The Setting was south Texas, where the best
in sporting clays came to shoot it out.
What a perfect place to pit America’s best against the
world! San Antonio, and the Alamo amidst the mesquite trees as a
backdrop, the stage was set.
Friday’s preliminary event would be the
spark that would ignite three days of fierce competition:
Oklahoman Doug Fuller would best the competition by one target
while shooting an impressive 96x100.
Doug was followed by five shooters who all posted 95x100
The field was close behind, but Doug was not to be denied
The five remaining shooters would have to shoot off for
Runner-up and Third.
The one-target difference would remain a constant through
out most of the weekend.
came with all prepared for another beautiful day in south Texas. The first squad would begin shooting
at 8:00 AM,
followed by two more at 11:00 AM,
with the final squad going out at 2:00
PM. All eyes were on George Digweed of England and Doug Fuller,
as these two world-class
shooters had battled
before in international competition.
Saturday would prove to be
an interesting day of
and Fuller would struggle on the Winchester course, while
team U.S.A. would
struggle to be contention for the Gold
in the open division.
The British open team would shoot well enough to give
them lead going into Sunday’s competition,
while Team U.S.A.
women would shoot well and establish a strong lead going
into Sunday. Brett
Dorak of Wisconsin would shoot well enough to take the Junior
lead into Sunday. With
the exception of our women’s team, which
enjoyed a commanding lead after Saturday's events, all
our teams would be in a tight race for the Gold
going into Sunday’s competition.
morning in San Antonio was foggy and overcast,
with a strong chance of rain,
which is of course not
your average sporting clays shooter hopes
for to begin a round. However,
by the time the 8:00 AM
squad would start, the sun would begin to peek through the
clouds. So began
with Digweed and Fuller now on the Beretta course, Fuller would
go out on the 8:00 AM
squad and Digweed on the 11:00 AM
Both would again struggle on Sunday to finish in the top
20 for the weekend. However,
from out of nowhere,
Wendall Cherry of team U.S.A.
would post a very strong 93x100 on the Winchester course.
With all team U.S.A. members posting strong scores, the
team was making a run at the Gold Medal.
Howells of England would post a most impressive score of 189x200
for the main event. Howells
was eight targets ahead of the nearest competitor.
However, this would not mean that Howells had won the
World Title just yet. As
with International rules, the top six shooters after the
200-target event must go into the shoot-off arena and attempt an
additional 25 targets
Imagine the pressure:
you had just beaten the world’s best shooters
by 8 targets,
and now you are forced into a
crowd would not
five shooters would enter the arena looking to catch Mick,
but only Willie
England would come close. It
seemed that Willie would catch Mick,
and indeed did tie Mick after the 25-target shoot-off,
which sent the pair
into another shoot-off.
Texas size competition,
with Texas size targets and a
dramatic climax fit for a Hollywood movie!
and Willie would go into the next shoot off with a 4-target
menu. Willie ran
the first pair and missed
the second pair. Then
it was Mick’s turn:
Mick hit one out of the first and missed
one. This meant
that Mick had to hit one
remaining target to
continue the shoot-off. Mick opted to take the second pair in reverse order than
most shooters had done during the 25-target shoot-off. Mick called for the targets and hit the close out-going
target to tie Willie.
Then, as if to maximize the drama of the moment, when
the second target it had already left the arena and was now a 70
Mick had just made a
shot to win the World Title by one Target!
the individuals decided in the Main event, all Englishmen,
the individual medals.
came the Team Awards, in
which the American
team would best the team from England by one target!
What an amazing comeback from Saturday,
when it seemed as though the Americans were out of contention.
Sunday's competition, Team
the Mexican team,
won the bronze medal by more than 100 targets.
the end of the weekend, we saw three events decided by one
target. What a
great weekend for all the shooters who attended and shot this
great event. April
in Texas proved to be exciting and especially good for
the U.S.A. teams. Sunday ended in a clean sweep for the USA in all team
medals for the Men, Women,
Juniors, Veterans, and Super Veterans.
victory was particularly sweet, as they had
only won the Gold medal twice in the previous
fifteen years. The
English may have won the individual medals,
Americans won the
Two individual Gold medal winners were Diane Sorantino in the Women’s
and Brett Dorak in the Junior Division.
Gunblast would like
to congratulate all
of the medal winners in the World English Sporting
look forward to bringing our readers and members more pictures
in July as Kansas will host the World F.I.T.A.S.C.
who shoot sporting clays,
look for the Gunblast logo at your next sporting clay event.
I will be traveling throughout the summer and welcome the
chance to meet and talk with fellow Gunblast members.
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