The SSAA New South Wales Benchrest Centrefire State Titles 2015 were held over two weekends in July and August, with shooters travelling from Queensland and New South Wales country areas to compete in the four Centrefire classes.
The first event weekend in July saw competitors travel to Silverdale range to compete in Unlimited and Sporter events. Unlimited, which consists of five 10-shot groups each at 100 and 200 yards, was the first match on the card. The 100 yards was won by Paul Sullivan (Qld) with an aggregate of 0.2590, while the 200 yards was won by Steve Sori (NSW) with an aggregate of 0.2951. Groups that are exceptionally small are recognised as ‘screamers’ and are highly sought after. Steve Sori shot the only screamer group on the day, with a 10-shot group measuring 0.380 at 200 yards! After all the scores were tallied, Paul Sullivan took out the honours with a score of 0.2796. Second was Steve Sori on 0.2858 and third went to Steve Blaine (Qld) with 0.3319.
The second event of the weekend was Sporter Benchrest, which consists of five five-shot groups each at 100 and 200 yards. The 100 yards was won by Paul Sullivan with an aggregate of 0.2772. Paul remained consistent at 200 yards as well, taking out the win with an aggregate of 0.2427. After all the scores were tallied, Paul Sullivan took first place with 0.2600, Steve Sori placed second on 0.3192 and NSW junior Donny (Siridon) Parsons placed third on 0.3515. A special mention goes to Donny who shot exceptionally well all weekend. This was Donny’s first registered match and as a junior taking out third place in Sporter was just rewards for the patience and determination this young fellow showed. Donny is definitely following in his dad Darren and grandfather Ean’s footsteps. Both are exceptionally good shooters and Donny has no doubt had just a little coaching from them before the event.
The first weekend in August saw shooters return to the Silverdale range for the second leg of the State Titles, where Light and Heavy Benchrest were contested. Both Light and Heavy consist of five five-shot groups each at 100 and 200 yards. The Light 100 yards was won by Thomas Spang (NSW) with an aggregate of 0.1970. The 200 yards was won by Steve Blaine (Qld) with an aggregate of 0.2503. Barry Warwick shot the only screamer group measuring 0.176 at 200 yards. After all the scores were tallied at the end of the day, first place went to Thomas Spang on 0.2660, with Steve Blaine second on 0.2722 and Bill Jupp (NSW) third on 0.2859.
The fourth and final event was Heavy Benchrest. The 100 yards was won by Murray Hicks (NSW) with an aggregate (and pending Australian Record) of 0.1546. The 200 yards was won by Barry Warwick with an aggregate of 0.2210. After all the scores were tallied, first place went to Murray Hicks on 0.2026, second to Steve Blaine on 0.2536 and third to Anthony Foate on 0.2555.
The wrap-up of the State Multi-Gun Titles was as follows:
NSW 2-Gun (Light and Heavy): Murray Hicks (NSW) 0.2517, Steve Blaine (Qld) 0.2629, Roger Marshall (Qld) 0.2752
NSW 3-Gun (Light, Heavy and Sporter): Steve Blaine (Qld) 0.2968, Paul Sullivan (Qld) 0.3013, Barry Warwick (NSW) 0.3139
NSW 4-Gun (Light, Heavy, Sporter and Unlimited): Paul Sullivan (Qld) 0.2959, Steve Blaine (Qld) 0.3055, Steve Sori (NSW) 0.3131
Thanks to all the shooters who travelled from far and wide to attended the four days of the NSW Titles. It was a great success. Special thanks to all those who worked behind the scenes to make the event run smoothly, in particular the target crew John, Geoff and Mark who did a great job; Bill Jupp for doing the weigh-ins; and everyone who helped move the frames and supplied the wind flags. Without everyone chipping in to help, the event would not have been so successful. Thanks to all.