A Short History of NSWRA Firing The Rigby
Members of the visiting Scottish Team on the Final Day in official dress uniform with Emma Brindley from Leeton who delighted all with her rendition of the Sword Dance.
Members of the NSW, Scottish, President's and NSW Ladies Team Members after the Scotland v NSW Match
Sunday 19th September
Queen's Prize Day 3
800 metres - Queen's final
With the swirl of bagpipes beckoning the NSWRA Queen's has been run and won with a nail biting finish at 800 metres going down to the last shot. Stephen Negus of Mosman Neutral Bay has won H.M. the Queen's Prize on centres from Jim Jeffery of Lyndhurst firing 75.8 in his final stage to win.
Conditions at 800 metres remained as they had been early in the morning with a light breeze coming from around 1.00 to 2.30 on the clock. Early on in the stage it did for a small time drift from the left and a number of points were lost on the change over. A high cloud cover made sighting a little dull as the stage wore on, however, you could only say it was fair for all and the best shots came to the fore.
Jim Jeffery shot reasonably early in the stage and posting 74.7 losing one shot to the wind wide at 3.00 o'clock. This left Negus being the only shooter capable of catching him requiring 75.3 to get the ride in the chair. Steve drew late to shoot and thus had the agony of the waiting game to contend with. When his turn in the order came he started slowly with only two or three centres in the first half of the shoot but came home with a great group that anyone would be proud of especially under the pump.
Well done to Jess Bale who finished with a 74 and took B Grade by a country mile and would have finished around 6th in A Grade. Outstanding effort!
Results of all grades will be posted very shortly by the stats who have done an outstanding job all week.
600 metres has concluded and we are now preparing for the final 15 shots from 800 metres. Weather was just zephyr of a breeze from the right, however, amazingly quite a number of the front runners dropped points. Tights targets and pressure make for a difficult combination.
Quickly the leaders remain the same Jeffery got through clean and remains a clean point clear of Negus. Negus has centres so if Jeffery drops a point trouble looms. Buchanan, Millen & Davies fill out the top five still on 5 down.
Fairy tale Jess Bale droppped one so is out of Queen's contention but is that far in front in B Grade she probably only has to shoot half a stage.
Shooting is about to commence and first shooters are saddling up we'll be back with the final results in the next hour or so.
Pre 600 metres
So we arrive at the final day of what has been a fantastic week of sun, relaxation, friendship & shooting. Full marks to the small band of volunteers who have put this champioship together. I think without doubt its been the best run in NSW for many years.
Ok enough of the platitudes and on to the business at hand. The day has dawned as predicted in the weather forecasts yesterday. Fine, a little high cloud and most importantly only a light breeze coming from the South West at the present. As mentioned in last nights briefs in these light winds your money has to be with the front runners but it comes down to pressure and who handles things best on the day.
One final note before we commence. Jess Bale shooting in B Grade has had a fairytale run and presently has herself in 3rd positition for the Queen's Prize. Fantastic effort from a young lady who has had an amazing week. Jess we wish you all the best for the day and whatever happens you have plenty to be proud about from this week.
Saturday 18th September
Queen's Prize Day 2
800 metres is just drawing to a close and just a few quick notes before the destractions set in thick and fast. Firstly conditions really settled down this afternoon. The breeze was almost from 12 o'clock only a few points either side of centre. Whilst it was catching the unwary the front runners generally handled it well at worst only dropping a couple of points.
Jim Jeffery Lyndhurst currently holds the Queen's lead clear on 2 points down 323.32. Jim is followed before by Stephen Negus Mosman Neutral Bay alone on 3 down 322.36 First of the 4's is Don Thompson Natives 37 centres, Mark Buchanan Roseville 34 centres, Tony McGuigan Mosman Neutral Bay 32 centres, Stuart Collings Mosman Neutral Bay 30 centes, Michael Millen Mosman Neitral Bay 28 centres, Duncan Davies West Wallsend 27 centres. The only shooter who could possibly be added to this list is Helen Griffiths Pacific who's score I do not have at hand at time of writing.
