Straight scores for Olympic glory

The GB Trap team took team bronze

The World Championships in Serbia wasn’t the fruitful event team GB had hoped for, but top-level performances mean the Olympic dream is still in full view

Some 26 Great British shooters shot in the World Championships in Belgrade in September. Team bronze for the OT boys and team silver for the Junior women along with some solid performances across the events proved team GB is making ground in the run-up to the 2012 Olympics.

In the Double Trap events, newly-crowned world number one shooter, Peter Wilson missed out on a place in the final by a single target finishing 11th on count back. Faulds was a few spots behind on an equal score of 144ex-150 and Steve Scott finished on 137.

The Double Trap Junior event saw a promising performance form Chester Cobb who finished just 10 targets behind the winner on 137ex-150.

Once again our Olympic Trap shooters missed out on securing a quota place as both Aaron Heading and Ed Ling were two targets short of the final on 120ex-125. Carl Exton was a single target behind on 119. Their combined score, however, put them in third place on the podium in the parallel team event.

The Ladies’ Trap event saw Charlotte Kerwood and Shona Marshall just three targets short of a place in the final on 69ex-75, and Anita North was just behind on 68.

Young talent is coming through the ranks as the Junior Ladies take team silver

Esme Sparey continued her fine form at the European Championships last month with a seventh-place score of 66ex-75, just one target short of a place in the Women’s Junior Trap final.

Meanwhile, in the men’s Junior event Mark Shaw just missed out on a podium finish after a closely-matched shoot-off with Russia’s Maksim Smykov, who took the bronze on 120ex-125+5. Callum McMillan finished on 112 and Nickolas Gowrie shot 105.

The Men’s Skeet event saw 21-year-old Rory Warlow top the GB team with his score of 122, just one target short of a place in the final. One shot behind Rory on 121 was Malcolm Allen, and Richard Brickell shot 120.

The women told a similar story with Pinky Le Grelle and Elena Allen leading the GB team on 67ex-75, five targets behind a final place, and Nicola Brocklesby was a single target behind on 66.

The Juniors Skeet shooters are really showing promise, the Ladies had a seven (65ex-75), eight (65ex-75), 11 (63ex-75) finish from Hannah Gibson, Sian Bruce and Sally Bond respectively, giving them the silver medal in the team event with their combined score.

In the Junior men’s event Charles Davidmann shot 118ex-125, just three targets behind the winner; Sam McGonigal shot 116 and Guy Franklin shot 114.

The Russian team finished atop of the medal standings with 12 medals, followed by China and USA in second and third place, respectively. A total of 60 medals, including Junior and team events, were assigned during this 2011 ISSF Shotgun World Championship in Belgrade, while five Olympic quota places, the entrance tickets to the next 2012 Olympic Games, were secured.

It is testimony to the high quality of shooters at the event that such respectable scores left our competitors empty handed in the individual events. This event proves that a single target can make all the difference and the GB team must now work on matching the almost perfect scores of the leading pack if they are to achieve Olympic success.

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