Ann Chinnery is a star shooter.
Ann Chinnery is a star shooter. Michaela Harlow

Marian mum is youngest Rifle Club member

STRETCHED out flat on her stomach, Ann Chinnery takes three deep breaths, holds the last one and pulls the trigger.

It's a routine she has been mastering since she first started learning the art of competitive shooting when she was 16.

Now aged 50, she is the youngest member of the Marian Rifle Club as well as being the only woman.

"My parents were shooters, it's something I have just grown up doing," she said.

"I want to keep shooting until I am 100."

Older members of shooting clubs are not hard to find, with fewer young people choosing to get involved in the sport.

Marian Rifle Club secretary and treasurer Royden Brittain said the increased cost of equipment needed for the sport could be deterring younger members.

"Buying a brand new rifle can cost up to $10,000," he said.

"Given the safety aspect, you always have to drive out of the city area to practise as well."

Chinnery, who owns three rifles, said there were always club rifles available to borrow if people wanted to try the sport.

"People are always willing to help you get started and offer advice," she said.

"That all changes when you start beating them - it can get very competitive."

The Mackay mum has represented South Australia and northern Australia in the sport.

Last weekend she won the A Grade division at the Marian Rifle Club.

At the moment she shoots big board targets with a 7.26mm rifle, commonly known as a .303.

"The more you get out there and do it, the better you become," she said.

Although she shoots to win, it's more of a personal battle for Chinnery.

"You are shooting against yourself really," she said.

"You have to have a routine... I have a look at the flags to see what the wind is doing, take three deep breaths, hold my breath and shoot."



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