So as things go I probably won't get back this evening - stats will be posted shortly. Tomorrow beckons with a finish at 800 metres with another 15 shots. A quick look at the weather sites has the weather fine with only light winds from the South & South West. If conditions remain light your money has to be on the front runners. Both Jeffery and Negus have been in top form for some time. Both have the experience, abilty and will to win. Toss of the coin as these things always are but I do think the points advantages they hold may well prove crucial in the light winds. Should be a great finish to a fantasic weeks shooting.
700 metres has come and gone and degrees of difficulty have varied from little patches of down the pole and doing very little to patches that have had a 7 point wind spread in ten shots! Ahh the weather gods shine favourably for some of us some of the time certainly not for all of us this week.
As the range concludes none of the leaders remain clean with the last one standing Jim Jeffery dropping one point here although he would still be retaining the lead. A number of others would be in close contact including Greg Traeger of Murray Bridge, Don Thompson and I think Spencer Dunstall is still there or there abouts.
The provisional results for 700 are as follows: A Grade Warren Grenness Castlemaine 50.9 ( now that just is not fair!); B Grade Jess Bale Concord 49.2; C Grade Rob Bartlett Wingham 49.4; F Class A Grade Bruce Kneebone Wangaratta 59.5; F Class B Grade Kent Chalmers 54.5 & F Class Open Geff Miners Goulburn 94.
After lunch 800 metres kicks off at 2.00pm. The wind is in two minds not knowing whether it wants to come from the South or the North. If it comes from the North current leaders are well and truly in the box seat. If it stays from the South we all have a chance!
600 metres has all but concluded and the NSWRA Queen's prize is wide open. The South Westerly winds are back and whilst not the strength of the McIntosh winds certainly as changeable.
Jim Jeffery Lyndhurst remains the only one of the leaders to be unscathed after this range with all the other cleanskins sustaining damage, most in multiples. Possibles have been rare with probably less than ten across the range. Flag lines seem to have been critical with most recorded near the flags as angle changes have been telling. 48's generally seem to be better than average 47's may just be a holding score. Certainly damge sustained this morining is going to be recoverable if the wind remains from this quarter for the balance of the day.
So to the results from 600 - again these are with just a hand full of shooters left to go - A Grade Ray Jones Bungendore 50.5; B Grade Matt Elsworthy Rail & Tram 49.1; C Grade Hugh McKenzie Port MacQuarie 47.2; F Class A Grade Bruce Kneebone Wangaratta 57.3; F Class B Grade John Black 57.1 & F CLass Open Geffory Miners Goulburn 96.
700 metres is just about to commence with the wind remaining gentle from the South West looking about 4 points at the moment but possibly wanting to die. Today is moving day, looks like there will be fair bit of moving going on before it's all over.
Friday 17th September
Queen's Prize Day 1
600 metres / Sargard Teams
600 yards is completed and your correspondent once again has missed the 600 cards before they have been dispatched to the office. However, we do have the day results and the Sargard team.
Maj. Don Thompson Natives Brisbane took out the day in a shootoff from Ian Moss Port Macquarie after they had tied on 150.19 ahead of John Brooker Yorkshire 150.17, Jim Jeffery Lyndhurst 150.16 and Richard Jones Manly 150.13 rounding out the last of the triples.
Full marks must go to Jessica Bale of Concord taking the day in B Grade 150.10 four points clear of nearest Hamish Bush Mosman 146.14. Outstanding effort Jessica - a prodigy of the NSWRA Under 25 State Team and going ahead in leaps and bounds after top scoring the Ladies teams matches earlier in the week.
The Sargard Teams has been shot and won by the mighty Lyndhurst Rifle Club for the second time in three years. Coached by veteran coach Greg Hahn Lyndhurst's side of Ben Emms, Les Fraser, Robert Sweegers and Jim Jeffery took the money with the score of 298.33 one point clear of arch rivals Mosman Neutral Bay. Ahh victory is sweet..)
