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buze - I share your suspicions. Some posts seemed deliberately provocative, appearing to tempt members to make a libelous comment. Ironically, one fitting into that category has been deleted by one of the newcomers. 

After a swift foray onto this Forum and failing to get the desired response, they seem to have retreated. I also share JJsdad's thoughts that there will be no explanation forthcoming.

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27 minutes ago, JJsDad said:

I have followed this rather distasteful saga for the last 6 months, since Northwood first announced the disqualification way back in the late summer of last year. I no longer shoot competitiive clays, having dropped out of my local club and sold my dedicated clay gun  some years ago. I now prefer game shooting with long term friends who shoot for pleasure and the companionship rather than mixing with the pros trying to earn a living from the clay circuit and coaching at any cost. However, I do casually follow whats going on and how guns, cartridges, skills and shooting grounds have progressed in the clay scene over the years. The above erudite post sums up my thoughts about this sad saga totally, however my reservations class me as a `hater` by his fanboys, if I dare express my view that this matter has done clay shooting per se no favours.

We shouldnt be raking over what he did as a rugby layer, and was subsequently found not guilty. Thankfully, down to our astute set of moderators the `fan boys` or mischief makers who made a brief appearance have been outed, and if anyone was hoping for a further revealing response from them, you live in cloud cuckoo land.

Will the discredited individual come clean on this matter on an open forum ? As they say in my neck of the woods; `you are having a laugh`.

The truth, as always will slowly come out. However, if you are expecting a baring of souls exclusive to Pigeon Watch, you are in for a long wait.

 

Don't leave, we all know the truth and one Day someone will have a bigger solicitor. 

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You know guys, there's one thing that makes me sad. And it's only indirectly related to this drama. I haven't been shooting for 20 years like all of you guys, but since we've started, I always felt that the "community" was a safe place to be -- we've all been vetted *by the police* after all, and I always assumed that loosing one's ticket because of lack of honesty was the worst thing that can happen to a shooter. *I* certainly know I felt **** when I picked up my first 3 points for speeding last year. "good character" and all.

I felt I could leave my wallet on the table at the shooting ground and come back and find it there. I always felt I would never have to lock my car on a shooting ground. Even if the people I don't like on the forum are there. I assume honesty.

And now, I can't. It's not just the topical guy we're discussing here, it's also the groupies -- it means there's a CROWD of people who are willing to cheat or accept it, or support it themselves, or try to manipulate, consciously, other people.

So it's not just 'competition' is that is getting corrupted, it's pretty much everyone who shoots who is affected. Of course I'm not a dreamer, I'm not expecting everyone to be completely squeaky clean all the time, but really this discussion is about people who are mingling in *organised* cheating, repeatedly. Or at the worst, trying to facilitate it because if you look at it, if you help a cheater knowingly, *that makes you one*.

That's why you get to prison for selling stolen goods, even if you weren't involved in the crime itself.

 

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It has not been established - or at least made public knowledge - that anyone has actually been cheating. Several newbies seem to have gone out on a limb to dismiss that thought, but can't offer any explanation as to what exactly has transpired.

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8 hours ago, buze said:

You know guys, there's one thing that makes me sad. And it's only indirectly related to this drama. I haven't been shooting for 20 years like all of you guys, but since we've started, I always felt that the "community" was a safe place to be -- we've all been vetted *by the police* after all, and I always assumed that loosing one's ticket because of lack of honesty was the worst thing that can happen to a shooter. *I* certainly know I felt **** when I picked up my first 3 points for speeding last year. "good character" and all.

I felt I could leave my wallet on the table at the shooting ground and come back and find it there. I always felt I would never have to lock my car on a shooting ground. Even if the people I don't like on the forum are there. I assume honesty.

And now, I can't. It's not just the topical guy we're discussing here, it's also the groupies -- it means there's a CROWD of people who are willing to cheat or accept it, or support it themselves, or try to manipulate, consciously, other people.

