Your best and worst shots

What were your best or worst shots, remembered or admitted to?

To start the ball rolling I'll open with a day I'd rather forget! Many moons ago, I used to be a member of a small informal shoot in Warwickshire , beat one drive, stand & shoot one drive! Bags were anything from a dozen to about thirty birds on a really good day, so with between 16 & 20 of us shooting, not a great many shots fired! But good just to enjoy the fresh air & companionship!
One year I decided to treat myself & put in a bid on the BASC charity auction for a 200 bird driven day in Wiltshire. I was successful, paid me money & duly recieved details of date, time & venue! I was really looking forward to it and duly turned up at the appointed venue, taking with me a fairly new Browning rather than my usual tried & trusty Miroku, which showed its age a little. Was introduced to the other Guns by the shoot captain who had given the day to the BASC, all very friendly & companionable. After a quick cofee/sloe gin in the shoot hut we drew for pegs, I got 4, which I was informed was the Pound seat for the first drive.
It turned out to be in the middle of the old carriageway to the Old House (now demolished) on the estate. this was about 12-15 foot wide slightly sunk between two gently sloping banks about 6 to 8 foot high with an avenue of trees standing 6 to 10 feet back from the lip. The birds apparently would often fly down the middle of this at treetop height, so 80 - 120 feet up!
The drive starts, sure enough a nice cock pheasant shows itself about 100 or so yards in front coming straight for me, I raise the gun line up just behind it, swing the gun through the bird (thinking its nearly 40 yards up give it a bit of lead), bang, bugger, missed it, give it the second barrell, bang, **** it missed again! Thinks, "must give the next one more lead" . This happens for the next ten or so birds that were lucky enough to present themselves over me on that peg. Me wishing a ******* great hole would open up & swallow me to put me out of my misery, as hardly any other guns had shots except my neighbouring guns who had wiped my eye a few times!
Cutting a long story short, I think I managed to hit 2 birds on other drives, but my confidence was shot to buggery & despite being polite to me the disdain of the other guns for my marksmanship at lunch was palpable!
I decided to go to a shooting school to see what was up with my shooting! I chose the "Royal Berkshire" as it wasn't too far away! After the instructor had watched a few shots (which I missed), I was informed that I was missing in front of the bird! Probably because after years shooting infrequently on a small shoot, and having been advised after missing to "give it more lead"!
The lessons were successful & I went on to regain my confidence and knock a fair few birds down subsequently!!
Best shot, high pigeon moving right to left at 80 yards.

Worst shot (s), an ND with a 5 round burst of 7.62mm into a group of Afghan school kids.
not being one for shooting fings that fly ,but love taking the odd pheasant or grouse with one of my hawks or falcons, in 1986 after moving back to UK
I was invited to a weekend hunt on a very well known estate near carnforth, at the time I was babysitting a very neglected Stein Adler, the german
genus of the golden eagle, she hadnt been flown a lot in the previous 2 years and could be a really nasty turkey with big feet, I took her along because
on the sunday she might get a chance at the odd fox.As luck had it she got a chance at a really old vixen, who was in the open, Iput her up and she
was off, the vixen made a beeline for an old blackthorn hedge with the eagle hot in pursuit, the fox shot under the hedge , eagles though very graceful
on high , in pursuit have no brakes , so 10 seconds later we had a spreadeagle wrapped round the hedge, she freed herself and dropped to the ground
I called her back to fist, for a couple of minutes she gave me the finger, and then decided to fly back to me or so I thought!!, as she approached I
raised my glove, she stooped and ignored the glove , and kinghit the yorkshire terrier which the lady of the manor was bringing to look at the big bird.
The eagle mantled up and proceeded to rip said dog to bits, to cut a long story short I was never invited again!!
Best shot, my first cock bird that was escaping the line. Hit with a single barrel .410 at the age of 12 standing with my grandad.

Worst shot. Walking through woods on a vermin clear up with brother in law, spot squirrel! reach into pocket fumbling, select 2 cartridges and load. mount...... click...... nothing. Wait the obligatory 30 seconds before breaking the gun. Squirrel now disappeared into cannopy! On looking realised that I'd loaded snap caps without realising it!!! Tit!!!
Best: Windy day, crow sitting in a tree going up and down. Perfect timing had a pellet from my air rifle putting it on the floor dead.
Worst: Saturday, fired a shot from the 12g to roust the pigeons off the crop. Showing off I didn't bother placing the gun in my shoulder but rather fired from the hip..
My best shot: (and also my worst)

With a Ruger 10/20T whilst stalking rabbits.

Because of the wind direction I had a very low crawl to a culvert with a good FoF overlooking the warren. Halfway to the culvert I noticed that most of the bunnies had suddenly been spooked and had run for the warren entrance. This was annoying as I was sure they couldn't have seen me. I was about 150 yards away, when through my scope I saw one slowly heading towards the warren. I fired twice. When I reached my target I discovered a tortoise shell cat with two .22 holes in it's head.

Mrs. B.... M......... I'm very sorry about 'Jasper', but if it's any consolation he died quickly, doing what he loved best.
Using L42 on sniper cadre at Balmoral Castle with the Head Stalker 400yd hind dropped, When asked by the Stalker if I had shot a deer before he was told that " He usually uses a Shotgun and Solid Shot" by the Instructor.

Worst Bergan Hohne 30 mil firing camp, worst case of trunnion tilt ever seen!!.
Best: Targets exposed for 1.5 seconds 3 times, on each exposure - target 1 one on the body one on the head, target 2 one on the head. Possible high = score 3 * 3 hits. Did it.