Tommorrow beckons with the weather forecast fine but windy and 6, 7 & 800 metres will be a challenge for all concerned. The game is there to be won and lost for all. The new ICFRA targets are proving to be the best thing for the competition keeping chances alive long after they would be gone on the old.
500 metres is now just drawing to conclusion and the day is just going from great to perfect as far as the weather is concerned. You tell me but where in the world can you go shooting, enjoying picture postcard weather and watch whales breeching in the bay. It is without doubt the most picturesque range in the world!
Now back to matters of importance unless someone upsets my apple cart at the last moment these are the results from 500 metres. The wind for the first time this week settled down to a very gentle breeze from the right and mirage for one of the few times has come into play. Stark contrast to the last couple of days.
A Grade has gone to Ken Young Southern Highlands 50.9; B Grade for the second time today to Jessica Bale Concord 50.1; C Grade Bill Gillis Maitland 48.4; F Class A Grade Bruce Kneebone Wangarratta 60.3; F Class B Grade John Black Grafton 60.3 & F Class Open Tim Larkin Rail & Tram 96
This afternoon after a shortened lunch break we have 2 & 10 at 600 metres followed by the prestigous Sargard 4 man Club Teams. Whales, sunshine, relaxing if this isn't paradise then I don't know what is!
Glorious spring weather has greeted a field well in excess of 200 for the first day of the 150th NSW Queen's Prize. The wind is contiuing to blow from the South West although now after the concusion of 300 metres it is as calm as we have seen it all week.
Before the commencement of 300 metres the gathering was treated to an exhibition firing of the 1874 Rigby muzzel loading target rifle. This actual rifle was used in inter colonial matches between NSW and Victoria. The honour of firing this first shot to officially open the 150th NSW Queen's went to John Killian of the UK who is at the present time the only winner of the Queen's to have come from GB (1974). Surprisingly enough a Super V was valued for this shot - must have been a hell of a ricochet!
On to the results from 300 metres Mark Buchanan, Roseville took the first range of the Queen's with 50.8 the best of a few on count back. B Grade to Jessica Bale, Concord 50.6; C Grade Derek Bush Holsowrthy 48.4; F Class A Grade Greg Warrian Tumut 59.6; F Class B Grade 60.3 & F Class Open Tim Larkin Rail & Tram 98
Thursday 16th September
McIntosh Day 2
The McIntosh Aggregate has just concluded at 800 metres in a true grandstand finnish. Going right down to the wire Mark Thurtell of Orange took the title in a shootoff against Angus Bell of Port Jackson 24.2 to23.?
800 metres saw a continuation of the conditions experienced throughout the day with a fresh breeze from the South West handing out the canings with monotonous regularity. Scores over 70 early in the afternoon were a rarity in the end I think a 72 or 73 was the top score on the range. The front runners shooting early had it toughest although the wind did not settle to any great degree so as it goes things played out fairly evenly across the field.
Both Mark Thurtell and Angus Bell finished with 339.35, from Ken Young and Ian Moss again eleven down I just don't have the centres at the moment but in that order. Ben Emms 338.36 finnished 5th with Spencer Dunstall in 6th 338.?
Sorry I don't have the other Grades at time of compiling this report and will conclude later as time permits.
The second range of the day has just completed and just incase 600 was not a trial enough in itself 700 put on a repeat performance. The only form of appeasement came in the shape of the more generous ICFRA target at 700 metres - the easiest target in the series. This said possibles were few and far between as the changeable wind once again played havoc with the scores.
Best on range was the old master Spencer Dunstall from Ungarie -I'm not certain whether or not he's using his pee rifle - with 50.7 on a countback from Richard Jones Manly. They were followed by Ben Emms Lyndhurst 50.6 and Donna Negus Hoslworthy 50.4. This I think is the some total of the possibles. If it isn't then be assured there aint to many more.