So it's not just 'competition' is that is getting corrupted, it's pretty much everyone who shoots who is affected. Of course I'm not a dreamer, I'm not expecting everyone to be completely squeaky clean all the time, but really this discussion is about people who are mingling in *organised* cheating, repeatedly. Or at the worst, trying to facilitate it because if you look at it, if you help a cheater knowingly, *that makes you one*.

That's why you get to prison for selling stolen goods, even if you weren't involved in the crime itself.

 

A very interesting post, it (the alleged cheating) does go much further.

Unfortunately it will never be sorted out and brought in the open.

I do wonder what our CPSA is doing about it?

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Sorry to knock the rose tinted glasses off chaps … but cheating is no new phenomena.

30 years ago I can remember incidences and stories from straw bale shoots with groups of chaps 'looking after' their mates and pressuring scorers, and 'sandbagging' is IMHO also cheating and has been around for decades.

The new element is social media.

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15 minutes ago, Smokersmith said:

Sorry to knock the rose tinted glasses off chaps … but cheating is no new phenomena.

30 years ago I can remember incidences and stories from straw bale shoots with groups of chaps 'looking after' their mates and pressuring scorers, and 'sandbagging' is IMHO also cheating and has been around for decades.

The new element is social media.

There are always people who will push things as much as they can, the most common of course is claiming a no bird when the target is still absolutely fair, but just a bit different from the last one.  Or the “I definitely chipped that” brigade who typically have their whole squad badger the ref to give it.

I know one shooter in Scotland who was banned for a year for tampering with a score card, that was back in the days before master score sheets with each ref was a thing.

I know folk who have registered with the SCTA and CPSA and who had different classes in each organisation and book in under the number where they are in the lowest class.  I know folk who have deliberately booked in under the wrong class, at shoots where classes are not checked online, and taken prize money home.

Unfortunately it is the nature of people that they will try and take every opportunity for advantage.

One thing that highlights that to me most clearly is that how often have you seen a squad put their hands up to correct the referee if they call a miss, but the target is chipped?  But how many times do you see a squad put their hands up to challenge if the ref calls a hit, but it is a clear miss?

Or they will call for a no bird if the target flies a bit different and is missed, but if it flies different or comes out chipped and it is killed then nothing is said.

If you know something is wrong and you don’t put your hand up and say that is wrong then it is cheating.

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48 minutes ago, Smokersmith said:

groups of chaps 'looking after' their mates and pressuring scorers, and 'sandbagging' is IMHO also cheating and has been around for decades.

Not THE sole reason I packed in shooting clays, but this was one, of a number of things that I grew to dislike about competitive clay shooting circuit. In my area we had what club members refered to as the travelling circus, a group of guys who went from ground to ground at the weekend, but only showed when there was cash to be won. One of these guys later went on to great things as far as County and National Titles were concerned. On a normal practice day you never saw them, but advertise a cash payout and they would arrive en-masse and split into two groups, the non-shooting group crowded around and invariably tried to pressure the scorer that a wad that appeared close to the bird was in fact a chip. As most of our trappers and scorers were teenagers to keep the costs down; they invariably bowed to pressure from a small group of adults who were all supporting one another in the assertion that a clean miss was in fact a kill or a perfectly acceptable bird was in fact a `no-bird` due to a puff of wind.

The understanding at the time was that they would target at least two or three venues each weekend that were paying out cash and drive from one to another throughout the day to try to pick up the cash. So no illusions from my end, competitive clay shooting has always had its `seamy` side and the money  and bragging rights now on offer at big tournaments has evidently encouraged rule bending or worse.

