Caithness Smallbore Rifle Association Open County Meeting 2017

This meeting was held on Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th June 2017, with strong, rapidly changing winds blowing for most of the time and – unusually for Wick – very high temperatures and humidity on the Sunday. The meeting was held in combination with the STS Grand Prix 3.

Around 30 competitors in four classes competed in the various competitions on offer, with entrants coming from far and wide. There was a good representation from the Borders, others travelled from Aberdeen, Huntly, and Clachnacuddin Clubs, and local shooters were also very much in evidence.

For the main aggregate in Class A, local shooters were to the fore, with H. Simpson, J. Campbell, and R. Campbell taking 1st, 2nd and 3rd places respectively.

In Class B Maria Bexley (Clachnacuddin) was the winner, with P. Richard (Pentland) in second place, followed by M. Smith (Huntly).

Class C was won by G. Habiby (Huntly), with Sue Thomas (Dumfries) second, and G. Robertson (Stirkoke) in third place.

Class D was won by Tom Mackenzie (Westfield), with his brother Murray Mackenzie in second place.

In the Team events, the team from Huntly took a clean sweep, winning all three competitions by a significant margin!

The Spittal handicap, shot as a squadded competition on either Saturday or Sunday, produced a tie for first place – between P. Richard (Pentland) and Iain Malone (Clachnacuddin) with Sue Thomas in third place.

The ladies were all conquering in the Sharpshooters “Disc” competition, with some very accurate, rapid shooting skills in evidence: “The Ladies” consisting of Fiona Shedden, Mary Melvin and Sheena Sharp walked away with the team prize, while Lisa MacDonald (Wick Old Stagers) fought her way through several qualifying rounds to win the final of the Individual event.

Following qualification rounds on Sunday morning, the Mowat Cup (Championship) Final was contested on Sunday afternoon in challenging conditions. After two details of 20 shots at 100 yards, Hugh Simpson (Wick Old Stagers) (388) was declared “Champion” by a clear margin, with Graham Shedden (Dumfries) (382) in second place, and John Sinclair  (380) just behind in third.

Other awards included:-

                                                              1st                                  2nd                                   3rd

Ladies Competition:                    Sheena Sharp                  Sue Thomas                    Maria Bexley

Junior Competition:                    T. Mackenzie                     M. Mackenzie                        --------

Veterans Competition:               Hugh Simpson                  Sheena Sharp               Graham Shedden

(More details and results can be found on the Caithness Small Bore Rifle Association website

As one of the visiting shooters, I was impressed by the warm welcome to the range and the atmosphere of friendly competitiveness which brought everyone together. Local B&Bs are very comfortable and friendly, there is a caravan/campsite next to the range, and there are some excellent restaurants in Wick – well worth the journey for a busy weekend’s shooting and a relaxing “Apres-shoot”. Something to consider for next year?

Thanks are due to local organiser Marty Simpson, the volunteer scorers (no challenges through the weekend!), the Range Officers, the caterers (delicious soups, amazing cream cakes!) and especially to Wick Old Stagers Rifle Club who presented the range in immaculate condition for those attending the meeting!

Report by Robin Thomson