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Title hat-trick for teenage marksman

PUBLISHED: 09:59 11 February 2009 | UPDATED: 10:38 07 July 2010

Colkirk marksman Roland Johnson.

Colkirk marksman Roland Johnson.

A 15-year-old Colkirk marksman has claimed a national shooting title for the third year running.

Roland Johnson, a member of the rifle club at Gresham's School in Holt, has made it a hat-trick of British U16 Smallbore Rifle Championships in only his third year in the sport.

A 15-year-old Colkirk marksman has claimed a national shooting title for the third year running.

Roland Johnson, a member of the rifle club at Gresham's School in Holt, has made it a hat-trick of British U16 Smallbore Rifle Championships in only his third year in the sport. Shooting with a .22 calibre target rifle, Johnson achieved a score of 292 ex 300 over three targets shot at 25 yards, which sent him through to the final with the joint third highest score. A final round total of 290 ex 300 gave him victory by two points over clubmate Chloe Evans, with colleague Alex Ward a further point behind in third on 287.

Johnson has made a spectacular rise through the shooting ranks to become not only the best smallbore target shooter of his age group in the country, but one of the most proficient of any age. He took his first U16 title after just nine months in the sport, and followed that up by becoming the Norfolk 50 metre and 25 yard Open Handicap champion. A second U16 championship was followed by his making the final of the British Open Championships, marking him out as one of the top 20 riflemen in the country. This, and a steady stream of 'tons' - perfect scores of 100 - piqued the interest of the selectors of the England team in the British Schools Home Internationals, and he was duly selected for the 12 strong team. He has also shot for the Norfolk county team in the winter leagues this season and last.

Johnson's form has continued to flourish this season. Prior to attaining his hat-trick, he was chosen as one of a 12-strong British Schools team that overcame the New Zealand Schools in a postal match. His next aim is to retain his place in the English Schools side in the Home Internationals, and to shoot his way into the 6 strong British Schools team that will participate in the Landsstaevne event in Denmark this July.

While Johnson was unable to claim the English U18 crown, a score of 290 was enough to give him second place.

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