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Numbers down, scores down but excuses up at 900 yards

It was a lucky 13 shooters that presented at the daunting 900 yard mound on Saturday, July 30 for the 4th stage of the Peter Picton Memorial Trophy and the range lived up to expectations with possibles almost impossible to come by with many wondering why their perfectly tunes rifles behaved so traitorously at the clubs longest range. There were only 2 possibles shot on the day and these were both by Nick Abrahall in target rifle giving him 100/100 of rifle to win the Grafton Shoppingworld Butchery trophy in that category. In F-Class John Bloomer took out the off rifle honours with 114/120. The same shooters took out the honours in the Aggregate Trophy (Handicap). With all 15 wind flags pointing in different directions at times it was difficult to calculate wind strength and direction and with the 900 yard range being the same target as 800 but 100 yards further back it was a difficult ask to puts all shots in the middle. One shooter who only that morning recorded one of the only perfect scores ever in the 300 yard fly shoot (50/50) was relegated to 2nd last in F-Class at 900. Dave was last seen Googleing laminators so he could preserve his perfect fly target encased in plastic to take pride of place in the pool room. Three shooters who laughed in the face of these challenges were Michael Cook (never shot target rifle before) John Apps (hasn’t fired his rifle since 2009) and Luke Bloomer (Regular Target shooter trying his hand at F Class). Results were mixed with a great deal of learning being the common denominator. Of the three, Michael Cook did amazingly well to master the conditions and in his 2nd stage managed a very creditable 46.3 to be right up there with the big boys in the tough conditions. Considering it was his first ever target rifle competition it was testament to his competitive ability and the quality of equipment prepared for him by accuracy guru Dennis Hilton Next week the competition will be from the 300 yard mound which is a most sensible range to try stuff out and kicks off the Treasurers Trophy which Treasurer Al assures this writer will be packed with value! Shooting commences at 1pm so be there by 12.30 for squadding. Shooters take note the following weekend August 13 is allocated for the SSAA Inter-Club Shoot so there will be no regular Saturday competition for the GRC. The range is located at 434 Trenayr Road, opposite the Koppers log mill and adjacent to the Experiment Farm. Visitors and new shooters are always welcome. John Stone