Aged only 12, Andrew Hughson of Stornoway has blasted his way into the record books by winning a national clay pigeon shooting competition at the Harris Gun Club grounds in Aline Forest.
For the first time in its history the HGC hosted the Scottish Clay Target Association’s Universal Trench Championship in August and Andrew came away with a clutch of achievements. Not only did he win the overall competition but he also took the High Gun and Junior Champion titles.
Andrew took up clay target shooting at the age of ten in 2013, the same year that Harris Gun Club relocated from Urgha, near Tarbert, to Aline Forest. Club treasurer Fiona Knape said: “The club’s long-term aspiration is to establish a reputation for sporting excellence in clay target shooting and to provide an effective pathway for young shots from the Western Isles like Andrew to fulfil their potential and progress to the national and international Scottish shooting teams. Hopefully Andrew will be the first of many Western Isles juniors to win a Scottish Championship.”
Andrew also came first in C Class, hitting 85 out of 100 clay targets, one target clear of fellow HGC member and Senior Champion Stuart Macleod. There were no A Class entries but B Class was won by D.J. Morrison with 82 (4th), with Colin Knape taking D class with 83 (3rd). Lady Champion was Fiona Knape and Veteran Champion was A.J. Morrison.
The first round of the 100 target Scottish UT Championship ended with Andrew Hughson and D.J. Morrison taking joint lead and Colin Knape and Ruairidh Macdonald just behind by one point in joint third. Although DJ maintained first place in the second round, he slipped to fifth place in the third round and finished 4th overall.
Andrew dropped to joint second place with Colin in the second round and moved up to joint first, again with Colin, in the third round, which he maintained to the end to win the titles of Scottish UT Champion 2015, High Gun and Junior Champion. The final round saw Colin slip from joint first to take 3rd place. Ruairidh slipped from joint third in the first round and to fourth in the second, then moved up to joint third in round three before slipping down to 5th place to take second in D Class.
Stuart Macleod made a steady climb from eighth place in round one, joint sixth in round two and joint third in round three before finishing 2nd to win the titles of Runner-up and Senior Champion 2015. HGC presented the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners with a keepsake medal.
Sunshine and a warm breeze presented ideal shooting conditions and the shooters were well fed and watered with the complimentary hospitality provided by Harris Gun Club. Club members Catherine and Robert Hughson cooked the hot food and to Emma Hendry who provided the home baking.
* HGC is the only clay target shooting club in the Western Isles that is registered with the Scottish Clay Target Association and provides seven different clay target shooting disciplines at its all year round facility which, as a non-profit organisation, is run by shooters for shooters on a voluntary basis. Follow the club’s progress on Facebook, at www.harrisgunclub.co.uk.