Parkfield Archers End of Season Shoot

On Sunday 1st October 2017, the day after the CAA shoot a few of us attended the Parkfield Archers end of season handicap shoot.

Mike W, Rob, Mel, Ian C, and myself journeyed just down the road from Ely to Parkfield Archers at Wimblington to take part in their end of season handicap shoot.

Parkfield had chosen a Western round. Rob shot a Short Western (50 and 40 yards) on his American Flatbow whilst everyone else shot a standard Western (60 and 50 yards) on their recurve bows.

We set up the event tent in light rain, but managed to avoid any other rain after that, but it was very windy.  At one point Mel’s Danage target boss fell over with his arrow still in it – breaking it. The club did kindly contribute to the cost of replacing it. I could see why this happened though as the Danage only had floor pegs, we usually also put guy ropes on ours at the back.

I managed a personal best – mainly because I had never shot a Western round before. My final score was 688 with 28 golds.

Despite the weather Ely Archers all managed to come home with medals:

Western 2nd Place – Mike Williamson

Short Western 2nd Place – Rob Edson

Overall Archery Team – 3rd Place – Mike, Mel, Ian and Daniel

Ian also managed to win the raffle – with first choice on the raffle prizes – even though he’d gone home already.

Parkfield Archers Western Shoot 2017

CAA End of Season Handicap Shoot 2017

On Saturday 30th September 2017, I attended the CAA end of season handicap shoot in Cambridge. The shoot was totally free to attend and open to just Cambridgeshire based clubs. The rounds available were Long Metric rounds. I decided to shoot a Long Metric I which is 70m and 60m.

This was the first time I had ever shot 70m away from the archery club, so was a bit daunting. There was a medium breeze – 10mph, but it was a nice bright sunny day. The wind seems to move around a bit so it was hard to get into a rhythm. Some shots would go where you pointed them and others would not.

I also set up my scope on the line, but only used it for a few 70m ends at the beginning. My sight marks seemed way off from the marks at the archery club which are usually 6.6 and today I was shooting with them at 6.2 this fact then worried me that when I changed to 60m these marks would be way off as well – but luckily they were OK.

In the end I came 9th out of 39 seniors with a score of 529.  If the shoot wasn’t handicapped I would have won the Gents Recurve Long Metric I. That’s handicap shoots for you! Although some ladies did beat me by around 10 points.

A great free shooting day and I was reasonably happy with my efforts. It was still nice to shoot above my handicap and gain a new personal best score. I’ll be attending next year!

CAA End of Season Shoot 2017

Windy Windsor at Knebworth Shoot

It was my first time attending the Green Dragon Bowmen shoot at Knebworth House. This annual event see’s us shooting a Windsor round (60yds, 50yds, 40yds) with other junior rounds available. Green Dragon Bowmen shoot on straw bosses and they fix the bosses in place and just move the shooting line (well this was already laid out, we just moved forward at every new distance).

The backdrop behind you on the shooting line is the impressive Knebworth House. Beside that is the cafe and then the toilets which only opened at 11am – the shoot started at 10.30 but we stopped for a toilet break after the first scoring end once the toilets had opened. After the 60 yard distance it was lunch until 1pm when we started the 50 yard distance and then there was another break in the afternoon before we shot the 40 yard distance.

It was a very well organised shoot and parking was very close-by. I’m also glad that you could enter the competition via email and use PayPal for payment, I can’t stand cheques and paying for stamps to post entry forms off.

The only downside to the whole day for me was shooting into straw targets, but there were over 20 targets on the field, so purchasing this many Danage targets would have been very expensive although layered foam targets are not much more costly than straw.

It is also worth noting that the field is very open and in May 2017 it was very windy that day. At the 60 yard distance I found myself aiming in the white on left hand side of the target to get the arrow to land in the centre of the target. As we moved closer to the targets and the wind slowed a little I then changed to aiming at the blue and then the red to centre my shots.

I finished the shoot with a score of 777 with only one miss. This was a PB for me, as I had never shot a Windsor before but it also turned out to be a club record as well beating the previous record by something like 12 points.

Green Dragon Bowmen Windsor 2017 TargetsGreen Dragon Bowmen Targets

Green Dragon Bowmen Scoring

Knebworth House

Jolly Archers Autumn Shoot 2016

I have only ever taken part in indoor archery competitions until last Sunday when I took part in my first outdoor competition. Louise and I went to the Jolly Archers shoot at King’s Ripton, Huntingdon. I decided to play it safe and shoot the Bristol II which is 72 arrows at 60 yards, 48 arrows at 50 yards and 24 arrows at 40 yards, so 144 arrows in total + sighters.

I could have shot the Hereford round which starts at 80 yards – maybe next year.  Louise bought their line tent, and I amazed how everybody had the same tent, even down to the colour! Everyone had green, although apparently you can get them in grey. I think if you don’t have a tent you’d look out of place.

