Nicholas Benjamin & Aliana McMaster to defend their Jackson Bay Sporting Clays titles

By Sports Desk June 09, 2024

Defending champions Nicholas Benjamin and Aliana McMaster are set to defend their Jackson Bay Hunting & Fishing Club Sporting Clays titles on Sunday which they won last year.

Well over one hundred gunners are expected to trek to Jackson Bay in Clarendon for the 9:30 am shot-gun start of a challenging day on the course. 

If last year's conditions are repeated then the competitors can expect extreme heat, wind and some rain before the end of the tournament. Notwithstanding those conditions, the shooters will get a chance to display their skills by the sea as at least one station will be positioned with the sea in the background. 

In 2023 Benjamin shot 90 to be the only shooter to post a score in the 90's while McMaster was engaged in a shoot-off which she won convincingly over Kashka Jones. 

The top contenders for this year include former national shotgun champions Ian Banks, Shaun Barnes, Christian Sasso and Chad Ziadie plus other top gunners such as Bruce DeQuesnay and Ray McMaster.

On the female side, Aliana will have to contend with her mother and many-time national female shotgun champion Wendy McMaster as well as several other ladies who have been shooting well. 

Club president Sean Clacken looks forward to the tournament for the development of the club as well as to gain funds to assist the people of the Portland Cottage Community where the club is based.

President Clacken credits the support of many sponsors who have come on board for the shoot this year. They include First Rock, Century 21, Ultra Financiers and Optimum Distributors as well as many others.


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  • Craig Simpson takes top spot at Jackson Bay Sporting Clays, Aliana McMaster continues her winning streak Craig Simpson takes top spot at Jackson Bay Sporting Clays, Aliana McMaster continues her winning streak

    Craig Simpson and Aliana McMaster were the top shooters last Sunday at the Jackson Bay Hunting & Fishing Club in Jackson Bay, Clarendon. Simpson, who secured 91 points, had nothing but praise for the venue and the targets, while giving his victory speech.
    While acknowledging that it was more challenging than he had expected, that didn’t stop Simpson from putting in the mental work it needed to win. “The wind made it more challenging than you would expect, but still, there was something there for everybody. You had a mixture of targets, some of which were of international standards, testing the best of us. I’m happy that I came out on top,” he said.

    Craig Simpson

    Aliana McMaster, who scored 86 points, won the ladies section ahead of her mother, Wendy McMaster, with a score of 83, who was dethroned last year as the five-time national female champion. It was all love and support for the mother-daughter duo, as Wendy shared that at one point, she sensed that her daughter was withholding and she had to have a pep talk with her.
    Wendy, after accompanying her husband to several bird shooting events in support before he took up clay shooting, said she eventually decided it didn’t seem that hard and she could try it too. She eventually ‘dragged’ her children into it.

    For Aliana, while she has no recollection of the exact moment she decided to take up the challenge, she said being exposed to it eventually led to that decision. “To tell you the truth, I was just tired of watching. I was like, I’m going to be here anyway; I might as well participate. So that’s how I got into it, and I think it was maybe the following year that I did my first lesson”.
    Fast forward to the 2024 event, and the duo both stated that they are not competing against each other; in fact, they are each other’s biggest supporters. “I’m not competing against my daughter; I’m really competing against all the men in the C class; she competes to win her class,” Wendy, who ended up in the third spot in the C class, shared.
    Although, with a smile, she said when Aliana just started “to whop her bottom,” it was a little bit of shaky ground as she thought, ‘Looks like this girl plans to give me a run for my money!” She had no fear, as she said her victories made her proud.

    Aliana McMaster

    Aliana quickly dismissed the rivalry as she stressed how much she admires and supports her mother in the sport. “I am her biggest supporter.”.
    The day was an overwhelming success, and president of the Jackson Bay Hunting and Fishing Gun Club, Sean Clacken, shared that there was a big improvement from last year, with over 150 gunners participating. They also did things a little different for this year’s event. “We created our own trophies; they are all made of wood and have clay on them,” he informed, giving credit to the creators, Chris Lee and Woodman 876.

    He also shared that improvements were made to the course as the gunners wanted a shorter walking course, which he informed was ‘easier but trickier’. “We wanted to facilitate those young to the sport, but at the same time give challenges to the more experienced,” he informed.

    Sable-Joy McLaren, Senior Manager of group marketing for First Rock Group, title sponsors for the competition, is thrilled with the success of the event. “We’re very pleased with this year’s staging of the competition. The incredible talent and sportsmanship displayed by all the participants made this a great experience.” She continued “It’s actually FirstRock’s second year sponsoring the event, and this time around we supported in a more expansive way, by including other members of our Group, Ultra Financier, Century 21 Jamaica and Optimum Distributors.”
    Among the other winners for the day were Liam McConnel with 79 points in the Hunter category, Brian Kong with 83 points in the C category, and Chad Ziadie with 91 points in the A category.

  • Craig Simpson & Wendy McMaster ready to defend Rangers Sporting Clays titles Craig Simpson & Wendy McMaster ready to defend Rangers Sporting Clays titles

    Defending champions Craig Simpson and Wendy McMaster will be gunning for top honors again at the Rangers Gun Club shoot which is set for Sunday May 6th with a 10 am shotgun start at the True Juice Complex in Bog Walk, St. Catherine.

