Welcome to what I hope will be the first of many updates on the achievements of club members. I felt that, while we make announcements whenever somebody achieves something, the whole club doesn’t necessarily know about it, just those there on the day. Likewise, competition/league results don’t have as wide an audience as they could.
Some of the sections are fairly long, covering substantial periods. They will not be so in future but I wanted to be thorough and make it up to date.
Please provide feedback, so I can improve future reports. If anything is missing or if you don’t want to be mentioned in reports, please let me (Jon) know.
As you’re hopefully aware, the club took part in the Winter Postals run by DCAS, which are divided into Portsmouth (indoors) and Frostbite (outdoors). The top three scores from each club formed a team (next three formed a 2nd team, etc) and faced other clubs over five months. We entered three teams for the Portsmouth postal (two Recurve and one Compound) and two teams for the Frostbite (no bowstyle distinctions). The results for our teams are as follows:
Thank you to all who entered scores and congratulations to those who were part of the winning teams.
With two wins and three 2nd places, I believe this is the most successful postal year we’ve had. This shows that our members are getting better every year and we should be proud of that. We also have newer archers who are building up their skills and could very well contribute to next year’s leagues. I hope we do just as well, if not better in the 2019/20 season!
As usual we ran the Tavistock Trophy parallel to the Portsmouth Postals. The highest cumulative score over the five months in each category was awarded with a small trophy and bragging rights until the next indoor season.
This year our Webmaster, and general tech guru, Simon Bench designed and crafted a set of 3D printed trophies. Thanks go to him and we look forward to seeing next year’s version.
Congratulations to: Pasty Cain (Barebow), Bruce Cox (Recurve), Alister Smith (Longbow) and Marcus Yeoman (Compound).
If you want to see a more detailed breakdown of the Postal and Tavistock Trophy scores, let me know.
The following are all the classifications earned by members during the 2018/19 indoor season. Congratulations to all.
Since outdoor evenings have only recently started, there haven’t been many classification gains/regains yet. Those hardy individuals who continued to shoot outdoors on Sundays during the winter have had a head start:
From its introduction a couple of years ago, the 252 scheme has proven to be very successful, with all new members and many existing members progressing through the distances, demonstrating their increasing proficiency. The current standing for active members is as follows:
Additionally in April, Alister Smith (R) achieved 60 yards and John Williamson (R) achieved 20 yards.
This is a list of the club records that have been awarded since I took over Records Officer last April. The does not include the pre-2018 records I discovered during my overhaul. Please see the Club Records for anything before then, as well as the current (30/04/19) standing for all rounds.
This is as complete a list of results as I could compile. Starting on January 1st means a mix of indoor and outdoor results.
Congratulations to all who competed.
Take a look at the DCAS events calendar and see if there are any competitions you fancy trying. If in doubt, speak to the tournament organiser.
If you attend a competition, please let me know how you get on, so I can share it with the club (and add the score to your records card!). Also, let me know if you earn any badges (Roses, Stars, etc) or if you manage to attain the lofty ranks of Master Bowman and Grand Master Bowman. For those unfamiliar with record status awards, I hope to have a dedicated page on the website in the near future.
Thus ends the inaugural Records Report. As I mentioned above (several times), please let me know if there are any errors, omissions, etc and I hope that members continue to provide me with material to put into these reports.
On Easter Saturday 11 Club members and family gathered at the car park between Sharpitor and Leeden Tor on Dartmoor for an informal social walk. We set off to the disused Yelverton to Princetown railway on a warm sunny morning. On reaching the railway we turned towards Princetown with the possibility of hearing a cuckoo. At Ingra Tor we entered the disused quarry to look at the quarry and remains of the workings.
Moving on along the old track bed we heard a cuckoo way off to our left and as we progressed we managed to locate the bird and see it in a tree to give us a good view of it through binoculars. We rounded a bend where the original tramway took a different course and took a short cut to Foggintor Quarry, an ideal place for our picnic.
After we had our picnic lunch in the peaceful quarry we returned the the railway track and made our way towards King’s Tor and Swelltor. On this stretch we stopped to inspect worked granite corpels that were made as spares when London Bridge was widened in 1903.
After marvelling at the size and amount of work to make these corbels only to be left on the moor we continued along the track to near Leeden Tor where we turned off the track and made our way up to Leeden Tor and down to the car park past a sizeable Bronze age settlement of hut circles. Back at the car park some of us took the opportunity to treat ourselves to an ice-cream.
We were lucky with the weather, the good company and with the interesting historical features on the route which made for a very enjoyable walk capped by the sighting of a cuckoo.
