I argue that GB has managed to do this by acting as a closely-coordinated team, each of the individuals in which knows what their task is and executes it as well as they can. Take the target-by-target scores (shown below.) The top four targets are the four GB Team targets, which tells a story all of its own...
|The top four targets on the range are GB targets. Photo reproduced with the kind permission of Bill "Obi Wan" Richards.|
|A scatterplot with trendline of each team's score versus the difference in target score between the highest and lowest scoring targets for that team.|
|Team||Palma Match Gun Score||Aggregate of Individual Gun Scores|
To my mind, this suggests that GB and the USA teams well above the others in terms of both individual shooting; however GB's superior team performance won them the Palma despite the enormous strides the USA have made under Dennis Flaharty's leadership and Emil Praslick's dedication to their coaching performance. (Note that the USA had the most consistent performance among their four targets, even if not the highest scoring.)
On a final, personal note I sincerely wish I could have taken part as an individual. More so as a member of one of the official teams. I've had the privilege of being a part of two GB successes and hope for the opportunity to be involved in future efforts. There is nothing greater in fullbore rifle shooting to which one should aspire than to represent one's country in the Palma Match. Well done to all those competing in the 2015 World Long Range Championships, whether first or last.
* The R^2 value in the graph indicates only a 7% probability that this trend occurred by chance.
** Brandon Green appears to have one score missing, so his score was adjusted per his average for all distances.
***Colin Cole and George Edser appear to have scores missing, so their scores were adjusted per their average for all distances.
****My Kiwi friends will, no doubt, be disappointed not to have battered Aussie in the Palma as they did in last night's Beldisloe Cup but they can take pride in the fact that they beat them in the individual.