    The venue is considered to be happy hunting ground for the two defending champions. It is the venue where Simpson posted his highest score in the sport (97 out of a possible 100) and where McMaster dethroned her daughter and two-time winner Aliana, to take the top spot. 

    Competition for top honors will be stiff as some of the Jamaica Skeet Club's best shooters will be on the course. They include nine-time national shotgun champion Ian Banks, six-time national shotgun champion Shaun Barnes, four-time national shotgun champion Christian Sasso, other national shotgun champions like Chad Ziadie, his father Geoffrey Ziadie, Ray McMaster, Andrew Hopwood, Nicholas Benjamin and young David Wong as well as former winner Nicholas Chen.

    On the female side the top contenders include two-time winner Aliana McMaster and sister Leanne, Renee Rickhi who is part of the Jamaica Rifle Association's Alpha Angels lady shooters, Marguerite Harris and granddaughter Lori-Ann Harris among others. 

    Shooters in various classes from A - E, Hunters or Beginners, Juniors, Sub-Juniors and Ladies will be competing hard in order to win their classes and in some cases move up to higher and more challenging classes. The event features an eighteen-station driving course. 

    The shooters will face targets of varying types including true pairs (birds launched at the same time), rabbits (birds released on the ground), birds in the air released at different speeds and directions as well as some targets released over gentle flowing streams on the lush green course. 

    The Rangers Gun Club is expecting another big field of approximately one hundred and fifty shooters to conquer the expansive driving course for a day of individual and team competition which will feature the local gun clubs. For the third year in a row four clubs will compete for that trophy. The competing clubs are Driftwood Gun Club, Rangers Gun Club, Trelawny Gun Club and defending champion - the Jamaica Gun Club. 

    Part proceeds from the event will be donated to the Food for the Poor organization. 

    The lead sponsor for the Rangers Gun Club Sporting Clays shoot is Sterling Asset Management while Worthy Park Select, National and STLSOLAR are the next level sponsors. 

    The club has a rich history of young business men and some of their fathers who loved shooting getting together in the mid-1980s to start the Rangers Gun Club at their Salt Gully base in St. Catherine. They initially focused on bird shooting then took on sporting clays which is currently the most popular form of the sport.


  • Simpson, McMaster on target at Driftwood Gun Club Sporting Clays tourney Simpson, McMaster on target at Driftwood Gun Club Sporting Clays tourney

    Three-time winner Craig Simpson and four-time female winner Aliana McMaster finished tops at the Driftwood Gun Club Shoot at the 17-station Murphy Hill Course in St Ann recently.

    Both competitors shot 95 out of 100 targets and dominated the packed field, which included a total of 157 of the best gunners on the island, such as nine-time national shotgun champion and president of the Jamaica Skeet Club Ian Banks; six-time national shotgun champion and defending champion Shaun Barnes; four-time and reigning national shotgun champion Christian Sasso; Chad Ziadie, the 2022 national shotgun champion; as well as five-time national female shotgun champion Wendy McMaster.

    The young McMaster already created history by being the first female to make it to the A Class late last year and her score of 95 again etched her name in the history books, as it is the highest by any female locally. When her score was posted most people thought it very possible that she won, which would make her the first female to win any sporting clay event in Jamaica, but Simpson roared back with his high-scoring 95 to set up a tense shoot-off between them.

    In the end, Simpson took down six of the eight targets, while McMaster struck only four.

    “Winning is always an amazing feeling, it’s what keeps us going. I tell everybody that I don’t think I leave my house if I was not coming here to win. I am hungry for the win. Always hungry for the win. I am always excited about the competitive field, and as the years go by with the juniors emerging, the field only becomes more competitive, and it's an internal challenge to stay relevant. I have been able to do that over the years and I plan to continue to be there for as long as I can, but they are coming," Simpson said.

    McMaster, on the other hand, was also happy with her performance.

    “It’s honestly an amazing feeling. After you have a reputation or expectation from the people coming to the shoot it can get to you and really mess up your head. I feel it can play a big part in how that day goes, but I just had to approach it like any other shoot and just do my best, and frankly, winning four times in a row is honestly such a great feeling and I am absolutely grateful for it," she noted.

    Meanwhile, the top three in the various classes were A Class: Christian Sasso (92) by way of shoot-off with William Zager (92) and Alex Cunningham (91); B Class: Gordon Bucknor (86), Robin Rickhi (84), and Zachary Harris (81); C Class: Brandon Laing (90), Adam Harris (85), and Wendy McMaster (85); D Class: Lori-Ann Harris (85) and Noah Vaughn (84); E Class: Seymour Essor (69), David Campbell (67), and Anthony Ayoub (67); Ladies: Aliana McMaster (95), Lori-Ann Harris (85), and Wendy McMaster (85); Hunters or Beginners: Philip Burgess (77), Cameron Lee (69), and Che Rowe (68); Juniors Aliana McMaster (95), David Wong (87), and Lori-Ann Harris (85); and Sub Juniors: Craig Powell Jr (55) and Levi Clarke (48).

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