Greece’s Mitas scored two records to win the Skeet Men final
With a perfect match – 150 hits out of 150 targets – Mitas won his first ever ISSF World Cup Stage, and looks now forward to the Games. Beijing’s Olympic Bronze Terras equalled the 125-target world record but finished out of the podium after missing two on station four.
Tucson’s shooting range became once again the stage of a record competition, today, in the frame of the 2012 ISSF Shotgun World Cup Stage held there from March the 24th to April the 1st.
Shooting under a clear sky, and in spite of a consistent breeze, Greece’s Efthimios Mitas, 26, won the Skeet Men Gold medal equalling the World Record (125 hits in the qualifications) and the Final World Record (with an overall score of 150 hits).
The Greek finalist played a perfect match, hitting all the targets over the two-day competition, to secure his first ever ISSF Gold medal.
“I will never forget this match!” Mitas said right after the match.
“It’s a dream which come true. I have been shooting since 1998 and been dreaming about a perfect match since then.” he commented, looking at the scoreboard.
Mitas’ best ISSF placement had been a second place at the 2010 ISSF World Cup in Dorset, while he had placed in third at last year’s ISSF World Cup Stage in Maribor.
“I was feeling great today. My mind was clear, and this is a great range. A perfect mix to score a record.” He added.
“The Olympic Games are in my sights. I will be competing in the pre-Olympic test in London, in April, and then at the ISSF World Cup in Lonato. Right before the Games, I will then participate in the European Championship in Cyprus.”
Coming out of the qualifications, Mitas had to fight against the 2008 Olympic Bronze medallist Anthony Terras, a 26-year old France shooter from Marseille.
Terras made it to the final with a record score of 125 hits as well, but then finished out of the podium after missing a single “mark” and a “pool” in the double at station four. After finishing in the Olympic medal standings four years ago, Terras won the 2009 ISSF World Cup Final in Beijing, and is missing form international ISSF podiums since then.
The Silver medal went to the 2000 Olympic Champion Mikola Milchev, 44. The expert skeet shooter qualified for the match with 123 hits, and then climbed up to the podium after beating the young Mexican flag bearer Carlos Alberto Valdez Romero in an endless shoot-off, with a score of 148+44 to 148+43 hits. Carlos Alberto Valdez Romero secured the Bronze, stepping on his first ISSF podium.
After yesterday’s Silver medal at the Skeet Women match, the Italian team finished in the spotlights again today thanks to Giancarlo Tazza, 23, from Caserta. The young Skeet shooter had to fight to get into the final, passing through an qualification shoot-off with a score of 122+12 hits, finishing then in fifth with 147 (122+25) targets.
Qualified with 123 hits, the 40-year old Russian veteran Valery Shomin, a 2010 World Champion, finished in sixth with a total score of 147 (123+24) hits as well.
Olympic Champion’s record equalled
The 125-target World Record equalled today had been established by USA’s Olympic Champ Vincent Hancock at the 2007 ISSF World Cup in Lonato, Italy. Since then, the record had been equalled eight times, never by Mitas or Terras. The American shooter had set the 150-target Final World Record in the same occasion, a record which has been equalled only five times since then.
Hancock, the reigning Olympic Champion, placed in 10th with an overall score of 121 hit, today. “The competitions that matters is in four months.” The American shooter said, referring to the Olympic competition taking place in London next July.