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Jess bang on target!

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By Euan Maxwell
Sport
Jess bang on target!

A LOCKERBIE pistol shooter was on target again, becoming a national champion in the process.

Jess Liddon won the British Ladies Air Pistol Championship with a final score of 238.2 and also claimed a new Scottish record as she continued her Olympic campaign.

Held at the National Shooting Centre in Bisley, Surrey, the British Airgun Championships took place over the weekend of February 26/27.

On day one of the tournament, Jess topped the women’s aggregate competition with the highest qualifying score, a small three points from her personal best.

The following day was the one to count however as the national title was up for grabs. Starting qualification at 8.30 am, Jess continued to deliver results and matched her score from the previous day of 565 to see her qualify in first place for the final.

With scores returned to zero, all eight qualified athletes started the final on a level playing field. Stage one of the final saw the competitors shoot two five-shot series, each in 250 seconds.

By the end of the two series, Jess had gained the narrowest possible lead on her competitors, 0.1 points ahead to take into stage two of the final.

The second stage of the final is where the knockouts begin to happen. Shooting individual shots in 50 seconds, the lowest scoring athlete after every two shots is knocked out until the final two remain.

With clapping, cheering and even jeering, the remaining two athletes shoot two final shots to determine the gold and silver medals.

Scoring two near perfect shots of 10.7 in the last two shots, Jess stamped her authority to claim the gold medal, finishing a large 4.6 points ahead of silver.

The result is a testament to Jess’ hard work and dedication, having recently moved back to Dumfries and Galloway in an effort to benefit her training programme.

Jess does the majority of her training in the area, making use of the fantastic facilities the community has to offer whilst also having access to world class coaching and training facilities in Budapest to complement the day-to-day work she does back home.

The season is almost in full swing for Jess now and next weekend will see her travel back down to Surrey to compete at the first Great Britain selection trial with the goal of selection to compete in the World Cup series held over the summer.

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