Sutton St James pupil Rayns adds county string to bow

Nicholas Rayns
Nicholas Rayns
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A top-flight longbow archer at Wisbech Grammar School has won a place in the Cambridgeshire county squad.

Nicholas Rayns (17), who lives in Sutton St James, had earlier proved his class by notching up a county record at an end of season shoot for Cambridgeshire hosted by his club, Parkfield Archers, at Wimblington.

In a junior western round involving shooting 48 arrows at 60 yards and 48 at 50 yards he topped the previous record of 396, scoring a total of 405. He also achieved the highest score for the round, beating all the adult competitors.

His interest in the sport was triggered when he joined the school’s archery club four years ago and he bought his own bow two years later when he signed up with Parkfield Archers.

Rayns, who has been putting in weekly practices with the Wimblington club and at the school’s games sessions, said: “I am quite proud to have got so far. I had not expected this when I first started shooting.”

His coach, Mr Sean Fox, who is head of archery at the Grammar School as well as a county coach and the Cambridgeshire team manager, said that Nicholas’s skills put him at a national level and that beating adults at the top of their game in his most recent contest was a feather in his cap.

Mr Fox said: “He has got all the attributes that would make a competitive archer in the future: he is calm and he thinks about everything he does.”

In his first outing for the county Rayns is now setting his sights on a strong performance in the annual contest between Cambridgeshire and Essex, which is being staged at Abbey College, Ramsey, on Valentine’s day.