My dream team

By Dun­can Thomas Direc­tor of BASC North­ern Eng­land

Shooting Gazette - - Shoot briefing -

We would shoot Jan­uary pheas­ants on a crisp, frosty day at Crow­combe Court with the world class host­ing abil­i­ties of David and Kate Kenyon. The team would firstly con­sist of Mike Hat­ton, the chap that re­ally got me into game shoot­ing in the first place. He was an amaz­ing men­tor to any young lad and pulled off the high­est duck I’d ever seen whilst smok­ing a cigar and drink­ing a cup of cof­fee. Sadly Mike is no longer with us but I think of him on ev­ery shoot day. His son and my best mate, Andy Hat­ton, would be with me. We have shot all over the place to­gether. He’s great com­pany, a real laugha-minute and so­cial heavy­weight. Then there’s my son Ben Thomas, a tree sur­geon and pro­fes­sional hunter in South Africa. Ben is a use­ful lad to have about and is fol­low­ing in his fa­ther’s foot­steps. Claire Sadler, an all round good egg, a mas­sive contributor to ladies’ shoot­ing and comes from the renowned Sadler em­pire. We’d also be joined by Sarah Read, my op­po­site num­ber in the NGO. Sarah is a great friend and close ally, an­other real grafter for shoot­ing sports and easy to work along­side, and a very smart shot as well. My old boss Alas­tair Mitchell is an in­spi­ra­tional char­ac­ter; he was su­perb to work for and taught me loads. If he said we were in­vad­ing France to­mor­row I’d be off like a shot with him! Along­side him would be Piers Rein­hold, a re­tired Green Jacket and GP. Piers is a proper old-school gen­tle­man and clas­sic game shot. John Clarke is a re­tired head­keeper and top buddy, great com­pany and now a re­spected field­sports artist; he could paint a great pic­ture of the day. Linda Roberts has to be on the list for the lunch. Linda is the best shoot caterer in the north, if she can fill me and my Bow­land syn­di­cate up no­body would go hun­gry. Last but not least the Royal Dun­sop beat­ing and pick­ing-up team – with­out fear of con­tra­dic­tion the great­est team of shoot staff in the north. Their hu­mour is bru­tal.

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