Outdoor Archery Season, 1997
My year shooting in California started with a trip to Arizona, where a strong
U.S. and overseas contingent were competing. It finished at the Pacific Coast
championships in California in September. The scores were disappointing
overall, with a few redeeming moments (shooting over 300 at 90m and 330 at
70m among them). The main problem was lack of time to practice, due to
pressure of work. For 1998, I intend to re-prioritise work and practice.
key for an explanation of the columns:
All of the Fitas I shot but one this year were over 1200. I didn't
think that I would be shooting under 1200 again, but I broke one of my rules
about making late changes and paid the price. I'm working on increasing my
comfort zone at each tournament, and making my form more consistent.
Dist Hits Golds Score Low High S. Dev. Num
90m 35.83 3.58 274.83 253 302 12.8895 12
70m 36.00 7.08 306.33 294 319 8.6538 12
50m 36.00 8.00 307.00 290 319 8.0000 12
30m 36.00 16.83 337.25 328 343 4.2647 12
All 143.83 35.50 1225.42 1193 1266 20.0643 12
- Arizona Cup, 12th-13th April
- The weekend before this tournament, I had been in Sacramento at a seminar
given by Rick McKinney, and I was trying to work on focussing on the
gold, and maintaining correct upper back tension. I didn't score as well
as I am capable of, but I enjoyed the shoot. I shot quite well in the
eliminations, winning the first round by a long way and being eliminated
in the second round by Matt Grey of Australia, the eventual silver
- Sacramento Archers Club Fita, 27th April
- Although this was only a club shoot, I was pleased to shoot a new
competition best at 90m, and to shoot my highest score for nearly two
years. Pity it wasn't a Fita Star...
- California Cup, 3rd-4th May
- I came sixth in qualifying, but went out in the second round of
the elimination. The 90m and 30m in qualifying weren't particularily
good; the 90m felt good but didn't score well, the 30m didn't feel good
either. Still, I made my target score for the tournament.
- Cotton Boll Fita, 10th-11th May
- This was one of ``those'' competitions. I spent a day and a half of a
single Fita over two days trying to work out what was wrong, while
shooting nice feeling shots all over the place. When I eventually did
work it out, I shot quite well, but had no chance of placing by then.
- Sacramento Archers Club Shoot, 1st June
- This shoot was two Olympic Ranking rounds (72 arrows at 70m) shot
back-to-back, for the benefit of some archers who were trying to get
U.S. Archery Team qualifying scores. I was very pleased to shoot a
personal best, especially as the first three dozen score of 332 was
higher than the Scottish record for the 70m Fita distance.
- U.S. Archery Team Trials, 6th-8th June
- I was allowed to shoot as a guest at the U.S. Team Trials for 1997,
used to determine the U.S. team for the World Championships. The wind
was very tricky, blowing from different directions at each end of the
field. I shot extremely poorly, shooting my lowest score and my first
miss for two years. This was partly through confusion from trying to
integrate some form changes at too late a stage, and partly through lack
of practice in the wind (there is such a thing as weather that is too
good!) There was little consolation in the wind causing many well-known
- California State Championships, 14th-15th June
- I combined two of my favourite pasttimes for this weekend, flying and
archery. I hired an aeroplane, and flew down from Palo Alto to Long
Beach for the tournament. Unfortunately, the archery didn't go as well.
A mismatch between mental state and form turned a good start into a poor
- Sacramento Archers Club Fita, 27th July
- Another hot day in Sacramento, and I was quite pleased with the score I
shot, especially since I had hardly practiced since the California state
championships. I was testing a minor form change that improved the
overall feel of the shot, and preparing for the trip to the U.S.
- U.S. Nationals, 2nd-8th August
- My first visit to the U.S. Nationals was enjoyable, but not especially
distinguished. My Fita scores were below average, the first due to an
equipment failure at the start of the first day. This was my first
equipment failure in two years; I had done a thorough visual check of
the bow on the practice day, because my sight marks were different than
expected, but didn't pick up on a slightly loose bolt on the sight
block. This bolt worked its way loose, falling out at the start of the
90m. This resulted in a miss, and rather shaken confidence.
The second Fita score was poor due to form problems. I made the cut for
the international NOR, though, and won through against one of the
Mexican team members in the first round. In the second round, I came
against Jay Barrs at a time when he was shooting well and I was shooting
poorly, and got thoroughly beaten.
In the team round, myself and team mates Francis Parchaso and Chris
Jones won through the qualifying rounds to take the
gold medal in the
- Sacramento Archers Club Fita, 24th August
- This was a strange day, and another below-average score. My shot felt
OK, but I just wasn't grouping, and couldn't work out why. I have a
suspicion that there may have been a tuning problem; I had another
equipment failure at 90m, my first ever broken string, and I'm not sure
the replacement string was tuning the same. Apart from that, I have no
idea what went wrong.
- Sacramento Archers Club Fita, 14th September
- I started out the same as the previous Fita, not shooting very well. At
50m I experimented with my new X10s, bought the previous day, and
started shooting very well. I had to switch back to my A/C/Es after
losing a couple of arrow points; I hadn't glued the points into the X10s
properly since I wanted to experiment with the tuning.
- Pacific Coast Championships, 20th-21st September
- Fourth. I used A/C/Es again, since pressure of work had not
left me time to set up the X10s properly. The score was average, but I
was content with it since I hadn't been able to practice during the week.
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