Air Arms Ambassador
I took up Field Target shooting when I was about 14 or 15 years old. I was lucky in that my parents were happy to take me all around the country to the various national competitions. By shooting in these competitions I gained a lot of experience quickly, and everyone was always happy to help with shooting advice too. I have always shot airguns and Field Target, I have tried clay pigeon and rimfire shooting, but they don’t really do it for me. I also shoot 10m match pistol, but I’m not very good at it!
There are a few moments that stick in my mind. My first major competition win was in the 1990 Airgun World (as it was then) Showdown Final. To take the title I had to beat the some of the best in the sport including Nick Jenkinson and Andy Calpin. I was 16 at the time and I must have been unbearable! On the domestic front I have won the BFTA Grand Prix series on three occasions. The British Masters and European Championships I think I have won twice. Other memorable wins include several NEFTA Classic and MFTA winter league titles. I even managed to win the Showdown again, it only took about 20 years of trying. In 2006 I shot and won the World FT Championships held in Poland, it was nerve wracking. I have also traveled to Germany, South Africa and Italy to attend World Championships and I recorded a top ten finish at each. Where do you Practise My home club is Leicester & District Small Bore Rifle and Pistol Club (or Dowry Hill as the FT population knows it). I find little time for practise but shoot plenty of competitions and hopefully that keeps my shooting sharp.
At the moment I use an Air Arms FTP900 mounted with a Schmidt & Bender FT scope which makes for a lovely combination. It would be difficult to choose a favourite but I do have a soft spot for my Mk1 EV2.
Top Tips to Fellow Shooters
- Enjoy your shooting, what is the point otherwise?
- Get to know your equipment well.
- Try not to make silly mistakes (and that isn’t easy).
More FT shooting! There are now so many more shooters capable of winning events, it is harder to win a competition now than it ever was. So, I hope to remain competitive and win a few more titles but that will take some hard work on my part. I would love to do some more shooting abroad and have promised myself a trip to Spain one year to attend the Euskadi Open, a few more World Championship trips would be great too.