B Grade was Gordon De Gruen Sydney 48.4; C Grade Robert Bartlett Wingham 48.2; F Class A Grade Robert Harvey Marrickville 57.1; F Class B Grade John Black Grafton 56.2; F Class Open Rod Davies 89
So after lunch it is back to 800 metres for 2 & 15 in a breeze that has just about everyone in play. At time of righting my best guess of a leader looks to be Richard Jones of Manly being the best of the 5 downs. Eight down was the top twenty after the conclusion of 600 metres. Best of luck to all!
Well bugger me what a day we have in front of us now. Sydney has dawned fine but with a devil of a wind coming over the right shoulder changing in both angle and in strength. The new ICFRA targets are really sorting the would be's from the could be's today.
600 metres has just concluded and all three leaders from yesterday - Young, Moon and Thompson have all been hammered to the tune of 6 or 7 points. I think only one possible has been recorded across the range and from what I have seen a 47 is pretty much a holding score.
Chris Money from the City of Subiaco took the range with a freakish 50.7. B Grade Bob Harold, Concord 47.2; C Grade Brenton Friend Marrickville 45.1; F Class A Grade Ernie Mace 55.1; F Class B Grade Graham Willis Bathurst 55.1; F Open Rod Davies Cessnock 94.
700 metres is just aboout to commence and conditions don't look to be easing at all. This game is anyones for the taking and my bet it will remain so right throughout the afternoon session.
Wednesday 15th September
McIntosh Day 1
Overcast skies welcomed 113 shooters this morning at 300 metres for the first day’s competition for the McIntosh Aggregate which is the traditional lead up event to the NSW Queen’s prize. Heavy rain overnight had cleared away by early morning and now at lunch we are enjoying the Sydney sunshine once again. The South Western quarter remains the home of the wind and is forecast to remain so for the rest of the week which should prove very challenging as the distances increase.
John Baxter of Lithgow led the charge at 300 metres claiming the first gong for the championship with 50.8 from Wendy Moon, Wingham on 50.6 and Ken Young Southern Highlands 50.6. B Grade has been won by Rodney Smith, formerly of Rail & Tram and now of Sarina, with 48.6 from Darren Pinkerton, Orange 48.5 and Warwick Sides, Junee 48.2. C Grade with a reasonable roll up has gone to Brenton Friend, Marrickville 46.3 followed by Michael Wortham, Marrickville 45.2 and Robert Bartlett of Wingham 44.2.
The Scoped Shooters are well represented with F Standard having 27 entries and now split into two grades. I don’t have the Grades at hand at the time of filing; however, of the bat Greg Campbell of West Wallsend has topped F Standard with 60.8 from John Peters Cessnock 60.6 and John Faulkner Milton 60.4. F Open has its usual devoted band of followers and has been headed at 300 by Rod Davies, Cessnock 97.0 from Andrew Larkin Rail & Tram 96 and Malcom Henderson Southern Highlands 95.
500 metres saw a clash between two heavy weights of the NSWRA in the form of Angus Bell and Spencer Dunstall - I will leave the reader to work out how each of the contenders are named in that light - with Angus taking the honours on a count back with both returning 50.8. Don Thompson of Natives rounded out the top three with 50.7. In B Grade it was Gary Wooton, Katoomba 50.4 from Terry Owen Sydney 49.4. C Grade again had Rob Bartlett of Wingham 48.4 ahead of Peter Mitchell of West Wallsend 48.2. F Standard A Grade has John Peters Cessnock 60.5 from Dennis Smith Gosford 60.4 whilst on B Grade it was Grahame Willis, Bathurst from Cedric May, Canberra 60.5 to 59.3. F Open Rod Davies, Cessnock 94 from Les Rozsnyai, Nowra 94
Back to 600 metres after a rather long and relaxing lunch and a challenging 15 shot match to conclude the day. The draw here did prove rather important with early draws having to contend with a wind that didn't know whether it wanted to come from 2, 12 or 11 o'clock. Scores early were all in the 71 to 73 range with only the very odd 74. Later in the day the conditions settled a little to be just a gentle drift from the left and a number of 75's were recorded with very handy centre counts.
