2023 Air Rifle Field Target National Championships

The National Air Rifle Field Target Championships were held from the 29th of September to the 1st of October 2023 at the Majura range in the ACT. Canberra turned on some beautiful warm Spring weather for the 3 days albeit that on Saturday and Sunday the wind decided it needed to test the competitors’ skills to the limit. To say conditions were challenging to the extreme would be an understatement!Saturday started with a 50-target combined Open Air Rifle and International PCP match. As the morning progressed so did the unpredictability of the back gully winds with all competitors finding a course that would be challenging in good conditions slowly increasing in difficulty as the morning matured.After a short lunch break the demoralized competitors ventured back out on course only to find that the mornings unpredictable winds had now matured into what many described as “just plain evil”.Sunday morning saw beautiful start to the morning albeit that many seemed a little sleep deprived with the onset of daylight-saving time. The air was calm and still and many foolishly believed that we were in for a calm day. Those who have visited Canberra in the Spring previously knew better and the tempest arrived right on queue to coincide with the “fire” command. Shooting Springers on a long difficult course is a challenge at the best of times but when the wind is gusting upwards of 40 knots and switching like railway points the task moves from challenge to nigh on an impossibility. As such scores reflected the conditions with many competitors deciding that “spray and pray” was the best course of action. For some it yielded the desired results.

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