The final long-range pennant shoot for 2009 for the east Central District Rifle Association was shot at Bendigo last Saturday over 1000 yards with all six teams meeting on the same range.
The even light and heavy cloud should have given the shooters a hint of what was in store for them. The fish-tailing wind blowing from behind the shooters started to build during the first shoot, at the same time the mirage (movement of the air due to heat) started to distort the view of the targets. Everyone suffered with very few good scores posted, missed targets were a feature of all team scores.
To add to the challenge the markers found it hard to see the bullet holes in the target and many misses turned out to be a good score after a second look. Frustrated but determined to do better next range the shooters enjoyed lunch together.
The conditions and scores picked up after lunch and at the end of the day Bendigo won the match with a handicap score of 497.52 followed by Katandra 480.36, Shepparton 479.32, ECDRA 465.24, Karramomus 462.17 and Nagambie 456.21. For the ECDRA Ron Press top scored on handicap with 99.5, followed by Norm Linehan 98.6, Geoff James 94.5, Doug Moser 92.2, Richard Godden 59 and Andrew Braden 42 (one range only). Robert Chaffe top scored in Target Rifle with 92.4 followed by Neil Broughton 80.2 and Ian Williams 77.2.
Despite the very difficult conditions all agreed that it was a great day of shooting and most were looking forward to the 1000-yard shoot next year. Next week will be the third round of the ECDRA spring shoot over 600 yards at the Violet Town Range, new shooters are most welcome.