2019 Queensland Lever Action Championships

Bowen, North Queensland was the venue for the 2019 Championships held on the weekend of 31 August and 1 September.  Competitors from Western Australia, Australian Capital Territory and New South Wales joined local and intrastate competitors to make up a field of 33 for the weekend.

Saturday’s Open match imposed no restriction on calibre and caters for any lever action rifle with a wooden stock and allows aperture sights. Eight targets were shot over distances from 100m to 25m and from positions such as any field position to standing unsupported. Targets included round and contour animal profiles. Time frames for the five shots on each target varied from five minutes to 10 seconds for the rapid fire. High individual target scores were the order of the day with Kerry Guinea, Don Chesworth, Jim Ellis and Robert Luther all scoring 50’s. On the other hand, everyone found at least one target in which they scored well below maximum to restrain their aggregate total. Outright winner was Don Chesworth over Gordon Ferguson and Jim Ellis.

1st   AAA Don Chesworth          1st      AA     Gordon Ferguson         1st           A         David Mitchell

2nd  AAA  Jim Ellis                      2nd     AA     Drew Tarring                2nd       A          Robert Luther

3rd   AAA Jim Buckley               3rd     AA     Kerry Guinea                3rd        A          Paul Dickson

1st   B       Ray Bendon               1st      C       Ben Jasiulec                 1st        Jnr       Chloe Kendall

2nd  B       Brian Endersby           2nd     C       Heath Kendall

3rd   B       Greg Klein                  3rd    C       Derek Hansen

In keeping with the Open classification of this match, a wide variety of rifle brands were to be seen – Browning, Marlin, Winchester, Mirouk, Henry and an even wider variety of calibres – 22LR, 30-30, 218Bee, 357M, .223, 44-40,.222, 44M, 6X45, 22-250.

The Classic Calibre match, in which only open sights combined with centrefire cartridge introduced prior to the end of 1938 are allowed (there are some exceptions), was shot on Sunday.  Similar variety of targets, distances positions and timeframes are also offered in this match with the only dispensation to the open sights being an additional 5 seconds for the rapid fire.  Classic Calibre matches are often the great leveller as see here by two A grade shooters out shooting their higher grade competitors to take the major placings.  Outright winner was Gordon Ferguson over Darryl Challacombe  and Jim Buckley.  

1st   AAA     Jim Buckley             1st      AA     Drew Tarring       1st      A         Gordon Ferguson

2nd  AAA     Don Chesworth        2nd     AA     Kerry Guinea       2nd    A          Darryl Challacombe

3rd   AAA     Jim Ellis                    3rd                                                 AA   Des Prowse           3rd        A          Les Flowler

1st   B          Allan Mc Donald      1st      C       David Mitchell    

2nd  B          Ian Lade                   2nd     C       Greg Klein

3rd   B          Ray Bendon             3rd    C       Brian Endersby

Rifle brands utilised in this match showed less variety being mainly Winchesters and Marlins with a sole Savage.  However the calibres still evidenced quiet a selection – 357M, 38-55, 218Bee, 25-20, 32-20, 30-30, 44Special, 44M, 44-40 and 25-35.

The Two Gun aggregate resulted in Gordon Ferguson in first place only one point ahead of Don Chesworth with Jim Ellis in third.  Top veterans were Don Chesworth, Kerry Guinea and Jim Buckley.

Bowen Branch members contributed greatly over the weekend with efficient scorers and target crew as well as wonderful catering.  In the months leading up to the championships however, it was down to two dedicated lever action shooters, namely Allan McDonald and Les Fowler for all the preparation.  You are to be congratulated on your efforts which resulted in an excellent free flowing weekend.

Thanks also go to Total Solutions Engineering Pty Ltd for their support of the championships.

The variety offered through the various shooting positions, timeframes, distances and the many different targets all combine to make the Lever Action discipline one of the most interesting and challenging disciplines amongst the many from which SSAA members have to choose.  If you have not already tried this discipline, you should!

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