Phill Hodder almost claims another title – Bathurst OPM 22nd October 2023

The last Bathurst OPM was held in 2019 – so the Central West shooters were pleased to be able to return to the Bathurst Range to compete. The announcement of the Bathurst OPM meant a compulsory return to the range for Phill to try and defend his title from 2015. Phill, Adrian and Ross met at midday on Saturday on the Bathurst Rifle range for the Saturday afternoon practice at 600 yards. The winds were a very strong 12 to 16 MPH coming in from the left and sometimes dropping and swinging to come in from 1 oclock.

After meeting old friends in the Club House and signing in – the Roseville members joined the Bathurst Club members for a Saturday afternoon shoot. Club Champions Steve Williams and Graeme Bright both set an ominous tone – telling us the wind at this time of year is really tricky and that they were lucky to post 95 or 96 in recent Club shoots. Having never shot on Bathurst Range – Adrian surprised everyone and posted a 50.3 for his first practice shoot – watching the flags intently and making wind corrections that saw him move from 1.5 right out to 5.5 right during the shoot. Phill posted a credible 48.5 losing one left and one right and Ross posted a 44.0 with one of the best water lines you will ever see – but the wind getting a hold of him.

In the second practice match – Adrian experimented with the wind and posted a 44.1, while Phil improved on his first practice to post a wonderful 50.5. Ross had another tough time of the tricky cross-wind again shooting good elevation but shots drifting out the left hand side.

The Saturday afternoon practice was done by 3:30pm and it was a hot day. The Bathurst Council won’t allow visitors to camp on the rifle range – so Ross, Adrian and Phill headed to a beautiful free-camping site called Flat Rock Creek 19km out of Bathurst. The boys arrived at Flat Rock Creek at 4:15pm and a swim in the river was in order followed by a cool crisp Ginger Beer. There were plenty of camping groups set-up in the camp ground – showing how popular this spot near O’Connell is. As the sun went down – Adrian cooked up dinner of Franks and Beans before we turned in for the night.


The next morning the sun came up and the campsite was quickly packed up as a beautiful day beckoned. The intent was to be on the rifle range by 8am for a wonderful day of shooting. Nigel Russell joined Phill, Adrian and Ross to represent the Roseville Rifle Club.
There were only 3 Electronic Targets for the competition and due to popular demand the Bathurst Rifle Club increased the entry to 40 shooters. With this in mind – the competition organisers made the decision to change the programme and shoot 3 matches at 600 yards. Adrian was drawn first down – and the wind was even stronger from 3 o’clock than the day before. He chalked up a 48.2 in the first match was proved to be quite competitive in TRA. Phill posted a 48.2 as well – with Nigel taking the match in TRC with a 47.4 and Ross posting a credible 51.3 – much improved on the previous day.

The wind got tricker at the second match with “holes” showing up in the flags dropping down the pole and the wind turning to 1 o’clock. The smart play was not to fire when this happened – those that got caught chalked up a guaranteed maggot.

Adrian shot first as the order rolled through and posted a 47.3 which again proved to be quite competitive given the conditions. Phill stepped up with a 49.2 – and excellent shoot under the conditions and one that got him on the podium in TRA. Nigel forgot to check his target number and put a centre bull on the target next door – in a shoot that would otherwise have won him the 2nd match. The wind got the better of Ross and he posted a 48.

The final match was a 15 shot match – and Adrian experienced something very strange. In gusty 16 mile an hour winds – his first 3 shots were a clover leaf in the inner 4 ring at 1:30. It was unbelievable and he stopped shooting and protested that the Target was not calibrated properly after the lunch-time repairs made to the target face. The next shooter on the target was called up – an F-Class shooter – to put a couple of shots on the target to test it. His two test shots were a bull at 7:30 and a V-bull at 9 o’clock. The Range Officer requested Adrian re-commence his match – and with on scoring shot on the card there were no sighters. Adrian settled in and shot a quick-fire 71.6 – again posting quite a competitive score in the conditions. Phill shot next and chalked up a 71.3 to hold in 2nd place in the aggregate and keeping his two point lead over Adrian. Nigel won the 3rd match posting a 69.4 and Ross also posted a 69 to finish his day.

The final standings on the day were: Phill Hodder 2nd TRA 168.7, Adrian Bonanni 6th TRA 166.11, Nigel Russell 2nd TRC 157.10 and Ross Webb 3rd in FSB 168.3.
It was a very challenging day – a real rifle shooters day – where supreme wind reading skills were needed to hold the bulls eye. here was not one possible shot in TR over the entire days competition – and the winning score posted by David Brown of Narromine Dubbo was 170.11. It was a great weekend and you can see all the shooters plots here: Club Scores – Plots 2023 | Bathurst Rifle Club Inc. (brc.org.au). We will definitely be going back next year.

The trip on the way home was filled with mis-adventure with Phill channelling his inner Brockie and taking a corner too fast on the way back to O’Connell to end up spinning off the road and ending up in a ditch. His trusty Toyota survived the ordeal, and apart from being a bit shaken – Phill was able to call Ross and Adrian for assistance and to organize a tow truck to haul him out of the ditch and drive back to Sydney. We are glad he survived that one – he lived to tell the tale!

Adrian Bonanni

President’s Match and National King’s Prize 2023 at Belmont

So who would be crazy enough to drive 900km to shoot in Brisbane in late October in temperatures of 30-36c for a King’s competition where 45% of the counting shots are from 1000yds – a distance Roseville Rifle Club members never get to practise on? Oh and did I mention the sweeping field requiring four columns of flags (sometimes pointing in all different directions with irregular 180 degree changes) where even the top order people who have won Queens/Kings in the past were leaking points like mad in the tricky conditions. So who is THAT crazy to do the trip? Three RRC target rifle shooters: Mark Buchanan, Dmitri Kazakov, Tim Walter and one FTR shooter: Janet Beale.
Our people tried hard, but things didn’t always work out to plan … We are happy to report that the final results attest to the mettle of our people to withstand the punishment of Belmont:
Dmitri (TR-A): possible at 800yds … 94% accuracy in leadup and 95% in the King’s

 

Mark (TR-A): possible at 600yds and 800yds, first place at 600yds…93% accuracy in leadup and 95% in the King’s

 

Janet (FTR): possible at 800yds, second place at 800 yds… 93% accuracy in lead up and 92% in the King’s.

 

Tim (TR-B): second place at 600yds… 87% accuracy in Lead up and 87% in the King’s
 
There was a distinct home range advantage for those based in Belmont, and an advantage for Queenslanders in general with 60% of people who ended up in top 5 scoring positions coming from Qld. As for our club members, all four (Mark, Dmitri, Tim and Janet) joined the “miss” club by donating at least one counting shot to another target – and each did it at 1000yds…such an easy way to leak valuable points.
Ah well, certainly could tell we weren’t at our lovely home range.  At least there were Koalas to be seen, an evening fire pit and much comradery.
Special thanks to Dmitri who was super helpful getting gear on and off the mound.
Janet Beale

Gosford OPM 2023

Gosford is just 45 minutes away and is clearly a favourite for Rosevillians as it is the closest OPM to our home range. So it was on Sunday 15th Oct that 14 Roseville competitors took their chances at Gosford’s 500m range (3 details of 10, 10, 15). Highlights (other than the great company, ample food, prizes on offer, and lack of rain)
included. Unfortunately not everyone could come home with prizes, so these were the Roseville winners and grinners:

b

Phill Hodder who decided rather than drive up on the day he could camp out…in the “no camping zone”. But camping must have worked as he scored a 50-7 on his first detail. TR-A: one 1st place medal.

