The halloween weekend saw the opening double header of the Scottish Student Sport Rifle Grand Prix series hosted by Aberdeen and Robert Gordon University Rifle Clubs. Following last year’s dominant season, where EURC finished as double Scottish and British champions, expectations were high and the pressure was on. Despite the weight of the favourites tag, Edinburgh shot consistently well across both days and enjoyed their best overall start to the season for some years.
Saturday played host to the Aberdeen leg of the GP series and Edinburgh made a blistering start to the season. In the main team of eight event, the team comprising of Chris Gray, Adam Dove, Greg Stewart, Lara Muttiah, James Gutteridge, Harry McCaughey, Rhys Olley and Bryony Fraser-Burn took 1st place by the significant margin of 29 points over closest rivals St Andrews.
The team of four event brought more success for Edinburgh, with Edinburgh A (Chris, Bryony, Harry and Adam) narrowly taking 1st over Edinburgh B (James, Greg, Rhys and Lara) who took a comfortable 2nd. The Ladies team of three (Bryony, Lara and Emma Sweet) continued Edinburgh's dominance with victory.
In the A Pairs event, Greg and Harry were a narrow 2nd beating Adam and James back into 3rd on a tiebreak, while Bryony and Chris sneaked into 4th place. Meanwhile, Emma and Tim Perkins took 1st in the B Pairs to underline Edinburgh’s dominance.
In addition to their success in the team events, Edinburgh also saw some fantastic results in the individual categories. In A class, Chris Gray took 2nd narrowly ahead of teammate Adam Dove in 3rd while Greg Stewart was unfortunate to drop back into 5th after a tiebreak. In the B class competition, Emma Sweet took 1st place after a magnificent shoot, while Rhys Olley’s consistent scoring placed him in 3rd after yet another tiebreak.
After a hugely successful first day of shooting, expectations were high for the RGU leg of the GP series on Sunday and further excellent scores saw yet more silverware for EURC.
The team of eight (Chris, Adam, Greg, Lara, James, Harry and Tom Diggle) once again saw an impressive victory, this time by an even larger margin of 32 points, leaving Edinburgh in pole position in the main team event for the season.
Edinburgh's teams of four once again took 1st and 2nd with the A (Chris, Bryony, Adam and Harry) again narrowly defeating the B (James, Lara, Greg and Tom). This highlights the phenomenal strength in depth Edinburgh has this season, even accounting for the fact that several of the first team squad were unavailable for the weekend. The Edinburgh Ladies team of three (Emma, Bryony and Lara) enjoyed another big win to take an imposing lead in the Ladies GP series with only two of the five matches shot.
Edinburgh had yet more success in the A Pairs event, with Chris and Bryony taking 1st place, Lara and Tom taking 2nd and Adam and James taking 3rd, a string of results without precedent in recent years.
Meanwhile the individual competitions were once again well contested. In A Class, Chris took his second consecutive 2nd place finish, Tom took a close 3rd place on his SSS debut and James took 4th place after a tense tiebreak. In B Class, Eddie Pennington shot fantastically well to record his maiden SSS podium finish and a deserved 1st place finish, while Rhys and Emma tied for 4th place with Rhys edging it on a tiebreak.
Overall, an incredible start to the season for EURC and a hugely impressive standard set across the board. The next leg of the Grand Prix series will take part in Edinburgh in mid-November.