GUN hawk Dimity Boydell went into the national clay target shooting competition with guns blazing, and came out on top with a win for the NSW Ladies Team.
“We were all very excited and overjoyed. There were lots of hugs between the players,” she laughed.
Dimity headed to the 2018 Trap Nationals at Wagga Wagga on March 17, to represent the NSW Ladies Team at the weeklong shooting competition.
“There were teams from each state, each with three shooters,” Dimity said.
Dimity had never met her team mates before the big day, but the women quickly fell into the groove of things, taking home a near perfect score.
Each team member had to shoot 25 targets, each valued at three points.
”The gun you’re shooting with has two barrels. If you shoot the target on the first go, that’s three points. If you miss the first shot, but hit the target with the second round, that’s two points. If you miss completely, that’s zero points.”
Only two targets were shot on the second barrel, the rest on the first go.
“We scored 223 out of 225 points. The next closest result from the team was 219,” Dimity said.
It is the second time Dimity has competed on the national level, her first foray back in 2008 at Roma. Clyde Mitchell also went in to compete for the NSW Veterans Team, and placed third.
Despite the first time win for Dimity at the regional round, there was little time for celebrations.
“The Saturday we arrived, everyone shot for their teams. For the next six days we were playing for ourselves, competing for a place on the Australian team,” Dimity said.
Poor weather conditions with averse winds played a role in Dimity missing out on top spot.
“I didn’t perform as well as I could have, and that’s disappointing.”
Though, she said the feeling of self-disappointment was widespread.
“The scores didn’t reflect the calibre of shooters. Everyone should have been shooting more targets, but the majority of people struggled with the conditions.”
She also admitted the weeklong competition was straining.
“I normally shoot in clay target competitions that last the weekend. This was a seven day ordeal, which is a lot different: it drains a lot more of your mental and physical strengths.”
She said she would also like to work on her posture, explaining her handle on the gun changed throughout the course of the week.
“Holding your gun for a long period of time, your arm begins to get tired.”
Slight disappointment aside, the week was a win on many levels.
Out of the 790 shooters that competed, 120 were women. Dimity says the figure illustrates the growing popularity with women.
“When I was shooting at Wagga Wagga, I heard that the highest application for firearms came from women. The sport is definitely gaining momentum.”
Even so, she said certain aspects were still lagging behind.
“It is more difficult for a woman to get sponsorship from someone to pay for their equipment. There was a woman who was an incredible shooter who didn’t have a sponsor. The men that shot on her level, had sponsors.”
She said equipment costs could be expensive, only adding more stress to the shooter.
“There was this idea that women at the shooting competition were only following their husbands. Now they’re starting to recognise women are taking up the sport for their enjoyment.”