It was certainly different to be shooting 3 arrows, swapping details then shooting another 3 – it was like being indoors again.

The 60 yards was bit dodgy, but my sight marks for 50 yards were way off so my 1st end at every new distance was quite a low score. But in the end I had 1020 out of 1296. A 2nd class score, and probably the maximum you can get anyway. That’s a 7 score average. My 60 yard distance average was 6.5, 50 yard was 7 and 40 yards average was 8 per arrow.

We both came away with 1st place medals, but it seemed like so many people got medals, hardly anyone was missed out. I think the problem is with having all the different age ranges, genders, distances and bow types. There just too many variations – then there are the team awards.

An enjoyable, but a long day (the toilets are about 200 yards from the shooting line, plus the breaks weren’t that long).

Here we are in the car at the end with our medals:

louise and daniel jolly archers-medals

Archery Euro Championships 2016

This weekend I attended the Archery Euro Championships 2016 in Nottingham, England. I went to the recurve Sunday and bought tickets for both sessions. I decided to buy the undercover tickets as you never know what the weather is going to be like in the UK.

We set off from Cambridge in the morning at around 7.30am and arrived early in Nottingham at about 9.30am. We parked at ‘The Forest’ one of the park and ride sites or should I say “Park and Tram” sites. I chose The Forest as it had around 900 parking spaces and was only about 4 stops from the Old Market Square. The tram ticketing system was really easy to use; we chose an Event ticket which was just £2 return with the parking for free. The lines on the tram map are also really easy to follow and you can’t really go wrong. The tram digital displays tell you when the tram is coming and the first tram arrived really quickly and we jumped on. The great thing about a tram compared to a tube is you are above ground and so can see the sights. Within about 10 minutes we were in the centre of Nottingham.

We were so early we jumped into a Starbucks for coffee and then once the gates were open we walked across the road and found a space in Block A the undercover area. Most of the seats were already taken give or take about 20 seats. We picked some seats opposite the shooting line.

It seemed a great venue, just about long enough to fit the 70m+ required. It also seemed very quiet in the middle of the city on a busy Sunday. I wondered if all the shops were told to turn off their music systems. The great thing about being in the middle of a city is that you can pop out for food and drinks and of course the toilet.

The weather was not kind, and a bit chilly under the covered area, I actually think it was warmer in the outside seats. There seemed to be a cool chill coming through the gaps in the stands which came onto the back of your legs.

The archery was good, and I did manage some OK shots with a small Lumix camera. It’s amazing how even though we are taught to shoot a certain way, each person still seems to shoot differently. They lean forward and they put their thumb around their neck (Viktor Rubin) etc.

Patrick Huston did shoot well; Kieran from Team GBR was the star of the day for me. His shooting was amazing. One team I did miss was Netherlands, where were they? I must check what happened in the qualifying rounds.

Archery also seems a sport where you can get close to your archery heroes. It’s really strange to see the top archers having to walk with their bows fully made up with their arrows sticking out of their rucksacks whilst they walk though the centre of Nottingham on their way to Premier Inn.

I also felt that the whole thing lacked a bit of marketing. E.g. have your photo taken on the shooting line or near the bosses. There were no T-shirts to buy and no archery retailer stands or any freebies from any archery manufacturers. I came away with a badge and a very good arrow pencil from the Nottingham Building Society and some of those blow up long noise makers.

I would attend other archery championships, if there are ever any in the UK in the near future. There were the Olympics in 2012 and an archery championship in Edinburgh in 2010.

Fenland Archers Portsmouth Tournament 2016

This was my first time at the Sir Harry College in Whittlesey for the Fenland Archers Portsmouth Tournament. If you go in the future make sure you drive right around the back of the site as that’s where everybody parks. The venue has its good and bad parts. The good part is I liked the outer hall for setting up in, before going into the shooting hall. But the downside was that the shooting hall was very cramped with not much room behind the waiting line. Another downside was that you seemed to be either in the hall or out, there was no real space for spectators. There is a balcony with a gym on it, which if open would have made a good place to watch the shooting and take some photos.

Booking in and finding your boss location was easy and nicely presented on a board. I had trained the night before and had several ends of 10 10 10, but could I reproduce this today – no way. After only about 5 ends did my aim start to shake, which usually happens more towards the end of the round. I wonder if it was either nerves or a lack of stamina, as I had shot the night before. Next time as a test I may try and not practice the night before and see if it makes a difference.

A lot of my arrows ended up in the 7,8,9 zones although amazingly I did manage to end the shoot on a 10 10 10 end. My overall score was 507. This was only my second tournament and was good experience either way, a thoroughly enjoyable day out.

I am third from the right in this image.

Fenland Archers Portsmouth Tournament

fenland archers 10 10 10 end

My Bow