At a glance
SUAC team (Andy, Dom, John, Sam K) – 2190 – 2nd
Fiona Walsh – 480 – 2nd
Nata Chavanich – 519 – 7th
Suzanne Coley – 501 – 10th
Jenny Gibbs – 469 – 13th
Samantha Hewkin – 453 – 17th
Kirie Yasuda – 444 – 18th
Liam McDonnell – 474 – 1st
Andrew Howe – 571 – 3rd
Dominic Collis – 550 – 6th
John Bowes – 547- 8th
Sam Killgallon – 522 – 15th
Stephen Fawcett – 519 – 16th
Jiahao Chen – 512 – 17th
James Clark – 427 – 26th
Suzanne Coley – 993 – 4th
John Bowes – 1087 – 4th
Dom Collis – 1081 – 5th
The Oxford University Indoor Tournament was Stephen Fawcett’s final competition as the competitions officer (and this is his final match report), but his squad showed him precious little respect when it came to reserving him a seat on the minibus. He and Matt Potticary had already done the minibus checks, but for some reason the bus wasn’t allowed on to the concourse area – it seemed there was an event happening later in the day, but certainly not this early in the morning. Matt attempted to argue with the control point, at which point the ever-diplomatic Stephen had to defuse the situation and agree to move the minibus by the Jubilee Sports Centre. As the minibus was hidden away, Stephen waited by himself on the concourse for the latecomers to show them the way. By the time everyone had arrived, all the bus seats were taken. Stephen was supposed to be the navigator, but Samantha Hewkin said that she had a set of directions, so Stephen left his insubordinates to it, since that seemed to be the order of the day.
Stephen contemplated leaving his bag in the minibus and taking himself in Dominic Collis’ car, but in a case of ‘famous last words’, he decided that the bus would get lost and he would take his own bag with him. Dom’s car was making good time, until the conversation drifted towards studying in London, since Stephen had done this previously and Dom was hoping to do so in the future. Dom was following his own directions, since he wasn’t planning on Stephen being with him, but with London on his mind he took a wrong turn and started driving off… towards London. Fortunately they still had enough spare time to make it comfortably early to set up their bows, though everyone else was wondering where they had gone. It just meant that the car could spend more time listening to 100.5 Dom FM, with the music being provided by Stephen’s phone. Dom found Stephen’s choice of music to be somewhat insightful to Stephen’s psyche.
At the start of every competition is a pre-event assembly, during which on this occasion Oxford’s president managed to confuse everyone who was paying enough attention by getting the detail order wrong. The archers took their place, with the non-competing Matt sitting on the bench figuring out an engineering paper. After shooting a respectable set of sighters, Stephen managed to twitch on his very first scoring arrow, causing him to put it in the net to the right. Jiahao Chen confidently took it upon himself to be the scorer on his target, but unfortunately wrote down the wrong score for someone else on his target. The mistake was only found after the arrows had been pulled out, by which it was too late to make a change. Fortunately, it was only a friendly competition, with not much riding on it apart from some chocolate.
With six sessions over the course of the weekend, SUAC dominated this first session on Saturday morning, along with Chris Skipper who was shooting for AC Delco and had driven part of the SUAC squad. Good shooting etiquette was generally followed by SUAC, except for one moment where the last four people on the line were all from SUAC and standing next to each other. At this point, three of SUAC walked off the line, leaving poor Sam Killgallon to shoot his final arrow by himself!
Sam K was shooting very well, possibly even surprising himself. It seemed that the only thing potentially stopping him would be a touch of nerves as he was entering previously uncharted territory and some of his shots belied more than a hint of tension in his loose. Meanwhile, Sam H was possibly going for the world record for how quickly three arrows can be shot, as she would be on and off the line before some people had even shot their first arrow. Unfortunately she was shooting so quickly that she managed to forget to shoot an end, while nobody else batted an eyelid as they assumed she had already been on and off the line.
James Clark had befriended the archers on his target, and soon the whole of SUAC got interested in Charlie from Oxford Uni’s purple bow, especially given that the absent captain Declan Ashworth likes purple things but they tend to be tricky to obtain. A SUAC member took a photo of the bow to show the rest of the club, at which point Charlie pointed out that her phone desktop had a better picture of her bow, which she allowed SUAC to share. This confused those who weren’t at Oxford because it was an outdoor photo and little context was provided apart from the fact it was a purple bow.
Jenny Gibbs was offering everyone some of her crisps, though this was apparently not to Andrew Howe’s liking as he managed to knock them out of her hand and all over the floor. This prompted a mass pickup of all the crisps, which may have subsequently found their way back into the crisp packet.
The end of the shoot was delayed as someone had a pass through, right in the centre of the straw target as demonstrated by the resting place of the arrow in the net. There was a brief argument about whether the correct protocol had been followed, but it seemed to have been agreed to let him shoot an extra arrow. Fiona Walsh got distracted by some of the timing antics of someone on her target, causing her to lose her rhythm and affect her shooting towards the end.
As it was only the first session of the weekend, the results remained unknown for quite some time, though John Bowes, Suzanne Coley and Dom stayed to shoot a double round in the second session. At this point Imperial College’s archers had arrived, so Stephen had a brief chat with them, and the BUTC B team had their mandatory team photo before everyone who wasn’t staying made their way back to Southampton.
In the second session, Dom and John were only mildly satisfied with their scores, while Suz was bouncing up and down for managing to score over 500, having just missed out in the first session. All three would just miss out on getting prizes for the double round. However, there were prizes for Andy, who was third overall in the gents recurve to get a bronze medal, and third out of those competing on Saturday, with 571. Nata Chavanich was surprised to hear that she had come third out of the Saturday lady recurves with her score being relatively low for her. She was working on technique though, trying to find a consistent anchor point as she described her floating draw hand as ‘being over in Beijing’ during the shoot. Andy and Nat won Creme Eggs for their Saturday efforts, while Liam McDonnell won a gold medal in the gents barebow as well as a Mini Eggs Easter Egg by therefore also being the top Saturday gents barebow with 474. Fiona managed to get a higher score than Liam but 480 was only enough to get the silver medal for second overall. For some reason she didn’t also win a Creme Egg for her efforts by coming second on the Saturday. The team of Andy, Dom (550), John (547) and Sam K (522) also won silver medals for coming in second place overall, leaving Stephen to rue missing that opening arrow and getting exactly the same score as Nat, 519 (woop). However Sam held his form enough to merit his place on team of the day with a big competition PB.