones.

6.3. Visitors and spectators are allowed and welcome on the course during the competition.

6.4. Visiting the course BEFORE competition start is PERMITTED and encouraged for shooters and visitors. (Not allowed over the shooting line.)

6.5. The course will consist of at least 30 targets (include forced positions) with one firing point (peg) for each target.

6.6. All firing points and targets must be clearly marked numbers from 1 to max number of targets.

6.7. Distances for different diameters of HZ:

6.7.1. HZ 15-19mm        12-23m

6.7.2. HZ 20-24mm      7-27m

6.7.3. HZ 25-34mm      7-37m

6.7.4. HZ 35-40mm      7-41m

6.8. Un-supported standing shots:

6.8.1. HZ 35-40mm          7-32m

6.8.2. Angle of shooting must be under +30 / -30 degrees.

6.9. Un-supported kneeling shots:

6.9.1. HZ 35-40mm          7-32m

6.9.2. Angle of shooting must be under +30 / -30 degrees.

6.9.3. Kneeling shots are allowed to shoot standing.

6.10. Supported standing shots:

6.10.1. HZ 25-34mm          7-27m

6.10.2. HZ 35-40mm          7-37m

6.11. Supported kneeling shots

6.11.1. HZ 25mm               7-27m

6.11.2. HZ 35-40mm          7-37m

7. Provincial League Series

7.1. Each province will host a series of league matches. The calendar for such series must be submitted to the Committee for prior approval.

7.2. Each province may determine the commencement of its League Series independently.

7.3. The Committee may combine the League Series of two or more provinces, where it is deemed to be in the best interest of the sport.

7.4. Participation is open to all SAHFTA affiliated members or members of a national body affiliated to the World Field Target Federation. This requirement will be abandoned in instances of first participation in a series.

7.5. The Technical Officer may set a standard of difficulty for league series matches. The difficulty standard is available from the SAHFTA website (

7.6. The responsible member of the club hosting the league series match, shall complete a certificate of compliance, stating that the course complies with rules and that the standard of difficulty set according to rule 6.5 has been met. Such certificate shall be displayed at the match and must be delivered to the Technical Officer within 7 days after the match. The certificate of compliance is available from the SAHFTA website (

7.7. In the event of failure to comply with rules, the standard set according to rule 6.5 by the hosting club, the Committee may revoke the League Series status of the match. In such instance no result will stand.

7.8. The hosting club shall deliver the scores from the match to the member responsible for the logs within 3 days. The hosting club shall keep all scorecards for a period of 1 year.

7.9. If a League Series match is suspended by the range officer due to hazardous weather conditions, and the match cannot be resumed, no result will follow if less than 50% of the course has been completed by any competitor.
7.10. A provincial log will be kept in respect of each province. The results from League Series matches will be recorded on the log. The winning score will be reflected as 100% and all other scores will be expressed as a percentage thereof. A shooter’s 6 highest scores will be reflected on the log, and the average there of. Any query regarding a score, as reflected on the log, must be raised within 2 weeks of its publication with the member responsible for the logs.

7.11. Results will be recorded in the log of the province where a shooter normally competes, irrespective of where the score was achieved.

7.13. Each province, which has a separate League Series, will host an annual provincial championship for that province. Such provincial championship shall consist of 2 matches. The results of each match of the provincial championship will be recorded as a provincial league series match. The naming of such provincial championships is in the discretion of the province concerned.

8. National Trials

National Trials will be held annually to select a national team to represent South Africa at the World Field Target Championships.

8.1. Team selection is only open to South African citizens.

8.2. The minimum qualification for entry into the National Trials is a 60% average on the national trials log. Entry will be limited to the top 100 shooters on the national trials log.

8.3. A national trials log, separate from the provincial League Series logs will be kept. The national trials log will record shooters scores at provincial league events in the 12-month period preceding the national trials. The 6 highest scores will be recorded as well as the average. No average will be reflected if less than 6 scores are recorded on the national trials log.

8.4. The minimum qualification standard for the national team is the following:

  • An average of 80% or more on the national trials log, and
  • At least 1 contributing score must be achieved at a provincial championship.

8.5. A series of 2 matches will be shot at the National Trials.

8.6. The National Team shall consist of the top 6 finishers at the National Trials, subject to rules 8.1 & 8.4.

8.7. In the event that any member of the National Team is, for any reason, unable to attend the World Championships, the Committee may, after considering performance at the National Trials, performance during the provincial league series and previous experience, invite a replacement shooter to join the National Team.

8.8. The Committee may, in its discretion, extend invitations to specific international shooters to attend the National Trials.

8.9. All targets shall be clearly numbered (per course from left to right) on the target faceplate.

9. SAHFTA Colours and Other Awards

SAHFTA colours are awarded at the conclusion of the National Trials in recognition of performance.

9.1 The top 6 shooters at the National Trials, who are not members of the National Team and have not been awarded national colours previously, will be recognized with SAHFTA colours.

9.2 The top junior shooter at the National Trials will be recognized as the junior champion, with medals awarded up to 3rd place. Only junior shooters with an average of 75% or more on the National Trials log will be considered for awards.