Dmitri Kazakov who decided he had places to go and things to do so left early.

Janet Beale who didn’t stay to collect her loot instead kicking on to Brisbane once she had finished shooting. FTR: two 1st place medals, one 2nd place medal, 1st overall, top lady, top vet, won a door prize

Chris Sefton who did an amazing 49-8 in TR-C: two 1st place medals, one 2nd place medal, 1st overall

 

Mark Buchanan who scored 2 possibles but no glory on the podium

The Russell clan doing their own mini family competition – who can beat Dad? Skye Russell who, having only been shooting TR for less than 5 weeks and using her new TR ladies jacket for the first time, came 3rd in TR-C: one 2nd place medal, 3rd overall. Paul Russell. TR-B: one 1st place medal, 3rd overall Nigel Russell. TR-B: one 2nd place medal.

Christian who proved the force is with him in FTR – so watch out people (especially Janet who lost out on countback!!). FTR: one 1st place medal, one 2nd place medal, 2nd overall.

Sam Houston

Alan Humbert. F-STD: One 2nd place medal, 3rd overall

Adrian Bonanni and Nicholas Bonanni who looks like he has grown a foot in the past week and is almost hard to recognise in the cool shades. TR-C: two 2nd place medals.

We hear that Gosford is moving their OPM to earlier in the year next year because of the potential for fire danger closure….so watchout Gosford, Roseville will come again to steal as many prizes as we can in 2024.

Janet Beale

WS Josephson Shield – 2023

The WS Josephson Shield (the Joso) is {almost} always held the Sunday after the GPS Schools competition so that the GPS Combined team (top 12 school shooters) can compete.

This year at the start of the competition, they handed out the medals from last year. Those winners were Metropolitan District (MDRA) in Target Rifle (TR) and the NSDRA F-class “Jacaranda” team. Now why would we tell you about last year’s medals in this year’s story? Well, I am glad you asked. Last year, due to inclemant weather, it was 3 details at 800m (2+10, 2+15, 2+15). In TR, 4 of the 5 MDRA people were shooting in Bisley and couldn’t shoot the Joso this year, opening up the possibilities a bit. And in F-class, Roseville’s Eva Patrick and Janet Beale took home their medals from last year.

Now what about this year? We were told a 60% chance of rain in the afternoon. Quick, get as many ranges done before the rain! So we did 2+10 at 300m, then 2+10 at 600m, then 2+10 at 700m before breaking for a half hour lunch. We finished the day with a 2+10 at 800m with the sun getting low but no rainclouds looking out towards buts.

Joso winners were Hunter Valley District Rifle Association in TR and North Shore District Rifle Association Green (Emerald) team in F-class.

Janet’s Joypod arm broke mid shoot

  • Fun fact #1 – in TR at 700m there were 29 possibles out of 47 TR competitors.
  • Fun fact #2 – every one of Roseville’s TR competitors (all 6 of them) scored possible’s at 700m. That would be Dmitri Kazakov (50-9), Phill Hodder (50-8), Nigel Russell (50-7), Adrian Bonani (50-4), Sam Atkinson (50-3) who counted out Angus Langsford (50-3).
  • Fun fact #3 – Dmitri’s 50-9 at 700m placed him 4th for that range….what’s a guy gotta do? Geez its tough at the top!
  • Fun fact #4 – in TR the top score at a detail was a 50-10 at 700m by Chris Schwebel (MDRA & new manager of Aus U25), last year it was 50-10 by Mitch Bailey (MDRA & new Aus U25 wind coach).
  • Fun fact #5 – in F-class, this year Alan Patrick was the only one of our 3 Roseville reps that was on the winning F-class team (so he will get a medal), but as his wife Eva also just got her medal for last year, the Patrick couple have evened things up. Next year might just have to be a tie-breaker for the Patrick’s. That is, if you exclude 2017…..
  • Fun fact #6 – Janet’s Joypod arm broke mid shoot at 800m, Eva (wind coach) had to unscrew the joypod arm, then go and get the arm from her Joypod and come back and screw in the replacement arm. Next counting shot was a “6” – phew disaster averted because rifle and shooter didn’t have to move. Thanks Eva for saving the day
  • Fun Fact #7 – because of Eva’s great wind coaching, Janet came 2nd in F-class as an individual shooter. But alas, 2nd gets diddly squat!
  • Fun Fact #8 – Alan Patrick was on the NSDRA Green (emerald) team but he partly coached the NSDRA Jacaranda (purple) team thus pulling off some impressive scores for both teams. Now that’s bi-partisan commitment!

Thanks to the many Roseville crew that helped support the event without shooting….we appreciate you!

Janet Beale

After the Floods – Returning to Eugowra – June 2023

Five Roseville Rifle Club members and two family members made the trip out to Eugowra on the June Long Weekend. Tim Walter and his son Ian left Sydney early on Friday the 9th of June, and Dmitri, Ross, Adrian, Chris and Lucas met at Ross’ place to hitch up the A-Van, and Camper Trailer and head west.

It was a beautiful day to drive with the sun shining on one of those crisp clear winter days and the forecast was for amazing weather all weekend.
When we entered the township of Eugowra in the late afternoon – it was easy to see the devastation that the floods had on this beautiful part of the countryside. There were many houses boarded up, and it was easy to see the height that waters got to with grass and debris stuck on the top strand of barbed wire on many fences.
The re-build of the 130 houses that were destroyed by the flood was progressing and there were many demountable houses and caravans set-up for residents to live in while the re-build was underway.

The Roseville Rifle Club base-camp on Eugowra Rifle Range

We made the Rifle Range by 4:15pm on Friday afternoon – enough time to setup camp before sunset. Alan Noble – the Eugowra Rifle Club President was there to greet us, and make us feel at home, with the camp shower, generator and hot water on the boil.

The Eugowra Rifle Club coat of arms

We set about getting the Caravan, Camper Trailer and tent set up, and Tim and Ian’s swag set in place, before sunset and then it was time to have a couple of drinks and light the fire in the Clubhouse.
Ross cooked Apricot Chicken and Rice for dinner which we washed down with a beer or two and a couple of wines. The banter after dinner was so good that we did not finish until midnight – by which time it was chilly outside and we scurried to our respective tents and swags.

