Bermuda could have as many as 13 competitors in the shooting events at the Natwest Island Games in July.

The Coral Reef Rifle and Pistol Club and the Bermuda Trap and Skeet Shooting Club are working to make sure the three venues for the Games are up to standard.

The competitions will take place at LF Wade International Airport’s finger that just out into Castle Harbour, Warwick Camp and at Cooper’s Island.

Ross Roberts, who won a bronze in the 50-metre prone at the 2010 CAC Games, told the Bermuda Sun: “This is great that we have alternative places that we can shoot. Unfortunately, we haven’t started training at any of the actual venues for the Games.

“We’re training for the rifles at our range at Fort Prospect, the shotguns are still up on their range in Smith’s parish, and the same for the rifle shooters at Warwick Camp, they would rather be shooting on the range that is going to be used for the Games that way they can get used to the light conditions and wind conditions.”

Roberts said the clubs are “anxious to get started” and are hoping the purpose built facilities are done soon. “There is still quite a bit of work to get done at all three venues.”

He expects to start using them at the beginning of June. Roberts said even though memberships in the clubs are limited due to the small facilities they have, it will be great to have a bit more exposure.

“It means a lot to try to grow the sport. It’s grown smaller because of the lack of exposure we’ve had. It would be great, for once, to compete in front of a home crowd.”

He said there has been one snafu for those who want to compete in the air rifle and pistol events, and that is cost. The club has to hire the police to watch over their training session.

“Because of the current laws the air rifles, the air pistols and the .22 pistols used in the Games, they are on the prohibited weapons list and we can’t even get them licenced.

“We’ve negotiated with the police to start training but the problem is financing. Neither club nor the members have the financing to pay the police to be there.”

Roberts said it costs $50 per hour to have the police there to stand guard during training. He added they would need eight to 12 hours per week — $400 to $600 in police costs — to ensure they were up to the standard for the Games.

He added then there are ammunition expenses and the club have made requests for sponsorship, but to no avail.

Roberts said the team would not be finalized until the first of July, end of June. Brian Mello, president of the Bermuda Trap and Skeet Club, said it will be great to compete in front of a home crowd.

“We’ve never been competition folk — we like to have fun and compete against ourselves.”

Mello said that changed in 2011 when he went away to the 2011 Natwest Island Games. “I saw how seriously everyone takes this. I went thinking it’s no big deal and go have a laugh, but it was a big deal. Hopefully we can show that to Bermuda by having it here.”

He said the club shoots once a week but it is very low key. Mello said the club has already held tryouts.

He said the range being constructed at the airport will be of international games quality. “It is going to be temporary… but it could definitely happen that guys could want to compete more after this.”

Anyone interested in helping the clubs with a donation so they will be able to train, may contact Ross Roberts (505-8101), David Dumont (3335625), or Brian Mello (717-0851).