Worst: COPEX at Sandown, missed the target at 5 yards with an MP5.............I wished the ground had opened up.


Book Reviewer
Best shoot.

One evening in Uncle Tom's Cabin and the City Club, Paderborn. Pulled a local girl's aunt (her husband was away selling insurance). Spent the night up to me nuts in guts.

0600 and walk in the twilight back across Paderborn to barracks, quick shave and into combat jackets and lightweights and an SMG Shoot-To-Kill in Sennelager in the November snow. In between sleeping off me hangover in the back of a Land Rover I scored 54/52. ISTR the Marksman score was 49, which I often achieved. Result. I do know that the bloke in the next lane got a very poor score.


Years later (1989) having transferred out of the cavalry into the shiny-arrse RAPC. I'd shot for them and taken trophies most years at Corpsaam (travelling with the team from BAOR fully tooled up one year: caused a stir on the Townsend-Thoresen ferry out of Zeebrugge). My notice went in in August 1988 and by April 1989 (or whenever Corpsaam was) I was into just about my last full month of service in between resettlement courses etc. In January I had done my last ever military course, SA80 conversion at Pirbright. Not because I needed to but because the course was on, a week away from my desk, lunches in the Sergeants' Mess and it was my only chance to fire the Army's sparkly new rifle before leaving.

Come Corpsaam and the QM is banging on my desk to get me to participate and up the standard of the RAPC team. Much as I loved converting live rounds into empty cases throughout my career, I really wanted to give it a miss this time. I told the QM I'd do Corpsaam but only if he let me have an SA80 to do it with. I knew he wouldn't: RAPC Worthy Down only had six SA80s for attached clerks on courses to stag on with. I was wrong. He so wanted me to play that he let me take one of his precious SA80s, to be returned clean by guard mounting each day. Can you see yet how daft this was? I get my rifle zeroed then overnight some snotty-nosed clerk is lumping it around camp on stag.

I'll be honest, I did my best, but I have this vague idea the range staff didn't put me on an SA80 lane and as we all know, plywood Figure 11s do not fall when hit by 5.56mm. Epic fail.

Still, I was out of all competitions by midday Wednesday so I could get back to me desk.
Worst, neatly removing the lower jaw of a rabbit at some 40 yards. The poor thing did not move, just sat there with blood dripping from what was left and red bubbles from the nose.

Best, second shot at said rabbit, neatly putting a .22 straight through its skull and killing it stone dead after allowing for wind deviation.
Best shot, high pigeon moving right to left at 80 yards.

Worst shot (s), an ND with a 5 round burst of 7.62mm into a group of Afghan school kids.
Nice about the Pigeon, an underated quarry to my way of thinking! Not sure if your incident with the Afghan kiddies was a joke or not? Did you bag any or were any just pricked?
Nice about the Pigeon, an underated quarry to my way of thinking! Not sure if your incident with the Afghan kiddies was a joke or not? Did you bag any or were any just pricked?
Apologies Ex, the ditty about the ND was a wee joke.

The calibre was 5.56 not 7.62.
Some very interesting posts, on both rifles & shotguns, lets have a few more please.
Ok, with me again, to go back very many moons ago in the NRP, I was handy with the old Lee Enfield .303, but my favourite weapon then was the old Bren gun, I qualified as Marksman in training school & managed to maintain that rating on each subsequent annual shoot! A great weapon, if almost too accurate for a Machine gun!
Best shot, was across the face of a very pretty black girl who took it out of her mouth and without warning got a face full.

Worst shot, putting a .22 round in the floor about six foot in front of me in the rapid stage of the 1992 Army v England pistol match, costing us the day.
As a young full screw I was serving in NI. A lad in the same unit invited me to a (civvie) clay pigeon shoot on the outskirts of Lisburn to a place where he was a member.

We both duly turned up and my mate loaned me an old 12 bore SBS for the forthcoming activities. When it was my turn to fire I loaded two cartridges and closed the gun. At that point, both barells went off at once and I was uncerimoniously thrown off the range.

The **** had loaned me an incredibly fucked weapon.
Not quite a bad shot, but my stupidity caused me to drop a clutch of points.

Army v RAF i think around 93, there was a centrefire & standard pistol event. Standard pistol in the morning, all well, on going to bomb up .32 mags in the afternoon it became apparent that I'd left my FAS magazines on the bedside table at home 280 miles away.

Luckily, I had a beautiful P.08 luger in the box, so did a full course of centrefire pistol with it with factory 9mm.

Granted it wasn't the best score of the day, but it wasn't the worst, cost me a few crates though as we stood a chance against the crabs for once.
Best shot: Shot a crow at 50 metres with my old BSA .22 air rifle. Said crow was sitting on the chimney pot, dropped straight down the pot (open fire apparently....)

Worst shot: firing an M16 on full auto from the hip at a large iguana 5 paces away. Lots of dust and noise but totally missed the bloody thing.

Maybe I should stick to my .22 BSA
Best shot: Skeet shooting, double bird from station No.2 - high and low birds cross in the middle as I let fly, and both disintegrate in a perfect cloud of dust. YES! even did a little Tom Cruise in Tropic Thunder dance to celebrate...

Worst shot: Following the above, I aim to demonstrate to my mate (who was new to skeet) how I had achieved that superhuman feat of Bill Codie marksmanship by launching a double for show which point the high and low bird collided in the middle, in a perfect cloud of dust...

...fuckin' gutted.

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