When you consider there are only about six dedicated longbow archers in the club at the moment, a turnout of seventeen is pretty impressive. The fact that most of them did, in fact, posses a longbow, is even more impressive.!
We were blessed with a fine day for the middle of September and the morning was soon well underway with the National round. No one seemed particularly concerned with scores as we were shooting to BL-BS rules :- Most hits =1st place ; highest score = 2nd ; most Golds = 3rd.
The petticoat sweep was initially forgotten, but after the third end the subject was brought up and agreed upon, starting from that moment, much to the chagrin of Alun, who already had 2 petticoats. Neil at once started aiming at the very edge of the boss instead of the flag; the rest of us just, sort of, aimed.
We had wrapped up the National by about 12.30, so we took an early lunch break while the field party set out the Mini Pope and Young.
One of the advantages, and they are few indeed, of being Tournament Officer, is you get to practice the art of ‘delegation’. I suppose I should have known better when I delegated the job of finding and selecting the animal target faces for the P&Y. Alun expressed his intense dislike for the bear, that had alluded his arrows last year, so the bear was chosen…
Another animal picked was a duck; one I had never seen before. Suffice it to say, the duck was about a tenth the size of any of the other chosen animals, and as such became the sole target (sic) of Neil’s desires.
Out of the assembled multitude, there was only one who didn’t know the Pope and Young, and that was John Hall. Being a quick-witted sort of chap he soon got the idea.
As we were all shooting, (no spectators,) and after a bit of persuasion, it fell to the lovely Carol to act as timer and scorer. James assisted his Gran with the technicalities of the timer on his phone, but, that conquered, we were soon ready to get cracking. So as not to cause too much aggro before we had started, we went for a 40 second first round. This seemed to go off well and the scores were soon mounting.
Adrian and Matthew were soon putting some of the old hands to shame.
Alun, once again was bemoaning the force-field around the bear and Neil was determined to have duck for tea.
The shooting was so hap-hazard that we soon decided to remove all the non-scoring arrows from the bosses before scoring. Things whizzed along after that..!
The 30 second round started to sort the men/women from the boys/girls. (Don’t you just love PC…?) The final round at 20 seconds tended to disintegrate into chaos; which is as it should be. It was in the midst of this chaos that yours truly, while at full draw was suddenly shocked into a premature release by Carols whistle. The arrow hit the DUCK..! This piece of amazing archery was rewarded by boos and cries of “cheat”, and “15 points penalty”. No amount of mitigation was accepted, and I was forced to submit to the very unfair sentence of loosing 15 points.
Relief on all sides as the Pope and Young concluded and we all queued up to have a go at splitting the wand. Sue T, as recognised master, or should that be mistress, of the wand, led us off. The first round of archers produced no result, nor did the second. The third round, however, did. James showed us that a borrowed bow and borrowed arrow could result in a split wand. In fact, the arrow struck the wand with a resounding clonk, dispelling any chance of a dispute. The remaining archers couldn’t match his skill and we gratefully called it a day and made our way to the club house for tea.
Carol, not only did sterling service with the timer and scores on the P&Y, but also, as is her wont, produces a splendid tea. No less that six delicious cakes…. Over tea the results were worked out and the field taken down. I got the impression the day was enjoyed by all, which is the whole idea.
Very many thanks to Carol, the field party, and everyone who turned up.
The results, and in no particular order, are as follows:-
||4th O/A Lady and Most golds unrewarded
||2nd O/A Lady
||1st O/A Lady
||3rd O/A Gent
||1st O/A Gent and Pope and Young
||3rd O/A Lady
||Joint 8th Gent
||6th O/A Gent and Highest Score Unrewarded
||7th O/A Gent
||2nd O/A Gent
||Joint 8th Gent
||5th O/A Gent
||Joint 8th Gent and Split the Wand.
||5th O/A Lady
Roger and Jim joined us shooting a Short National, morning only.