Of banks and backgrounds!


Well, the banking at Lonato sure is big!!!! You can see the size of it in this photo quite reasonably. The interesting thing is that I am told – whether it be true or not – that the banking for the Olympics in London will have to be bigger!!! Help!!! Where is all the stuff going to come from – and then go to when the event is over? Maybe that’s the legacy – a huge pile of slurry spreading over Greenwich. Oh won’t they love the shooters after that?

Again it was sunny, but the old Scots coach took no chances and kept a minimum of 4 layers on at all times – even when having a shot and complaining constantly about how sore his shoulder was!!! That may be the excuse for the high (ish) gun position! Still you cannot hide class. Talking of which Joe Neville turned up with Caroline and had a couple off station 8 with a borrowed right handed gun. Hit them both needless to say – even with the sun in his eyes!!!
Lonato is a big ground but nothing that we couldn’t do in this country given the will.

Here’s a couple of photos to amuse yourselves whilst you are programming for future competitions.

Taking stock – Italian style


After Conselice, we scooted off up the road to Desenzano as one of the party was a man with a mission – namely to get a new stock for his gun at Essevierre’s factory in Val Trompia, near Brescia. It is a revelation to see the stockmakers at work. They can look a bit brutal but you have to bear in mind that generations of experience is all in there and the finished product is a joy to behold. Very impressive and not expensive.

I took this photo at Conselice of another stock. It’s still a bit unusual to see the thumbhole style on a shotgun but maybe the trend will acquire some backing in the future.
Whether it’s an Essevierre model or not I couldn’t discern as our Italian was molto bad. Apparently there is another stock maker on the ground at Montecatini so that’s something to check out on the next trip. I would say that it’s a pity that you cannot have a shot at Essevierre’s factory – but hey life’s rarely perfect

The Italian Job


Yes, yes, it’s a long time since I’ve written, but, being a world traveller, I’ve been away – again. This time to sunny Italy. And it was sunny all week. Perfect for some serious training.
.
We flew from Edinburgh to Milan Malpensa, collected the hire car – paid for in Swiss Francs (don’t ask) and then drove to Conselice, Marcello Dradi’s ground. There’s a little hotel and restaurant right on the ground – almost – which makes for the perfect shooting holiday. Good food, good shooting. Altogether good. We did a ton of training on the skeet ranges. Rounds were 6 euros and cartridges – RC2 – sold at 42 euros for 250, which isn’t bad. Peter, top left, had no bother getting through his morning’s quota!!!!!


Conselice is pretty and has a supermarket for buying bits and bobs but the food in the restaurant is good and the ground has catering on a Saturday and Sunday. This photo is of the clocktower in the town.

Psycho!!!!



A couple of photos of the mad psycho at work!!! Actually Katie Sinnott, sports psychologist extraordinaire. Katie has worked with the STSF Skeet squad in the past but this was more of an “open day” at Kippen to get others in on the act. She concentrated, as openers, on pre shot routine and thought stopping. We are hoping to build up training groups who realise the value of having Katie working with them. You’ll see, if you look closely, some of the group putting a lot into this. Well done to everybody who attended on a Sunday morning.
If you are interested, please contact me at e mail: claycoach@tiscali.co.uk

I love this job!!!



I’ve had fun this week. Kate – right – was out for her first lesson, although she had shot before. Her lovely little Belgian Browning made the tower targets look easy.
This is the gun. A little beauty. 20 bore, over and under A1 Browning. Double trigger which is always interesting. Coupled with a 24 gram cartridge, comfortable yet very effective.


Nickie, smiling, makes any coach’s day. This lady was red hot at the OS training day at Kippen on Saturday. Well might she smile. Even a grumpy old shooting coach could be seen to have the merest movement at the corners of his usually downturned mouth.
Well done Nix!!!!

Danger – gun repairer at work!!!


I use the words “gun repairer” and not gun smith as you can see this was rather an urgent matter and things had to be taken in hand with alacrity. Be assured it worked!!! The gun was constantly altered during the day with cardboard and insulating tape to ensure the perfect fit!!!

Keyed Up at Dartford


Dartford Gun Club have installed a new system to manage the targets – and, sadly, keep the shooters honest. What happens is that you go into the office and see the lovely Gail, pay her some money and she “charges” up a “key” with x number of targets. When you go to the range, you insert it in the control box – pictured – and the targets are then deducted from your allocated total. We used it for two days recently and it worked well. Gordon said that it was cheaper to install than the trusty Claymate system. Who knows, it may catch on.

Happy High House


George and Iain (not me) in the High House. The big smiles are because it was very windy and very cold outside.

January Journeys

In this section I have some photos of East Yorkshire Gun Club, Bisley and Dartford where I ran a series of coaching sessions last week. As you will see we enjoyed reasonable weather throughout although, as usual, I played safe with as many layers of clothing as possible!

A sunny day at East Yorkshire

The club house at Bisley

Group work on one of the Bisley skeet ranges

A most unusual photgraph of a Borders farmer actually smiling! Another sunny day at Dartford.

Super Photos

I’ve got some great photos here from a number of days I have been involved in. Have a look at them and come back to me with your comments.

THE GUN IS EMPTY!!
This is a great photo demonstrating a Left Master Eye and the effect it could have on a right handed shooter. Thanks to Jill for demonstrating.

Another good photo showing an excellent OS ready position on a sunny day! at North Ayrshire Shooting Ground. Look at,and admire, Martin’s determination.

A snowy day at Auchterhouse and Sandy demonstrating his ready position for a bird off the High Tower.

This week I will be at Cluny Clays, Auchterhouse, East Yorkshire, Bisley and Dartford so getting about quite a bit with the Olympic Skeet shooters. I will be taking a trip to Italy next month, with a small group, to conduct OS training at some of the top grounds over there including Lonato and Montecatini. Hopefully this will be the first of many such trips so watch this space for more information.

Good shooting.