With the club having had such a phenomenal smallbore season as well as winning SSS fullbore, the spotlight now turned to the main fullbore competitions with the hope of continuing the fantastic run of results. The Imperial Meeting at Bisley is undoubtedly the highlight of the summer fullbore calendar, but the club had representatives at both the Scottish and Irish Opens, with success at each.
At the beginning of June there was the Scottish Open up at the challenging range of Blair Atholl. Despite many very experienced and talented shooters attending and conditions being rather miserable, there were a few highlights from the weekend. Seth Dowley won the Bannock trophy, shot at 500 yards, with a truly excellent score of 75.14. Emma Sweet also won her second cap for Scotland after being selected to shoot in the Lawrence Trophy match, although unfortunately England took home a narrow victory. Seth also shot at the Irish Open at Ballykinler ranges in Northern Ireland, finishing an excellent 6th in the overall aggregate.
However, the most success came on the Century and Stickledown ranges of Bisley during the 147th Imperial Meeting. EURC had 3 representatives in the Grand Aggregate, and a team of 4 shooting in the Musketeers and Universities Long Range competition, which together make up BUCS fullbore. Both Bryony Fraser-Burn and Emma made an appearance on the prize list for the Lovell competition (shot at 1000 yards). This was a particularly notable achievement for Bryony given her X class status, having to compete against the best of the best for a place on prize lists, and this rounded off her fantastic debut season for the club. But it was in team competitions that EURC really flourished. Rory MacLeod and Emma shot for the East of Scotland in the Astor County Championship, with the team putting in a score only 11 points behind the eventual winners. Rory shot well for the East of Scotland in the County Championships, and notably Emma captained the team at long range which finished one place out of the top 10 on the day, a real achievement. Bryony, Emma, and Rory were also all involved for Scotland in the National Match. Rory continued his fine form with the rifle, with Bryony and Emma acquitting themselves admirably in the vital role of plotters. Notably Scotland achieved their record score in the match, something that the three EURC representatives can be very proud to have contributed towards.
It would be hard to deny that the main focus of EURC at Bisley was to be crowned both the best smallbore and fullbore university club in Britain by winning BUCS fullbore. Unfortunately, an unprecedented 3rd BUCS team gold eluded the team, but nothing must be taken away from their performance. In the Musketeers match, the short range match (shot at 300, 500, and 600 yards) between all universities other than Oxford and Cambridge, the team shot well to finish second by only 2 points. As they only lost to the eventual winners of BUCS fullbore, the University of London, this is most certainly laudable. The Universities long range match was to follow a day later, and it has to be said that conditions were at their most challenging. With the wind at 900 and 1000 yards extremely tricky, that alone would have been difficult enough. But, with the temperature and sunshine almost unbearable, the team knew they had their work cut out to haul in the two teams ahead of them, Cambridge and London. Unfortunately the heat had too much of an effect on the shooters, and with Cambridge and London both shooting fantastically well the gap could not be closed. However, after the conclusion of the long range match, it was announced that EURC had finished 3rd in BUCS fullbore, a real achievement given that the club didn’t even enter a team last year. An extra bonus at the presentation ceremony was that Rory finished 3rd in the Men’s Individual competition, with Bryony also in the top 10 overall. The club thanks Simon Glen for being the coach in the Musketeers match, Nick Jeffs for coaching long range, and Chris Gray for register keeping over the two days.
In all, EURC has enjoyed success at all three competitions where it had representatives. A plethora of County and National caps, team and individual success, and two BUCS medals means the club finishes off its extremely successful year in style. EURC wishes Rory MacLeod well for upcoming GB tour, and finally thanks all of those involved in such a brilliant season.