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Echuca shooters bring home titles

Four Echuca Clay Target Club members won four of six championships on offer in Tasmania on the weekend.

GEORDIE COWAN January 29, 2014 4:04am

Four Echuca Clay Target Club members were on fire at the Tasmanian State Trap Shooting Carnival at the weekend.

Steve Haberman, Rob Viney, Craig Fitzgerald and Stephen Atkins competed at Evandale, near Launceston, winning four of the six state titles on offer.

‘‘Between the four of us, we pretty much cleaned up,’’ Atkins said.

Haberman, who lives in Geelong, battled for a day and a half to win the state double barrel championship.

He shot 745 consecutive targets in a long shoot-off to gain the victory, while Atkins finished fifth after missing his 380th target.

The Tasmanian title follows up Haberman’s two Victorian titles at Echuca two months ago.

Echuca club president Atkins said prevailing in such an event mainly came down to concentration.

‘‘You must concentrate at 100 per cent for every target, because as soon as you lose it, you miss one,’’ he said.

‘‘You have to have a certain level of expertise, but it comes down to concentration.’’

Tongala resident Atkins won the Tasmanian double rise championship, being the only shooter to hit all 50 targets and also claimed the overall high gun with 374/380.

‘‘For Steve to shoot all 50 targets in the double rise was just incredible,’’ Tasmanian Clay Target Association president Cheryl Arnol said.

A runner-up AA grade finish in the state single barrel with 71/72 wrapped up his weekend.

Ballendella’s Viney won the Tasmanian State Point Score Championship after he hit all 210 of his targets, while Echuca’s Fitzgerald was runner-up in AA grade of the same event.

Fitzgerald also came fourth overall in the state handicap event.

‘‘To win four titles out of six, not just for Victoria but to one club is fantastic,’’ Atkins said.

Arnol said the association was always pleased to welcome visitors to the state championships, which attracted 154 shooters.

‘‘From a Tasmanian perspective, we absolutely love having the Echuca members and indeed the Victorian members come down. It’s just great,’’ she said.

Atkins said the club welcomed any new members, with coaching available. Inquiries to Atkins on 0458311279.

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