At the Belmont Shooting Complex range, 50 minutes drive north from the Gold Coast, Barry Le Cheminant and David Le Quesne stood just two points behind the medal positions.
As they bid to become the Island’s first Commonwealth medallists, in any sport, since father-and-son fullbore rifle shooters Cliff and Colin Mallet in 1990, Le Cheminant and Le Quesne totalled 297.23 after the 300, 500 and 600 yards disciplines.
Le Quesne registered scores of 50.5, 49.2 and 50.5 and Le Cheminant 49.2, 50.6 and 49.3.
England, South Africa and Australia lead the table after all scoring 299s with 39, 37 and 35 v-bulls, respectively.
Le Cheminant, appearing at his fourth Games, said: ‘We’ve got the long-range to come [900 and 1,000 yards], they are the more difficult shoots so the competition is still wide open.
‘The top three teams are very strong and it would be nice to have a bit of wind blowing because that will be testing for everyone.
‘David and I are happy. We’ve done well, but there is a lot more shooting to be done.
‘It was hot today lying in the sun and it’s been non-stop taking fluid onboard.
‘We’ve put a lot of work in to get where we are – we’ve been on the range 12 of the 14 days we’ve been here, so we are making the most of the facilities.’
Team manager Bruce Horwood said: ‘It was a solid first day of shooting. They are two points behind the leaders and their scores are what they have been hitting in practice.
‘It was interesting today though, as it was the first time since we’ve been here that the wind came in from the right, but it switched back to coming from the left after an hour or so. That made it different conditions for everyone, but not difficult conditions.
‘It was very warm as well, around 30 degrees, so it was hot for everyone lying on the ground with all their shooting jackets on.
‘David and Barry have worked very hard since we arrived. I was concerned they were overdoing it, but hopefully all the hard work will pay off for them.’
Senior investment manager Le Cheminant added: ‘We’ve done a lot of shooting in our build-up, our preparation has been good and a month or so ago we did some shooting at Bisley as well.
‘David and I have come here to do a job and putting in all the practice we feel is the best way to do it.
‘We went to the range, we did our shooting and then it was back for a meal, rest and then bed.’
The Jersey duo will also compete in the Queen’s Prize individual shoot tomorrow – the discipline that fellow Jersey Rifle Club marksman Colin Mallett won in Auckland 28 years ago.