02.08.10 BCRA Open Day 4

The fourth and final day of the BC championships dawned fine. The programme for the day comprised three shoots at 600m., two of these being the last two individual shoots and the third being the final range of the international match against British Columbia, representing Canada, and a US team consisting of shooters from the Western states.

The results from yesterday showed GB shooters in the ascendancy with various individual successes, the most note-worthy being a win in the Grand Aggregate by Nigel Ball, who had shot four scores of 50 in the day to overtake local shooter Don Pitcairn. Kitty Jack was runner-up two points behind Nigel, with David Armstrong in third place, a further point back.

In the first shoot today the scoring continued high as the conditions were straight forward in the first competition, the Life Governors. Jane Messer, team captain, was second with 50.8, just behind Dave Adams, BCRA President, with 50.9.

The final individual competition, the Norm Beaton, is also the final of the Lt Governor’s and the only 15 round shoot of the meeting. David Armstrong won the Norm Beaton with 75.10, with Jane Messer in second place with 75.7. This resulted in Jane being declared the outright winner of the Lt Governor’s Match with a score of 378.42, with Nigel Ball second with 377.36 and Archie Whicher fourth with 373.32. Jane was duly chaired off the range to the strains of “Scotland the Brave”, played by a lone piper in full highland regalia.

The day’s third shoot was the third and final range of the International Teams Match shot under Kolapore conditions. GB Red Team had edged the 300m and 500m ranges each by one point from the US team, and a 2 point lead could hardly be described as a cushion. Jane made it clear to the team that real focus was required if disappointment was to be avoided and the 600m leg of the match got under way in tricky wind conditions with sudden changes of both strength and direction and occasional dust clouds raised by the gusts. Once again Jane was to the fore, both shooting (coached by Kitty Jack) and coaching, and a composed team performance was delivered. Dropping five points, GB progressed to a clear win with a score of 1,185 ex 1,200, with the BC (Canada) team on 1,176, the US team on 1,168 (we think!) and the GB Blue team on 1,166.

The prize-giving soon followed and a high proportion of the fine silver trophies were claimed by GB team members. It should be noted that, overall, Nigel won the BC Open TR Championship and Jane was runner up. None of the visitors had ever shot on such a pristine range in such spectacular surroundings. The organisation by Bob Pitcairn and his team had been flawless, a tribute to all their hard work.

So ended the 2010 BC Championships. The Captain was moved to state that the day had been ‘most satisfactory’. After farewells on the range, the GB team celebrated their successes with an excellent dinner at the local steak house. Some then retired while others, mindful of the rest day to come, returned to the Jolly Roger pub before, in the small hours, serenading a sleepy captain - and no doubt all the other hotel guests - to the strains of Hail the Conquering Hero, thus rounding off a very good day.