Gasparini wins Italy's first medal, on his highway to Rio
Italy's Gasparini won the Double Trap Men event beating Wang of China. It was the first medal in Granada for the Italian Team and Gasparini's first gold ever. Fokeev ended up in third place.
Davide Gasparini, 23, won yesterday's Men's Double Trap event at the ISSF World Cup In All Events in Granada, beating Wang Hao, 36, by 28-20 hits in the gold medal match. Gasparini outplayed Wang right from the start of the Gold medal match, having reached a 4-target lead within the first 8 doubles, which began smoothing Davide's path to the gold. The Italian athlete eventually finished on the highest step of the podium with a 8-target advantage on his Chinese opponents. Gasperini had already prevailed upon China's Wang in the semifinal (27 to 26 hits).
Vitaly Fokeev, 39, won the bronze medal match (28 to 26 hits) against Jeffrey Holguin, 34. The American shooter had started off with the right foot leading after 5 doubles; Russia's Fokeev took the 1st place 6 targets later, but was eventually stuck in a tie when the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit memeber reached him at 6 doubles from the end of the game. But the draw didn't last more than 3 targets, when the 39-year-old Fokeev ultimately got the top of the scoreboard and kept the lead till the final finished.
Alexander Vavilov, 35, came 5th in the semifinal scoring 22 targets – just not enough to qualify for the bronze medal match (Fokeev did it with 23). Vavilov of the Russian Federation was followed by Mark Russell, 49. The Sydney 2000 Olympic Silver Medallist took the sixth and last place with 20 targets.
An incredible shoot-off decided Holguin's participation in the semifinal. He was indeed in a tie with Vasily Mosin and Fehaid Aldeehani for 6th place in the qualification round – all of them having scored 140. While Aldeehani of Kuwait was outdone after only 3 shots, Jeffrey Holguin and Russia's Mosin staged a never ending neck and neck duel: the two shooters kept hitting every single target - in the warm afternoon of Granada. Holguin finally made it with an impressive score of 56-55, and left the range exclaiming: “Oh, it took forever!”
Italy's Gasparini had already won a Double Trap medal (a bronze at the 2013 ISSF World Cup in Al Ain) – but this was his first gold ever: “It's the best feeling, – Davide said – today I was competing against some amazing shooters. Some of them had also took part in the Olympic Games: I felt like a nobody!”
And other than his opponents, Davide also had to face the Spanish weather: “It was not easy to shoot 5 rounds for the qualifications with such a hard temperature! Then it got windy, but everything went well.” Nothing really bothered Davide. It was just him, and the targets: “I didn't even realize I had already won the gold before the end of the final. I was just focused on doing my best.”
Next year, it will be Granada one more time, with the 51st ISSF World Championship in All Events: “I hope to be there, and win again” - concluded the 23-year-old Davide.
In that event, the first Rio 2016 Quota Places will be decided. Before this final, Gasparini had never won a World Cup gold medal. Now, he's already thinking of the Olympics. Things changed quickly, getting Davide on his way to Rio. Or rather, his highway.
RESULTS - Double Trap Men
1. GASPARINI Davide
2. WANG Hao
3. FOKEEV Vitaly