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Old Tricks – New Tricks
OA Bulletin – R+PC Report Autumn 2017
Well, we’re still here and in a low key understated sort of way, flourishing.
We hear from others at Bisley that we are actually one of the better off old boys’ organisations thanks largely to the school’s continued support and the elevation of shooting to a school sport. The even better news is that the new maths building includes a basement range and has been given the go ahead by planners. There will of course be a disrupted period during construction but the future is looking positive indeed.
The range closures of last year are now history and our shooters have both stayed put and moved on to various other venues. Long range (50 & 100yds) has stayed put at Vauxhalls and short range (25yds) has moved to East Barnet and various other clubs. Andy Moore and myself are still shooting at our local clubs in Minehead and Bournemouth and those at university are shooting with their local clubs.
Our Herts Rifle League winter season 2016/17 (Division 2, Team 4) resulted in our finishing fourth (ex6) not bad for such an unusually elevated division and it shows we held our own against declared averages. Our final position belies some very good scores; clearly the challenges of range closure put the team on its mettle.
Martin Warr spent the season shooting for the Herts County Rifle Team as well. Congratulations to him. With his current average he should have another season of county shooting ahead in 2017/18. Keep up the good work. I’m not so sure my own average will have the same result in Dorset but it looks like I might get a go at the new NSRA County Veterans competition seeing as I’m over sixty; ten years over!
Herts Rifle League summer season 2017 (Division 2, Team 4) was a similar story but this time the damage was done in the early rounds and we ended up in fifth place. Not too shabby but could do better.
Our team for the winter 2017/18 (Division 2, Team 4 – Again!!) season comprises:
Andrew Wilkie 97.0
Andrew Moore 93.4
Martin Warr 97.4
Nick Tubby 93.8
Kris Gruber (Reserve)
Priscilla and John Simmons both had success at the NSRA Bisley Open Meeting in August.
The annual Coles Trophy match against the school took place on 30 June. The result was a close win for the school with Macrae handicap scores of 400.076 to the school and 399.987 for the OAs. Congratulations to the school team.
Owen Simmons has dusted off his contacts list and called for competitors for this year’s BSSRA 25 yard competition. If you would like to take part then please let him know.
Full bore shooting kicked off on 1 April this year with a practice shoot at 600yds. A week later we shot the short range Q Match at 500 & 600yds, coming fifth out of six teams. Not one of our better performances given the early practice but shooting was disrupted by the delays getting target frames in place and by painfully slow marking. More delays followed during our match against the Old Lawrentians. This time we came second as expected with 458.24 against 466.36.
The plan was to have a practice shoot at 1000yds before the Long Range Q match at 900 and 1000yds. Yours truly duly booked targets and then disappeared off to Australia for six weeks. Well thanks to the electronic booking system the team arrived at Bisley to find they were booked in at 1100yds. We don’t have kit to shoot at this distance so after much discussion they were offered an electronic target at 300yds (See photo). Good practice for the future and very efficient with instant marking, just not 1000yds!
This summer Alun Lewis turned his wordsmithing talents to shooting, updating the NRA Facebook page during the Queen’s Final at Bisley. Tech savvy at 70, a new trick for an old dog. I wonder can you get a tingle from a lekky bone?
Wind coaching is still evolving so nothing new to report but the new scope stand will help by preventing the scope moving in strong winds.
At the time of writing we have just shot our last full bore event of the season The Arnold Cup match. First presented in 1936 the competition was balanced 32 to Alleynians and 31 to us with three ties (66 matches). This year the match was shot 2 & 7 at 300 and 600yds whereas previously it has been shot at 300 and 500yds. I am delighted to report that this year we won with a score of 272.29 against 250.16 to the Alleynians. Congratulations to all on levelling the overall total at 32 each and completing a run of five successive wins for the Old Albanians. The individual scores (ex 70.14) were OL Simmons 69.6, AWB Wilkie 70.10, MC Warr 68.6 and AD Lewis 65.7. The match was followed by our annual dinner in the London Middlesex where we were hosts to the Alleynians team and their partners.
Club kit is available for all disciplines so if any of you would like to relive the excitement of corps camp or that first shoot on the school range the opportunity is there. The grey hair count is still high and we need to keep working on reducing it. So go on – You know you want to!!
Let me know your stories I’ll have another one of these to write soon.
Good shooting to all,
Andrew Wilkie (Capt)