How did you first get into shooting?
I started shooting at five years old, but I had a little plastic side-by-side gun much earlier. My mum and dad both got me into shooting; my mum, Stella, organises game shooting and referees, she used to shoot clays until she hurt her shoulder and had to stop. My dad, Colin, shoots both game and clays and has done since he was a little boy. He is in the GB Hélice team with me – we are the first father and son to have shot Hélice in the GB team together. My sisters and cousins all shoot as well, so it is very much in the family. Although I’m in the GB Hélice team, I also shooting Sporting and FITASC when I can and have recently come back from the World FITASC in France where I came 444th out of 1,280.
Who has helped you with your shooting so far?
I look up to George Digweed, as anyone in the shooting world does, he is an inspiration. People who have helped me directly are my uncle John, Dad, Bob and Henry Arnold, Chris Potter, Jim Lamb and Dionne Rogers. I’m lucky to have so much support.
What do you like best about shooting?
Pulling the trigger! Shooting is good fun, I really like it as a sport and I like the atmosphere. My friends at school all want to have a go when they can. I want to keep shooting, improving and winning more competitions.
What do you shoot at the moment?
I shoot a Blaser F3, although I have had to borrow Henry Arnold’s recently as mine was away being repaired. I use Express cartridges. Express allow me to buy cartridges at cost. Any help in costs for shooting are greatly appreciated because it is very expensive and I can only shoot once or occasionally twice a week.
Where do you like to shoot best?
I like to shoot at lots of different grounds, I think it’s good to shoot in different places because different backgrounds make the same targets appear different so it is really good training.
What have you won this season and how has it made you feel?
So far this year I have qualified for the GB Hélice team; won the Hélice Junior World Championships in Italy and European Hélice Junior gold in Spain; I came third in the FITASC Grand Masters at Hepworth Hall and third in the Ambassador Sporting. I won FITASC gold at Podimore and first in D Class; I was second Junior at Southdown FITASC and Kent Sporting Colt. I was also Colt champion for Kent in Sportrap and Olympic Skeet and Sporting.
I was very excited to win the World and European Junior golds. Trying to learn to concentrate and focus on each target and trying to win is quite hard. I wasn’t expecting to win, but now I want to win even more.
How do you cope with balancing shooting and school?
I go to Thamesview School in Gravesend, Kent. If I’m honest, I don’t particularly enjoy school, but they have been very good at letting me have time off to compete in the major competitions. Also, they have nominated me to carry the Olympic Torch, which is a great honour just to be nominated.
So what’s next?
I have just been told that I can shoot the World Cup in Italy, so I would like that to be my next big win. My parents always tell me: “if you drop a clay let it go and move onto the next one and make it count”. I just try to stay positive and keep my chin up at all times. My future aspirations are to compete in and hopefully win the Olympics – maybe 2016.
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