Friday, July 18, 2014
I'm flying out on July 22 to Glasgow out of Vancouver with stops in Toronto and Dublin. I'll get in to Glasgow in the afternoon and day of the Commonwealth Games opening ceremonies. Between YVR, YYZ, DUB, and GLA I'll need to get some sleep in because it'll probably be pretty hectic and non-stop once I arrive on the afternoon of the 23rd.
All schedule and results info will be on the Glasgow 2014 website and here is a direct link to the shooting schedule. I'm scheduled to shoot on the 26th and it will be around midnight back in Pacific timezone if you plan to stay up and watch! ;)
Sunday, July 6, 2014
Arriving in Beijing I had 2 main themes I kept hearing from people who had been here before; the food and the air quality. So far the food has been amazing! The air quality though I noticed the moment I got off the plane and looked out the airport window (my 'window seat' on the plane had no actual window -- seat 19A on a 777). Smoggy and humid and irritating my throat. That was Day 1 and I was missing the fresh Pacific Northwest air and the blue skies!
You don't notice the hazy smog indoors too much in smaller rooms but if you go into large indoor spaces you can see the glowing haze around the lights. The indoor 10m range at the Beijing Shooting Range Hall is big enough where you can see it indoors.
|10m indoor range at the Beijing Shooting Range Hall|
Legacy venue from the 2008 Olympic Summer Games
I shot my 2nd best ISSF World Cup score to date, my best score being shot earlier this year at Fort Benning. I'm happy with the way I shot here in Beijing and definitely continue to learn a lot from other shooters and in my own discovery. You always want to do better but... on the international scene, I'm still very new having gotten half of my international competition experience within the last 4 weeks. I'm learning lots and will continue to adapt and make changes to improve my performance.
I've been able to make it out to do some sightseeing and planning on visiting a couple locations of the Great Wall tomorrow!
|Visited Tiananmen Square|
|At the Temple of Heaven|
A little over 2 weeks until the 2014 XX Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland! Great to hear that Canadian shooting legend Susan Nattrass was named Canada's flag bearer!
Friday, June 20, 2014
It's amazing to watch the top 8 finalists across various disciplines shoot in the ISSF World Cup finals. This is where the top 8 people out of the 100 or so trying to qualify start at 0 points and shoot until a champion is determined. I definitely pick up a lot just watching the top people compete in their disciplines.
|Women's 50m 3 positions Final|
I was able to do a bit of sightseeing in Germany, Italy, Austria, and Slovenia and have posted photos on various websites:
Feel free to follow me!
Friday, June 13, 2014
|Indoor 10m range 'looked' the most complete. This will be a really nice |
range when the elevator and balcony are all finished
|Outdoor 50m range was missing a few items earlier today|
Saturday, June 7, 2014
First stop after arriving in Munich is to the range to drop off our rifles and pistols at the armoury for storage during our time in Munich. It was at this point that we hit the second hiccup on our trip... after leaving our backpacks in the shuttle bus, thinking we would be quick to go in and pick up our accreditation and drop off our guns, the bus left without us to the host hotels. Noooo! Thanks to the helpful staff at the ISSF they were able to track down our things and bring them to our hotel the next day.
After taking in some sights it was back to business and one of the first things on my schedule was going through the open training time. During open training each country has reserved lanes for them to practice, and me being the only one from Canada representing 10m, I had the lane to myself. 20 shots in and I was very happy with my results. Awesome.
Next was getting the best H&N Finale Match pellets to use. This involves putting the airgun in a vice and shooting at targets with various tins of pellets from their manufacturing line. It turned out that Lot #40181 gave the best results so I picked up 20 tins (10,000 pellets) which will be enough to cover me for the rest of the competitions I'll be at this year. Back in Vancouver when I'm training, I'm less concerned about the best batch to use and just focus on training so I use the same brand but they're not tested. When shooting for a competition score at the international level, I want the best grouping I can get though so I keep these tested ones reserved for competitions.
|Results from my H&N pellet testing plus some extras that H&N included.|
Thanks H&N Sport!
I go through pre-event training on Tuesday and then shoot for score on Wednesday. You can see realtime scoring of all events on the ISSF Munich World Cup site and follow me on twitter at @alharding for more updates!
Monday, May 26, 2014
On June 12th we'll make the drive to Maribor, Slovenia for the World Cup stage there and then returning home about a week later. Busy busy!
