There was another good turnout at The Hub on Sunday, which just proves what masochists archers are as the round of the day was the dreaded Vegas – a three-spot target, arranged in a triangle, which has to be shot in a specific order. Sounds easy but isn’t. The Juniors got to have a go at a Portsmouth (either triple or single face depending on experience) and then all the scores were put through the handicap mangle to produce the final result.
Archery depends upon having a bow that has been correctly set up/aligned by someone who knows what they are doing and using a set of arrows that are of the correct length and spine. Having high end archery equipment is nice and it can make the longer outdoor distances easier to reach, but it is the archer who makes the shot, not the bow. Ralf Mitchell learned this fact the hard way on Sunday. Fired up with enthusiasm about his new, heavier poundage, carbon/foam limbs and his top of the range of ACE arrows, he expected his score to be stratospheric – what he ended up with could best be described as subterranean. It was a bitter pill for Ralf to swallow, but I am sure he will bounce back.
With a couple of notable exceptions, it was a pretty average day shooting wise for most of the archers. Rhys Moore put a couple of arrows wide of the target to find himself last in scratch terms among the Gents Compounds, and half-way down the leader board after handicapping. Scratch honours in the Compound went to Pete Mumford. Not his best effort this season but still good enough for third place overall. Andrew Westmorland continued to impress, finishing second in both scratch terms and overall. Joy Gough felt that ‘nothing clicked’ as she struggled to find a release aid that she can use in the Outdoor season.
Barbara Harris never found her rhythm and, at one point, couldn’t even find the mark she was using to position herself relative to the boss. She ended up doing a bizarre square dance on the shooting line, while Rhys Moore serenaded her with a quick burst of the Cha Cha Slide song, much to the amusement of her compatriots. Harris took the scratch Recurve honours with her worst Vegas score of the season and ended up in fourth after the handicap was applied. Peter Howland and Simon Kenyon suffered in silence on their least favourite target face, and both were glad when the ordeal was over. But it wasn’t all gloom, Chris Addy increased his pb by 56 points, though he had to settle for tenth place overall. Kristan Joughin did even better by adding a terrific 69 points to her pb and taking first place in the handicap.
None of the Juniors shooting the Portsmouth had a good day. Tilly Ashton started well on the triple face, but a lack of shooting took its toll and she tired badly over the last dozen. Caoimhe Sleddon on the single face did the opposite, starting slowly and finishing strongly. Dylan Addy struggled throughout due to an equipment problem.
Sarah Sleddon shot the last of her qualifying rounds, adding 18 points to her pb in the process. She can now take part in the next handicap round.
Results: Vegas/Portsmouth Handicap- 1.K.Joughin 1470 (46/351/5)pb, 2.A.Westmorland 1456 (60/539/14), 3.P.Mumford 1422 (60/543/10), 4.B.Harris 1415 (59/513/14), =4.D.Moore 1415 (60/535/7), 6.J.Gough 1409 (60/518/5), 7.R.Moore 1408 (58/532/13), 8.D.Addy 1393 (47/208/1), 9.P.Howland 1391 (50/384/4), 10.C.Addy 1388 (41/295/1)pb, 11.T.Ashton 1377 (56/471/14), 12. S.Kenyon 1376 (48/369/5), 13.C.Sleddon 1367 (49/307/5), 14.R.Mitchell 1314 (31/235/1).
Portsmouth Scratch-S.Sleddon 59/460/6pb.