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Sporting Shoots 2021. Reports and discussion.


Will Hewland
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1 hour ago, Will Hewland said:

Also Redricks. Nice to see Bebo and Sian, although like me they weren’t smiling as much as we would all like. 
 

No excuse for my terrible 1/10 on stand 11. I just didn’t change what I was doing enough. Rubbish. But by the time I got there my brain was a bit fried as it had been a tough course. A reasonable 8/10 on the nasty stand 4 (missed one of each).

Finished on 77, so take stand 11 out it wasn’t THAT bad. But I think the course was a bit too tough. Only 11 shooters over 80 from 100+ entries. I know if Hamid was still here to comment he would be saying that shoots are meant to be selling entertainment and I wonder if Redricks is just a bit past that point for the mass audience. 

Thanks for your support.....

Yes it was a tougher than usual course.

Maybe a bit of a reality check to the shoots which are class wins above the classification cut offs......Whats the point of classifications if you dont shoot within your class  ??..... Many made the comments as posted.

So...........

A bit gusty at times but thankfully no rain 😊
With the winners all in their class averages, a true reflection of how it should be was comments received.

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See, the thing is with an average, you shoot above it approx half the time and below it approx half the time. That's what an average is. If no-one in a class shoots a score above their class and the majority shoot a score below their class, then it clearly isn't a reflection of how it would normally be. That's how statistics work.

No issues with a shoot being tough, but it pisses me off no end when people say that winning scores should be within the class band. Mathematically the class bands would get lower and lower every three months if that was the case.

Edited by Bebo
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Bebo, that is perfect sense of course. Actually, class winners at Redricks were above class cut off points and so they should be (for reasons you state) and because C and B class are improving folk, who are climbing up. I am very glad Phil Moss has introduced an interesting new shoot within driving range of me. I just reckon backing one or two stands off would cheer a lot of folk up and make Phil quite a bit more profit with another 30 entries. 

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I don’t have an issue with hard shoots, my issue is I have gone backwards dramatically on most shoots I attend.   Doesn’t matter where I go I shoot under par for wherever I am.   I’m not trying to be better than I am, I’m trying to get back to where I was.   Maybe I just need to go back to shooting as much as I did although getting me to do that at the moment is like flogging a dead horse.

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1 hour ago, Sian said:

I don’t have an issue with hard shoots, my issue is I have gone backwards dramatically on most shoots I attend.   Doesn’t matter where I go I shoot under par for wherever I am.   I’m not trying to be better than I am, I’m trying to get back to where I was.   Maybe I just need to go back to shooting as much as I did although getting me to do that at the moment is like flogging a dead horse.

Any issue with gun fit changing?  Last time I went through a really bad patch was after losing weight and not realising that my gun fit had changed.  Bit of a tweak to the adjustable comb improved things.  Shame I've put it all back on again, but at least it was easy to change the gun back again!

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11 hours ago, Sian said:

I don’t have an issue with hard shoots, my issue is I have gone backwards dramatically on most shoots I attend.   Doesn’t matter where I go I shoot under par for wherever I am.   I’m not trying to be better than I am, I’m trying to get back to where I was.   Maybe I just need to go back to shooting as much as I did although getting me to do that at the moment is like flogging a dead horse.

Sian, perhaps it’s simply that you’ve fallen out with shooting, I know I have. The first lockdown came and went, and I truthfully did not miss shooting at all. Right now I’m having an enforced layoff due to recent spinal surgery and I haven’t shot in over two months, haven’t even picked up the gun in two months.

Now winter is fast approaching I’m thinking “ do I really want to get wet and cold standing in a field trying to hit something that’s a dot on the horizon “.

The only thing I do miss is the fluffy rabbits and interaction between all the shooters, I’ve made some good friends and it’s always a pleasure to have a chat to them all.

Take time out for yourself, do something completely different and come back when you really feel like.

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Lots of reasons why you can drop off form, but it will basically fall into one of two camps. Most likely it is a mental thing, which is either boredom (lack of hunger and application) or distraction (such as work or home worries etc.). 
 

Otherwise it’s technical, where gun fit has gone wrong for some reason, or some physical issue has crept in, but after all this time it’s less likely than the mental side I would guess. The trouble is, it can spiral downwards, because once your brain is working on a “I hope I don’t miss” basis, as opposed to “I’m going to hit this”, it’s a distraction in itself. Although this then manifests itself as a technical problem.. you don’t realise you’re stopping, whizzing, head-lifting etc..

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It happens to me, we go shooting because it's fun - right? we need to remember that.

there might come a time, if we keep on plugging away, when it stops being fun and becomes just another day on the treadmill. We do less well when the enthusiasm wanes and the scores go down, when the scores go down we lose heart and we go into a downward spiral.

