Good luck Pride Park Archers with your new woodland.
As for me I need to practice more and to build up the strength in the shoulders to cope with two days of shooting. P.S, Mark if you are reading this sorry for not hearing the comment about targets, I was distracted by some fellow SVYF archers talking to me.
Thanks for reading.
The location of the championships was stunning, with it taking place on the banks of Windermere lake in the Lake District, which we were able to enjoy in fine dry weather. Yes, dry weather in September in the Lake District, we were shocked too.
Having been able to get the Friday off work we headed up the motorway Friday morning meeting Stephen at the apartment shortly after 2 pm. We unloaded the cars and popped down to the camp site and venue to check we knew the route down the country lanes for the following day. As it was our accommodation was about 10-15 minutes drive from the venue.
Traditionally the nationals had been solely paper faces but a couple of years ago they started to introduce a few 3d targets. This year would see over a quarter of the 40 targets being 3d targets. This year they imposed a time limit of 8 hours, stating all archers had to stop shooting after 8 hours from the start, even if they hadn’t shot all the targets.
I’m going to make a few general observations.
It is my view that some targets were at their maximum range, possibly even beyond. You don’t have to stretch shots just because it is a championships, especially with the quality of the grounds the championships was on. The challenge is in what you score not whether you score.
When you have a long shot and then put a face which may have a large scoring kill zone but wound lines are unforgiving I personally don’t think it is fair. It slows down the day as archers are forced to take three arrows.
The weather, initially misty, soon turned into a beautiful autumnal day of no breeze and bright sunshine.We were on site shortly after 7:30 am with registration opening at 8 am.The shoot starting just after 10.
We were off course by about 4:30 and headed back to the apartment and then to a local pub for food and then an early night.
Sunday morning dawned a little cooler than Saturday with a slight breeze. Again we were on site from about 7:30 am for a breakfast roll and registration.
I didn’t feel Sunday flowed well with a few hold ups whilst we waited for the group or groups in front to shoot the target. On one target there was over 30 minutes while we waited with other groups to shoot a long paper face moose.
I knew I’d not shot well on Sunday and think I can put that down to a loss of confidence. I broke one arrow quite early on and a second a couple of targets later and I think this got into my head. Unlike A course, B didn’t have as many backstops for the 3ds so if you did miss there was a chance of breaking an arrow, as David, one of the compound archers in the group can testify to; when he misjudged a long downhill shot on a 3D ram and the carbon arrow exploded as it hit the tree behind. I was very lucky on this target, with my arrow just staying in the top of the animal.
Our fellow SVYF member Robin won Gents Barebow, which helped the club towards winning the Instinctive Team trophy. Congrats to Colin who won 3rd in Crossbow too. Here is a link to the full results (http://www.nfas.net/downloads/champs/2015%20Sept%20Nationals%20Reults.pdf).
Earlier this month we headed just over the border to Monmouthshire for the annual Hawk archers shoot.
Numbers were small with around 40-50 archers of mixed classes but that made for an easy flowing day and relaxed atmosphere. You can see a previous shoot report here.
Hawks course layers set an enjoyable but challenging course with some very deceptively placed shots. A number of times we would get to the target to realise it was either further or smaller than we thought. That’s not to say they were stretched but well placed.
The course was a mix of 3d targets and a few hessian painted to a very high standard.
Inter mixed were a couple of predator prey shots which Hawk scores slightly differently to other clubs. If you hit the predator with your first arrow you can go for the prey with your second arrow but only score max for a second arrow. Therefore if you get 24 points on the predator the max you can score on prey is 14 points. I think I prefer this scoring as you get a potential bonus but not a huge amount.
Hawk archers grounds is situated in a beautiful wooded hillside allowing them to put on shots both up and downhill.
Shooting group for the day would be Sharon, myself Richie from DW Longbow (we shot with him at Wolverine) and Mary from svyf.
The organisers worked hard to clear paths and cut in steps up and down the hillside which was much appreciated as the ground soil is quite heavy clay in parts making it quite slippery. As it was we enjoyed good weather with no rain and it being bright without it being too warm. Having said this I know Mary struggled at times to have enough light to see through her sights as the tree cover was pretty dense in parts.
Only one shot annoyed me or i think could have been improved which was one between a V in a tree which you shot from about five to six yards. The gap was too tight for my arrows as they are still straightening at that distance. The result was two broken arrows.
It was great to see Mary get round the course. She had taken a really bad fall a few weeks ago at Charnwood shoot tearing the muscles in the left leg. The fact she could walk let alone get up and down the hillside.
As for me I didn’t shoot well at all only coming in with 520ish long way off placing and a lot lower than I wanted.
I’m going to have to work on my consistency of draw as I’m taking a lot of damage to my right ring finger tip.
Congrats to Mary and Sharon who both got first places. Especially well done to young Alfie also from SVYF our a junior who shot really well coming first too.
As always thanks for reading.