Congratulations to Sam Armstrong 44th Bay Country Open HOA Champion!
We were treated to a beautiful weekend of weather for the 44th Annual Bay Country Open, hosted at Talbot Rod & Gun Club June 10-12, 2016. A total of 50 shooters from the region participated in six events as spectators were treated to first-class shooting but it was Sam Armstrong of Hagerstown, MD who would claim top honors with a total score of 393 X 400. This marks the 4th BCO Championship for Armstrong who secured the championship in 2004, 2006 and 2007.
Festivities began Friday afternoon with the doubles event, the field was a bit light with only twelve participants for this challenging event but Alessandro Vitale of Glen Arm, MD would not be deterred and would post the top score of 99 X 100. Great shooting Alessandro! Friday night would conclude with delicious pizza prepared by our good buddy Carmine, owner of Rusticana Pizza in St. Michaels.
Saturday's events would include the 12 gauge event in the morning, followed by the 20 gauge event in the afternoon. While warm, the weather was superlative and made for great shooting by all competitors. At the completion of both events the shoot-offs began to settle the scores. In 12 gauge, Sam Armstrong, Dan Pardoe and Mark Gay would shoot off their perfect 100-straight scores but it would be Gay of Mount Airy, MD that would take the title. Way to break 'em Mark! A shoot-off would not be required for the 20 gauge championship as Sam Armstrong held the lone 100-straight but Vitale, Gay and Tommy Johnson would shoot-off 99's for runner-up. In the end it would be Vitale who would take those honors. Saturday's events would be capped with a wonderful roast pork dinner prepared by Talbot's own grill-master Marion Gannon. A big thank you to Marion and the rest of the Talbot crew for putting on a great feed.
As tradition and luck would have it, going into the sub-gauges on day-3 would bring on the challenging winds. While providing a little relief from the heat, gusty winds blew targets all over the place adding extra "sport" to the already tricky 28 gauge and 410 bore events...as if shooting the .410 wasn't enough to raise your hackles! The morning 28 gauge event would produce a trio of leaders having broken 98's. Alessandro VItale would again be in the top ranks joined by John Zema of Cliffwood, NJ and TRGC's very own David Lovelady! At the conclusion of the shoot-offs it would be John Zema who would take the 28 gauge championship. John would also claim the .410 bore championship shooting a lone high score of 97, an incredible feat in the blustery conditions!
Special congratulations go out to Talbot members David Lovelady and Brad Olson. Lovelady's 98 in the 28 gauge was not only his personal best but an incredible score for his inaugural 28 gauge outing, great shooting Dave! Brad Olson, having only shot a handful of registered events posted personal bests in 12, 20 and 28 gauge posting scores in the high 90's and tied his personal best in .410!
A big thank you goes out again to all of the Talbot members who volunteered their time loading houses, preparing food and in general keeping things organized and running. A very special thank you to Paul Bergere, Frank Divilio and Brian Wegener for your efforts. Thank you to our referees and our trap mechanic Dominic. And a very extra special thank you to Gloria without whom these events would be a complete unorganized mess! Thank you all and thank you to our sponsors whose support ensures that we can continue to host these events.
HOA: Sam Armstrong 393 x 400 HAA: Sam Armstrong 491 x 500 Doubles: Alessandro Vitale 12 Gauge: Mark Gay 20 Gauge: Sam Armstrong 28 Gauge: John Zema .410 Bore: John Zema