The Life & Times Of An Amateur Archer
Although weekends are usually reserved by most club members for tournaments or last minute sight checks, yesterday saw bunch of us braving the boggy patches and threat of rain to take part in our summer fun shoot.
Each summer the Sports Club that hosts our archery holds it’s open day and this year it coincided with our jolly day shooting at silly target faces and generally having a chuckle at one another’s expense. So while the general public may now be aware of the archery that goes on, I’m not sure that we represented the sport as a serious thing which takes hours of practice and concentration.
The targets this year were painted by six different people (well… 5 really as one of the ‘painters’ cheated more than a little and used a normal target face) and each had it’s own set of scoring rules, target bonuses and forfeits. None of us knew where / what would be best to shoot at so several wild shots started flying once we got underway.
There were about 15/20 of us out for the afternoon with a range of bows – one of our compound shooters went back to nature with his longbow, and one of the more experienced recurve archers decided to shoot barebow with a beginners bow. It was also great to see a couple of new juniors come over and join in.
Luckily for us the sun managed to hold its own against the rain just long enough for us to shoot each target face and put the scores together. Some of the targets were pretty challenging when it came to scoring (I was lucky that my shooting partners took over the scoring for the Olympic face… I was still reading the guidelines after they’d finished totting up the scores) and one had a particularly devious forfeit – for each arrow in the black outer rim of the dartboard we were required to shoot standing on only leg for the next target.
Negative scores were recorded in abundance as people cruelly made hitting the heads of the motor cyclists a score of -10, and eventually it became clear that there would have to be two winners in the adult and junior categories – most positive points, and the most negative…
After 10 minutes or so where most of us entertained ourselves by shooting balloons and wound one another up, scores were totted up and the winners announced. Lucky for me my terrible indecision about what what to shoot at had left me in second place for the most negative score and as the winner didnt want his chocolate I left the field with the prize. Result!
TODD PACK | Writer & Editor
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