Thursday, 6 October 2016

The 2016 Summer Report, pt 2: Shooting Outdoors

The Hampshire Long Range Open Meeting

In preparation for the ELEY finals at Bisley (see part 1) a number of our shooters were keen to get a bit of outdoor practice in beforehand.  As a result, a few of us went up to Andover Rifle Club to enjoy a fine day of shooting on their outdoor range.

This was a Double Dewar match, meaning two cards shot at 50m and two cards at 100yds.  Each card has a maximum of 200 points on it, so final scores are out of 800.  The shooting is a little different from the standard indoor shooting, which we do at 25yds; the targets are further away but they are also bigger, and therefore because they are bigger, we can shoot more than one competition shot into each target.

Let's compare:

A standard 25-yds indoor 10-bull (the shots have been coloured red to make them clearer in these pictures).
Zoom in on the 25-yd card and you see that there is only one competition shot per target.
A shot 50m outdoor card.  Only 4 competition targets.

Zoom in on one of the targets and you can clearly see 5 competition shots
A shot 100-yds card with two competition targets.
Zoom in on one of the 100 yds targets and you will see 10 competition shots.
So the upside of outdoor shooting is that there is less moving around from one target to the next.  The difficulty lies in changing light and wind conditions.

Matt Simmons, Jonathan Rowe, and Tamsin Rowe, all shooting at 100 yards for the first time!

Owing to the fact that none of us shoot particularly regularly outdoors, this match represented a steep learning curve for those of us for whom this outdoor shooting was all new and those more experienced of us who had to remember what we were supposed to be doing.  It was a great competition that presented Tamsin and Matt with their first outdoor experience, and Jonny with his first 100 yds experience.  None of us did astoundingly well, except perhaps Tamsin, who proudly took away the Phyllis Green Trophy (top lady in C/D class).

Well done, Tamsin!

The Bisley Weekend Aggregate

A couple of City shooters, Gordon Scruton and Jonathan Rowe, decided to not just do the ELEY final but go up and do the whole weekend aggregate of the annual Bisley meeting.  This involved three cards at 50m and three cards at 100 yds, making a sum-total of 120 competition shots (thus 1,200 points in total).  This was an awful lot of fun and we'd encourage as many of you as possible to set aside the weekend next year to join us.  There was camping involved, BBQing and lots of the infamous 'Bisley wind' to throw the shots off.

Particular highlights in the shooting over the weekend were Jonny's high placing in C Class at 50m and, to a lesser extent, Gordon's placement in A Class for his 50m.

The Dacorum Open Handicap Shoot

A little time after Bisley weekend, a few more shooters decided to go up to Buckinghamshire for a handicap shoot, this handicap was based on a shooter's declared average.  Much like handicaps in golf, this is a way for shooters with different levels of skill to enjoyably compete against each other.  This competition marked a couple more firsts for Portsmouth City shooters - for Mike McCormick it marked his first time shooting at 100 yards, and for Tom Sommerville it was his first outdoor shoot entirely.

Mike and Tom shooting on the 50m range.

No significant wins in this competition but it was a great, if slightly drizzly day and a fun time was had by all!

Havant's Final Fling 'Scottish Match'

This annual competition marks one of the last competitions of the outdoor summer season.  A Scottish match is one that is only at 100 yards, and in this case was 60 competition shots.  Portsmouth shooters, Ian Cooper and Gordon Scruton took part in this competition, both in A Class, and while neither got close to winning the class (well done to Cliff Richards of Havant for that) it was pretty close between the two of them.

That's the end of the outdoor round up, but the next part of this summer report will look at the indoor postal leagues.

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