Namoi Valley Archers played host to 107 competitors at an official Northern NSW Branch ABA tournament held last weekend. A quality field of archers from Newcastle, the Central Coast, Gloucester, Taree, Maitland, Kempsey and all over the North-West descended on the Wondoba State Recreation area facility to participate in the two day event. Competitors had to deal with difficult conditions on Saturday with strong winds and heavily overcast skies the order of the day Competition began on Saturday morning with the 3 arrow round followed by the high pressure 1 arrow round concluding with a 2 arrow all count round on Sunday morning. Two ranges were used for the tournament each consisting of 20 animal targets set at unknown distances in natural bush settings with distances ranging from 8 to 48 metres. Northern NSW Branch Controller, Peter Fairhall praised the local club for the quality of their ranges designed by Darrell Hudson and Peter Stubbs (Outback range)and Steve Jaeger and Stuart Dolbel (Boundary range).
The competition in the sighted divisions was a very high standard with the Mens Freestyle Unlimited division proving very intense with the top three competitors separated by just 2 points after the first two rounds with Gunnedah’s Steve Jaeger holding the overnight lead. Taree’s Scott Dollin turned in a magnificent last round missing the bullseye with just 3 of his 40 arrows to ease to a very narrow 2 point win over Jaeger with another local, John Clark a further 8 points back in third. Tamworth’s Robert Jones was another archer in top form turning in three high class rounds to claim the win in Mens Bowhunter Unlimited with Gunnedah’s, Stuart Dolbel taking second place. Matt Sinclair made an impressive debut into Branch competition shooting very well to take third leaving some highly credentialed archers in his wake. Scott Porter was an impressive winner in Bowhunter Limited while Ken Thompson continued his good form to win Recurve Freestyle. Jodi Dolbel made a welcome return to competition showing all her international experience to score a comprehensive win in Womens Freestyle Unlimited with a powerful display while Diana Finlay scored a good win in Womens Bowhunter Limited. The local club’s barebow compound archers dominated the tournament with Wade Hudson winning Masters with a superb performance which included a mesmerizing 1 arrow round of 390 out of a possible 400. Phillip Porter won the A grade division with a top class display while James Finlay clawed back a big overnight deficit to win B grade on a countback. The very consistent Karen Hudson added the Womens B grade win to her bulging trophy cabinet to underline the local clubs dominance with Shelly Porter finishing second in D grade. Recurve exponents, Darrell Hudson and Peter Stubbs had to settle for the minor placings behind Tamworth’s Bruce Sherwood in B grade while Michael Patrick picked up the win in C grade. The local club’s younger archers performed very well with Matthew Wittman and Matthew Jauja going head to head in Junior Freestyle Unlimited with Witttman powering away with the win after a brilliant final round while Shane Thompson proved too strong in Recurve Freestyle Limited. Club members Amy Stubbs, Junior Compound B grade, Mitchell Finlay, Cub Compound A grade, Christopher Patrick Cub Compound C grade, Jackelyn Patrick Cub Compound D grade and Sammy Patrick Recurve D grade all recorded good wins with Jarrod Stubbs grabbing third in Junior Compound A grade and Ethan Thompson second in Bowhunter Limited. The Cub Freestyle event was an all Gunnedah affair with Jess Sinclair coming out on top after a very solid performance with Meg Jaeger taking second and Krystal Jauja third.
The next event on the calendar is the Interclub shoot with Tamworth to be held on May 4th at the Tamworth club’s Attunga range. Further details can be obtained by ringing 67423220.