Shoot report: Nth Island & New Zealand COMPAK champs 2013
It is with great satisfaction that I get to write this report. Marua Sporting Clays held the 2013 NZCTA COMPAK champs at our ground in Te Kopuru, south west of Dargaville on the 8-9-10th November.
Some 118 shooters from New Caledonia, Australia and NZ assembled early Friday morning in a slightly chilly and windy paddock to shoot the 100 target Nth Island Championship. A paddock transformed into what resembled a fairground next to a large pond greeted the shooters. The four fields were set in close proximity around a central area where the crowd could get food, shelter and fresh coffee and peruse the Wailing Wall.

The biggest feature of the fields was the large pond, over which two fields were shot. The other two fields were set over a paddock and gully, with challenging targets from a high tower and a lot of “below your feet” presentations. The targets for the Fri were set to challenge, but not beat the shooters, and many a high score was returned. HOA for the day was Grant Barton from Australia, with a score of 95, closely followed by Brian Deadman & Mark Vessey on 94, Brian taking 1st AA from Mark in a shoot off.
As evening fell, the target setters went about their work and reset the fields for the first day of the big show, the NZ Champs.
Saturday morning dawned much the same as Friday, the wind making a nuisance of itself again. The course is only a kilometer or so from the west coast, so wind is almost always a factor at Marua, but it was a consistent wind and the targets were not affected in an unreliable fashion, so fair for everyone.
The schedule called for shooting to start 8am sharp each morning, the course setters had been out since 6am fine tuning the targets and shooting started on time. A unique feature of this event was the use of volunteer referees, the plan was that no shooter had to worry about refereeing the following squad, this system worked well for the most part, we did struggle a little at times, mainly on Sunday, but thanks to some great sports, shooters pitched in when there was a need and all went very smoothly. Whilst it meant a lot of work for the volunteers, I think this system made for a stress free shoot from the competitors perspective. Maybe a consideration for future shoots, Food for thought.
As the day progressed, scores coming in were similar to Friday’s and some fine shooting, including a few splashes of red i.e. 25’s were coming in, the competition was tight, but one shooter in particular was on a mission!!
I can’t go on without mentioning the food. The ladies in the food department were cooking up a storm, Hot mutton, salads & a new taste sensation for “out of towner’s”, the Kumara “Yummo’s” were going out the window at a great rate. With the wind blowing and the sun shining, the marquees were full of happy faces, all tucking in to what can only be described as a sumptuous feast of local delights!!
Saturday evening brought the NZ vs. Australia Team shoots. The graded teams shot on their own field separate from the Open teams. Australia triumphed in the Open match, New Zealand taking the graded match.
Sunday morning dawned and yet again the target setters were out sorting last minute changes and tweaks. The club had invited (Begged) Craig Matthews to be the overall target setter for this event, ably assisted by our friends from Wanganui and Waikato. Craig is widely respected for his ability to throw targets that both test the best, but allow the rest to enjoy them as well. He showed this with the fact that most were shooting very well, with some excellent scores in the grades, not just the top grades either.
Sunday’s challenge was to put the acid on the shooters, as is expected on the final day of the National Champs, but still allow the whole field to come away satisfied that they had a fair chance at every target. Whilst I wasn’t shooting, from my vantage point in the referee’s chair, I think the team achieved their objective. No doubt the scores were lower, but I didn’t hear anyone say there was a target that wasn’t fair.
As the afternoon progressed, the final scores were coming in, and it was apparent that one shooter in particular had put in his best effort, and had moved out in front of the pack. Whilst final scores were tallied by the crack team in the office, (Thanks Maureen & Teresa), we had a shoot off for the people who entered and paid early. $1000 cash donated by Alimax Truck Bodies & Derek Morgan Limited was split 6 ways and I think young Graham Welch would have enjoyed spending his part of that cash, as long as Dad didn’t get his hands on it!!
A few shoot offs were required to settle accounts, and prize giving proceeded forthwith.
As mentioned, one shooter really had his game face on over the weekend, and congratulations go to Mark Vessey for a supreme effort in taking HOA with a stellar 193/200. A 9 target buffer between Mark and the rest of the field led by Brian Deadman on 184 shows the magnitude of Mark’s efforts.
Prize giving went smoothly with a large prize table and medals for the winners. I must thank our headline sponsors in Hunting & Fishing Dargaville & Target Products, along with a very special thank you to the local community who really got behind the club with cash donations for prizes, loaning of baches for accommodating the out of town volunteers, and last but not least their time helping with the set up, refereeing and packing up after the event. This community is very special, and the club is eternally grateful for their generosity, it made the event very special for everyone.
To the shooters, we extend a warm thank you for spending your time with us, there were mumblings of discontent early on about coming to a far away place like Dargaville, but I’m sure now, you will look back with affection on an event that really did show off the best Northland has to offer.
Last, but not least, Thank You to Bruce & Judy McKenzie & Bob & Cheryl Smith, whose generosity in allowing Marua Sporting Clays to reside on their property made all this possible. Without supporters like these, Sporting clays in NZ would be all but non-existent.

3 Comments to “2013 NZ Compak”

  1. Ron Madden says:

    Congratulations on a supurb event. The fact that none of the Marua members, all dedicated Sporto’s, did not shoot but wanted to run the event said it all really. That discontent was only from those who don’t understand the Sporting shooters way, and should be dismissed out of hand though one or two should have known better!! For me shot badly (as always)but enjoyed every minute of my trip North to the bad lands.

  2. Paul Hedwig says:

    I had a fantastic weekend thanks Marua although by the look of my final results I should have stayed home!
    I’m beginning to hate Craig!
    your team is to be commended, its hard enough to run one of these events when you have a club house storage sheds, kitchen and bathroom facilities without doing it the hard way like you guys, on a green field site. Well done and thanks for the great hospitality.

  3. David Mack says:

    This was my first time north of Auckland and I really enjoyed it. A most memorable three days. Thanks to all the organisers and sponsors and if you host another big shoot count me in. I would like to second the comments about the volunteer referees. I realise that it involves very selfless commitment from a number of people to organise and I offer my sincere thanks to all who stepped up, it really was much appreciated.