Leah Southall battles through

Leah Southall continues to stock her trophy cabinet despite suffering with aches and pains.

Leah had a successful shoot at Nottingham despite suffering with back pain

At the beginning of November, I travelled up to East Yorkshire Clay Shooting Ground for the second shoot of their Winter Series. Despite having the onset of tonsillitis and not feeling 100 per cent – it is winter after all! – I still decided to shoot and not let anyone down by pulling out of the squad. I didn’t get the result I would have liked, but I gave it my all and nothing more can be asked.

The following Sunday, the 10th, I shot the first Gamebore Winter Series at Mid Wales Shooting Centre. This was Remembrance Sunday, and at 11 o’clock, the ground fell silent as we paid our respects to the servicemen and women who gave their lives serving our country. 

As for my shooting, my first two lines went really well as I shot two rounds of 24/72. However, as the sun started to drop, it cast a shadow over the trap house. The clays looked black when they first came out, then suddenly flashed orange as they went into the sunlight.

I still managed to shoot 94/279, but I would have liked to have shot a bit better. I’m putting it down to experience and will take away many lessons – one of them being that, in the Winter, I should shoot earlier than 1 o’clock!

A trip to Mid Wales saw Leah retain the R&J Cox perpetual trophy

The next week I was back at Mid Wales Shooting Centre to shoot the Coed-Y-Sarnau monthly shoot. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to shoot many of these this year due to other commitments, but it was important that I went to that shoot as I had to take back the trophy that I won last year.

I shot a 15-straight to make it into the shoot-off, which I won by shooting the only 10-straight – meaning that I have won the R&J Cox Perpetual Challenge Cup for the second year running!

I was delighted to hear that Laporte-CPC are sponsoring me for another year. Their support is invaluable as it helps me train with consistently good targets and on a regular basis. This will be my fourth year sponsored by this fantastic company and I hope to make them proud for the 2020 season.

As if that wasn’t enough, I was over the moon to receive a phone call from the CPSA telling me that I had been shortlisted for the Young Shot of the Year award. Thank you to those who nominated me for this award – it means the world to me! The awards ceremony takes place on 1 February at the Belfry, and I am really looking forward to the evening.

Leah was delighted to have her Laporte-CPC sponsorship confirmed for another year

Towards the end of the month I travelled to Nottingham & District Gun Club for the John Bates DTL Memorial Shoot. I was in agony with my back the whole day. I took painkillers, and they kicked in on the last line – which showed as I shot a 25/74.

Even so, I hadn’t shot my best, and I took away another valuable lesson – when I am in pain with my back, take the painkillers before I leave the house, and not when I get to the ground! Despite this, I still managed to come first in A Class and first in Juniors, which I was very pleased with.

I am now looking forward to what the rest of the East Yorkshire Clay Shooting Ground Winter Series has to hold.

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