Final Trap Men

Spain’s winner Fernandez and Kaya of Turkey earn Olympic trap quota places at European Championships Shotgun as Galvez equals European record

European Championship Shotgun · Lonato, ITA

Spain’s Alberto Fernandez hit the spot at the European Championships Shotgun in Lonato as he secured the single Olympic quota place on offer in winning the trap men final.

Earlier on the Olympic Shooting Range the quota place in the trap women final was claimed by Turkey’s 23-year-old Rumesya Kaya as she took bronze in a trap women event won by Spain’s Fatima Galvez, who equalled the European record of 46.

Fernandez, 40, who won world titles in 2010 and 2018, is now heading for a fourth Olympics having competed at Beijing 2008, London 2012, Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020, finishing ninth at the latter Games and earning mixed team gold with Galvez.

The Spaniard (pictured centre after his win) was among four of the six men’s finalists seeking the elusive quota place in what was the last opportunity to claim it.

And the contest went to the wire as he held off the lingering challenge of two of those fellow seekers, Yavuz Ilnam of Turkey, whom he beat to gold by 46-44, and eventual bronze medallist Bostjan Macek of Slovenia.

The two men who arrived in the final with quota places already won were Croatia’s world and defending champion Giovanni Cernogoraz, who finished sixth, and Britain’s Nathan Hales, who set the world record of 49 in winning the World Cup on this range last year.

Hales  was an early leader after three perfect series, but eventually lost out on third place to his 51-year-old Slovenian rival after both had totalled 31, with Macek – who had recovered from two misses in his first sequence to record four perfect series - moving on thanks to his third place in qualifying, two places ahead of the Briton.

Italy’s Massimo Fabbrizi saw his challenge for a Paris 2024 place disappear as he finished fifth.

Three of the six finalists in the trap women had already earned Olympic quota places, including the eventual gold medallist, which meant Kaya was in competition for a Paris 2024 ticket with Finland’s 43-year-old Mopsi Veromaa and 38-year-old Beatriz Martinez of Spain.

Once Martinez, who is married to Fernandez, had been the first to depart, and Veromaa had finished fifth the Turkish athlete was assured of the quota place.

She then secured herself a place on the podium after beating Italy’s London 2012 champion Jessica Rossi – who was seeking a third European title - to third place. 29 to 28.

A perfect sequence of five hits then saw level with Kathrin Murche on 34 but she had to settle for bronze having finished fourth in qualifying, where the German athlete had topped the list on 119.

As world No.4 Galvez had the highest ranking of the finalists, but she had only qualified sixth.

It soon became clear, however, that the 37-year-old, who earned a quota place in 2022, was once again enjoying competing at the Olympic Shooting Range where she won the world title in 2015 and the world junior title in 2005.

After three consecutive sequences of five hits she had a lead she never lost, and she produced four more perfect series to achieve her record-equalling mark, with Murche, who won a quota place at last year’s World Championships, taking silver on 44.

Galvez is now heading for a fourth Olympics having finished fifth at the London 2012 Games, fourth at the Rio 2016 Games and 14th at Tokyo 2020.

Veromaa’s fine effort earned tangible reward as she helped earn Finland women’s team gold partnered by Satu Makela-Nummela and Noora Antikainen.

Italy, represented by Rossi, Maria Palmitessa and World Cup Final champion Silvana Stanco, took silver and bronze went to the German trio of Murche, Sarah Bindrich and Nadine Halwax.

Men’s team gold went to the Turkish trio of Ilnam, Oguzhan Tuzun and Tolga Tuncer, with Britain earning silver thanks to Hales, Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Matthew Coward-Holley and Aaron Heading.

Finland’s trio of Jukka Laakso, who finished one place off the final, Juho Maekelae and Eemil Pirttisalo took bronze.





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