Student shots fight hard

Over 10,603 athletes from over 150 countries descended on China for the World University Games and the GB Trap shooting team fought the heat to stay in the contest that saw a number of World Cup standard performances

Shenzhen in southern China hosted a spectacular World University Games recently. The multi-sport international competition is second only in size to the Olympics.
Great Britain’s shooting contingent consisted of two shotgunners – Mark Hampton of Cardiff University and William Marshall of Manchester University – two pistol shooters, four rifle shooters and coaches Steve Pengelly and Sinclair Bruce.

The shotgun shooting was held at the brand new Trap and Skeet range in the Longgang district of Shenzhen. Four combined Trap and Skeet ranges with Laporte traps and electronics had been installed, with a fantastic background consisting largely of green netted banking. The only drawback of the new layouts was the covers, or lack thereof, as the 40°C heat, 80 per cent humidity and glaring sunshine brought an extra hurdle to competing.

Some 33 men, from 17 nations were competing in this event, with a further 15 women from 10 countries competing in the Ladies’ Trap event.

The two Brits enjoyed great targets, light and background, whilst coping with the heat.

Will Marshall didn’t make the best start to his competition posting a 19 on the first round but steadily brought himself back up to standard by posting a 22, and then a 25-straight for a first day total of 66.

Mark shot steadily on the first day with two 24s followed by a 23, leaving him on 71 overnight. Unfortunately for the guys from the UK, the standard was exceptionally high, with two 75-straights posted by Italian Marco Panizza, and Jakub Trzebinski of Poland.

On the second day Mark’s rounds of 25 and 22 did little to keep up, putting him on a more than respectable 118 – just three targets adrift of a place in the final. Will finished the day on 111, having shot 21 and 24, placing him 28th.

Marco Panizza and Jakub Trzebinski both finishing on scores of 123. Marco became the eventual victor by pushing himself two targets ahead of Jakub in the final.

The high standard of the Games was seen across all the disciplines in both the men’s and women’s events; Jana Beckmann of Germany won the Ladies’ Trap shooting 73+21, whilst the two Slovakians Danka Bartekova and Monkia Zemokova set new games records of 72+24 in the women’s Skeet. A Games record was set in the men’s Skeet by Italian gold medallist Giancarlo Tazza and silver medallist Ralf Buchheim with a score of 124+23.

Since returning from China Mark has kept his run of form going with his combination of Guerini shotgun and Fiocchi Top Trap ammo, by winning the gold with the England team at the Home International in Wales, winning the Hereford and Worcester county Trap event, and then finishing the season on a high by making a comprehensive victory at the Commonwealth Shooting Federation European Division Championships at Southern Counties, Dorset.

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