Dartford Shooters take the cake

Five English Skeet shooters are believed to have made history at Dartford Shooting Ground as the first squad ever to shoot a perfect 100-straight each.

Gary Cooke , Martyn Fleming, Andy Parsons, Steve Leppington and Martin Brister were the last squad to shoot at the first of three England Selection shoots on 20-21 April.

Andrew Parsons noted that the fine weather, great targets and consistent buttoning meant the chances of the odd 100-straight were high – but five straights from one squad was something special. 

Being a selection shoot there was more than an 80 minute gap between rounds. The squad used the time to drink coffee and enjoy the cake provided by England Skeet team manager Julia Havill. By the final round, a crowd had gathered to watch.

The pressure built until Gary Cooke came to shoot the last five targets. Gary has shot more than 185 registered 100-straights, but even he took a deep breath – and as the last one smashed the applause broke out.

Billy Mousalli also shot a 100-straight, but the limelight was on the final squad. 

“Historically more 100-straights have been shot on a single day, and many squads have had the ability to achieve such a record, so statistically it was bound to happen eventually. But why these five shooters on this day?” wondered Andrew. 

“The guns and cartridges were as consistent as ever, the shooters had all shot straights before, the only variable was the manager’s cake. What was in it? Will the team get drug tested at the next Home International?” 

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