The next morning was stunning – sunny and not a cloud in the sky. A quick trip was made into town to buy some beautiful scotch fillet for BBQ dinner from the local butcher who thankfully is back up an operating, as is the local grocery store. Those missing the Café’s of Sydney were able to get their fix at the Old Post Office coffee cart who does a roaring trade.
Saturday afternoon was the Eugowra Practise shoot – at 600 yards. All of Roseville’s shooting contingent shot a couple of stages to get atuned to the wind and sight picture and check elevations. Some good scores were shot giving our members confidence for the following day. Chris Sefton changed ring sizes between the first and second practice match and went from a 47.1 to a 47.6 – proving that the new ring size was right for 600 yards. Dmitri was able to upgrade the Eugowra Rifle Clubs HEXTA Software to the latest version and check one of their targets – which the Club appreciated.

The next morning – 25 competitors were on-hand to enter the Eugowra OPM. The first match was at 500 yards. Tim Walter found his form early and posted a fine 50.3 – and Dmitri posted a credible 50.7. Ross Webb got out of the blocks with a 59.3 to win the first match in FSB and Chris Sefton posted a 47.2. Adrian Bonanni shot a 48.6 – a good centre count but a couple of dropped shots early.

Down-range from the 500 yard mound – not much wind in the flags

Back at 600 yards – the wind got a little tricker and the 1st 600 Yard match proved the undoing of many competitors. Only one possible was shot in Target Rifle – by Brett Macauley from Lyndhurst. The scope shooters had a better time of it with many possibles being posted. Ross maintained his momentum coming 2nd at the 1st 600 Yard match posting a 57.1. Our target rifle shooters all dropped points, but Dmitri and Adrian had good centre counts.

The final 600 yards did not really ease-up and there was some movement on the leader boards after the final match. Tim Walter and Chris Sefton won TRB and TRC respectively, and Ross Webb was unlucky to be pushed into 2nd place in FSB by a fast finishing Ian Barrett who shot the highest score of any scope discipline in the 2nd 600 yard match.
Lucas Bonanni had a fun day running the cards for the event and chatting to everyone.

Chris Sefton – 1st TR C grade

Tim Walter – 1st TR B grade

Ross Web – 2nd F-std

The final results – Roseville did well taking out TRB, TRC and 2nd in FSB.

Dmitri and Adrian finished outside of the podium, but Adrian got bragging rights over his arch-rival Josh Gordon by beating him at both the 600 yard matches.
The sun went down on a glorious sunny day and after the presentation the Roseville members went to the Bowling Club with Alan and Marie and their son Marcus for dinner. It was a wonderful weekend, well worth doing again, and it was a good opportunity to support the local community of Eugowra who had been through so much.

Adrian Bonanni

Lockhart Fundraising OPM

Ross and Adrian support our U/25 Australian Rifle Team – Lockhart Fundraising OPM.
The date was set for the Explorers Rifle Club in Lockhart to host a fund-raiser to support our U/25 Australian Rifle Team as they prepare to head to South Africa next year for the Long Range Championships – the weekend of the 20th and 21st of May 2023. The Lockhart Rifle Range is a lovely 900 yard rifle range in the heart of the Riverina – south east of Wagga. The township of Lockhart is a must see for anyone travelling through the area – with old post and rail shop fronts lining the main street and plenty of murals and art installations – it really is a pretty as a postcard. Better yet the 900 yard rifle range is one block back from the town centre so it makes it easy to head into town for a relaxing dinner or a couple of refreshing drinks after a day of shooting.

Mal Sharp rocked into the Commercial Hotel for Friday night drinks and dinner

Ross and Adrian needed no further encouragement and so they hitched up the A-Van and headed south on Friday the 19th of May. The weather was mostly fine on the drive and after leaving at 10:30am they pulled into the Rifle Range at 4 oçlock with just enough time to set-up the campsite. Then is was off to the local pub for dinner – and who should roll up to the bar? None other than Mal Sharp and his wife Donna who were down from Lyndhurst for the shoot. The four of us shared a lovely Friday evening meal and a couple of beers, and then it was back to the campsite for a good nights sleep.

Saturday morning was time to relax in sunshine – with nothing more to do than read the paper, and listen to the local radio which was going around the grounds with the latest AFL competition up-dates. The friendly fold at the Explorers Rifle Club showed up and set-up a BBQ at the 900 yards mound and provided a sausage sizzle lunch which was most welcome as the wind had come up and it was getting a bit cold. After lunch the 800 Yards Bisley match commenced – with 19 shooters being grouped into 3 shooters – and the target system set to the Bisley Match scoring format. The competition was 2 stages of 2 sighters and 15 counting shots. Adrian was grouped with two F-Open shooters and this was somewhat of an advantage because when they drifted out of the 6 ring – it was a good warning to watch what the flags were doing. For those who don’t know how a Bisley match is run – the 3 shooters each take turns to fire their scoring shot – with the shooter who has just shot scoring for the shooter about to fire and the third shooter getting ready to fire their shot. Each shooter has a 45 second time period to fire their shot or else they have a point deducted from their score. Adrian and Phill Hodder had recently been practicing this type of shooting on the Hornsby range – and so the approach to the match and the set-up for it was familiar. This experience helped a lot – in managing the match and making sure that a good shot was fired in under 45 seconds. The wind was tricky at 800 yards with a head on wind swinging between 11:30 and 1:30 – so you needed to know your zeroes.

The 800 yard Bisley match – wind flicking between 1:30 and 11:30

At the conclusion of the Bisley Match it was good news for the Roseville members – who both placed in the medals. Ross Webb won F-Std B-Grade with a score of 72.2 + 79.1 = 159.3 and Adrian Bonanni came second in TRA with a score of 72.5 + 74.2 = 146.7.
The presentation of prizes was held before dinner at the Lockhart Ex-Services Club where Scott Brindley thanked everyone for coming and congratulated the winners.

Roseville takes home medals!

After a good Chinese meal at the Club – it was back to Range for a couple of drinks around the fire and then a good nights rest.

Winners are grinners – Emma Brindley presents Ross Webb with his trophy.

The next morning saw around 40 competitors show up for the U/25 Australian Rifle Team fund-raiser OPM. The programme started at 700 yards for 2 x 10 shot matches and then back to 900 yards to finish with a 15 shot match. Buoyed by the success of the previous day – Ross Webb started brightly with a 51 at the first tricky 700 yards. Adrian had a couple of low shots and posted a 47.1 getting caught on the wind once. At the second 700 yards the wind picked up and started swinging making it tricky (and cold). Ross posted a 45.1 but still placed 3rd in FSB, and Adrian had a 46.4 getting caught on a couple of occasions. No possibles were scored in TRA which was an indicator of the conditions.

Back at 900 yards in the afternoon – and the wind swung through 180 degress and started coming in hard from the left, with gusts. This really challenged the competitors – but Ross held his nerve to come 2nd at 900 yards with a 77 nearly winning the match. Adrian had a target failure as the Silver Mountain targets failed to record his sighters – and when moved onto the neighbouring target with no change to sights – he shot a inner 4 at 3 oçlock for his first scoring shot. There were a number of target failures experienced at the 900 yard match – which put a downer on what was otherwise a good competition.

In the end Ross was the stand-out for Roseville taking 3rd place in FSB and coming 2nd at the 900 yard match. He was presented his prizes and the grin on his face says it all. The money raised from the U/25 Australian Rifle Team Fund-Raiser will help our fellow Club members Adam Beale and Pat Jacombs get to South Africa next year for the World Long Range Championships – and we wish them all the best.

