Preparations on target as local rifle shooters gear up for national duties
Local rifle shooters have intensified training activities in preparation for the West Indies Fullbore Shooting Championships and executive members of the Guyana National Rifle Association (GNRA) are pretty confident of carting off the spoils.
Several countries will pit their skills over several days, October 7-15, in what should be fierce rivalry for top honours. Executive members of the GNRA have put all the modalities in place for a successful tournament and are beseeching the intervention of corporate Guyana to ensure that the competition is successfully staged.
Yesterday afternoon, several members of the executive body of the subject association convened a meeting at Olympic House, High Street, Georgetown to brief the media of issues relating to the imminent championships.
The forum was chaired by the entity’s Public Relations Officer, Troy Peters who was joined by Fullbore Captain, Mahendra Persaud, Secretary of the GNRA and the West Indies Fullbore Council, Ryan Sampson and Treasurer of the GNRA, Colonel Terrence Stuart.
Several countries will join the hosts and contest for the top prizes including Antigua and Barbuda, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Barbados and Bermuda.
Guyana will field an 8 member contingent that includes top shooters the likes of Paul Slowe, Ransford Goodluck and Persaud. Lennox Braithwaite, an experienced stalwart who had been out of international competitions for sometime is also making a grand return to the ranges. The executive group oozed confidence and Mr. Persaud said that this feeling is derived from the long hours of practice on the ranges.
Mr. Persaud said that at first he was a little uneasy of the team’s ability to outshine their competitors but after witnessing the local shooters on the ranges he is breathing much easier. The veteran shooter feels that as in previous competitions, their fiercest rival will most likely be Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. “Trinidad is most likely to field Norris Gomez and Justin Lall while Jamaicans, David Rickman and John Nelson has earned their reputations and could pose some problems,” said Mr. Persaud.
However, he said that the local team has been able to work together over the past weeks, and will gel as a unit on competition days. Notwithstanding his prognosis the Fullbore Captain affirmed that the local shooters would have to let their guns do the talking on the ranges.
Meanwhile, Colonel Stuart has joined Mr. Persaud in a plea for support from the corporate community. He said that the organizing committee is staring at expenditure of about $5M. He is grateful for the little acquired so far and extended gratitude to his benefactors including the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, Bank of Guyana, and Banks DIH Ltd. He is also awaiting responses from several other business entities.
The team has held the Short Range title for four consecutive years but relinquished those honours to Jamaica by a mere 2 points at the last championships. Their primary aim is to recoup this accolade, while adding others to their collection.