By: Tim Chambers
Tomahawk Sports Editor
William Tell might have shot an apple off his son’s head with a bow, but Nathan Winters is proving he can probably shoot a buckeye off a bear’s butt with a bow from long range. The Johnson County resident placed third in a recent ASA Pro/Am event in Appling, Georgia, then took back some serious prize money to Johnson County. It was his first shoot-off as a pro. He entered the final day leading the event but was happy with his finish which was well documented on Facebook. Itvwas quite an honor for the 38-year old Winters, a third year pro who has been shooting since age 12. “Our shooting class is usually 50-60 strong and some get paid to stay at home and practice,” said Winters. “Finishing like I did really helps, especially with my sponsors.”
Winters enjoyed reaching the top five on Sunday but he had been within a whisker of making that before. “I’ve had some top 10 finishes in the Pro Am before, but I would mess it up at the end and missed out on the top five. I was leading after Saturday, so I knew if I played it smart on Sunday and didn’t get real aggressive, then I should be okay. I didn’t want to drop in points.” Winters said the tournament consisted of 40 targets, with 20 being shot on the opening day. “They take the top five shooters from Saturday and put them in the pro pressure shoot down on Sunday. They put five targets in an area with bleachers and you shoot those five targets in front of around 500 people. I was third after that, but I was on cloud nine. There is a big difference between first and third place, but I was still tickled. First place pays about 20K, second place around 8K and third is right at 4K. Fourth place won about $900 so there was a big drop off from third to fourth. That’s why it was so important to finish there.”
Sponsors play out contingency money which can range from $100 to 10K. Winters needed a shopping cart to haul back all his checks ranging from his largest sponsor to the smallest. He also got a sizable one from the ASA Pro/Am. But money and fame wasn’t priority on Saturday. A sporting event back home helped ease his mind and he kept calling to get updates.
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