10m Air Rifle Men: what a young podium!

ISSF World Cup Rifle / Pistol · Fort Benning, USA

Three young guys made up the 10m Air Rifle podium at the ISSF World Cup in Fort Benning. The youngest, China's Yang Haoran, is just 17. New athletes are facing this Olympic Cycle!

There were plenty of young athletes coming to great outcomes throughout these first months of 2013 ISSF World Cup Stages; nevertheless, it's hard to remember something comparable to what has just happened in Fort Benning, GA, USA: Yang Haoran (17),  Dempster Christenson (22) and Sergey Richter (24) were the three shooters who respectively reached the Gold, Silver and Bronze medal at the 10m Air Rifle Men event; the average age of the podium was right 21 years old, proving again that a wind of change and renovation is blowing in the shooting sports world. New athletes are performing high results, getting in the international field together with other important champions.


Israel's Sergey Richter, who came third, first stepped onto an ISSF podium in 2009, when he won the 10m Air Rifle event in Munich, at the age of 20. He kept competing in that same discipline, gaining other medals in the next World Cup Stages and European Championships (Changwon 2011, London and Bangkok 2012, Odense and again Changwon 2013). This time, in Fort Benning, the European Champion qualified for the match with 623.1 points and then picked up the Bronze medal with 184.5. Seems like Air Rifle is the right one of Richter.


Dempster Christenson didn't miss the chance to triumph in his own country: the South Dakota native athlete won the Silver medal thanks to the 206.4 final points he scored; that was also Christenson's debut in an ISSF World Cup. Actually, a 13th place at the 2010 Munich World Championships had been his best result so far. This World Cup meant quite a boost to this 22-year-old guy!


Finally, the event's winner was China's Yang Haoran; he was the youngest competitor, but not an underdog: he had already showed the world his skills, winning the Asian Championship Gold medal in 2012, when he was just 16. Now it came to an ISSF competition, an other notable challenge which Yang Haoran: a new one, it's true, but that wasn't a big deal for such a young guy as Yang. “It's been a new experience, - he said - I was set for the best, but I didn't expect to win the Gold at my first try.”


Now, what these three brilliant shooters want is summed up by the Gold medalist: “I wish I could participate in more ISSF competitions in the future, – explained Yang Haoran -  in order to gain experience and self confidence.”


What else should young athletes look forward to? The ISSF youngest ever podium is set to go!


RESULTS - 10m Air Rifle Men

1. YANG Haoran


3. RICHTER Sergey


Alessandro Ceschi


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