Saturday 27th August

Another lie in! 0730 setting on the alarm clocks. 1½ hours later than we have become accustomed to. A quiet day on the roads, being Saturday. Got to the range in 10 minutes. An hour to prepare for the Canada match. Coaches quietly chatting to their firers getting/discussing zeroes, bearing in mind that we haven't actually shot 300x at all on this tour.

“All targets up!” was sent at 0900. Teams from Canada, GB, the US, Bermuda, GB and Canadian U25's all set for a Queens 2 course. Another lovely morning with the promise of some warmth as the day progressed – very light winds, only detectable on the mirage, nothing on the flags.

A timely reminder from the Captain that a team can lose at 300x but not win. How many teams have you seen shoot poorly at the first distance and then have to play “catch up”, often unsuccessfully?
GB shot well, 1 point dropped, 57 v's scored. Canada were 2 off and 43 V's. The USA this year does not have strength in depth and suffered with 7 away and 51 V's.

Once on the 500x point, Bertrand Pratt, our ever-reliable range officer gathered all the team captains together to propose starting earlier than the shooting programme stated. All were in agreement, so we gained about 10 minutes. Wind conditions much the same, but as the temperature increased, so did the number of “stops” as the coaches waited for something they could work with. By the end of the 500x stage, GB had dropped a further 4 points to Canada's 5. The US did very well, dropping only 1 point at the distance.

At 600x by the time the Vice Captain (last man down on the right) was starting his shoot, we were 5 points up on Canada. Warby was not aware of this, so he took his time and put in an immaculate 50.10. Final scores were GB 1193.156, Canada 1188.121 and the US 1183.125. Kelvin walked off the range with a smile and a 150.25, beating Kent Reeve on count back for top score on the day.

Whilst writing about our American colleagues, though I have not regularly been mentioning any of JJ Jackson's “Jj isms”, he did come out with a good one yesterday. He'd had a poor shoot (by his standards) and had a cranial-rectal insertion = his head was up his bottom.

Governor General's final. The DCRA have a slightly more “high tech” approach. A TV screen is mounted in a tent behind the firing point. As final scores come in, nothing happens, prior to the final results appearing, a Koala bear appears on the screen. Don't ask, we have no idea either...

The crowd knew who the winner was before the TV screen told us, just as I am sure that you know by now who won this year's final if you have been looking at the DCRA results/Facebook/Twitter etc. Our Vice Captain has had a fantastic tour, rarely venturing out of the bull's eye at any distance or day, either in Nova Scotia or here at Connaught. Warby won the Governor General's with a magnificent score of 300.34, the only full house. Des Vamplew 2nd on 299.38. Danny Coleman took 3rd on 299.36. The team took 6 of the top 10 places.

Wilde had a slight misadventure during his 900m shoot in the final. His personal sauna was requiring a bit of refrigeration, so he reached into his range bag and retrieved an ice cold bottle of water which he intended pouring down his neck. Being an international marksman, he missed and hit the back of his hat, which duly funnelled the water neatly into his action. Hopefully it will all have dried out by the time he gets to Brisbane.

The Captain has already planned another barbeque tonight, given the success of the last one, this should prove an ideal way of starting off our evening.

It is a distinct possibility that the team will be celebrating hard tonight. The “young uns” are threatening to go clubbing, they will probably fall in amongst bad company. Team medics will need to have their rehydration regime worked out for the morning for those with sore heads.

Packing, clearing up the hut and all the housekeeping chores await us tomorrow before our flight out of Ottawa back to Heathrow tomorrow night.