British Open English Sporting 2017 Report
Martin Myers won the 2017 British Open English Sporting title on Sunday afternoon, rounding off a fantastic competition held at West Midlands Shooting Ground across five days.
The Welshman shot 111 ex 120 the previous day to book his place in Sunday’s finals day and returned to the ground in Hodnet in confident fashion.
Bidding to go one better than his runner up finish last year, Martin shot a commanding 72 ex 75 to give himself a one shot advantage over Arnie Palmer heading into the six man super final.
With a further 25 targets to negotiate the title was still very much up for grabs and if either of the top two were to slip up, Richard Faulds was waiting to capitalise, having shot 68 earlier in the day.
After the first two stands in the super final, Martin still held the lead on 86 ex 91. Arnie then scored a perfect nine on the final stand which was made up of four pairs and a single to finish on 92 ex 100, meaning Martin needed seven to claim victory. He made no mistakes scoring the required seven targets to claim the title in front of a large crowd.
Having won the title once before in 2008, Martin joins a select group of individuals who have won the British Open more than once, “I’m delighted to win it again; it’s nice to do it twice!” he said. “It was hard graft yesterday (Saturday) to qualify and today (Sunday) it was all about performing. You’ve got to effectively win three times, but it makes it fair overall.”
“Coming into the last stand I knew I was a few clear of Arnie, so I had a couple to play with. I missed my last one, but I knew it was over by then.”
Reflecting on his second British Open title Martin added, “Not many people have won it more than once, so to do it twice is quite an achievement and it rounds the year off nicely.”
Palmer had the consolation of retaining the Veterans title to cap off a strong performance – not bad considering it was his son’s wedding on Saturday!
Aaron Harvey completed a hat-trick of victories in the Junior category, shooting 66 on the finals day course. Despite success in the Juniors, the Suffolk shot was left to rue what might have been, having fallen just one target short of the 67 benchmark to battle it out in a shoot-off to make the super final.
In the Ladies category Hannah Gibson was bidding to complete a double across the Sportrap and Sporting competitions. However, Georgia Moule shot 63 to take the category honours, which also earnt her third overall in Juniors.
Henry Bevan continues to shine in the Colts category and he eased his way to victory shooting an impressive 60 ex 75 on Sunday to finish 10 targets ahead of Tristan Hockey and Annalise Evans who battled it out in a shoot-off for second place. Annalise just lost out to Tristan, however, she claimed the Lady Colt honours.
Across the classes the level of competition was extremely high. This was none more so evident than in AA class where Phil Rowbottom, Ivan Spencer and Taylor Hedgecock all finished on 65 after their finals day round. Following a fantastic shoot-off, Phil came out on top, with Ivan narrowly seeing off Taylor to claim second in class.
Having set the course at Highwaymans for the English Open earlier in the year alongside his brother Simon, Mark Smith shot superbly to win A class, shooting 64 ex 75 on Sunday.
Elsewhere, George Cheer was clearly delighted to win the C class High Gun and received a Hatsan semi-auto – as did all other class winners.
Our thanks must go to Tom and Deb Jones and all the staff at West Midlands Ground for hosting the 2017 British Open. The team did a fantastic job. We hope that all shooters who attended throughout the week enjoyed themselves.
For a full list of results for the 2017 British Open English Sporting, click here.
To view photos from across all five days of the competition, click here.