If he can overcome a few hurdles, Scott Brydon hopes to achieve his dream of represent his country in clay target shooting.
Australia currently doesn’t compete in clay target shooting for the disabled so Scott is keen to compete as an individual on the world stage at the 6th International Para-Clay Target Shooting Grand Prix in Italy in October.
Scott became a paraplegic after a motorcycle accident in September 2011. He hit an old railway frame footing and went over the handlebars, hitting his head. He was instantly paralysed from the chest down.
Before his accident Scott played a lot of sport, and was an accomplished lawn bowler who won a state pairs title at just 15 years old.
He represented Australia in a juniors’ tournament against New Zealand.
Scott also played cricket, squash, basketball, indoor soccer and golf.
After his accident Scott had trouble finding a sport that he could enjoy on a regular basis.
His disability limits the range of movement he has and has also affected his balance.
He’s played wheelchair basketball — when they could find enough players — but after having a go at clay target shooting, Scott said he’s now found a sport he loves.
Scott’s been getting some coaching advice from experienced shooters Bryan Manns and Rob Thomson and has also been driving over to Griffith to get in some practice.
He competes with able-bodied shooters in A Grade in DTL (Down the Line) and in C Grade in ISSF (International Shooting Sport Federation or Olympic Trap) level.
Scott said being in a wheelchair without a lot of balance puts him at a disadvantage to able-bodied shooters.
“I have to tie myself into the chair to be able to keep my balance,” he said.
“Because I’m paralysed from the chest down, I have a limited range of movement and can only twist so much. I can’t rotate to the right.
“My biggest challenge has been learning how to shoot on angles.”
Scott hopes to compete at the International Para-Clay Target Shooting Grand Prix in October this year.
The event uses the same classifications as the Para-Olympics and Scott hopes to use it as a stepping stone for when the Para-Olympic committee recognise Para-Clay Shooting as a Para-Olympic sport.
“Personally it would be a great achievement, competing and representing my country.”
But to get to Italy Scott needs help with fundraising.
“I hate asking people for help,” Scott said.
Carewest Ability Links worker Wendy Beetson wants to see Scott achieve his dream and encouraged him to tell his story to The Cobar Weekly and to also set up a gofundme.com page.
Scott’s needs $6,000 to cover his travel and accommodation costs and so far he has managed to raise $2,000 from local donations and from shooters from around Australia.