Best for the range were Mark Thurtell, Orange 75.11 from Ben Emms Lyndhurst 75.9. B Grade was Terry Owen Sydney 73.5 from Mel Lucas 72.8. C Grade Brent Friend 71.5 from Rob Bartlett Wingham 70.5. F A Grade Bob Pedersen, Hobart 88.6 against John Peters Cessnock 88.5. F Class B Grade Greg Campbell West Wallsend 89.8 from John Black 86.4. F open Mal Henderson 142 from Rod Davies and Andrew Larkin both on count back.
Final results haven't been posted as I write but final standings for the day have made it the old fashioned way to the "Leaders Board". Ken Young of Southern Highlands and fresh from winning the Northern Territory Queen's is the best of two triples with 175.21 from Wendy Moon of Wingham 175.16. They are followed by Don Thompson of Natives QLD on 174.22, Mark Thurtell Orange, Ben Emms Lyndhurst and Donna Negus Holsworthy all on 173.21.
B Grade has gone to Terry Owen of Sydney with 169.13 from Garry Wotton of Katoomba 167.13 and Darren Pinkerton of Orange 165.13. C Grade is headed by Brenton Friend of Marrickville with 164.9 from Rod Bartlett of Wingham 162.11 and Hugh McKenzie of Port MacQuarie 153.6.
F Class Open is headed by Rod Davies Cessnock with 333 from Mal Henderson Southern Highlands with 329. The photo of the F Standard Leaders Board is not readable so I will be back to you later with those results.
After re writing what I didn't save correctly before %#@! I can now give you the final results for F Class but I suppose you have already found them on the results page anyway! John Peters leading Bob Pedersen 208.16 against 206.16 whilst in B Grade it is Greg Campbell 206.21 against John Black Grafton 201.07.
So after all the re writes tomorrow we look forward to the conclusion of the McIntosh over 600, 700 and 800 metres. The 15 shots tomorrow afternoon will prove critical especially if the wind continues from the South Western quarter. A quick check of the weather zone site just now has tomorrow as fine 11 - 24 degrees and the wind from the West South West 24 - 33 km/h. Have fun ladies it's anyone’s game
Monday 13th September - Medlands Match to Queensland
They may well say fortune favours the brave but after the conclusion of this Medlands Match at 800 metres you would have to say that it looks favourably upon the wary as well!
NSW once again were quick out of the starting gate posting 48's to their first three shooters and increasing the lead over QLD to two points. NSW's fourth shooter, Rebecca Shephard, ran into a patch of tough conditions and only could return a 43.3.This left Jessica Bale to close out for New South which she did admirably under pressure with a 49.4 which also lead to her top scoring the day in her first ladies teams event.
The wash up of NSW's woes in their finish was that with two shooters to go QLD had a 5 point lead plus centres to burn meaning the lead was practically 6 points. Helen Griffiths shooting 4th for QLD really showed her class with an excellent 50.5 which never looked like missing the bullseye. This looked to have put the decision beyond doubt with Catherine O'Loughlin closing for QLD who had been in solid form all day.
As we all have experienced there is definitely never anything like a sure thing in rifle shooting. After five shots QLD had dropped three points and all of a sudden the pressure was right back on. In the coach's chair was Carol Solomon with Helen Griffiths on her wing doing the plotting. The run of three inners brought a complete halt to shooting and the brains trust held up their charge for a good five minutes or so waiting for a settling in conditions. Settle they did, the corections were made - after a magnifying glass was found to read the sight at least twice - then the coaches let their charge go and Catherine finished brilliantly on VVVV5. Top stuff Queensland a win by 3 points and 17 centres.
Full final scores were Queensland 952.82, New South Wales 949.65 & South Australia 925.58. In the Helen Griffiths Grand Aggregate Queensland again held sway with 1319.122 from New South Wales 1313.092 and South Australia 1283.081. Individually as mentioned Jessica Bale of NSW top scored the day with 196.19 followed by Carol Solomon (QLD) 193.17, Wendy Latham (QLD) 192.14, Helen Griffiths (QLD) 191.18 and Catherine O'Loughlin (QLD) 191.16.
