top of page

The 2017 AAFTA National Championship

Frequently Asked Questions

FT Podcast: "The latest buzz in the airgun world brought to life!"
Click the image above to hear more on the latest info about the Nationals!

Q: What is this I hear about having a hair comb out on the range for safety against cactus?

A: Yes! having a small comb will help you remove any cactus barbs that may attach to your shoes, clothing or skin. The wise will carry one, trust me. A knife will just cut the barb, but the comb will let you pull them out.

Q: What's in the SWAG bag?

A: When you check in... (as the first thing you do at the range), you will receive a competitor swag bag.  As a part of your entry, you will receive the Official 2017 AAFTA National Championship hat and shirt. There is also your official competitor bib that you can attach to your jacket or straps, and wristband to ID you as a competitor on the range. There are a few more surprises in there too.  You will also find your meal cards to redeem for your meals on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Don't loose them!

Q: Are there cash prizes?

A: NO!  Airguns of Arizona (The Main Match Sponsor) has been kind enough to donate gift certificates to the winners. We are grateful for their incredible support of this event!  See the other pages for the amounts.

Q: What's this "Nature Walk" all about?

A: This is a destination event for many. There are shooters that have never been to the Sonoran Desert before. On Friday at 0800 in the morning, we are proud to bring in one of the best and most renowned rangers here in Maricopa County  to come to the range and lead a Nature Interpretive walk.  This will be about an hour-long FREE educational walk down the shooting path, talking about the local critters, cacti, flora, and fauna here in this unique and wild part of the world.  It gives shooters and their family the opportunity to experience the extreme beauty of the Sonoran Desert as seen through the eyes of "Ranger B", along the very trail you will be competing on.  

Q:How are teams going to be handled? 

A:  As we get closer to the match and registration closes, we will identify the teams specified by shooters upon registration.  Teams can be of any name, state, country, or sponsor.  Shooters may only participate in one team.

We will announce a deadline to formulate or reformulate teams as time approaches. As competitors, communicate with your fellow shooters and come up with the winning combo of shooters.   

We will apply the AAFTA rules as specified:  

"Team Competitions-

It is customary to include a club/state team prize at the U.S. Championship match each year. The team should consist of five shooters who are regular attending members of a club in that state. The team score should be comprised of the top four scores of the five shooters on the team with the lowest score being dropped."

The existing guidelines may not be as specific as needed, we consulted the BOG and will apply the following with approval from AAFTA:

We will follow the AAFTA guidelines, it will be for the best 4 of 5 scores

Teams may consist of any group of shooters, not limited to state of origin and irregardless of home club. This gives the green light for teams configured as: i.e. Pyramid , team Thomas, Crosman etc.  If team title is a club or location, members must be from that team or location. If team is a corporate entity, the corporation must authorize inclusion. 

Team configuration shall be at least one of each class. Spring inclusion not mandatory.  Minimum membership shall consist of one from Open, Hunter, WFTF

Q:  I am on the fence about registering right now because my equipment choice or competitive class may change.  Can I change my class or equipment after I register?

A: Yes. There will be a deadline of August 1st for any changes of classes.   Changes to equipment can be made up to November 3rd. More than one change request is not permitted (because this is very time consuming).  All changes are pending space available (e.g. pistol limit). Competitor list will not be released until after August 1st. 

If you would like to submit a change, please send in another fully completed registration form.  Then email us that you are making this request.  The forms submitted by most recent date will be considered the current information.  

You will want to register ASAP as the limited number of competitive positions are filling quickly. 

Q: I noticed that you dropped the lane count from 17 to 15. Why? 

A: AAFTA has required us to change the the lane count to a maximum to 15.  This is to help keep shooting fatigue to a minimum and allow for an earlier finish. This will also require us to cap the shooter roster to 114 participants.  So get your registration in early!

Q: I own a Springer. How can I use an Empty Breech Indicator on my rifle to show I am safe?  

A: There are different ways to demonstrate a safe rifle on the range. For break-barrels, cracking the barrel is acceptable.  Casing a rifle is another form of safety indication. For under/side-lever rifles, inserting a wooden dowel or safety cord through the barrel is acceptable. Your rifle is not to be cocked in order to be compliant. 

Q:  I will be flying in from from overseas, and I would like to ship my rifle instead of taking it on the plane. Can I ship my rifle and equipment in? 

A: Yes! We have made special arrangements for anyone who would like to ship their equipment.  Airguns of Arizona has agreed to accept and hold equipment sent in for the event. See Nats Info page for more information and details. 

Q: Why are you holding the AAFTA BOG Meeting on Friday instead of Saturday.  

A: Shooting is the main priority. We want to provide a thorough shooting experience for the competitors over the weekend. This requires us to have longer hours than what has been historically experienced. This increase in time would push the meeting later into the evening. In order to keep the competitors fresh, relaxed rested, and ready for the following day's competition, it is more prudent to move the meeting to Friday. This also gives competitors the opportunity to spend dinner and an evening at their own leisure on Saturday with all their new friends and fellow competitors.

