The 77-year old Jamaica Gun Club hosted a massive sporting clays shoot of 148 shooters from across the island at its base in Salt Island in the Clarendon valley recently, and the McMaster family took full advantage of it.
The shooters battled extreme heat and wind on an unfamiliar seventeen-station course, that only heightened the competition among the shooters but the McMaster family stamped its class on the day with Ray McMaster 92 taking the top spot by way of ‘long run’ tie breaker over runner-up Chad Ziadie 92 and A Class winner Brett Thwaites 92. His wife Wendy 78 topped the Ladies section and in-form daughter Aliana 69, bagged second place. Another daughter Abigail 62 was just off the podium in fourth place.
Ray started very well with by picking off five of the six birds on the first station and was perfect on the next station. His scorecard showed eleven of seventeen stations where he bagged all the targets on offer. His only bad station was number fourteen on which he got only three of the six targets.
He was happy with his performance after walking away with the ‘Highest Overall’ trophy for the second time. “Awesome, awesome, awesome. I actually didn’t think the 92 would prevail.”
He was not sure what was responsible for the win though, “I don’t know but I just come out and do the same exact thing, come out and execute. For one, the breeze wasn’t blowing too much and I think that helped with the course. Shooting is like that, you just come out and everything happen for you on the day. I must say I am happy that I prevailed but the score could have been better but I am very happy.”
He was especially happy that his family made it a “clean sweep” and they plan to celebrate the win. He praised the Jamaica Gun Club for putting on a well organized shoot which included trophies, prizes and gift bags full of sponsors products.
The Ladies winner Wendy said “I feel really good. My confidence level is going back to where it was. I was struggling back in several shoots before and I worked on my weakness and I have discovered how to correct it so right now I am in a good place, just to work on it a little bit more so I can always be on top.”
Wendy spoke about the pressure of her daughter Aliana defeating her several times recently but said she is over that now and plans to stay on top.
The shoot was one of the most competitive among the club members for a very long time as seen by the many podium positions that had to be decided by long run tie-breaker. Notably three shooters ended on 92, 91, 87 and 72 and there were many scores in the eighties even though many of the shooters said that the course was hard, coupled with searing heat throughout the day.
The top three shooters in the various classes were: A Class: Brett Thwaites 92, Shaun Barnes 91 (LR) and Jordan Thwaites 91 (LR); B Class: Najeeb Haber 79, Craig Davis 77 and the immediate past president Evan Thwaites 76; C Nathan Chin 90, Paul Burke 82 (LR) and Ricky DuQuesdnay 82 (LR); D Class: Gordon Bucknor 87, Justin Samuda 83 and Richard Todd 80; E Class: Noah Vaughn 81, Matthew Grant 77 (LR) and Carlton Davis 77 (LR); Hunters or Beginners: Kashka Jones 72 (LR), Lucas Thomson 72 (LR) and Anthony Ayoub 72 (LR); Ladies: Wendy McMaster 78, Aliana McMaster 69 and Tara Brown 67; Juniors: Nathan Chin 90, David Wong 87 and Mark Desnoes 82; and Sub Juniors: Christopher Lee 50.
Two shooters, Noah Vaughn and Kashka Jones were promoted D Class and E Class respectively after winning their class on the day.
Geoffrey Ziadie, president of the Jamaica Gun Club was very pleased with the day’s proceedings, “it was a great team effort of the whole club especially the managing committee but most of all I need to just single-handedly thank Bruce DuQuesdnay who set a fantastic course and made it a very successful and family-oriented great day, and as it turned out we had a husband and wife who won which was I thought was extremely gratifying for them, more importantly for the club that they did it. My son (Chad) actually tied for first and lost in the long run which we are good sportsmen. We are happy to say congrats to the McMasters but we have next time to look forward to so it was a great day had by all and the weather held up for us. We had a fantastic day.”