Branch just one V-bull from perfection at 600

A STEADY breeze and bright sunshine allowed the target rifle shooters of the Guernsey Rifle Club to really show their skills and with the top nine firers all within one point of each other the result would only be decided with the final few shots at 600 yards.

With two sighting shots and 10 shots to count at 500 and 600 yards for a maximum score of 100.20, the A-class marksmen were contesting the magnificent Burma Bowl while B class fought it out for the Martel Trophy.

Jon Branch managed a 49.06 at 500 yards, but on a day when high scores were the norm rather than the exception it only placed him in sixth spot.

Up on the hill at 600 yards, Branch really turned it on and a 50.09 ex 50.10 gave him a Burma Bowl winning total of 99.15 ex 100.20.

He was visibly annoyed with himself when he allowed his penultimate shot to stray out of the central V-bull, getting so close to the elusive perfect score which is every marksman’s goal is bitterly disappointing.

His victory was by a slim margin as Peter Jory and Al Stewart both posted a 99.12 and the result was literally decided on the final shots, losing a point could have pushed any of the leaders back into the ranks of the also-rans.

B-class Sam Frost added a 50.05 to the 49.05 from the shorter range for a Martel Trophy winning score of 99.10 while Huw Nippers kept in close contention with a 98.11.

Martel Trophy winner Sam Frost. (30801330)

These two shooters are both attending the Imperial Meeting at Bisley and are keen to impress the selectors who will have to pick the marksmen that will represent Guernsey in the prestigious team shoots against international competition.

Improvements were noted further down the score sheets as Adam Norman had a 50.03 at 600 yards and Mikey Chammings managed a personal best of 47.05 at 500 yards.

Next weekend the competitors will be contesting the Leale Trophy and the top-eight marksmen will gain a place in the Channel Islands Championships which is settled on the 900 and 1,000 yard ranges in Jersey.

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