2018 Marlborough Championships
Marlborough Championship, 20 – 22 October 2018
The Marlborough Championship was held over a gloriously fine and warm Labour weekend. With 41 competitors for the championship and the NZ Under 21 and Under 25 teams training as well the range was at capacity with a total of 57 shooting on eight targets.
All of the normal Kaituna conditions were to the fore over the weekend. The first day which was forecast for light winds, but saw a typical spring nor'westerly cross wind. It played havoc with the scores and even holding the rifle against buffeting was difficult, for the TR shooters anyway. The wind at 600 yards was gusting up to eight minutes. There was one 49, one 48 and two 47s being the best scores at 600. The best in the F Classes were 54s. Days two and three were both shot in much lighter conditions with a rear fishtail being the predominant condition after some early morning swirling stuff. The scores reflected the better conditions although you still had to work for a possible, but it was not impossible.
With the exception of the open title, all of the grades had a run away winner. The championship was won by Te Puke's Brian Carter from Alan White, Malvern, with Masterton's Graeme Bolland in third. With the top 6 firing their last 900 match shoulder to shoulder it went to the wire with the championship not being decided until the last shot. Brian has won the Marlborough Belt on his last two visits, even if they are about 15 years apart. Nicole Mckee, Karori, was a run away winner in B grade winning by 18 points from Robbie Gilchrist, Oamaru, and Malvern's Katherine Lange in third. C Grade saw Trentham's Tony Gore win comfortably with a 10 point margin from Te Puke's Stuart Cameron and local, Herman Jansen van Vuuren in third. In FTR, Ashburton's Murray Cook ran away from the rest to win by 14 points from Malvern's Geoff Smith and local Phil Gardiner in third. Mike Chui, Ashburton, had it all to himself in F Open but still turned in some impressive scores for the conditions.
At Marlborough all trophy ties go to a shot off. There was a shoot off for the 300 yard aggregate between Brian and Alan, both having 99.10, with Alan coming out the winner shooting 25.3. The 600 yard aggregate went to Irene Cameron with 98.10 and the 900 yard aggregate to Vic McMurdo scoring 99.5 Irene also took out the short range aggregate with 292.24 from Clevedon's Johan du Toit on 291.29 and Brian Carter on 291.24 The long range aggregate went to Bevan Mehrtens on 197.19, with Brian Carter and Nicole McKee one centre behind.
The weekend wraps up with a coached club teams match with four shooters firing 15 shots at 900 yards for their club. Petone Gold scored 284.19 for a one point win over Malvern with 283.21 and Te Puke in third with 276.21. Top scorers were Alan White with 75.6 and Brian Carter on 74.8.