Shooting in the blood
THE Warwick Pistol Club's February Open Shoot will be a family affair with all members of the Constable family competing at Rosehill Range this weekend.
Mark Constable remembers going with his father to Guyra Pistol Club events at the age of six.
Due to the age rules of the day and work commitments, Mark didn't compete until the age of 22, when he joined Hay Pistol Club in New South Wales.
Twenty-two years ago, he introduced his wife Janelle to the sport.
"I usually beat her but she beat me by 18 points last Sunday," Mark said.
Son Max started competing in 2010 at the age of 11 and his younger brother Todd first shot in October last year.
"The boys love shooting. With Todd coming into the sport, it has put pressure on his older brother," Mark said.
"It is one of those sports where you have to relax to shoot well.
"I have always enjoyed hunting in the field with rifles. Shooting is a very social sport."
After moving from Emerald to Warwick six months ago, Mark said the family hadn't shot as much as they would have liked, due to moving and buying a new house.
"My aim this weekend is to shoot my grade in each event," he said.
Mark and his sons will each compete in three events and Janelle in two matches.
While Janelle shot 531 on Sunday, she has a best of 538 which put her first in her grade at a shoot in Emerald.
Mark's best is 564 at Hay, one shot off breaking into A-grade in standard pistol.
"You have to compete against yourself. It is not like a race where you can see the fellow beside you," he said.
"After the match, you find out how you have gone compared to other shooters.
"There is good interaction between members in the Warwick club. They are very supportive of the juniors who could be our Olympic shooters of the future."
Seventy-six shooters will travel from as far as Townsville and Tamworth but floods will prevent shooters from Cunnamulla and St George heading east.
The shooter travelling the furthest is Graham Olufson, of Townsville.
National champion Tom Fulton, of Brisbane, will be in Warwick at the weekend to contest five matches.
Fulton won the Australian championship in the 50m black powder class at Easter last year.
Six juniors have entered this weekend.
Competition starts at 11.30am tomorrow with shooters competing in up to eight different matches over the three days.
Three service matches
Service matches and 25m black powder
Centre fire/sport pistol
10m air pistol
Three air pistol categories
Centre fire/sport pistol/rapidfire stage
50m black powder