Three years after his last world cup victory, the Italian champion finished atop of the podium with a massive 6-target lead on his followers.
taly’s 42-year old Daniele Di Spigno set a new world record of 78 hits out of 80 targets to win today’s Double Trap Men final at the ISSF Shotgun World Cup in Larnaka, Cyprus.
The four-time world champion, currently ranked 60th in the world, came back atop of an ISSF podium after missing since 2014, shuttering the world record of 75 hits established by Australia’s James Willett at the first world cup stage of the year, in New Delhi, last February.
Di Spigno turned out to be unreachable. His closest opponent, silver medalist Artem Nekrasov from Russia, 24, finished in second 6 clays behind him, with a score of 72 hits.
The second Italian finalist, 27-year old Davide Gasperini, closed the elimination-style final in third place with 56 hits, ahead of Malta’s first-time finalist Gianluca Chetcuti, 19, who took the 4th place with 45 hits.
“This is my tenth ISSF World Cup Gold medal. I think this is a nice way to close the circle,” Di Spigno said.
“During the final I shot at my best, focusing on each pair of target. I was not tired. I was not afraid. The clays seemed to fly so slow, they seemed so big… that’s just an impression off course, but that’s what happens when I am doing well. I knew I was going to make it.”
The Italian winner missed just two targets throughout the final, at the end of a long competition day where he shot 138+15 targets to qualify for the medal match.
“I did not count the hits and the misses. I did not realize what was going on around me. I was fully focused on my own performance, until the end, and that payed-off.”
“I didn’t perform at my best in the last few competitions. And I missed the highest step of the podium more than once. Even at last year’s European Championship, that took place on my home turf, I finished in second behind Russia’s Mosin. He was in today’s final, and I beat him. That’s why I was so happy after the last shot… it was like an explosion, I had a lot of stress to release.”
London 2012’s Olympic bronze medalist Vasily Mosin, 44, from Russia, made it to the final with today’s highest qualification score, 142 hits, but then dropped five targets in the first part of the medal match, landing in 5th place with 35 hits.
Following him, today’s youngest competitor – India’s 15-year old Shapath Bharadwaj – won the applauses of the crowd by scoring 26 targets (135+22 in the qualifications) to finish his career’s first final in 6th place.
429 athletes from 61 countries are competing in the ISSF Shotgun World Cup in Larnaka. Tomorrow, May 4, the competition will continue with the Trap’s pre-event training. On May 5, the next medals will be assigned at the women’s Skeet final scheduled at 16.45 (GMT+3), while the men’s Trap qualifications will kick-off with the first 50 targets. On May 6, the men’s Trap final will take place at 18.00 (GMT+3).