Caption: Winners are grinners – Emma Brindley presents Ross Webb with his trophy.
If you want a good weekend away – get down to the Explorers Rifle Club Open Prize meeting later this year. You won’t regret it.

Adrian Bonanni

Roseville flies its flag at Wingham (literally)

There were 9 Roseville RC members who did the trek north to fly the flag at our favourite regional prize meet at Wingham RC. The two day event is not to be missed and this year did not disappoint. The early morning start was doable but you did need to be dressed warmly for the 3oC temperature. Brrrr. Gloves and warm jackets were definitely needed. Layers were necessary because by lunch time it was warm and jackets and jumpers were ditched.  Wingham is an interesting course because you shoot up hill and the targets are in shade except for mid-day due to the tree cover.  There is also the issue of the SSAA range “up front” near the butts that adds some interesting swirls to catch you off guard.

We had a good mix of Roseville people in 5 divisions (TRA/TRB/TRC/FTR/FSB) ensuring we spread our chances of coming home with some prizes. Phill was also helping the extra Shore boys that Roseville adopted for the competition (Jasper, Billy and Hugh).

Wingham is renown as a tough gig in TRA with 27 top level competitors. Imagine that at 400yds, a 50-7 (Mark) means 8th place in a detail and 50-6 (Phill) means a 10th place. Those are awesome scores unless you are shooting at Wingham against all the other top A graders. There was more of the same at 500yds when 50-7 (Pat and Phill) meant 10th and 11th for the detail. You certainly have to be on your A-game.  Pat showed he will be a force to be reckoned with in South Africa landing three 50-8 over the 2 days. The leader board going into the last detail had 2 Roseville people (Pat and Phill) in contention but the final detail of 2+15 at 600yds meant it was near impossible to go clean so only Phill ended up in the top 10 in TRA.

However it wasn’t just about TRA.  Paul was holding his own in TRB (12 competitors) and Nigel was a force to be reckoned with in TRC (22 competitors). Skye, our solo competitor in FSB did very well showing everyone that a .223 can compete against a .308. But there was an interesting story in FTR because this was the first year FTR was officially offered at Wingham. So our Roseville contingent made up 37% of the FTR entrants! Great way to make the odds in Roseville’s favour and we did well coming 2nd/3rd/5th in the Grand Aggregate with lots of range prizes.

So here is how our competitors did & the prizes they took home

  • Phill Hodder (TRA): 99.99% day 1, 98.85% day 2.
  • Pat Jacombs (TRA): 99.33% day 1, 98.28% day 2.
  • Mark Buchanan (TRA): 99.33% day 1, 97.14% day 2.
  • Paul Russell (TRB): 97.99% day 1, 94.28% day2. 3rd at 500yds, 3rd at 600yds
  • Nigel Russell (TRC): 97.33% day 1, 91.42% day 2. 1st at 400 yds and 500yds, 2nd at 500 yds, 1st for Day 1, 2nd in Grand Aggregate
  • Skye Russell (FSB): 99.43% day 1, 96.01% day 2. 1st at 500 yds, 2nd for Day 1, 3rd at 600 yds
  • Janet Beale (FTR): 97.76% day 1, 98.07% day 2. 2nd at 500yds, 2nd at 400 yds, 3rd at 600 yds, 3rd at 600 yds, 2nd on Day 2, 2nd in Grand Aggregate
  • Alan Patrick (FTR): 98.88% day1, 96.15% day 2. 2nd at 400 yds, 2nd at 500 yds, 2nd on Day 1, 3rd at 400 yds, 3rd in Grand Aggregate
  • Eva Patrick (FTR): 98.32% day 1, 95.19% day 2. 3rd at 400 yds, 3rd on Day 1, 2nd at 600 yds

Notice the pattern – Roseville competitors were, across each of the days, scoring over 90% and taking home a heap of prizes.

Janet Beale

Cessnock OPM

The weather report said rain until 10am then clearing; but that didn’t deter 7 Roseville Rifle Club members from making the 140 km trip to Cessnock for their Open Prize Meeting that started at 9am on Sunday 21st May …yes that is the same day that others went to Lockhart for a different competition. At Cessnock, the rain held off and the clouds cleared but the wind decided to be a little challenging thus keeping the centre count extremely low across the board. Before jumping into the scores, a shout out to 2 Roseville members who were, yet again, doing double duty as shooter and expert – that would be Dmitri Kazakov on Hexta and Phill Hodder as Shore shooting coach. Both of you help the overall shooting community with your skills – thank you!

There were 3 details of 2+10 at 600 yds spread across 7 targets using our favourite HEXTA system. It was a joy not to have to pack the car and move to a different mound. It was also a joy to have the catering and facilities block so near to the competition. Now, if we could just improve the temperature a tiny bit and decrease that wind a little……ah well, maybe next time.

Overall there were 69 competitors in the various disciplines/grades but Roseville was represented in just three categories:- TR-A; TR-C; FTR. As you can see below, Roseville competitors were well represented in the various podium finishes.

  • Alan Humbert (FTR) – scored 98.8% accuracy and was 3rd overall (plus 1st and  3rd in two details)
  • Janet Beale (FTR) – scored 97.7% accuracy and was 3rd in one detail
  • Eva Patrick (FTR) – scored 97.7% accuracy and was 2nd in one detail
  • Dmitri Kazakov (TR-A) – scored 99.3% accuracy and was 3rd overall (scoring 2 possibles).
  • Phill Hodder (TR-A) – scored 97.3% accuracy
  • Allan Patrick (TR-A) – scored 96.7% accuracy and was 2nd at one detail (scoring a possible)
  • Nigel Russell (TR-C) – scored 91.3% and was 3rd overall (plus a 1st in one detail).

Nigel was in the largest shooting cohort in TR-C thanks to a large number of school boys attending. He proved to everyone he will be a force to be reckoned with in the Shore Parent-Son competition which comes up shortly. He is also on the cusp of moving up to TR-B. Keep going Nigel!

Janet Beale

 

Bendigo. VRA Kings 2023

You prep the ammo. Pack the car. Get in the car. Drive 860 kms. Stop 3 times, maybe 4 times. Then 10+ hours after setting out you are in Bendigo. To some, Bendigo is a gold rush boom town & home to the mid-1900s Central Deborah Gold Mine. To those of us in shooting it is home to Wellsford Rifle Range, which this year held its first VRA Kings Competition in over 70 years.

You know you are at Wellsford when you see kanagroos on the mound at the end of the day or crossing the line of fire while you continue shooting (they hop well below the bullets).  Weather was near perfect for Bendigo but hard for shooters. For the majority of details, most of the light breeze came from the right – unless of course when there was no breeze – or when there was a tail wind.  If you haven’t been to Wellsford Range before, you mistakenly watch the side flags and don’t understand what the heck is going on. If you have been there before, you know to watch the central flags, the butts flag and the dust at butts after a shot – and yet sometimes you still wonder what the heck is going on. What can I say – flags lie!

