The IoM Archery Club Senior Championships took place on Sunday in challenging conditions. The archers turned up kitted out for the tropical weather we have been enjoying of late, to be met by a chilly, gusting wind and a light drizzle. The round of the day was a Fita: three dozen arrows at each of four distances 90m/70m/50m/30m for the Gents, and 70m/60m/50m/30m for the Ladies.
The wind which backed, then veered, then suddenly dropped altogether within the space of a couple of minutes proved difficult for the archers especially over the longer distances. The Gent’s Recurve only had a field of two: Tony Hartley who was shooting for only the third time this season and defending champion Rhys Moore. Rhys shot well adding 336 to his previous best for the round but Hartley in spite of a lacking of practice was simply too good for him. Tony had a lead of 24 after the first distance and never looked under pressure, romping home 62 points clear of Rhys.
The Ladies Recurve had three entrants: defending Champion Karen Lott, Junior Champion Charlotte Harris and her mother Barbara. Charlotte was attempting the Senior round for the first time. All three found the wind difficult to cope with at the 70m distance and recorded misses but Barbara emerged with a 20 point lead over Karen. This lead was cut to just 7 points as the sun came out, the drizzle dried up and Lott began to hit her stride.
Barbara Harris has always struggled with the 50m distance and Sunday was no exception. Even though Lott had two misses to Barbara Harris’ one, her shooting was the tidier and Karen went into the final distance with an 8 point lead. It was all down to the 30m and quite suddenly Barbara Harris found the form she had been struggling with all season. Harris found the centre of the target with her first arrow of the end and pretty much stayed there. At the close Barbara was 44 points clear of Karen Lott to take the Championship and add 50 points to her personal best score. Charlotte Harris shot well at both the 60 and 30m distances and gained valuable experience.
The Gent’s Compound provided the largest and most unusual entry group with Dave Moore, Billy Lightfoot and Colin Moore being joined on the shooting line by Sarah Rigby. Sarah, having no one to shoot against in the ladies division with the George sisters’ absence, elected to shoot the Gents Fita.
It soon became apparent that the fight for first place was between Dave and Sarah, while Billy and Colin would tussle for third. At the end of the 90m distance Sarah had a twelve point lead over Dave and Colin and Billy were separated by only 1 point. The 70m distance saw Dave Moore close the gap down to 3 points. Lightfoot and Colin Moore were also 3 points apart with Billy still holding the advantage. The smaller target face of the 50m presented no difficulty for Rigby and she stretched her lead out to 17 points. At the same time Lightfoot began to take a strangle hold on third place. Once again it all came down to the final distance. Sarah seemed to be shooting like a machine, dropping only 11 of the 360 points available. Unfortunately for Dave he began to experience problems with his release aid and he recorded a couple of misses. This had no effect on the overall outcome as it only made Sarah Rigby’s margin of victory larger; she ran out the winner by 41 points. All four Compound archers recorded personal best scores. Sarah’s final total was only 13 points short of the Gent’s Club Record. Maybe next year!
Also shooting were Danny Cowin and Adam Wright. As neither of them can reach the 90m distance they could not compete in the Senior Championships and elected to shoot a Metric I which is the same as the Ladies Fita. Danny added 138 points to his pb but was soundly beaten by Adam who added 227 points to his previous best.
Results: Senior Club Championships – Gent’s Recurve 1. Tony Hartley 138 970 12 3, 2. Rhys Moore 134 908 16 3pb. Ladies’ Recurve 1. B. Harris 140 976 18 5pb, 2. Karen Lott 139 932 10 4, 3. Charlotte Harris 131 811 3pb. Gent’s Compound 1. Sarah Rigby 144 1307 57 18pb, 2. Dave Moore 142 1266 51 16pb, 3. Billy Lightfoot 144 1208 25 12pb, 4. Colin Moore 141 1174 20 6pb. Results Metric I:- 1. Adam Wright 139 916 9 4pb, 2. Danny Cowin 107 595 6 4pb.