More than 150 shooters and over 40 sponsors trekked to Jackson Bay, Clarendon Sunday morning for the pre-shoot and 9:30 shot-gun start of a challenging day of extreme heat and wind, which tested the skills of the shooters from across the island, for the first Jackson Bay Hunting & Fishing Club Sporting Clay tournament in 25 years.
In the end Nicholas Benjamin and Aliana McMaster out-shot their piers to be crowned Highest Overall champion and Ladies champion respectively. Benjamin was the only shooter to score in the 90s after shooting 90 and picking off all six target on eight of the 17 stations on the course.
“I am very humbled, very happy about the win today. It wasn’t easy. The course itself was fair. It was not an overly difficult course but that combined with the conditions – it was very hot, it was very windy, wasn’t any shade. The wind as you know plays a big part in the course itself and all of those things put together made for not an overly difficult but a not very easy day” said Benjamin.
He spoke about what is was like to shoot by the sea side, “it’s the first time I have shot by the sea as well. I think more impactful than the ocean was the sea breeze. I think that made it harder than just the sea as the background.”
Three shooters were engaged in a shoot-off to determine the runner-up and A Class champion after they all shot 89 in regulation time. Shaun Barnes shot a perfect eight from eight to take the runner-up spot while last year’s national shotgun champion Chad Ziadie scored seven form eight for the A Class first and Bruce DeQuesnay bagged six for A Class runner up. Ray McMaster was third by way of ‘long run’ ahead of Ian Banks and Christian Sasso after they all shot 88 each.
Aliana McMaster shot 78 to win the Ladies section ahead of Wendy McMaster 77 but had to engage Kashka Jones in a shoot-off to determine the Junior champion after both of them shot 78 in the tournament. That was very exciting as they had to do three rounds before McMaster could claim the win. They both shot seven and six in the first and second rounds respectively but McMaster shot a perfect eight from eight in the third round to Jones’ six.
According to McMaster “the course was set really nice. I enjoyed shooting the course and going through the different stations and observing the different presentations however I experienced a lot of challenges today, kind of outside variables like traps breaking down or the walking with the sun or whatever it was, it was basically all coming at me at once so it was quite a difficult time but I pushed through.”
“Going into a shoot-off, its not my first shoot-off so I kinda have an idea from experience of what to do and what not to do. You kinda just try to keep to yourself, you ignore every possible thing except the task at hand. It was a really good experience because no matter how experienced you are, you are still gonna get the nerves so its really nice I can experience that again, so it makes me a better shooter generally, and to come out the winner honestly it feels really great.” said McMaster.
The top three shooters in the various classes were: A Class: Chad Ziadie 89 (S/O), Bruce DuQuesnay 89(S/O), Ray McMaster 88 (L/R); B Class: Michael Banbury 83, Najeeb Haber 78 (L/R), Brandon King 78 (L/R); C Class: Ramon Pitter 83, Ricky DuQuesnay 81, Wendy McMaster 77; D Class: Matthew Sale 76, Marlon King 75, Noah Vaughn 74; E Class: Kashka Jones 78, Matthew Morin 69, Carlton Davis 68; Hunters or Beginners: Daren Gordon 79, Tariq Nembhard 77 and Andrew Clarke 72; Ladies: Aliana McMaster 78, Wendy McMaster 77, Lori Ann Harris 75; Juniors: Aliana McMaster 78 (S/O), Kashka Jones 78 (S/O), Lori Anne Harris 75; Sub Juniors: Che Rowe 61, Craig Powel Jr. 56 and Adam Clacken 51 and Hunters or Beginners: Seymour Essor 75 (S/O), Lori Anne Harris 75 (S/O), Max Williams 71.
Club president Sean Clacken spoke about the charity aspect of the tournament. “We come here normally about eight weeks a year but we are a part of the Portland Cottage Community. So we have partnered with the school and have done so for two decades, which is the Portland Cottage Primary School. So every year we meet with them, we try to find out what it is that they need, what assistance can we offer and in this case we decided that part proceed from this shoot will go towards the Portland Cottage Primary School.”