Tommorow is a lay day due to the Martin Baxter Match being cancelled at the last moment. Hostilities resume on Wednesday with the start of individual matches in the McIntosh Aggregate over Wednesday and Thursday. The Queen's Prize commences on Friday with fine weather forcast. If you haven't got your entry in yet get on the dog and bone and get it in!
Monday 13th September - 700 metres
700 metres has just concluded and whatever advantages that existed before lunch have now all but dissappeared. Queensland have surendered their five point lead they held from the pre lunch session to NSW who now hold a slender lead of just the one point. NSW again shot fast finishing well ahead of the other two sides and finally their tactics of shooting fast and clearing the mound have borne fruit.
Best on the range across the three sides was Cathy Burnett (NSW) with the only possible of 50.3 coached ably by Maureen Shephard. NSW finnished 10 points down with 15 centres followed by QLD 16 points down with 26 centres and South Australia hanging on with 16 down and 16 centres. Overall standings now are NSW 713.48, QLD 712.62 & SA 701.43.
So now to the final range at 800 metres. The weather is excellent with the wind continuing from the South tending to South West. Best of luck coaches it's anyones game from here.
Monday 13th September
Fine weather again greated us at ANZAC this morning with a cool breeze from the south coming over the right shoulder of the coaches that was to prove very challenging.
The Queensland girls took off from where they had finished yesterday in very competent form. Helen Griffiths 50.7 and Carol Solomon 50.5 led from the front at 300 metres with Queensland finishing this first range only 4 points down with 22 centres. NSW trailed Queensland by 3 points after 300 despite possibles from Donna Negus 50.5 and Jessica Bale 50.4 whilst SA finished a further 2 points in arears with Jasamine Traeger heading the list with 49.04.
600 metres has seen the wind become increasingly tricky with many changes both in angel and strength. Windage on the sights seems to have been from as little as 1.5 out to as much as 7.5 right. In the early part of this stage these changes were coming through rapidly and coaches had their work cut right out to keep up with them.
NSW was out of the blocks early at this range with some mixed results. Jessica Bale 48.6 and Mel Baxter 48.01 suffered the least damage as the team finished 20 points down at this range and off the mound a couple of shooters ahead of the other teams. This looked at the time a pretty good tactic as conditions weren't showing signs of settling to any degree. However, there did seem to be a decided settling of conditions, if not in strength then definitely in direction. Queensland took full advantage of this and finished on a 49.3 from Catherine O'Loughlen which top scrored the range and finished only 18 points down to extend their lead by a further two points. South Australia finished 24 points down with Joanna Meloar and Jasamine Traeger with a brace of 48.2's heading their team.
So with the teams now at lunch we await 7 and 800 metres which on these new ICFRA targets are going to prove challenging indeed with conditions unlikley to improve throughout the afternoon, certainly not before the close of play. In closing standings at lunch are Queenlsand 478.36, NSW 473.31 and South Australia 467.27. Top individuals are Jessica Bale (NSW) 98.10, Catherine O'Loughlen (QLD) 98.06, Jasamine Traeger (SA) 97.06, Joanna Treloar (SA) 97.05 and Helen Griffiths (QLD) 96.08.
A beautiful sunny day greeted the National Ladies teams for the 1st morning practice of the teams challenge with all enjoying great shooting conditions and a fantastic view of clear skies and calm sea.
However despite the local advantage NSW ladies received a rude wake up call in the Presidents match with the Queensland Ladies taken home the silver.
Perhaps a bit too much partying and celebrations with our Scottish friends were responsible however the NSW team have vowed to comeback in tomorrows matches.
NSW v Scotland : The Post Lunch Session
After lunch and back to 700 metres NSW entered the range with an 11 point buffer from the morning session from the President's side of previous Queen's winners and youngsters. The Scots had a deficit of a further 14 points behind the President's side.
The wind after lunch had swung around to be a frontal coming from almost due east and as the afternoon progressed tending to be East North East.
