Whangarei Girls High School's Danica Radich had huge success at the North Island and New Zealand Secondary School Clay Target Championships.
After only one year of competitive clay shooting, 16-year-old Radich took out the New Zealand Girls Single Rise Championship title.
The Irv Stevens coached-shooter went into the shoot-off for the title along with 60 other high calibre shooters. Overall - competing against girls and boys - she placed second behind Jonno Todd of Lindisfarne College in Hastings, but she took out the girls title comfortably in her favoured discipline.
She also came second in the NZ Girls Single Barrel Championship and placed third in the NZ Girls Skeet Championship.
"I was really nervous while I was competing. My heart was beating so fast," Radich said.
Radich joined Whatitiri Clay Target Club when she discovered she had a good aim while she was out duck shooting with her dad. "I love guns and I wanted to do something with my weekends so I started clay target shooting… I hope to go to the next World Championship and compete for NZ," she said.
Northland was well represented at the national championships, featuring 345 students, with students competing from Girls High along with Whangarei Boys High School, Tauraroa Area School, Dargaville High School and Whangaroa College.
There were several Northland competitors who progressed into the shoot-offs during the three days of competition and the region did well for its size. Tauraroa Area School's Shaun Roberts finished third in the NZ Boys Single Barrel Championship, while Josh Nilsson from Dargaville High School won silver in the NZ Boys Skeet Championship. Mason Reed was chosen in the North Island team to shoot against the South Island, however, the South Island contingent were too accurate on the day, and took out the battle.