This is one of the last places you can shoot a major competition (“Kings”) with paper targets. It is fascinating to watch people readjust to binoculars after being pampered by electronic targets elsewhere. (We love Hexta!!). And interesting to hear the proverbial “Range Officer – Challenge value on Target B4” or “Range Officer – Pull target C3”. And the anticipation of waiting for that target to come back up ever so slowly. Congrats to Mark Buchanan and Nigel Russell who did a fantastic job in their disciplines/grades coming home with lots of bling. Special call out to Paul Russell who showed everyone he is getting really ready to take on the GPS schools comp!

But how did our Roseville reps really do at the Kings? Well let me tell you….

  • Mark Buchanan (TR-A) – accuracy 99.24%  in the Kings and 99.32% in Lead-up.…. 2nd in the Grand Agg, 4th badge in the Kings, 2nd in Day 2 Kings, 1st at 1000 yds, 5th in the Syme
  • Dmitri Kazakov (TR-A) – accuracy 96.73 in the Kings and 96.29 in the Lead-up..… didn’t cross fire once! Was clean on day 1 and scored 4 possibles
  • Paul Russell (TR-B) – accuracy 95.47 in the Kings….. 4th in Kings (TR-B), 1st in Day 3 Kings, 2nd at 800 yds, 3rd at 1000yds & 900yds,
  • Nigel Russell (TR-C) – accuracy 91.70% in the Kings.….1st in the Kings (TR-C), 1st in Kings day 1-2-3, 1st at 500yds (twice) & 600 yds & 700 yds & 900yds & 1000yds (be sure to ask him about his last counting shot at 1000!)
  • Janet Beale (FTR) –  accuracy 98.49%  in the Kings and 96.22% in Lead-up (ok so the load for the 185’s didn’t quite work!)….most notable was a 3rd at 600yds and 2nd in one of the daily aggregates.

Say the good-byes then pack the car. Get in the car. Drive 860 kms. Stop 3 times, maybe 4 times. Then 10+ hours after setting out you are back in Sydney and time to prep some ammo for the next competition (if you have any projectiles, powder, primers, brass ….)!

Janet Beale

Roseville members representing Australia

The National Rifle Association of Australia (NRAA) announced the Australian teams going to South Africa in 2024 to contest the World Long Range Championships for Target Rifle. Initially the match had been scheduled for March/April 2023 but was postponed to 2024 due to COVID.   Roseville Rifle Club had quite a few nominations for the various teams showing the strength of target rifle within the club. Roseville is very proud to have 3 people selected as shooters within 2 of the 3 Australian teams.

Australian Veteran’s team (here), including from RRC:

  • Mark Buchanan

Australian Palma team (here)

Australian Under 25’s Team (here), including from RRC:

  • Pat Jacombs
  • Adam Beale

Pat Jacombs and Adam Beale

Mark Buchanan

These 3 individuals also represented Australia at the previous World Long Range Championships held in new Zealand in 2019 (pre Covid) where they each came home with team medals and where Mark also came home with an individual prize as the top Veteran shooter. RRC are very proud that these individuals’ skills are being recognised by the selectors and we wish these RRC members well on their medal quest in South Africa in 2024.

Janet Beale

Sargard, Mackintosh (lead-up) and Kings NSWRA 147th OPM

Sargard and the Emms

First day of the NSW Open Competition is the time for the Teams Matches – The Sargard (TR) and the Emms (F-class). The competition is at 600m and is a 2+10 for 5 shooters. Conditions were blustery from the right shoulder straight across the field – watch those pickups and drop offs! The wind coaches and shooters could tell they weren’t at Hornsby!

Who won the Sargard (TR)? No it wasn’t Holsworthy – shock horror – it was “The Left Overs” (Jeremy Chan, Damon Livermore, Alex Hoffmann, Nick Hocking, Matt Shepherd). Alas, the winds got the better of the TR team and they managed the wooden spoon. Thanks to our Roseville representatives of Mark Buchanan, Angus Lansford, Adrian Bonanni, Adam Beale and Alan Patrick (the top shooter for the team). Guess we need some practise in heavy wind! But the team was competitive, just 3 points behind the main pack.

Who won the Emms (F-class)? It was “Accuracy Matters” with Roseville’s Eva Patrick as part of the team alongside of Daniel Galea, Jacinta Bradley, Marty Kelly & Darren Bradley. Well done Eva for being second highest scorer in the team!

The MacIntosh (2-day lead up competition to the NSWRA 147th Open Championships / King’s Prize)

The move of the King’s Prize (formerly Queen’s) event from its traditional September date meant more competitors and new challenges at the MacIntosh (lead-up) held at Malabar on 25/26 January.. It was hot. It was sunny. Sun-cream and sun-umbrellas were at the ready and lots of water seemed to define the MacIntosh this year. Did we mention the Projectile shortages, Lapua case shortages, primer rationing, and lack of 2206h powder? Hmm, the shortages are starting to hurt – the NSWRA shelves are distinctly lower in stock than previously, unless you want a glove for the “other” hand. Oops, back to the event….Because of when it was held, the MacIntosh coincided with Australia Day so there was a Navy helicopter towing the Australian flag, and lots of people out and about for the pickets to watch out for. Malabar’s location was also a good viewing point for the Australia Day sailing competition that was just off the coast. However, one of the neighbours complained “why do you have to shoot up at this end (ie 800m), it is so noisy and you have all that space down there (waving towards the 600m and 500m mound). Cant you do it down there?” Obviously the neighbour did not understand how important the 800m range is to these competitions and he/she did not understand that previously this was the traditional date for the “Festival of Sydney” shoot.  We didn’t set out to ruin their Australia Day.
Of our five Roseville competitors, Janet Beale (FTR) came home with the only silverware from the MacIntosh. Mark Buchanan (TR-A), Adam Beale (TR-A), Adrian Bonanni (TR-A), and Ross Webb (FSTD-B) had some very good individual shoots but alas, came home empty handed. It’s a tough day at the office when, in TR A-grade, that a 50-7 means you might come 15th and a 50-2 means you might come 23rd in that detail. Tough day indeed.

So here is how the Mackintosh lead-up played out for our Rosevillians:

  • Mark Buchanan (TR-A): 99.55% accuracy
  • Janet Beale (FTR): 98.32% accuracy, first place medal at 500m with 60-7; first place medal at 700m with 60-9
  • Adam Beale (TR-A): 97.33% accuracy
  • Adrian Bonanni (TR-A): 96.66% accuracy
  • Ross Webb (FTSD-B): 88.31% accuracy

Great weather, maybe a sun burn or two, but despite our Roseville competitors no winning a lot (they obviously all shot well), any day at the range beats a day in the office or at home.

