Aussie selection for Nick Ward

AUSSIE SELECTION: Glen Innes shooter Nick Ward receiving the trophy from Rod Madeley for his first place on the final day of Australian qualifyers. Photo: Ian Thompson.
AUSSIE SELECTION: Glen Innes shooter Nick Ward receiving the trophy from Rod Madeley for his first place on the final day of Australian qualifyers. Photo: Ian Thompson.

Nick Ward will line up in the Australian International Rimfire Benchrest team for the second time after he surged home in the qualifying rounds. 

Ward started his campaign in March for the first round of competition and finished in ninth, holding on to a possible place in the national team. 

Three teams are selected for the World IRB Championships, an A, B and C team made up of the top nine shooters. 

On October 21 and 22, the second round of qualifying got underway in Coffs Harbour and it didn’t start off as Ward planned. 

Windy conditions hampered his performance on the first day but he made his comeback on the second day to win with two perfect 250/250 score cards. 

“People who aren't familiar with our 22 benchrest shooting, the wind affects the bullet quite dramatically,” he said. 

“Even though they are travelling reasonably quickly, they are still affected by the wind, so you have got to read the wind conditions and you hold off to an area to target and then you are letting the wind blow the bullet where you want it to go. 

“Then in the first day of the second qualifier, I didn't shoot poorly, just not as well as you would hope. I finished the day in 11th. 

“The second day I was a lot better and picked it a lot better and only ended up dropping two shots.

“I won the second day and that put me third overall for the weekend and then, when you added the two qualifying shoots together, I ended up in sixth. I was reasonably happy with my last day. It got me into the team which was the goal but you don't always expect it.”

His sixth position ensured him a position on the Australian B team at the next World Championships. 

Ward said the date and location are yet to be decided but he is pleased to be wearing the green and gold. 

“We are just waiting on some details to come through on when and where it is but at this stage they are talking Spain in July next year,” he said. 

“They try and give us a bit of time because we are not funded. It's not like the Australian swimming team where they get funding or sponsorship, so essentially you fund your own trips.”