It has happened to me a couple of times, once I gave up for a long time which I wouldn't recommend as that is just a negative course of action and you lose what ever skills you have built up. (There were other distractions at the time like having kids :) )

Another time I just shot less frequently, I also quit Reg shoots for a while to take the pressure off and just shot when I felt like it, the scores started creeping up and the joy of smashing clays returned. I now need to keep a balance and am enjoying my shooting which is the way it should be.

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I can agree with all of the comments above. Lots of possible causes but a lot of the time it's lack of hunger to do it. I shoot once every 2 weeks whether that be practise or a registered. If you're not keen to get out the door, don't go. Sometimes competitions aren't the answer, shoot some practise instead and try working on something different.

Sometimes you also need to analyse your card as to where all the misses have come from.  I put up a copy of my card the other day from highwaymans. If I analyse my misses the majority have come from initial miss read, not trusting what I what I was seeing or inability to repeat the movement accurately enough. None of which I can do a huge amount about with my ability.

Other sorts of misses could be concentration (missing final pairs), taking the shot in the wrong place, wrong technique for the target, miss reads. All of which you can work on away from a comp. Highlight your biggest reason to lose targets and try and see what you can do to improve that fault.

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Thank you all for the input.  I don’t think it’s gunfit, I do think a lot of it is head related although I’m sure skill set could be improved in many areas.   This downward trajectory started before the pandemic began, the day my best friend died in July 2019 and I was at AGL.  I shot in shock and was alone and from that moment I find it hard to enjoy shooting like I used to.   Pandemic helped me by not being able to shoot and when we were allowed back I wasn’t at all bothered whether I went or not.  I sometimes feel tense shooting and I’m finding I’m holding my breath of all things Not shooting though does hinder my ability so catch 22 I guess.   I shot a lot of registered targets, in fact the most for a few years and I could easily shoot a good few hundred every Saturday at my local club.   All weathers all over.  I may not go a lot through winter, who wants to shoot rubbish in awful weather.  

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21 hours ago, Sian said:

This downward trajectory started before the pandemic began, the day my best friend died in July 2019 and I was at AGL.  I shot in shock and was alone and from that moment I find it hard to enjoy shooting like I used to.

You may well have found the root cause of your lack of enjoying your shooting at the moment Sian with the statement you've made in your last post as you could be  subconsciously associating the sad news and shock of loosing your friend with your shooting activities therefore not enjoying the experience and the fun of the sport like you used to grief and shock can affect us in many ways long after the event perhaps as others have suggested do something completely different or perhaps attend shoots with Tony and just enjoy the company and fluffy rabbits with friends from the shooting circuit until you feel you want to take up the gun and shoot again. 

I do hope you get the feeling you want to shoot again but just go to enjoy being out don't worry about scores or averages just enjoy being with good company having a few laughs and smashing a few clays and hopefully you'll get the good feeling about shooting back again. Take care and hope to see you out and about :thumbsup:

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What Shortlegs has said above is spot on Sian.  You are associating the shooting with bad news and I think you need to either “go through it” and come out the other side or take a step back, carry Tony’s bag 😂😂😂 and watch for a while and tell us all where we are going wrong until you get the feeling back that you need.

I’ve been having the same thing since about June time when I was told my Dad was dying.  Every shoot we went to I was worried about if he died whilst I wasn’t there and it hindered me massively.  He finally (and thankfully) passed away last week so I thought we’d shoot Barrow on Sunday with no worries, how wrong I was.  The texts/calls were coming in whilst we were driving there of messages of sympathy, calls from family re flowers/funeral etc.  I still couldn’t concentrate properly.  Today we shot Barbury for the Army shoot and I decided I wasn’t going to check the phone etc.  Ended up shooting quite well, only had what I would call a “bad” stand once and when I came out Phil asked what had happened and I replied my dad just “popped” into my head and I missed the complete pair.  🙈

Again, I think it’s something I need to just get on with and hopefully it will happen less and less but my heart goes out to you Sian, it’s obviously affecting you deeper then you think, maybe some counselling would help or having a stiff drink before the shoot!! Take care my lovely xx 😘😘


 

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Went to Coleys today, first reg shoot for a month, expected to be rusty and that came to pass. Was early, saw some chums to fluffy rabbits with, squadding was running late, our 2.15 was nearly 2.30, squad in front was a six, us a five so constant awaiting, squad following must have all fallen out with each other as they all seemed to just shoot stand then want / rush to join our merry band, bit odd but each to their own. Not the most testing of layouts but it did though cause most a few problems, me? had a day when not much went right, it was though dry warm(ish) and sunny, shooting wise I’ve had worse days out, not many mind. It won’t be a month till next out so this day will soon be forgotten. 
One thing did notice, almost to a man / woman, after shooting, with only external catering & open air tables ( no shelter ) on offer everyone’s leaving very quickly. 