NSWRA 147th Annual Open Championships 2023 (The King’s)

It is January and the 5-day NSWRA 147th Annual Open Championships for 2023 kicked off on Friday the 27th. All up, there were 189 competitors over 8 classes/divisions with 47% in Target Rifle, 45% in F-class and 8% in Sport/Hunter. Roseville had 6 entries in Target Rifle (TR) and 2 in FTR. Such was the depth of talent pesent that there were 57 competitors in TR-A.
King’s Day 1 was a shocker. Cloudy, and very gusty from the west. The details were two 2+10 at 600m then a 2+15 at 700m. By the end of the day, we all missed Hornsby! Alan Patrick (TR-B) had the most notable outcome – coming 2nd at 700m. Mark Buchanan had a terrific score of 74-9 at 700m but dropping any points in TR-A moves you into the 26th+ position for a detail. At the end of Day 1, Chris Sefton was running 6th in TR-C, Alan Patrick and Angus Langsford came 4th and 5th in TR-B and the rest of the Roseville squad were in various lower places in their respective packs having had trouble reading those nasty winds that were coming in from the right hand side.
King’s Day 2 was sunny and humid (great sun-umbrella weather) – and lots of water needed all around. Winds were from the east this time (off the water) and relatively softer causing some mild mirage – favouring those of us from Hornsby. It was a jam-packed day of 2+10 at 300m, 500m, 500m, 800m. By the last detail we were all exhausted, hot, and no longer much in the mood – but some survived better than others. During the day, Janet Beale came 1st at 500m in FTR, Chris Sefton had a phenominal 50-8 at 500m coming 1st in TR-C (note that this was an A-grade competitive score and it was only his second ever possible!). Our “Patricks Marketing” duo did very well with Alan Patrick coming 1st in TR-B at 500m, and the beautiful Eva Patrick coming 1st in the daily aggregate for FTR! Roseville certainly preferred day 2 of the King’s over day 1.
King’s Day 3 started off very overcast with mild winds from the east, but, by mid morning, the sun had mostly come out as did the sun-umbrellas. The early shooters had the best time of it, but as we were all squadded, for the most part people were shooting at the similar time to others in their division. It was a short day with only two details, a 2+10 and 2+15 at 800m. Some very high scores were posted by Roseville throughout the day but for many, it was too late after the carnage from day 1. Call out to Mark Buchanan who scored a 75-13 but came 3rd in TR-A (such are the competitors in TR-A).

So here is how the NSW King’s 2023 played out for our Rosevillians:

  • Mark Buchanan (TR-A): 98.39% accuracy; 3rd at 800m in TR-A;
  • Adam Beale (TR-A): 97.59% accuracy;
  • Adrian Bonanni (TR-A): 96.66% accuracy;
  • Alan Patrick (TR-B): 98.59% accuracy; 2nd in the King’s TR-B, 2nd in the second and third daily aggregates (TR-B), 1st at 500m (TR-B), 2nd at 700m (TR-B), 2nd at 500m (TR-B), 2nd at 300m (TR-B);
  • Angus Langsford (TR-B): 96.39% accuracy, 3rd at 300m (TR-B);
  • Chris Sefton (TR-C): 93.39% accuracy; 4th in the King’s TR-C; 1st at 500m (TR-C);
  • Eva Patrick (FTR): 97.13% accuracy; 1st in the second daily aggregate (FTR);
  • Janet Beale (FTR): 96.29% accuracy, 1st at 500m.

We congratulate Roseville past alumni Gary Faulkner and Peter Walters for winning the King’s in their respective disciplines! Mitch Bailey from Holsworthy scored a phenomenal 500.80 to beat his dad Jim Bailey in TR-A so well done Mitch!

Janet Beale

The National Veteran’s Teams Match

While it was planned to be held in Sept 2022, Covid meant a postponement of the National Veteran’s Teams Match. So it was that on 23 January 2023, just days before the NSWRA 147th Open  Championships / Kings Prize, that two of our Roseville stalwarts, Mark Buchanan (TR) and Janet Beale (FSTD), represented NSW in the TR and F-class Veteran’s teams. The blazers and shirts may say 2022, but the hat bands and calendar says 2023….who is confused?

Due to the 4 month delay, there were fewer states represented at the comp, but that does not mean the effort or will to win was diminished.

Day 1 was the “Masters” in Target Rifle and the “Earnie Mace Match” in F-Standard (both competitions are shot at 800m as a 2+15 shoot for each of 5 shooters). Conditions meant the wind coaches had their work-hats on to glean every point they could out of the fickle Malabar winds. In F-Standard that also meant shoot as fast as possible to catch the right moment.  In both classes, NSW prevailed and took home 1st place medals – congrats to Janet and Mark (ok – yes – and the rest of their respective team-mates) on their win – particularly also congrats to their wind coaches who pulled out mini-miracles. Mark Buchanan was also the top shooter for the day in TR and therefore took home an additional prize medal.

Day 2 was the “Don Cook Match” in TR and the “Rob Richards-Mousley Match” in F-Standard. These were details of 2+10 for each shooter, at distances of 300m, 600m, 700m and 800m. NSW was the “hands- down” winner in TR leaving the other states in the dust. In fact, NSW TR veteran’s team, won at each and every distance meaning they won the “Don Cook Match” and the “Kosi-Ford Trophy” for the 2 day aggregate. Well done to Mark and his team mates. In F-Standard, just before lunch, things were a little more interesting as there was an equipment (scope) failure by a NSW team member and therefore a mid-detail swap-in of Janet’s rifle & ammo for that team-mate after a string of wild scores at 600m. Then, after lunch, at 800m a different team member had problems with his sighters meaning a quick trip to the paper target to get things squared away.  Needless to say, NSW didn’t win the 600m range or the day’s “Rob Richards-Mousley Match”. However, despite not winning day 2, NSW F-Standard team managed to win the Combined Aggregate for the 2 days by a single point. Phew. That was close. Janet also won the team’s “best team member” unofficial award.

NSW Vets wrap up: Mark came home with 3 medals and an individual prize, Janet came home with 2 medals and an individual unofficial prize. Well done to our Rosevillians and their NSW team mates, wind coaches and captains!  Great team effort by all.

FTR team
T-Rifle team

Janet Beale

ACT Kings 2022 Match

Mark Buchanan Master-Class in feisty Canberra Winds!

There were ten Roseville Members who travelled to Canberra to compete in the ACT Rifle Championships from the 16th to the 20th of November.   For Ross Webb, Nigel Russell, Paul Russell and Nicholas Bonanni, it was the first time they had competed at Canberra and they soon understood why this range has a reputation.   They say that a win at Canberra is worth two wins elsewhere, and this tournament was no exception.

With the State Teams matches schedule to follow the ACT Championships – this event was very well patronised with a record 170 shooters contesting the lead-up and a total of 265 competitors competing in the Kings Prize.   It was sensational – to be on a rifle range with so many competitors and brought back memories of years gone by where a Queens Prize would see more than 350 competitors at Malabar.

The mornings at Canberra tend to be kinder to shooters than the afternoon – however on the first day of the Lead-Up event – it snowed!!   A southerly polar vortex pushed rapidly through Canberra and then north to Sydney and so the 500M match in the lead-up was tricky.   Mark Buchanan showed his pedigree putting down a 50.6 in TR-A and Nigel Russell took the Gold Medal in TR-C with a 48.6.   Ross Webb posted a credible 56.1 in FS-B – re-acquainting himself with the Canberra winds.