Edited by JJsDad

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2 minutes ago, JJsDad said:

Not THE sole reason I packed in shooting clays, but this was one, of a number of things that I grew to dislike about competitive clay shooting circuit. In my area we had what club members refered to as the travelling circus, a group of guys who went from ground to ground at the weekend, but only showed when there was cash to be won. One of these guys later went on to great things as far as County and National Titles were concerned. On a normal practice day you never saw them, but advertise a cash payout and they would arrive en-masse and split into two groups, the non-shooting group crowded around and invariably tried to pressure the scorer that a wad that appeared close to the bird was in fact a chip. As most of our trappers and scorers were teenagers to keep the costs down; they invariably bowed to pressure from a small group of adults who were all supporting one another in the assertion that a clean miss was in fact a kill or a perfectly acceptable bird was in fact a `no-bird` due to a puff of wind.

The understanding at the time was that they would target at least two or three venues each weekend that were paying out cash and drive from one to another throughout the day to try to pick up the cash. So no illusions from my end, competitive clay shootinghas always had its `seamy` side and the money  and bragging rights now on offer at big tournaments has evidently encouraged rule bending or worse.

Yes indeed, I used to shoot in Kent and Sussex and the Travelling Circus was a well known problem.

Was rather nice to beat them cleanly on the odd occasion though!

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21 minutes ago, TIGHTCHOKE said:

Yes indeed, I used to shoot in Kent and Sussex and the Travelling Circus was a well known problem.

Glad to see it wasnt just me then !  I only went along with one good buddy so if we found ourselves waiting on the same stand as these characters we were usually outnumbered 4 or 5 to one. On one occasion when they were badgering the scorer over a chipped bird I couldnt stop myself and suggested they give the youngster a break. I got promptly told to wind my neck in and they then hung around behind the stand and roared with laughter at the first bird I missed and offered a load of crude advice. A complaint to the organiser was received sympathetically, but he was trying to keep the attendance numbers up, so other than a casual word to them, the intimidation side of it was glossed over. The only way to enjoy yourself was to avoid them as a group because once they had you marked, you would get a coughing fit behind you or a sly comment about your foot placement just as you were about to shoot.

One of them seriously upset one member, who got his own back by taking a wheel brace to the headlight on one of their cars. They raised hell with the ground owner who stuck to his guns and pointed out cars were parked at the owners risk. A number of members knew the guy involved, but as the circus had made themselves thoroughly unpopular his name never came out and they were a bit more subdued the next time they appeared.

Edited by JJsDad

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What made me laugh was the fact that the pot was rarely more than £60 quid for HG 😆 and said pot hunters often had to do re-entries to make sure of some money, few were good enough to break even (George was an exception in our area) but that in itself was an achievement because it meant free practice.

I have written about this phenomenon before where every locality tended to produce Champions and World class shots out of re-entries of the humble straw baler, I myself would be a rich man with no mortgage had I placed shooting money in a savings account 🤣, but then what a boring life Sundays would have been. 

Whenever you see a truly top notch competitor there are a few common traits behind them :

Rich dad/grand dad

early start

ability to disengage brain from girls when they hit late teens

VERY supportive and understanding spouse

Actual ability beyond dads mere ravings

countryside born and bred or at least easy access to pigeon/rough shooting

Some of the above are absolutes, one or two may be able to be left out, but trust me re-entries are essential. 

 

13 minutes ago, JJsDad said:

Glad to see it wasnt just me then !  I only went along with one good buddy so if we found ourselves waiting on the same stand as these characters we were usually outnumbered 4 or 5 to one. On one occasion when they were badgering the scorer over a chipped bird I couldnt stop myself and suggested they give the youngster a break. I got promptly told to wind my neck in and they then hung around behind the stand and roared with laughter at the first bird I missed and offered a load of crude advice. A complaint to the organiser was received sympathetically, but he was trying to keep the attendance numbers up, so other than a casual word to them, the intimidation side of it was glossed over. The only way to enjoy yourself was to avoid them as a group because once they had you marked, you would get a coughing fit behind you or a sly comment about your foot placement just as you were about to shoot.

I resemble that remark, I really can picture it exactly as you describe back in the 50 birder Sunday pot hunting days. 

