ROUNDS 5 & 6 MALDON Gary Chillingworth gets up right up to date with the HFT scene
Gary Chillingworth reports on rounds 5 & 6 from a very windy M. A. D.
Back in the summer, when the sun was warm and the ground was dry, my home club - Maldon and District Airgun Club, the best HFT club in the country ( I have no bias) - hosted rounds 5 & 6 of the UKAHFT National Series.
For 2015, there was to be a challenge of two Titans of the coursesetting world, but as these two were on holiday, Vince Holland and Richard Woods stepped in and decided to have a go. In the red corner, Richard had been dealt the low blow. He had been given an open piece of land and a hill. Meanwhile in the blue corner, Vinny had the woodland and a team of helpers.
Day 1 (the Saturday) would be held on the red course and Richard had pulled out all the stops not only to make sure that the shooters had a great day, but also that they would go home and speak about a course that was a mixture of pure evil and true technical challenge. Richard is one of the top HFT shooters in the country, and he used all of his years of knowledge as a shooter to put on a truly spectacular course. Every trick in the book was used from range traps and elevation, to targets with reduced faceplates and targets that were just plain small, but despite this, what we will all remember is the wind.
The hill section at Maldon has a fearsome reputation and this is why it is seldom used. The wind whips across the fields and when it hits the bottom of this mighty undulation it gathers pace, and by the time it arrives at the targets, it has built up such a head of steam that it could move a mortar round off target, let alone an 8.4grain pellet.
One particular target was on peg 27; it was a 25mm target at 40 yards and it was a little bird. The wind was coming from right to left - which I knew because when I picked the string up, it was bowing in this direction; in fact, a few people had mentioned that the strings were being pulled through their hands by the wind. I looked at the target and started to aim off, 1 mil- dot then 2, then 3 and when I ran out of mil- dots on my scope I pulled the trigger and waited; to my amazement, the target fell and the two points were mine. Unfortunately, this was one of the few targets that I killed that day, but heigh-ho, it was a fun course to shoot.
On the Sunday, the course was very different. Vinny is quite a technical chap and he is never happier then when he has a clipboard in his hand. Now, Vinny has not been shooting long and the annoying thing is, he is not
“people had mentioned that the strings were being pulled through their hands by the wind”
world champion - but it also appears that he is a very good course setter.
Vinny’s course was quite simple, but I don’t mean simple as in ‘easy’; there were no gimmicks, it was a great old-fashioned HFT course, and everything was there in front of you to shoot - and there was nothing to try to trick you. If the target looked long, it was long. What Vinny had done, though, was to create a course on which you needed to be precise.
There were a lot of targets set with branches above the targets, so if you got your trajectory wrong by underor over-ranging, then you would hear your pellet go ‘ thud’ into some wood. Vinny did such a good job; he even got a few people to storm off the course. There were some shooters who totally missed quite a few targets early on and instead of staying for the fun of it, dummies were thrown out of prams, and they were last seen wheel- spinning out the car park.
Both of the courses were great, but for very different reasons; Richard’s was a head scratcher and Vinnie’s was just plain hard. The thing I love about my home club of Maldon is the diversity we have within it. Everyone chips in and does their bit to make the club what it is. Richard and Vinny may have set the course, but the team of helpers was huge. On the day, you could see Maldon members running about with water for the shooters, and then there were members like Jim Lowe and his wife, who manned the side shoot for two days and did a wonderful job. Jim chose not to shoot the national, so that he could remain on the side-shoot to give everyone an equal chance. No matter what needed to be done, there was someone willing to help and this is what I love about club life in the world of HFT.
We do need to know who won over the two days: On the Saturday, Colin ( Tugg) Wilson took the Open; Kyle Hampton won the Recoiling: Edward Tandi was .22 champ; Mia Roberts was top lady; Jennifer Allen won the Juniors 14-16; and Mitchel Birch was Top Junior 9-13. The Manufacturer’s Trophy went to Steyr, and the Team event went to Maldon. The round was sponsored by Hull Cartridge and Junior shooter, Laura Dickson, won a stunning HW100.
On Sunday, the Open was taken by Richard Woods; the Ladies by Theresa Reed; the Juniors 14-16 by her son, Elliot Reed; the 9-13 was taken by Laura Dickson with her new HW100; the .22 by Edward Tandi; the Team event was taken by Maldon, and the Manufacturer’s by Walther.
The round was sponsored by Team Wild, and Steve Edmonson won a stunning special edition, Air Arms TX200.
The National shooting season is soon coming to an end for 2015, but if this article has piqued your interest, then check out the three great winter series of HFT. These are the Southern Hunters, the Midland Hunters and the Gauntlet. Information on all of these shoots can be found at www. shooting-the-breeze.com
“The thing I love about my home club of Maldon
is the diversity we have within it”
Left: You don’t have to be mad to shoot at M. A. D. but its helps
Below: We had a great turnout from the ladies
Above: Laura with her new gun
Above: Every rifle is chronographed to ensure that it’s legal
Far r ight: Richard Woods receives his winner’s trophy from Pete Dutton
Right: Steve Edmonson was the lucky winner of the Team Wild TX200
Below: Yet another miss for Greg Hensman. By now he should be used to it
Left: Charlotte Edmonson should always know there are cameras around and yes, her toe nails do match the rifle
Left: Laura Dickenson collects her HW100 with her father from M. A. D.’s Richard Woods