The 2011 season went into the annals of shooting history as one of the best for Kenyan marksmen with their splendid show at the 142nd United Kingdom Bisley Imperial Shoot in London in August, 2011. From the possible 13 gold medals, Kenyan marksmen brought home three from the event that attracted contestants from all the six continents. It was the first time Kenyan shooters won gold medals from the prestigious event that they have taken part in for over a decade.
The Kenya shooters also won seven silver and three bronze medals for their best ever performance. The performance came on the back of another heart-warming display in 2010, again in the UK, where Kenyans got 58 medals, four of them silver. Veteran Peter Mathenge from the Defence Forces Rifle Association (DFRA), Jorum Mbugua of Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) and General Service Unit’s (GSU) Sanford Otundo, all won gold medals. Otundo also won two silver medals and a bronze while Christopher Saina (GSU) and Solomon Letoya (Anti- Stock Theft Unit-ASTU) scooped silver and bronze each. Mathenge and marksman Mike Lekalaile of the Presidential Escort Unit (PEU) and GSU’s David Kirui claimed silver each. A
fter donning two silver medals in 2010, Mathenge, 54, would stun 1,800 shooters at 900 yards to lift the Admiral Huttin Trophy with a breathtaking 58 points off eight v-bulls. Mbugua claimed the Monroe Memorial Trophy and Otundo clinched the Faunthorpe Trophy. Rising star Hashim Abdille (Kenya Railways) was the only Kenyan winner in the Alexandra 600 yards with a brilliant score of 50 points off six v-bulls as John Serem (CID) won bronze. The Royal Air Force Championship trophy left the British soil for the first time, with rookie Joyce Chebii stirring Kenya to victory.
Kenya was second in UK Northern London Rifle Club versus the Rest of the World contest. The host won as Canada came third. Mathenge, Otundo, Letoya and team captain Edward Legei were entered in the prestigious Queens Second State final. Mathenge was the best placed Kenyan at the 13th position. Kirui was the only qualifier for the St George’s Shoot final, finishing 76th. Locally, GSU’s Christopher Saina beat two former champions Mathenge and Kenya Regiment Rifle Club’s Satindar Sehmi for the prestigious Kenya Open title in June, ending the duo’s decade-long dominance.
Mathenge has won eight editions of Kenya Open — 2001 to 2004 and 2006 to 2009 — while Sehmi holds the 2005 and 2010 titles. Nevertheless Mathenge claimed all the major trophies in 2011, save for the Kenya Open. They include Kenya Mini Bisley that he has won 11 times, Kenya Defence Force Open, Elenor Malik, Mourdat Trophy and Tradewise Logistics.
Major Peter Mathenge (Defence Forces Rifle Association)
Admiral Huttin Trophy
Jorum Mbugua (KWS)
Monroe Memorial Trophy
Sanford Otundo (GSU)
David Kirui (GSU)
Sanford Otundo (GSU)
Christopher Saina (GSU)
Major Peter Mathenge (Defence
Forces Rifle Association)
Mike Lekalaile (Presidential Escort Unit)
Sanford Otundo (GSU))
Solomon Letoya (Anti-Stock Theft Unit)
John Serem (CID)
The Kenya team
The team members were Peter Mathenge, Edward Legei, Nicholas Batai, Edward Muleyi, Paul Lepario, George Kariuki, Paul Munene, John Kamau, Joyce Chebii, Linus Sawe, Mark Ekiru, Hashim Abdille and Farhiah Mohammed Others were Solomon Letoya, Mike Lekalaile, Josphat Birgen, David Kirui, Abraham Gitonga, John Serem, Christopher Saina, Sanford Otundo, David Lekapana, Jorum Mbugua. The officials were R. K. Mwarangu (head of delegation), Wilberforce Kerema (adjutant), Anthony Kamitu (manager), Satinder Sehmi (coordinator).