The Club’s archers were in action at home and abroad again at the weekend. Three of the Club’s elite travelled to England to take part in competitions, while fifteen other club members tackled a WA 720 round under the grey skies of Greeba.
Tilly Ashton, accompanied by coach Uncle Dave Berry, travelled to Oxford to compete in the Junior Masters tournament, which is invitation only – all competitors having attained Junior Master Bowman standard. For Tilly the event comprised a qualification round followed by head to heads, shot over 60m. This distance was an age group up from the one Tilly normally shoots, which presented a challenge, as did the weather in Oxford. Damp and breezy conditions saw a lot of archers put arrows in the grass. It took Tilly a couple of ends to dial in but she shot well once she did and her score of 429 with four misses meant she qualified in 21st place. Torrential rain greeted the head to head stage which didn’t make shooting any easier. The head to head consists of three arrows, highest score taking 2 points – first one to 6 points wins and progresses to the next round. Tilly was up against 12th seed Katy Tonkinson who beat Tilly by just one point on each end to put her out of the competition in the first round.
Dave and Rhys Moore trekked to Durham to take part in a Double WA 720/Head to Head hosted by Durham City Archers. As Compound archers the Moores shot their qualification round and head to heads over 50m. There was no wind to speak of, but conditions were cool and damp. Dave had trouble with his bow on the first day and qualified in 20th. Rhys did a little better qualifying in 14th place but both men went out in first round of head to heads. On the second day Rhys found his form to qualify in 9th place, Dave still had some issues with his set up but shot better to qualify 17th. Sadly, they both went out at the same stage of the head to heads as they had the day before.
Meanwhile at an overcast and chilly Greeba, those who turned out also shot a WA 720 round – that is 72 arrows at a single distance. Ralf Mitchell’s archery journey took a few detours on Sunday as he attempted the full 70m distance for the first time. He was given a lesson in line etiquette from the Records Officer after he took a little too much of their shared shooting area. Then he set up his scope on the wrong boss, so that he was happily looking at someone else’s arrows during sighters, before finally sending a beautiful arrow into the wrong target altogether. To his credit, Ralf remained cheerful throughout the morning and he kept his most of his arrows on the boss even if they did not actually hit the scoring zones of the target.
Danny Cowin and Alex Allen-Snell faced off on Boss 1 with Alex taking the honours, as Danny had another bad day at the office. Ralf shared Boss 2 with Barbara Harris and Jane Berry. Jane coped well without husband Dave and added 15 points to her pb for the round. Barbara continued her run of form Outdoors by adding 11 points to her pb to take the win. Maddie Berry and Kristen Joughin shot together over a 50m distance, both were attempting the round for the first time.
Juniors James Hill and Caoimhe Sleddon shot distances according to their respective age groups, with James adding 29 points to his pb. Caoimhe was unable to finish the round as she had been ill earlier in the week and found the effort too much. She was still able to collect a handicap score for the three dozen arrows she managed to shoot.
On the Compound side of things Billy Lightfoot managed to find his way to the field for the third week running (quite possibly a Club record as far as he is concerned) and was joined by Pete Mumford, Colin Moore, Gareth Leather to shoot the 50m version of the round. Gareth, shooting the round for the first time, tended to put his arrows high and had to settle for fourth place. Colin Moore, who had spent all of Thursday night practising at the wrong distance, took third and Pete Mumford enjoyed a relaxed shoot to finish second. Mr Lightfoot, able to see properly for the first time in years thanks to his new glasses, added 6 points to his pb to take the win.
For once Joy Gough had some direct competition in the form of Aalin George who has returned to archery after a long break. Aalin had forgotten how physically draining archery is and had to take a break in the second last dozen, so only had a score for 66 arrows. Joy found herself putting one arrow in six over to the left of the target which put a dent in her score and left her unhappy with her performance.
Results WA 720: Gents Recurve-1.A.Allen-Snell 72/534/4/2, 2.D.Cowin 72/474/2/0, R.Mitchell 48/217/2/1pb. Ladies Recurve-1.B.Harris 71/536/10/2pb, 2.J.Berry 72/475/5/0pb. Ladies Recurve(50m)-1.M.Berry 62/320/3/0pb, 2.K.Joughin 56/266/2/2pb. Gents Compound-1.B.Lightfoot 72/658/25/12pb, 2.P.Mumford 72/620/13/3, 3.C.Moore 72/607/8/2, G.Leather 68/517/4/1pb. Ladies Compound-1.A.George 66/586/18/4, 2.J.Gough 72/572/10/2. WA 122-50-J.Hill 69/505/3/1pb.