March 23 • 01:22 AM

Bone on target at Junior Olympic Shooting Competition in Colorado

Lauren Bone, of Almont, takes time out for a photo at the United States Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

October 31, 2007
ALMONT — Whether it is rolling a ball down the alley (where she ranks among the top Division 3 bowlers statewide) or hitting a golf shot to within a few inches of the flagstick (where she has won the Blue Water Area Junior Golf Association 18-hole title), Almont High School junior Lauren Bone has been making it a habit of being on target when it comes to her respective sports pursuits.

Recently Bone added yet another accomplishment to her growing list of laurels when she participated in a Junior Olympic Shooting Competition in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

She was accompanied on the trip, which ran from September 20th-23rd, by her father Mark.

"We flew out to Colorado Springs on Wednesday," Mark told The Tri-City Times. "Lauren was going to shoot a practice round that afternoon," he recalled.

"Once we got there her gun malfunctioned almost immediately. It was disappointing to come this far and have something like that happen," he noted.

All was not lost though as Olympic Shotgun Coach Lloyd Woodhouse was there and noticed Lauren had a problem. He studied it intently, hoping to get it back in working condition.

Thanks to Woodhouse, Lauren's gun was soon up and running.

"We were amazed that someone who has accomplished what he has would be so willing to offer his assistance," Lauren said. "He checked everything out, hand cleaned and meticulously oiled everything," she noted.

"Mr. Woodhouse even complimented me on the gun I had and told me how much he enjoyed shooting his. He also explained the shells I was given to shoot were new shells developed for the Olympic team and had even less recoil then the standard "International" loads. The gun worked flawlessly the rest of the practice rounds."

The next morning saw the competition begin.

"When we arrived there, the Olympic coach called Lauren over," Mark Bone said. "Lloyd Woodhouse had brought one of his barrels and said he would modify it if she had any trouble with hers," he noted.

"He was willing to modify his own $200-plus barrel to provide Lauren with a successful opportunity. He continued to check on Lauren's gun the entire competition."

Lauren shot three rounds the first day of competition. They started at 9 a.m. and ended around 3:30 to 4 p.m. Her first two rounds were were competitive and within a few targets of the leaders.

As the day wore on, the winds and temperature picked up. The day started out fairly windy, clocking in between 15 and 20 mph.

By the third round, it was 90 degrees and the winds were gusting to 30 mph. The targets were really moving. That round was her low round of the day.

On Saturday, competitors gathered for the final round of competition.

"Coach Woodhouse came over to watch Lauren shoot and critique her," Mark said. "About two thirds through the round he came over to talk to her about her shooting," he noted.

"He had all positive things to say and talked about ways for Lauren to improve her international shooting. The style of shooting for this competition is different from the "American Skeet" Lauren normally shoots."

The field and number of targets in a round are the same. However, the speed of international targets are 30 percent faster than American.

The sequence of which stations the targets are shot from are different. Inter-national focuses on shooting doubles from the middle stations of the fields, while American Skeet only shoots singles from these stations on a regular round.

The size of the inter-national target is also smaller. The timing of the delivery of the target from the time the shooter calls "pull" is random and delayed in international. In American Skeet, it's immediate.

The last difference is the use of "Low Gun Mount" for the international game. The shooter is required to hold the gun next to their body with the stock of the gun breaking the plane of a stripe on their shooting vest. This stripe is placed at the bottom of the shooter's elbow.

This was Lauren's first real exposure to the Olym-pic/International Shooting Competition. She has competed in many American Skeet Competitions through the Scholastic Clays Travel Program. She also shoots in the Scholastic Clays Travel Program.

"It was great experience coming out here," Lauren said. "From the moment we got to the facility to the time we left we were treated well," she noted.

"International shooting is a style I would like to try again in the future. With the pointers Mr. Woodhouse gave me, I am sure I could improve," she noted.

Sports Editor, Kevin Kissane has been covering sports for the Tri-City Times for over 20 years and is one of the most recognizable personalities in the area. Kevin when not covering anything from little league baseball to football, or softball to basketball, can be found on the links playing his favorite sport, golf.
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