Blog

Land Rover help required


I have a 1968 series 2a landrover with no MOT. I think it needs quite a bit of work which I am very happy to have done. Any suggestions who might do this in the Central belt of Scotland? Drop me an e mail or phone me.

Ups and downs


It’s an age since I’ve written – one of the main excuses being that I’ve had that most ghastly thing – MAN FLU!!!! Men will know it’s much worse for us!!!

How and ever I’ve still been about.
Southern Counties hosted the first GB OS Selection shoot last weekend. John McCarthy shot brilliantly in none too fine conditions to come out the clear winner on 122+22. There was a big gap between him and the next shooter – Richard Brickell.

Good news for Scotland is that Alison Nicol shot very well in the qualification and the final and is now number 2 GB lady. Further is that Sian Bruce, 14 years old, at her first big shoot, made the final!!!! Sian said she was “tickled pink” and particularly enjoyed the pretty colours when she hit the flash targets. A big future for this young lady lies ahead.

Roger Searle won class C with and equal PB which bodes well for the rest of the season and Charles Davidmann came in a good third in the same class. Just shows you!!! One competitor in his 60’s and one only 15. It’s a great game.

Drew Christie and Sian shot at Kippen last week – both posting personal bests. Drew came in with a good 94 – not that he was happy – and Sian shot a 79. Cameron Murray who at the moment shoots a PB every time he competes came in with a 77. All good for Scottish shooting.

I’m off down the road to the Brittannia GP to day so more next week.

GOOD SHOOTING.

A grand Grand Prix!!

Off to sunny Cyprus on 9th of March for the Victory Grand Prix. This is a big event with over 400 guns in the three Olympic disciplines. Scotland had shooters in Double Trap, Olympic Trap (men and women) and Olympic Skeet (juniors, men and women)so a good turn out. The reasoning behind this attendance was to get shooters introduced to large multi discipline events having to pace themselves over long days of competition.
The good news stories are that Shona Marshall from Alford won the ladies trap competition with a magnificent performance in the final leaving her three targets ahead of her nearest rival. Well done to Shona. In the men’s trap, Andrew Addison came in a very creditable 15th at his first big shoot with a score of 116. Bearing in mind 119 made the final this was another great performance.
In the junior men’s skeet Ben Wilson from Islay came in as the third placed British junior, which for a young lad of just 17 was a fine display.
All of those who attended regarded it as a great learning experience and a very worthwhile event.
Photos will follow when Peter Scott Aiton, a very new OS shooter who shot a personal best at this event, gets his camers disc into my sweaty hands. My little camera seemes to have packed in although it may be my useless skills in handling it!!!
Did I mention, I love this job????

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.
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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.