More lately though I personally think proper out loud cheating at organised registered shoots is thankfully less common.

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4 minutes ago, Hamster said:

What made me laugh was the fact that the pot was rarely more than £60 quid for HG 

Exactly !

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1 hour ago, Smokersmith said:

Sorry to knock the rose tinted glasses off chaps … but cheating is no new phenomena.

30 years ago I can remember incidences and stories from straw bale shoots with groups of chaps 'looking after' their mates and pressuring scorers, and 'sandbagging' is IMHO also cheating and has been around for decades.

The new element is social media.

This is my eyes is where governing bodies and major shooting sponsors should reign shooters in. If you read half the background stories on most products. They tell of pride, passion, professionalism and we match that in our shooters and brand ambassadors etc etc. If they have a shooter bringing the sport/brand into disrepute via the field or social media or being disqualified from a world event? Well that can't be good for business.............or is it??? Social media now reaches out to far bigger audiences and sponsors/shooters have jumped on that bandwagon. I imagine phone calls will have been made behind the scenes, reassurances sought? As such I imagine there will an outpouring of support from all the major shooting brands that sponsor the DQ shooter.............they are just taking there time I think? Or is it better to distance yourself and hope it all blows over, then back to business as usual?

A search on social media may give you an idea if you know the brands! Time will tell

We'll never know the truth! But the silence and possible NDA may have backfired!

Edited by Savage10FP

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And to think I thought travelling circuses only happened in my neck of the woods! At the end of the day isn’t this sorry saga, if true, nothing more than simple greed, or ego perhaps, or both?

Maybe I’m old fashioned but why does there have to be a cash prize anyway....it feels like the dark ages to me and for anyone even slightly motivated by money it’s bound to happen. I’ve never shot comp in my life, no issue with folks who want to, but I don’t do it to gamble....I do it to shoot. 

I don’t know the people involved in this so I can’t comment, but surely taking away the prizes can only help take away the temptation. We all want to win and like the felling when we do, but surely this can’t be at any cost?

 

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8 minutes ago, Iggy said:

And to think I thought travelling circuses only happened in my neck of the woods! At the end of the day isn’t this sorry saga, if true, nothing more than simple greed, or ego perhaps, or both?

Maybe I’m old fashioned but why does there have to be a cash prize anyway....it feels like the dark ages to me and for anyone even slightly motivated by money it’s bound to happen. I’ve never shot comp in my life, no issue with folks who want to, but I don’t do it to gamble....I do it to shoot. 

I don’t know the people involved in this so I can’t comment, but surely taking away the prizes can only help take away the temptation. We all want to win and like the felling when we do, but surely this can’t be at any cost?

 

No cash prizes in Fitasc sporting, just a trophy and glory.

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9 minutes ago, TIGHTCHOKE said:

Not cryptic at all.

 

My buddy sent it me! BH has responded on his page. 🤔🤔🤔🤔

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Just now, Savage10FP said:

My buddy sent it me! BH has responded on his page. 🤔🤔🤔🤔

Handbags at dawn then!

I do not do the Facebook thing!

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1 minute ago, TIGHTCHOKE said:

Handbags at dawn then!

I do not do the Facebook thing!

Its entertaining! Ed Lyons comments on a certain Eye Dom product silenced the Fan boys. 

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Marvellous, Bens solicitors must be wringing their collective hands in anticipation!

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Very odd, Mark seems to think he’s not an official team mate, he seems to think he’s sponsored by them still, which leaves one to conclude that Gamebore have agreed some kind of temporary pretend severance.

Ed Lyons simply asked for proof of claims and guess what. 

 

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Having reviewed this topic, it has been concluded that until any major new information comes to light it should be put to bed.

If you want to rake through posts on social media and follow what people are saying on facebook or wherever, please do it there.


Members have seen what has occured on PW over the last month or so and have drawn conclusions, so let's leave it there for now.

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