Clay shooting 'more fun than golf'

May 10, 2004|by BRIAN SHAPPELL

CLEAR SPRING - It's like golfing with a shotgun, said Ron Nobles of the Izaak Walton League of America, Washington County Chapter, describing the sporting clays fun shoot Sunday.

Halfway's Janet Gigeous, taking advantage of the free round for all mothers Sunday, called it "a lot more fun than golf."

On Sunday, the Izaak Walton League of America held its second of six fun shoot events of the year at its Independence Way property, near the Hagerstown Speedway.


Nobles, the sporting clays committee chairman, said there are 10 stations along the fun shoot route, which is run with more lenient rules than the strict, nationally-sanctioned shoots held at other locations.

"The scoring is a little more relaxed," he said. "There's no competition really, nothing at stake."

Nobles said the sporting clays fun shoots are reminiscent of golfing because of the changing looks at the targets and surrounding scenery. He said some clubs even provide golf carts to get around their terrain.

Robert O. Lawrence Sr., a club member for about three decades, said, like golf, the main objective is improving, regardless of the makeup of your group of shooters.

"Most of us just shoot against ourselves," said Lawrence, who hit 34 of 50 targets. His tally Sunday was two short of his personal best, which he shot last year.

Lawrence was bested in his group by Mark Dom, a member since the 1980s, who hit 35 clay targets. Dom said he attended the shoot because he enjoys sporting clays and because it helps support the well-run club.

"It gives you everything you need in hunting," Dom said. "They try to give you every possible situation you would face."

Dom said the course also is good for beginners because it is not too challenging for new members and novices.

"The idea is to keep them coming back, so they can enjoy themselves," Dom said.

Michael Wasiljov, a member for two months, said clay shooting was a lot more difficult than he thought it would be, but he still enjoyed his first fun shoot.

"You see people on TV and they make it look easy," said Wasiljov, who hit 10 of 50 targets.

Also hitting 10 of 50 was Gigeous, the only mother to take advantage of the free round. Gigeous said she attended the shoot with her husband to have something to do outdoors before celebrating Mother's Day later that day.

"We hadn't been there and wanted to do that course," she said. "It was a nice walk in the woods, basically, and the weather was gorgeous."

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