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Yesterday was probably my best day with the gun.

Started at Churchills in the morning, a very misty morning should I add and shot a personal best 97.  Missed second bird on stand 3 (sim pair blaze from the platform) last crosser on 7, and second going away on 10.

Then went to Owls Lodge in the afternoon and followed that up with a pleasing 93.

Not quite as good this morning at Oxfordshire Shooting School, a patchy 86; missed silly stuff at the start trying to be careful rather than deliberate and only having me and one other in the squad probably didn't help, felt rushed and should have slowed down.  Felt like a steady course, one silly going away edge-on rabbit target is probably what will settle it.

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1 hour ago, bisondan said:

Yesterday was probably my best day with the gun.

Started at Churchills in the morning, a very misty morning should I add and shot a personal best 97.  Missed second bird on stand 3 (sim pair blaze from the platform) last crosser on 7, and second going away on 10.

Then went to Owls Lodge in the afternoon and followed that up with a pleasing 93.

Not quite as good this morning at Oxfordshire Shooting School, a patchy 86; missed silly stuff at the start trying to be careful rather than deliberate and only having me and one other in the squad probably didn't help, felt rushed and should have slowed down.  Felt like a steady course, one silly going away edge-on rabbit target is probably what will settle it.

Well shot chap, am another who ventured to Oxfordshire, had a pleasant day, far more enjoyable than my outing earlier in week, could it be that before shooting one had tea (china mug) hot food (on a plate with knife & fork ) and could eat / drink indoors not shunted outside in a chill as one treats cattle? oh and I had some chums to natter with!

Shooting wise had a good (actually for me very it was very good) start until a wheel came off, and then yes the edge on going away rabbit trashed mine and every card in our squad and judging by the chatter many others too, did though pull it back and ended on a decent effort (given ones level) Yes I maybe let a few "go" however one did hit a few that I thought  couldn't so all in all a good day ensued.

The place is intimate, I fear due to current climate the much desired expansion might not be on the near horizon, that said it looks after it current target market very well and deserves its relative success, couple years ago it was 30/40 entries tops, now feels busy without ever being overrun. 

High Gun was 95 when I left, though some superstar or two was still shooting at time.

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Well shot Dan!  I shot Churchills as well on Thursday.  Did OK, with a 78, but felt like a missed opportunity for a really decent score. I dropped at least 5 really soft targets.  Only stand that caused me real bother was the platform.  First up on a tricky sim pair and I struggled to find the right hold etc, took until the fifth pair to hit both of them.

Spent Friday having some coaching.  I struggle with quartering stuff more than I should, I just don't have a 'go to' technique for them.  Has certainly helped me a bit with alternative approaches, but it's also messed with my mind a bit, which showed today at Gatton Bottom.  I ended up missing loads of stuff that was very gently quartering by trying not to hold out to far on them, didn't work should have stuck with my usual approach of holding further out and treating them as going aways.  They just weren't the right targets for the approach I was trying to take.  Finished on a fairly dismal 72, as it wasn't a tough shoot at all. Only positive is I avoided my usual sim pair panic and shot the away / overhead combination well. Again another missed opportunity.

 

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Honesberie today. A big step up in difficulty over the last few I’ve done there. I think previous shoots could have been a touch harder and have said so. However, it never ceases to amaze me how course setters decide to toughen a shoot up a bit but then make the change to many stands, where 1 or 2 would do the job fine. I feel today that it had at least one tough stand too many for mass appeal. 84 for me, having shot the easier first half well. 

4 minutes ago, Bebo said:

Well shot Dan!  I shot Churchills as well on Thursday.  Did OK, with a 78, but felt like a missed opportunity for a really decent score. I dropped at least 5 really soft targets.  Only stand that caused me real bother was the platform.  First up on a tricky sim pair and I struggled to find the right hold etc, took until the fifth pair to hit both of them.

Spent Friday having some coaching.  I struggle with quartering stuff more than I should, I just don't have a 'go to' technique for them.  Has certainly helped me a bit with alternative approaches, but it's also messed with my mind a bit, which showed today at Gatton Bottom.  I ended up missing loads of stuff that was very gently quartering by trying not to hold out to far on them, didn't work should have stuck with my usual approach of holding further out and treating them as going aways.  They just weren't the right targets for the approach I was trying to take.  Finished on a fairly dismal 72, as it wasn't a tough shoot at all. Only positive is I avoided my usual sim pair panic and shot the away / overhead combination well. Again another missed opportunity.