Training has been going great lately with the new SIUS electronic scoring system I now have setup. It makes it great being able to shoot with the same electronic scoring system used at the World Cup and other international events.
|New SIUS electronic scoring on the left replaces my |
paper hand crank target system
I want to give special thanks to BC Target Sports for some funding earlier this year. That money went directly to helping purchase my flight for this Munich & Maribor trip. Thank you! Also would like to send a thank you out to Roy and Jeff at SIUS and Harvey at AGP! Thanks guys!
Saturday, March 29, 2014
I started out strong on my first 30 shots but I also burned through a lot of my time to do that. Shots 31-48 I felt the pressure of time ticking away and I let my performance slip a bit. Thanks to the SIUS electronic scoring you can see all all of my shots from the entire match here and complete results can be found on the ISSF website.
Two months for me to improve on my pacing and mental strategy to get ready for the World Cups in Munich, Germany and Maribor, Slovenia in June.
Also got to meet 1976 Olympic gold medalist Lanny Bassham today! Awesome!
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Normally I'd fly into this event on Thursday to give myself a full day before competing but with a busy work schedule and everything I cut my trip down by a day. I literally got off the plane and went straight to the venue and got in some pre-event training.
I had a tough time getting to sleep at a decent time thanks to the 3 hr time zone change. I think all in all I got maybe 4 hrs of sleep before shooting at 8am (5am to what I'm used to). My first of two matches went really well with my 60 shot series going 94, 94, 94, 95, 97, and ending with a 97 for a personal record tie of 571/600 -- which was the highest 10m men's score shot over the weekend! I shot a 571 in 2011 when I was here at the same event.
|Team BC took 1st place and I took the Gold in the Master class|
After shooting my 571 I spent the rest of the day in a High Performance Rifle and Pistol Clinic which was really useful and packed with lots of information. The main takeaways for me were from Dr. Kristine Dalton and her team from the The University of Waterloo School of Optometry and Vision Science. Vision in shooting sports are crucial and she covered topics such as ocular dominance, tear film quality, and vernier acuity. Awesome. Other great sessions were Dr. Demetry Assimakopoulos and Dr. Ceara Higgins on injury prevention and athletic performance (with Olympian Avianna Chao), Olympian Sharon Bowes on training at your best, Lou Pino talking about mindfulness training and the InteraXon Muse, and Steve Hunt, on developing consistency in performance.
My second day score was 558 which put me in first place after the two qualification matches. I ran into issues during the Finals which I should have prepared better for. Lesson here is to make sure you're current on rule amendments and find out from the officials if they're going to be following them. Important!
Our BC Team, consisting of Thomas Logan, John Berta, and me took 1st place!
Next up in the month of March is the BC Championships, City of Calgary Championships, and then the first stop on the 2014 ISSF World Cup tour in Fort Benning!
Monday, January 20, 2014
First up... some events in Canada:
- Feb 14-16: 2014 Canadian Airgun Grand Prix - Toronto, ON
- Mar 7-9: BC Airgun Championships - Richmond, BC
- Mar 14-16: City of Calgary Airgun Championships - Calgary, AB
Sunday, August 18, 2013
All of the results from the 2013 Canadian National Pistol Championships can be found on pistolcanada.ca. Here are the direct links to the 10m and 50m events I competed in. I just noticed that my BC teammate Edmond Lee and I had the most 'x' ring shots in both 10m and 50m events than anyone else!
All in all it was a great competition to be at and good for me to experience the new Finals format. Looking forward to doing some traveling with the Canadian Team in 2014!!
Taking a short break and will be back at it later this month.
Monday, August 5, 2013
Unfortunately after Finals I dropped down to 7th. This was my first time shooting the new Finals format which is definitely a lot more challenging than before. The format before took the top 8 shooters after the qualification relays and then added 10 more shots to their qualification total for an aggregate score. This usually resulted in few changes in the leader board. The new format however zero's out the top 8 finalists and they start over shooting 3 shots, then another 3, then 2 more with the person in last being eliminated, then 2 more shots and then another elimination. This goes on until there is only 1 person standing. Fun to watch as a spectator!
I'm definitely taking away some learnings from this event and will definitely add some "Finals" training into my schedule. It's one thing being able to go for the endurance of a full 60 shot match but it's a different beast to shoot the Finals with elimination threats after each of the 2 shot series.
The 50m event which I've been spending a bit more time is on Wed-Thu with open practice tomorrow evening. More updates to come!