The Club’s archers were in action both on and off the island at the weekend. A group of eight braved the treacherous seas to travel to the annual Wigan and Orrell shoot; while an even dozen made their way around the debris strewn roads of Man to reach Onchan. In both cases the round of the day was a Portsmouth.
The Wigan and Orrell shoot, held at Bamber Bridge near Preston, has traditional been a happy hunting ground for the Island’s archers and this year proved no exception. While Pete Mumford (60/558/18) and Billy Lightfoot (59/549/19) could make no impact in the Veterans category of the Gents Compound, Joy Gough (59/546/17) secured second place in the Ladies Compound.
Joy’s grandson Brandon Gough (54/417/0) enjoyed his first taste of off-island competition and acquitted himself well in the Junior Gents Compound.
Tilly Ashton (60/537/18) was on fine form as she added 27 points to her pb for the round to take the silver medal in the Junior Ladies Recurve.
Jacob Brookes (60/471/7) was off the pace at the weekend, but Nathan Kinrade equalled his pb with a score of 60/478/9). Toby Young had the hardest task of the day in the u18 Junior Gents Recurve as all boys shooting are entered in that category as well as being segregated into their own age group. Toby did not allow that fact to bother him as he put in a season’s best score of 60/535/22 to take the u18’s Trophy. The children, as usual, were splendid ambassadors for the both the Club and the Island.
At the Onchan Hub, the archers were engaged in a Portsmouth round being shot as part of the Club’s Handicap League. It was great to see Josh Trafford back in action after an eighteen month break due to back/shoulder problems. A period of extended physiotherapy had left him ready to rebuild his form and Sunday was the first step. Having lowered the poundage of his bow until his muscles have recovered, Josh did not have an accurate sight mark to start with and he had to ‘feel’ his way into the shoot. It took him a couple of dozen arrows to get going but he finished strongly with back to back dozen totals of 106. After handicapping Josh finished at the bottom of the table but things look promising going forward.
Peter Howland was also back in action at the weekend as was Ralf Mitchell. Ralf was returning after illness and celebrated by taking the win after the handicap was applied. Peter was a little below his best and had to settle for joint sixth place with Greg Altham after handicapping. James Hill had a miss in an otherwise decent shoot that dropped him down the results table, but he is still very much in contention for the Trophy in the Junior Championships to be held on the 3rd of February. Danny Cowin seemed more relaxed and focused than usual and put in the highest Recurve scratch score of the day. Naturally the born perfectionist that is Mr Cowin was unhappy with his performance, but he remains the man to beat in the Senior Championships on February 10th.
Lady Recurvers Barbara Harris and Kristen Joughin enjoyed very different shoots. Barbara’s performance could only be described as erratic and put her firmly at the bottom of the table. Kristen however, shot well up to her handicap to finish second overall. Harris is currently thinking of abandoning archery and taking up Tiddlywinks – Barbara is no better at that than she is at archery but the equipment involved is lighter and cheaper.
Colin Moore left his Compound bow at home and broke out his trusty barebow to get in some practice ahead of the Club Championships with the aim of retaining his title.
Rhys Moore took the scratch honours over father Dave in the Gents Compound, but Dave had the last laugh as he took the last place on the podium after the handicap was applied.
Results Onchan Portsmouth Handicap – 1.R.Mitchell 1453 (60/473/9), 2.K.Joughin 1441 (60/433/4), 3.D.Moore 1439 (60/577/37), 4.R.Moore 1435 (60/579/39), 5.D.Cowin 1432 (60/554/22), 6.G.Altham 1430 (60/524/15), =6.P.Howand 1430 (60/469/7), 8.J.Hill 1429 (59/507/8), 9.C.Moore 1412 (60/482/7), 10.B.Harris 1393 (60/510/12), 11.J.Trafford 1355 (60/489/6).
Also shooting for the first time was Caoimhe Sleddon who was using Sunday’s shoot as a chance to get sight marks ahead of the Junior Champs. Caoimhe did well to cope with the new distance and showed decent form. When she has completed two more rounds, she will be given a handicap based on the average of the three rounds.