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Health and safety society helps gun down the shooters

THE Scottish shooting team at Barry Buddon started with high hopes of overtaking swimming as the nation's most prolific all-time Games medal winners.

They were just one behind at the opening ceremony but their hopes were blown out of the water when they claimed just four on the range when the programme closed last night.

In 2010 Jonathan Hammond and Jenn McIntosh, had bagged seven medals between them but here Hammond drew a blank though

McIntosh did add the three-position silver yesterday, the record-breaking 34th Scottish medal, to her earlier bronze in the prone.

A refurbished range at Meadowbank helped her and is welcomed by the sport. Less welcome is the delay in assessing four sites - three in the Central belt and one in the North - interested in housing a national centre.

The one-time Formula One world champion, Jackie Stewart, was the latest to lend support yesterday. An Olympic reserve for the clay pigeon event in 1960, long before he was in F1, he feels it's "important . . . to create a legacy".

There will be none on the Angus MoD range. The memory of Dunblane still haunts the sport, but one suspects there is more political than public opposition.

A Scottish Parliament proposal for airgun legislation, if carried, will hinder development further. Licences for all weapons would have a heavy impact. "Plinking" is where just about everyone is introduced to the sport.

Our health-and-safety obsessed society is about to strike again.

Even the environment has shooting in its sights. The Barry wetlands are covered by a ban on lead shot, which the world body insist is adhered to. The Scottish Government authorised a one-month exemption for the Games.

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