 

The thing with coaching is it gives you a (hopefully better) direction to take, but practicing this is how you hit more clays. Any folk I coach I always tell them this and that they might even shoot worse for a little while, before going forward. We all want a “light bulb” moment of course. 

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16 minutes ago, Will Hewland said:

The thing with coaching is it gives you a (hopefully better) direction to take, but practicing this is how you hit more clays. Any folk I coach I always tell them this and that they might even shoot worse for a little while, before going forward. We all want a “light bulb” moment of course. 

Certainly no complaints about the coaching, it's set me on the right road I think.  It's getting to the point that I can select my approach to a quartering target correctly and only repetition is going to get me reading them properly.  The ones today, I should have just held further out on as I would normally do.  They were straight enough you could treat them like a going away and not worry about needing any gun speed to generate lateral lead. A few targets in practice yesterday that were properly quartering, it really helped with those.

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After my poor 73 last week I went to Northampton today not expecting much but to my surprise I shot 92.  You never know what is going to happen until you pull the trigger.

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College Farm yesterday; started out with a birthday brekkie and started the shoot very well, straighted the first 3 stands then managed to completely mess up stand 4 missing five there but made up for it by only missing 2 over the next 8 stands (tried to jump in to a rabbit way too early, and a low R-L teal) for 93.

Gunsite today; started a bit later as was out last night and wanted to let the first rush of people through.  Probably started shooting at about 12.30, did ok on what I thought was a slightly tougher than usual affair.  Happy to only drop 2 of the sim pairs loopers, only hit one of the big teal, and didn't touch any of the L-R looper on 12.  Steady 88 though and very happy to have shot in the good weather.

Traffic bad on the way home though with the M4 being shut between Newbury and Hungerford there was a diversion that I didn't have to take but caused a massive delay, over 2 hours for me to get back.

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Long day today, went to Westfield for STP and Sporting.   I didn’t shoot either well but they were both excellent shoots if a little long to shoot the sporting.   It was very well attended.  Harry said approx 380 shooters.  It was a good job I had Natasha to chat to and the weather was very good so in between stands I lay in the grass looking up at the fluffy clouds and occasionally flicking a V at Mr Lovett as he drove by on his quad.  😂   I made the mistake of not taking a snack with me so Andy Jones (God bless him) gave me a snack bar half way round to keep me going.  I kept forgetting what I was doing on Sportrap.   My favourite layout (no. 4) in terms of targets I shot the worst on unfortunately.  Guns going in for a new ejector to be fitted so I’ll have to shoot Lola May.  I figure I can’t get any worse, famous last words.

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Westfield for us too. First time there and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Wonderful straightforward journey there in just over 2 hours and an absolute nightmare nearly 5 hours home! Good targets, met some people I’d not seen for a long time and as Sian said, beautiful weather.  Only 1 target I never connected  with, the l-r over the pond and we had some long queues on some stands but would definitely return. 

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Honesberie for me too yesterday. It was the loopers that did for me - I found it very hard picking the right kill point. I am quite happy walking away having hit the third or fourth clay and ending up with a 5 or 6 but I dropped 13 on three traps having missed all of the them. Very frustrating and I have no idea where I was wrong. I was 8 down after the first half so I was a bit disappointed with a 72 by the end albeit I can only count 6 which I know I should not have missed.

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22 hours ago, bisondan said:

Gunsite today; started a bit later as was out last night and wanted to let the first rush of people through.  Probably started shooting at about 12.30, did ok on what I thought was a slightly tougher than usual affair.  Happy to only drop 2 of the sim pairs loopers, only hit one of the big teal, and didn't touch any of the L-R looper on 12.  Steady 88 though and very happy to have shot in the good weather.

Traffic bad on the way home though with the M4 being shut between Newbury and Hungerford there was a diversion that I didn't have to take but caused a massive delay, over 2 hours for me to get back.

A friend and I did Gunsite too, westbound we were diverted off the M4 at J13 and headed along the A4 with everyone else to Marlborough. Homeward we headed south to the A303 at Andover

I managed 80 and I agree it was tougher this week, I fell foul of the floaty targets on stand 1 missing 3 (kicking myself,) there were other slow targets I also should have hit but didn't. Stand 4 missed 4(was that the big teal? I only hit one too,) Stand 7, I can't remember what it was but I dropped five. stand 11 missed 3 of the 4 basic rising left to rights. I was chuffed to bag all the sim pair loopers(standard and Midi,) stand 12 missed the first looper, I didn't know why and got that dreaded feeling so changed tactics and shot them as soon as I could see them (rather than where you would expect in mid-flight) this saved my bacon on this stand but, overall, the damage was already done.

Another nice, warm day in the ancient mystical Wiltshire landscape, shooting in sight of the West Kennet long barrow and a mile away from the Avebury stone circle  👻 ☠️👻

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