Snow falling on the Canberra Range – Day 1 of the Lead-Up

The first 600M match on Day 1 of the lead-up saw the winds come in the side-door with the occasional straightening of the flags.   By now the snow had disappeared and the sun had come out and the range was a balmy 25 degrees.   People were in t-shirts again.   Sam Houston got a hold of the 600M wind and posted a 49.2 to pick-up the Bronze Medal in TR-B.   Nigel Russell continued on his good shooting in TR-C to post a 48.1 and pick up another Gold Medal.  Ross Webb backed up his good showing in the morning with a 52.1 in FS-B showing good consistency.

The conclusion of Day 1 of the lead-up saw Mark Buchanan put the hammer down with a 75.10 at 700M to come fourth in TR-A and fourth in the Day 1 Agg.  Hot on his heals was Paul Russell who finally got his mojo and posted a 75.7 to win TR-B at 700M and claim a Gold Medal.  Nigel Russell also scraped into 3rd Place in TR-C with a 68.5 to collect another medal and win the Day 1 Agg in TR-C.

Day 1 Agg Winner – Lead-Up – Nigel Russell TR-C

Paul Russell goes clean at 700M in the Lead Up – 75.7 TR-B

Day 2 of the Lead-Up started at the “easy 700M”.   Easy for some but not all.   Mark Buchanan went clean with a fine 50.6 and Nigel Russell came 3rd in TR-C with 44.3 to collect another Bronze Medal along the way.   Ross Webb showed he was in the mood on the Thursday posting a credible 56.3 coming 5th in FS-B for the match.

And so it was back to 800M for an afternoon of spoiling winds coming in from the side-door and the back-door of the Canberra Range.  Mark held for a 49.3 in TR-A.  Nigel dropped a few to many points allowing the local blokes in Canberra Club to move up the board a bit and put pressure on his lead in TR-C.

The last match of the Lead-Up was 15 shots at 800M.   Mark was caught in a tricky wind-set and posted a 70.5 to slip down the ladder a bit.   Adrian Bonanni fared a little better posting a 72.6 in TR-A but still short of the elusive possible.  Nigel slipped on a banana-peel helping the next-door neighbour during his match – and slipping off the top rung in TR-B.  Ross Webb posted a reasonable 79.1 in FS-B to place 9th in the match.

So the lead-up was run and done.   At the end of the match Roseville only had 1 badge winner – Nigel Russell taking out Number 2 Badge in TR-C with a 311.18.

Nicholas Bonanni travelled to Canberra by train on Thursday evening and Tim Walter drove down Thursday afternoon to enter the fray for the ACT Kings Prize.   Ross Webb did not compete in the Kings – and decided to enjoy the sights of Canberra while the rest of the Club contingent toiled away on the range.   Nicholas had to show all his patience and perseverance at the first 500M match for the ACT Kings – as his old-man had pushed his fire-formed cases too hard, and he had to retire from the mound twice with case-separations.   It was not the start you want at an ACT Kings – but he fired the full compliment and posted a 41.3 in TR-C for his first match.   Mark was all-business at the first match putting down a 50.7 in TR-A.   The wind was quite strong from the right – but not consistent – so it was a real case of firing when the flags were right.

At the second 500M the scores went up a bit – as conditions settled a little and shooters got into the flow of the match.   Mark continued where he left off – posting a credible 50.6 in TR-A.   Adrian Bonanni got beaten by his son – by 1 centre.  He posted a 49.2 in TR-A and Nicholas posted a 49.3 in TR-C coming 5th and earning bragging rights over the old-man.  Tim Walter posted a credible 48.4 in TR-B.

The 15-shot match in the afternoon at 600M proved quite tricky  –  with pulsing wind and quick direction changes in the flags.  Mark closed out his day with a 73.7 – only two-points day on Day 1 of the Kings in TR-A.  Paul Russell showed his penchant for 600M again – posting a credible 73.5 in TR-B and Nigel Russell lifted his game to post a 71.2 in TR-C.   At the end of Day 1 – Mark was sitting in 25th place in TR-A and Nigel was sitting in 6th place in TR-C.

The Tiverton Cup match was held in the late afternoon – when all 280 shooters had finished their individual matches.   The NSW Junior Training programme requested the presence of Paul Russell and Nicholas Bonanni to shoot in an U/19 Training team, and so Roseville co-opted the services of Bill Ballantyne from Hornsby-Manly TRC and Mal McKenzie from Wingham to fill in for our Junior team members.   The young Roseville members shot very well in the U/19 team showing their credentials.   Nicholas posted a 46.2 and Paul posted a 47.5.   In the Tiverton Cup – our Roseville Gold team came 5th in a field of 13 TR Teams – with a score of 198.18 – 7 centres behind a classy Lyndhurst Team in 4th place.   The winners of the Tiverton Cup were Holsworthy Rifle Club posting a score of 200 with 35 centres.

Friday evening was the Captains dinner held at the lovely George Bar and Dining restaurant in the Lake George Hotel at Bungendore.   We were pleased to be joined by Phill Hodder who drove down from Sydney to have dinner and spend a couple of social days on the range – unable to get time off work to compete in the ACT Kings.

Captains Dinner at the Lake George Hotel – Bungendore

Captains Dinner at the Lake George Hotel – Bungendore

Saturday at Canberra is known as super-Saturday – it is where shooters can consolidate their position or even lift themselves up the board – with two 800M matches at the end of the day.   The morning was at a very benign 700M – and Adrian Bonanni made the most of the lovely conditions early posting a 50.7 in TR-A.   Believe it or not – he came 44th in the match for TR-A showing how good conditions were.  Mark went 2 centres better to post a 50.9 and come 7th in TR-A for the match.   Sam Houston showed some class in TR-B posting a 49.5 and Nigel Russell shot well posting a 49.3.

So it was back to 800M for the a 10 and 15 shot match.   Mark was all-class just slipping out of the bulls-eye once on the first match to post a 49.8 in TR-A.  Tim Walter posted a credible 47.4 in TR-B and Nigel held is ground with a 46.1 in TR-C.   Conditions got a bit trickier for the 15 shot match later in the afternoon – with the wind flicking and changing as it came in from the left hand side of the range.  Mark posted a 73.3 in these tricky conditions in TR-A.   Adrian Bonanni got caught up in the Canberra washing machine posting a poor 67.5 and Nicholas Bonanni pounced – flogging the old-man again by posting a credible 69.4 in TR-C.

At the end of the Saturday matches – there were no Roseville members sitting in the badge list – but some were close.

The final day of the ACT Kings saw some of the most feral winds play across the range at the 600M mound.   A westerly had blown in and it was flicking North Westerly to come in from both the side and the back-door.   On top of that – those who shot early had to deal with the rain.   Mark showed his wind-reading pedigree and posted a 49.4 in TR-A in these conditions coming 29th in A-Grade.   Tim Walter also showed his grit to post a 46.4 in TR-B.   Conditions did not settle down for the final 15 shot match of the tournament with the winds gusting to 16-20 MPH and flicking.   Marks final match saw him post a 71.6 in TR-A and jump up into the Badge List – taking out Number 23 badge in A-Grade.   His perseverance and ability to minimise the points he dropped shone through.   Nigel Russell posted a credible 68.1 in TR-C – but the local Canberra TR-C shooter put up a 74.6 showing that local knowledge counts for a lot on Canberra Range.  Adrian Bonanni found the wind un-readable – firing good shot – but stringing them along a water-line from magpie to magpie.   Nicholas again pounced,  putting up a 64.3 and taking another match off the old-man.