Q: What is the dress code for the Banquet?

A: You can come as you are. We realize that you will have spent the entire day competing. If you prefer, and have the luxury of time, casual attire.  There are no golf snobs here!

Q: Why a banquet, that disrupts historical expectations?

A: Sometimes change is a consequence of improvement. 

Q: Empty Breech Indicators are an inconvenience, so why do you require them?

A: Safety is a number one priority. Anyone who has experience at a professional, well-run range understands this requirement. This is a range rule and is non negotiable. 


Q: What will the award levels be? 

A: First thru Fifth will be awarded.  In addition, top junior, senior, female will be recognized in each class.  First through third will receive LARGE prizes and medals, fourth and fifth will only receive medals.  The Prize Packages and specifics are TBD.  We will release this once sponsorship is confirmed and secured.


Q: Do I have to attend all 4 days?

A: No, not at all. However you will be severely disadvantaged if you don't take advantage of the sight-in opportunity on Thursday and / or Friday.   We are providing this privilege for open range time in order to give you the best possibility to succeed. 

If you decide to leave Sunday afternoon, you will miss the grand event of the weekend, the Closing Ceremony and Awards Banquet.  Dates have been provided 12 months prior to the event for adequate notice. You are not required to attend the award ceremony. Attendance is voluntary, but its still included in your registration fee and it's non refundable. We are more than happy to mail out your award if you are unable to attend. 


Q: Is it extra to shoot both Pistol and Rifle?

A: Both pistol and rifle shooting opportunities are included in your match entry fee. You will be able to shoot both. Pistol only has 48 slots. You are advised to register early in order to secure your spot. There is no discount if you choose only one. 


Q: Will there be a Standby List if registration fills?

A: Yes

Q: Is there any registration priority?

A: No. Registration is based on a first-come, first-served basis.  


Q: Why is this event so expensive?

A: We strive for nothing but the best at our events, in order to bring you the highest caliber venue.  This will be a memorable event, especially the Closing Ceremony and Awards Presentation.  This is four fun-filled days of shooting.  Remember as this may be a bit more expensive than years past AAFTA Nationals, this is still about half of what you would normally pay for a firearm national championship, and on par with European Championships.  We promise, you won't be disappointed. 


Q: Will there be an "Unlimited / Freestyle" Class.  

A: No.  This is an AAFTA event. All classes being shot are listed in the 2017 AAFTA Bylaws and Match Guidelines. 


Q: Can we just shoot Unlimited and not be awarded by AAFTA?

A: NO!

Q: Are laser rangefinders allowed? 

A: Absolutely not on FT course. If you are caught using one on the FT range you will be DQ'd.  They are allowed on Sight-in Range.


Q: How will shoot-offs be handled for ties

A: We will place a 3/8ths inch target at 15 yards. Each shooter will get two shots for their turn.  If there is still a tie, the target will be moved back incrementally until a winner is determined.  The person who shoots first, will be determined by their age. The younger shooter shoots first. 


Q: I am planning on staying in Phoenix in between the EBR and the Nats. What is there to do in and around the Phoenix area during that time?

A: Grand Canyon (need 2 days) A MUST SEE
Sedona (beautiful red rocks, shopping. Full day trip, can be done on way to grand Canyon) 
Musical Instrument Museum (one of the best museums, trust me)
Heard Museum (Indian Museum)
Apache Trail Road to Roosevelt Lake (nice day drive out of Phoenix)
Commemorative Air Force Museum in Mesa (for aviation buffs)
Desert Botanical Garden 
Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park 
Old Town Scottsdale, Scottsdale Mall  (walk around and shopping) Women Friendly
Airguns of Arizona / Bass pro shop (airgun and fun store) Man Friendly

Frank LLoyd Wright’s Taliesin West Home Tour


Q: What airports are the best to fly into?

A: You can fly into either PHX international or Mesa/Gateway airport (IWA).  

Q: When looking at your calendar for field target events, I saw none after April. If someone was interested in scheduling a summer vacation to include one of your field target events prior to the Nov AAFTA Championship, will any be available? 

A:  After April, the season comes to potential end here at the range.  Unfortunately the weather here slowly turns the range into the surface of the sun during the summer.  However, that's what makes it so attractive in November when the weather is perfect.  We will carefully consider May and October depending on the temperature.  We do have other venues such as Benchrest 25m, 50y, 75y, and 100m, indoor 10m Rifle and Pistol during the summer months here at the range. You are always welcome to come visit if are in the neighborhood.

There are other FT venues near Flagstaff AZ ran by The Airgunners of AZ that’s up in the pines during the summer, but not at the same range as where the Nationals will be held.

Send us your question!

Success! Message received.

bottom of page