Bildeston clay pigeon shooter Aaron Harvey believes he is in the form of his career after retaining the British Junior Sportrap title on Sunday.
The 18-year-old, who also finished third overall among more than a thousand of the best shooters, was delighted with his success at Garlands Shooting Ground in Tamworth.
“I was chuffed,” said Harvey, who recently represented his home county Suffolk at both senior and junior level at the CLA Game Fair.
“It’s my highest achievement so far to finish third overall in such an elite competition. I beat Mark Winser to go into the shoot off joint first overall and then finished in third.”
Harvey’s impressive performance at the British Open caps a memorable few weeks, which included missing just one target to score 119 out of 120 to win the Amabassador Services and Essex Gun Super Sporting title.
After beating 26-time world champion George Digweed MBE by two clear clays to lift the trophy, Harvey continued his fine run of form to win the junior title at Southdown Gun Club by scoring 94 out of 100.
While representing Suffolk, Harvey took fifth in the seniors and second in the juniors, with the teenager thrilled with his achievements in 2015.
“My targets I set were in the World Championship, English Championship and British Championship,” he said.
“I finished runner-up in the Worlds in Florida in April, and was also runner-up in the English Championship in June.
“I just won the British title, and to also finish third overall when I wasn’t even thinking about finishing there, shows how far I’ve progressed.
“It’s the best form I’ve been in and I’m at the top of my game at the moment. Hopefully I can keep maintaining the standard I’m at, which will be difficult.”
Harvey’s average has been consistently in the 90s over the last three months, and the Bildeston youngster puts it down to a change of job.
“When I was working as a shooting coach I was shooting every day,” he explained. “It became more of a chore rather than a hobby for me.
“I’ve now got a job as a scaffolder which means I’m shooting less, which is making me more keen to shoot when I get the time to.”