Rifle Report from Junior Internationals 2018

The successful group of Scottish Junior Rifle and Pistol shooters who competed in the Junior International week at Bisley

The Rifle Team included Vikki Walls, Georgia Gooch, Isabel Stark, Abby Martin, Katie Scott, Frankie Beard, Scott Norval, Robin Shand, Sam Coates, Magnus Carswell, Angus Strudwick and Bertie Galloway.

This was Vikki’s fourth and final JI Week and she has previously won 6 or 7 medals but no Gold medals. She had a superb week winning Gold medals in the Air Rifle Grand Prix and the main Air Rifle Match where she went into the final in 2nd place and held her nerve to win.

Isabel Stark unwrapped her new rifle the day before travelling to Bisley. Following a few adjustments to her rifle (including using a hacksaw!), she was happy with her position and performance. The following day, in the 50m Prone Grand Prix she beat the Danish Junior Champion to win the Gold Medal scoring 605.7, just below her PB.

The girls were having a good week!

Isabel improved her performance in the 50m main event with a new PB of 610.6 finishing second in Qualification to the same Danish girl. For the first time, a Women’s Final was introduced (not ISSF) and Isabel didn’t get the medal she really deserved. Isabel, Vikki and Georgia combined to win the Bronze Team medal only 2 points behind the Danish Team. The GB Junior's finished first.

In the Men’s Air Rifle matches we only had Scott Norval and Robin Shand competing. It is clear that we are not competitive in this event and we need to do some serious training before the event next year.

The Mens 50m competitions were very interesting. I selected the Teams for the main event from the Grand Prix. Sam Coates, Magnus Carswell and Scott Norval were top so entered as the A Team. It happens regularly that the B Team beats the A Team and it happened again. Robin Shand found his normal form with a 609.4 in the main match and qualified for the final, unfortunately not making a medal position, but good experience. The surprising performance was from Bertie Galloway who exceeded his PB by over 9 points with a 609.2, only missing the final by 0.2. Not bad at 15 years old!

Robin and Bertie were joined by Angus to win the Bronze medal behind the GB Juniors and Denmark.

The GB Junior Team for the Drew Match, competing against the USA, Australia and New Zealand, was selected from the 50m Prone Grand Prix and the match shot concurrent with the main Prone match. Isabel and Vikki were selected and Isabel picked a great time to shoot a new PB.

The team was a mixture of Juniors planning to win medals and others who were there for experience. I was very pleased with everyone’s performance , especially having several new PB’s at the event. Vikki has been a great source of medals for Scotland over the past four years and it was great to see her finish with two Gold medals. I used the event to inspire our Squad to focus on Air Rifle so I hope I succeeded. There was some discussion about re-introducing 3P next year.

Report by Ian Thomson, Photos by Robin Thomson