700 metres saw the old heads of the President's side take hold of the match and really stick it to the State side. Veteran coaches Reg Rowlands and Greg Hahn with Tony Moon acting as the comunicator in between the two - the hearing not being what it used to be - were back to the days of old really nailing the conditions. By the end of the range the President's men were back within 4 points of the State team sending shivers down the collective spines at the thought of an upset victory!
Back to 800 metres up on hill for a real grand stand finish. The President's lead off whilst the State side and the Scots held back waiting for the predicted swing of the wind round to the North which is the easiest of conditions at ANZAC. After waiting for 20 minutes or so the wind stubornly stayed from the East and refused to settle from the North so finally the other two sides commenced shooting with the President's men already through their first few shooters.
Following on from their form at 700 metres the President's started strongly and by the time they had got down to the last shooters the President's held a 2 point lead over the State side. With tension in the air the last pairs all started together the State's pairing of Steve Negus and Jim Bailey were once again rock solid and returned 50.4 and 50.7 respectively. The President's pairing of Wendy Moon and Graham Crowe had mixed fortunes with Wendy returning a 49.4 but Graham, who had been battling a stomach bug all day, could only make a 42.2. This final collapse handed the relieved state team a victory by 7 points. The Scots finnished a further 28 points behind the President's.
Top individual shooter for the day was Jim Bailey rock solid as ever with 200.21 coached ably by Tony McGuigan. Jim was followed by Wendy Moon (Pres) 198.20, Tom Ryan (Pres) 196.14, Richard Jones (Pres) 194.21, David Hossack (Scot) 194.16, Richard Scott (Scot) 194.15, Evan Jones (Pres) 194.15, Ed Cartwright (Pres) 194.13 & Mark Buchanan (NSW) 194.13
An excellent day had by all and now on to the presentaion dinner and hopefully just the odd quiet ale perhaps even a dram or two of scotch to go with the occasion.
Tomorrow will see the Interstate Ladies Teams matches commence as we build towards the Queen's later in the week. If the weather holds to what we have enjoyed today a truly memorable week is ahead of us all.
Saturday 11th September
Sydney today has been blessed with picture postcard weather with hardly a cloud in the sky and just a light breeze from the South East to keep the coaches on their toes.
Hostilities opened at 300 meters with three teams taking the field representing NSW, Scotland and the NSW President's Invitational side. From the outset the two NSW sides looked to be locked in a very tight match with only centres separting them. NSW finished the first range 10 down with 47 centres just clear of the President's men 10 down with 41 centres. The Scottish struggled to be 30 down and 32 centres. At this stage I must mention that Mk1 factory ammunition is in use for this match and a number of rifles seem to be below par which certainly is accounting for a number of the points lost.
Just as a side note to 300 metres top points must go to the competitions director Ian Trevathen. Just before the match got underway Ian took great pride in hoisting the state flag to fly alongside the team members. Ian walked off happy with a job well done only to be called back to replace the Queensland flag that he had raised in error! Ian was quick to accuse Mike Hobbs who is down to run the association store for the championship week of infiltrating the NSWRA organisation and instigating the plant!
600 metres saw the wind increase and NSW break clear of the President's finishing this range 29 down with 86 centres. The President's struggled finishing 42 down with 71. The Scots are now 56 down with 63 centres. Best individuals at this stage of proceedings are Jim Jeffery (NSW) 100.12, Jim Bailey(NSW) 100.11, Wendy Moon (Pres) 100.10, Ben Emms (NSW) 99.10, Jacqui Rankin (Scot) 99.09.
After lunch, which is now being enjoyed, we have 700 and 800 metres to conclude the match and then presentations at the Seals Club at Maroubra beach.
Friday 10th September
Today practice took place on all ranges for the International Teams events. Weather was generally fine with a balmy temperature of 28 degrees C. The wind during the morning was a mild westerly that turned to the South East for the final ranges needing up to 15 points at times.
The Captains and coaches are remaining tight lipped on their chances and have currently adjorned to their respective clubs to discuss tactics prior to the barbecue for all to be held tonight.
Weather forecast for tomorrow is fine and sunny with good prospects for a sunny Queens later in the week.