In the Grand Aggregate – Mark Buchanan picked up number 16 badge in TR-A and Nigel Russell picked up number 2 Badge in TR-C.   It was a wonderful and challenging five days of competition mixed with good camaraderie, good dining and great memories.    We are all looking forward to the NSW Kings Prize in January 2023 – where the threads on our wind-arms will not wear out!

The full results can be found here:  https://www.results.nraa.com.au/act-championships-2022-results/

 

 

 

Belmont 2022 – Nationals (19th – 23rd Oct)

Marcus and Comrade relaxing.

Queensland’s Belmont Rifle Range was the home of the 50th National Rifle Competition comprising the President’s Match (leadup) and the King’s Prize. Four stalwarts from Roseville made the trek north – Mark Buchanan, Dmitri Kazakov, Adam Beale and Janet Beale.

Mark & Dmitri decided to go early and attend the Natives Prize Meeting prior to the Presidents & Kings. Mark departed early Thursday morning stopping off at Ballina for the night as he is getting a bit long in the tooth to be able to match Dmitri’s record driving time of 8 1/2hr to Brisbane. Saturday we commenced at the shorts with limited success with his trusty rusty Angel. Mark brought three rifles with ammo to suit each however using the Barnard with a Benchmark at the long ranges on the Sunday saw a comeback to end up 4th overall. Dmitri’s “special” 16,000 round barrel don’t work wonders finishing.

On the Monday Comrade & Mark went for a drive to the Cleveland area having lunch at the Redland Bay Hotel. Mark started going downhill from there with expected long Covid however it turned out to be just a short flu as he regained strength towards the end of the week. It didn’t help his scores in the Presidents either as he left his raincoat at home.

There was a poignant moment as a minute of silence was held and a “parting shot” for Her Late Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II prior to the start of the official competition.  The shot was completed by Benn Emm’s who was the previous National Queen’s winner.

Queensland’s tag line of “Beautiful one day, perfect the next” missed the mark in 2022. This year it should have said “cloudy one day, cloudier the next” or even “rainy one day, nearly flooded the next”. Mother Nature had an ironic sense of timing that made life very interesting for the participants and the competition organisers. While the President’s Match went ahead as scheduled with 7 details over 2 days, the King’s Prize, which would normally be a longer 10 details over 3 days became a modified 5 details over 2 days with fewer shots delivered per shooter than in the lead-up. Yes the final day was totally cancelled too….see the severe weather advice that was broadcast to all the phones.

However, the competition did proceed under amended SSR’s that allowed for tents to be used for the competition should there be inclement weather. And those tents were certainly used on both days of the shortened King’s competition.

So how did our Roseville stalwarts fair? Not as well as any would have liked. This time our standout performer was Dmitri.

Dmitri Mark Janet
Dmitri (TRA): 96.8% accuracy in President’s match with 2 possibles, 98.1% accuracy in King’s match, 14th place. No shots on wrong targets this time! Mark (TRA): 96.5% accuracy in President’s match, 2 possibles, 96.9% accuracy in King’s match Janet (FTR): did not shoot the President’s match, 95.3% accuracy in King’s match….oops she made the wrong load for the 210gr projectiles so they didn’t group well Adam (TRA): 96.5% accuracy in President’s match, 3 possibles, 94.7% accuracy in King’s match

Despite the weather, despite the lack of prizes for our Roseville stalwarts, it was good to get out of Sydney and try out the longer distances again. Congrats to Steve Negus from Canberra for winning the King’s prize. Can we recommend the trip to Belmont? Yes but only if you have good rubber boots, a sense of humour, and a Bunnings umbrella!

The results are available: The President; The Kings Prize; The Presidents + The Kings Prize Grand Agg.

Thanks to QRA for the photos

Janet Beale, Mark Buchanan

NSW Queens Prize 2022

The NSWRA 146th Annual Open Championships 2022 (the 2 day lead up “McIntosh” followed by the 3 days “NSW Queens”) was held 7 Sept 2022 to 11 Sept 2022. However, half way through, the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was announced. The news came to Australia in the wee hours of Friday 9 Sept which was the first day of the “NSW Queens” event. The decision was made by the NSWRA Board to continue the competition and to hold it as the “NSW Queens” in her honour as the 5 day Open Championships had already commenced on the Wednesday. A minute of silence was held before shooting commenced on Friday. Later, we were advised that the NRAA will be meeting in the near future to discuss which of the upcoming “Queen’s Prizes” will be held as such and when the changeover to the “King’s Prize” will formally come into effect, but the impact that Her Majesty’s death has had on the shooting world is far-reaching.

On a lighter note – the Roseville shooters tried hard in what can only be described as extremely trying conditions…and the scores were astonishingly diverse across the various details with most people experiencing both highs and extreme lows throughout the competition. Consider that on McIntosh day 2 we shot 2 details at 800m, at the first detail the people had about 9 min of wind, the second detail we had 12 or more minutes of wind. Needless to say, the marquee that was brought in for the presentations on the outside deck disintegrated with Thursday night’s wind. Then, on the last day of the Queen’s we shot at 800m again but with just 1-3 min of wind which was quite twitchy causing a lot of shot scores of 3, and some 2’s even in A grade. It wasn’t just wind, there was also rain, sun, heat and cold and everything in between (and for some of us that was all within the same detail).

Consider also that the winning target rifle A grade scores were Jim Bailey (Queens) on 492/500 and Steve Negus (Grand Aggregate) on 864/875. Needless to say, when these world-class shooters drop that many points in a Queen’s and yet still win, the conditions must be incredibly tricky for mere mortals to figure out.

Our Roseville competitors persevered in the conditions in what was the final “NSW Queen’s” for the foreseeable future:

Target Rifle A-grad
  • Adam Beale (Queen’s 98.98%): 600m – 1st place range prize, Queen’s Day 2 – 2nd place, Queen’s Badge #13
  • Mark Buchanan (McIntosh 98.66% and Queen’s 98.78%): 800m 1st place range prize, McIntosh Day 2 – 1st place, Grand Aggregate #9 badge.
  • Angus Martin (Queen’s 98.17%)
  • Alan Patrick (McIntosh 97.32% and Queen’s 95.12%)
Target Rifle C-grade
  • Nigel Russell (McIntosh 88.23%): 500m & 600m & 800m Macintosh 1st place range prizes, McIntosh day 1 – 2nd place
FTR
  • Eva Patrick (McIntosh 95.87% and Queen’s 93.92%): 500m Macintosh 1st place range prize, McIntosh day 1 – 1st place
  • Janet Beale (McIntosh 98.62% and Queen’s 95.48%): 800m Macintosh 1st place range prize, McIntosh day 2 – 2nd place, 800m Queen’s 1st place range prize, Queen’s day 1 – 3rd place.

Janet Beale