Following this enjoyable outing another walk is planned for the Spring Bank Holiday Saturday 25th May, start time 10:30. This will be on Dartmoor again and will take in the Bronze Age monuments at Merrivale. We will gather at the Four Winds car park on the B3357 Tavistock to Postbridge road, grid reference SX 5606 7489. From there we will explore the area around the stone rows and further afield as time weather and stamina allows. Appropriate clothing will be needed, walking boots and waterproofs and a packed lunch plus drinks, no dogs please as it is lambing and ground nesting bird time. The car park is the one with trees around it.For further information please ask Jim.
Thank you to everybody who attended the AGM on Tuesday and thank you to all the committee members for giving your time and effort to running the club. The newly elected committee remains mostly the same with only a few changes. You can see our full committee here.
The club account is currently healthy and we’re looking to spend some money on new foam bosses in the near future. We’ve also obtained a trio of bag targets for use at events such as the Cornwood Show in August.
Many records and awards were handed out following the audit of the records system and the recent winter postal leagues. There are still a few to hand out though, due to some people not being able to make the AGM. For up to date records, see the Club Records page. Also keep an eye out at the start of May for the first Records Report.
Simon has been working behind the scenes on the website (including supporting the updated records). With the records now updated and more easily done so in future, we hope that people will visit them and look to set/break some records this year. As always, the rounds and classifications are available from this page.
In addition to the Cornwood Show on August 8th, we will be attending another show at Hatt on June 15th. We will run a have-a-go stall at both, which can provide the club with extra money, as well as hopefully encouraging members of the public to give our sport a try and do a beginners course with us. We will be looking for volunteers to help run the stalls on both days, so please consider helping the club. If you can help, speak to the Public Relations Officer (Jim) for more details.
The outdoor season is just about to begin but before we get there have you handed in your Indoor score card yet?
Hopefully, everybody will have given their completed scorecards to the Records Officer before the AGM. If you haven’t been able to, don’t panic. Indoor shooting ends in April but the indoor year technically runs until June 31st. Please ensure that all scorecards are with the Records Officer (Jon) by then, so that they can make sure records, classifications, handicaps, etc are up to date and any awards are given.
With that out of the way it’s onto the outdoor season. For those members new to outdoor shooting (and those who need a reminder), here’s a few things you should know.
Outdoor evenings will start on Tuesday the 23rd of April and last until September (date to be confirmed). Sessions will commence at 18:30 and continue until light fails (we start earlier outdoors because of light restrictions). As always, Sunday shooting is outdoors year-round, starting at ~09:30. We have the field all day on Sundays, although most people tend to pack up around lunch. As long as you and a key holder are present however, you may shoot for longer. Please be on time (or early) if possible for evening sessions, as we are limited by light, so we want to get as much shooting done as possible.
We shoot across the road from the YMCA, on the school field. From the YMCA car park entrance, head up the road. On the left, just before the roundabout is the upper entrance into the school. From the car park, continue on foot beyond the basketball court (on the left) and the caretaker’s house (on the right). On the right is a double gate and a path leading down to the field (please close the gate behind you).
Be careful as you approach the shed, as there may be people shooting in the woods (they’ll be obvious). To reach the shooting line, you can either walk down to the shed and across the field, or continue along the path, taking you behind the shooting line. If entering the field from the shed, stick to the right of the flags if people are shooting (or wait until the whistle goes to indicate it’s safe to cross).
Just like when shooting indoors the outdoor season also gives you the opportunity to earn classifications and handicaps. We also take part in the widely popular 252 scheme, which is designed to help archers improve as they move up the distances. Also for new members you must obtain a badge for a distance before you can progress to the next. For example you must fist obtain your 20 yard badge before shooting at 30 yards. More information will be added to the site in a future update or you can look back at this post from when we first took on the scheme.
Don’t assume that inexperience means you can’t enter competitions. Archery events are as much about the atmosphere as the shooting (the author has made several friends through competitions). It’s also an opportunity to look at all the different equipment that people have.
They often include the longest available distances but shorter rounds are normally on offer so, if in doubt, contact the tournament organiser.
Give a competition a go and see how what happens.
Be sure to check out the Devon and Cornwall Archery Society events calendar to see what’s going on in the two counties.
Regardless of the result, let me (Jonathan) know how you did and I’ll mention it in my monthly Records updates (first due at the end of April).
On Tuesday 30th October we will be holding a SPOOKTACULAR fun shoot for Halloween.
Fancy dress is optional – as some don’t need it ;P We do remind you that if you want to shoot in fancy dress, please make sure you don’t have loose items that may catch in your bow!
This shoot will be open to all subscribed members and our lovely friends from the Plymouth Uni Archers.
