Hunter Class Competition

hunter class competition

Hunter Class Benchrest is score shooting from a bench rest position. In Australia the SSAA established Hunter Class competition back in the 1970's and included it in the Benchrest Rulebook. Since that time there has been a steady increase in popularity and today there are 4 classes of official competition. 2 are for Rimfire rifles in 22LR and 2 for Centrefire rifles. Matches are held at SSAA ranges all over Australia at club level, State level and National Championships are held annually and include all 4 classes.

The target consists of 6 bulls (or roundels). The lower right hand bull is enclosed with a border to indicate it is used for sighting shots. The other 5 bulls are for record shots. One shot on each of the 5 bulls is required and as many sighting shots as desired can be fired so long as they stay confined inside the sighter border area. Each bull is scored as per most application target shooting with a 10, 9, 8, 7 ring etc. A shot only needs to touch the scoring ring to get the higher value. The very centre of the 10 ring has a dot and a hit on the dot is scored as a 10.1. This is useful to separate tied results.


The 200yd centrefire target is twice the size of the 100. For the rimfire matches the 100yd centrefire target is used at 50m and the 200yd centrefire target is used at 100 yards. A complete match for 22LR rimfire classes consists of 5 separate targets fired at 50m and another 5 fired at 100 yards with the larger target. For centrefire classes it's the same except fired at 100yds and 200yds. Other than this the same sort of general procedures apply for this type of shooting as they do for group shooting. Competitors may place their own windflags on the range, there is a system of bench rotation so each competitor shoots from a different bench each time and the time limits are the same being 7 minutes to complete one target.


The Light rifle class reflects the historical factory style guns and must have a magazine and 6x scope, where as the Heavy class rifles have unlimited scope power and no magazine. This style of shooting is great fun and some say less pressure and stress than a group shooting match. It is great for junior shooters to start competition shooting. The focus is on reading the wind and aiming off to make your shots land in the 10 ring. Another great benefit is that it is much easier for clubs to organize and manage Hunter Class events. For details of the complete rules for SSAA Hunter Benchrest see the rulebook or visit the SSAA website.

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