How Did They Miss? 11 excuses for missing your shot…

How Did They Miss? 11 excuses for missing your shot…

After a longer hiatus from shooting than most of us have experienced in our lives, both partridge and pheasant seasons are back, thankfully with not even a hint that the season will be cut short or impacted like it was last year.

But, after such a long time away from the field – with clays only ever a simulation – it’s likely that we are all a little rusty. 

So, below are a collection of some of the better excuses that we’ve heard over the years, with a few originals also from the team at Keepers Choice.  

Blame Covid

Let’s face it. The reason that most of us haven’t been able to shoot for more than a year is because of the pandemic. It isn’t your fault if you’ve lost your touch, your eyes have gotten (even) worse or your favourite gun doesn’t feel the same.

The old adage ‘practise makes perfect’. It’s not your fault that you couldn’t practise.

Blame the Gun Next To You

Perhaps your neighbour or their gun were in your eyeline? Or maybe their shot put you off, or made you jump?

Whatever the case, the gun next to you is a fine, age-old excuse and the perfect scapegoat for when things go wrong.

The Sun

The likelihood is that people have been using the sun as an excuse for missing for hundreds of years.

There are several versions of this excuse that all work well. First, the classic, the sun was in your eyes. However, for those a little more thoughtful, it is the reflection of the sun that caused you to miss.

One of the team once heard somebody blame the sun being too hot on their back for missing – this is a little farfetched but worth a go if desperate.

The Deliberate Miss

Also known as ‘The Charitable Miss’. With many shoot captains fining guns who miss, with the pot going to a chosen charity, guns have been known to claim that it was a deliberate miss as they wanted to donate money to charity.

Some guns may start to feel a little too generous with this.

The Sky

Regardless of the sky, there’s always an excuse.

Overcast skies are the best for this, as the birds can sometimes blend in, with it being difficult to see a flying bird against a cloudy backdrop.

Clear skies? Please see the excuse number 3.

It’s Too Easy

This is a particularly good excuse when missing a low, easy bird. It’s not your fault if you are used to higher, more difficult birds, is it?

The Wind

This is an absolute classic and one of our favourites (and sometimes quite legitimate).

If you are in the field on an exceptionally windy day, the wind can sometimes blow the birds off their line – which is a good, common excuse.

It is a little more difficult to claim that the wind was so strong that it was capable of pushing the cartridge off its line, but who are we to judge?  

The Underfoot Conditions

If the ground is wet and boggy, it can be quite easy to slip. Or perhaps the ground is too hard and its not possible to get a good solid base?

Whichever it is, if you don’t have a solid footing, you won’t be as good a shot as you normally are.

The Badly Behaved Dog

Another timeless classic. Our favourite companions have accompanied us in the field for as long as any of us can remember, and there is no doubt that a good dog can make the perfect day even better.

However, there is very often one who’s dog – even if very well trained – is just having one of those days. A yappy dog or a dog running where it is not supposed to can be guaranteed to put you off your shot.

The Early Bird

Without naming names, this is very popular with a couple of members of the Keepers Choice sales team.

The basis of this is that when one arrives on the peg too early, by the time the shooting begins, one is too relaxed, and the adrenaline is no longer pumping… resulting in lethargy and laziness.

Too Tired

We’ve all seen them. They arrive at the peg yawning and rubbing their eyes, complaining that the bed wasn’t as nice as the one at home.

Pre-emptive and effective.

We hope everybody enjoys being back on the peg, and we look forward to hearing some of the more obscure excuses as the season goes on.