Our recent beginners are of course also welcome as your course will have finished by then. We hope you can stomach whatever our Social Sec, Iain, has decided to dress in.
What would a fun night be without prizes! We will be awarding prizes for best fancy dress, moonlit shooting, some freaky tunes and some side games.
Start time – 1930 until 210(ish)
See you there!
Overview of the night
Yesterday the club held it’s first Easter themed shoot, organised by our rather eccentric Social Secretary Iain (yes he’s the rabbit). From the amount of eggs consumed, bunnies shot and smiles on faces the evening was a great success. With the prospect of a full archery setup up for grabs the competition was fierce! Although many people did just keep going for the chocolate rewards! By the end of the scored shooting everyone was on a suitably high enough sugar rush to warrant a round of balloon shooting to round off the night.
1st place -Alex Bennion
1st place – Linda Wright
2nd place – Jenny Woodards
3rd place – Marvin Doncaster
2nd place – Mike Coleman
1st place – Darren Bennion
We enjoyed putting on the Easter shoot and it was really well received. We’re keen to provide more themed evenings for members so watch this space!
You can see all the photos from the night on Facebook
As you know we weren’t able to shoot last night owing to the annual War Games. But that didn’t stop us from having fun as we went out for a fun night of bowling.
Everybody who attended had a great time, despite Lindsey trying her best to flatten us with a backwards bowl! The best individual score of the night went to Marcus with 174. Top team score went to lane 8 (Janet, Jim, Mat, Simon and Teresa) with a score of 535. For those who want a recap of their scores, here you go.
Finally we just want to extend a big thank you to Iaian (Laim) Lees for organising the outing.
The format is exactly as it was last year. There are classes for each bowstyle (Barebow, Compound, Longbow, and Recurve), ladies and gentlemen, and for three levels of experience: those who took up archery since 31st January 2017; those who took up archery before 1993; and all the rest.
You may submit as many Portsmouth scores as you can shoot during the month and the Records Officer will remind you when to submit them.
Any questions then please contact the Records Officer in the first instance.
You probably know by now that the DCAS Postal League is in full swing. Shooting a round for the Postal (and in any competition) can be daunting for newcomers and experienced archers alike. So here’s 5 tips to help you shoot at your best.
It’s frustrating getting up to the line and realising you’ve forgotten to put something onto your bow. Even worse when you’re 4 ends into a bad round and then realise you don’t have a button in! Whenever you shoot it’s important to run through a mental checklist on all the parts of your bow. If you’re a recurve archer don’t neglect your string, having a well waxed string and correct brace height will pay dividends. Finally don’t forget your arrows, make sure all the fletchings are secure and the shafts are straight.
Not everyone does it but warming is very good for you. Not only are you helping to reduce the risk of straining yourself, you are are also reminding your body which muscles you should be using to draw your bow.
It can never be overstated how much of a mental game Archery is. Learning how to entirely focus on your shot and shut out distraction is not an easy thing to do. Before you start your end take a few moments to focus on your shooting. Many find it helpful to recite their shooting routine in their head.
Tensing up before a shot can lead to poor execution in the form of torquing and heeling the bow. If your shoulders, arms, neck or back are tense before your shot you can’t properly control which muscles should be applying pressure at each stage. Take a breath, hold it, release and let your upper body relax. Once your muscles are free of tension you can start your shot.
Scores can be a huge distraction when shooting. If you focus too much on a bad score you can pull yourself down mentally. Likewise getting cocky with a good score can lead to you neglecting your shot. The key is to take each arrow one at a time. Focus on that one shot and once it’s in the target, let it go and move onto the next.
Hopefully you found these tips useful and we’ll be seeing a lot of new personal bests.
By now you may have heard that Richard has stepped down from the position of Chairman and Susie has stepped down from the position of Treasurer. On behalf of the club I would like to thank them for the time they have volunteered to help with the successful running of the club.
After the EGM last Friday you’ll also see there are a few other changes on the Committee including the new role of “Development Officer” (more details to come). You can see the new up to date committee list here.
We’ve seen a great uptake on the 252 scheme since it started this year. In fact you’ve probably seen people with their fancy badges already! The 252 scheme is a great way for any archer to evaluate their current ability, get sight marks for different distances and generally improve their archery. The scheme has also had another affect, less time is now spent searching for arrows! By ensuring that you shoot at a distance that is appropriate to your skill level we have been able to fit in far more shooting and far fewer Seagull style field searches.
Owing to how well the scheme is going it has been decided that the 252 scheme will now become mandatory for all new club members who have not yet shot outdoors. Basically if you want to shoot a certain distance you must first achieve the 252 badge for the distance before that. For example, if you want to shoot at 40 yards, you will need to have completed your 252 scores for 30 yards.