British shooters win in Turkey ahead of home World Cup

Matt Skelhon and Ryan Cockbill both win gold in Antalya, with less than one month to go until next competition in Stoke Mandeville. 05 Jun 2013
A picture of a man posing with his rifle at the shooting competition

Matt Skelhon of Great Britain competes in the mixed R6-50m Rifle Prone SH1 final round at the London 2012 Paralympic Games

Ⓒgetty images
By Jake Wright | For the IPC

“I'm in good shape - shooting well - so looking forward to it - would be nice to get the qualifying world record next.”

Stoke Mandeville Stadium, the birthplace of Paralympic sport, is set to host the third in the series of the 2013 International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Shooting World Cup on the 2-4 July as para-shooting returns to Great Britain for the first time since London 2012.

British shooters will be looking to capitalise on home soil advantage and add to the two gold medals and one bronze they won at the last world cup competition in Turkey in May.

Over 100 shooters from 20 nations competed in Antalya in the second instalment of the IPC Shooting World Cup series.

Paralympian Matt Skelhon was one of the Brits who picked up Turkish gold, winning the mixed R3 air rifle prone category.

Skelhon was on the hunt for gold after picking up a silver medal at the first world cup competition in Szczecin, Poland – the young Russian, Tatiana Ryabchenko, shot four 10.9’s (a maximum score) to win gold on that occasion.

However the 29-year-old London 2012 silver and bronze medallist was able to put the gold medal ghosts of Poland to rest beating Slovakia’s Radoslav Malenovsky’s, 211.7 to 210.7 in the final.

“I don't mind being beaten by any shooter as long as I know I have shot to the best of my ability,” said Skelhon.

“It was great to win the gold in Turkey - I was slightly disappointed in Poland but you can't win them all.”

The second British gold went to Ryan Cockbill in the 10m air rifle SH2 who scored three 10.8’s, point one of a mark away from maximum score to beat Serbia’s Sinsia Vidic.

Owen Burke capped off the British medal haul with a bronze in the 10m air rifle competition.

Turkey’s Korhan Kyamac can vouch for the advantages of shooting on home turf, when his 194.2 won him gold in the 10m air pistol SH1 class in Turkey - beating Austria’s Hubert Aufschnaiter and Mongolia’s Ganbaatar Zandraa in the process, who took silver and bronze respectively.

US Army Marksmanship Unit soldier John Joss won a bronze medal in the mixed R3 air rifle prone, at his first IPC Shooting World Cup.

Olivera Nakovska-Bikova proved why she is on the IPC shooting’s Ones to Watch list in Turkey as she shot a 183.8 to win the women’s 10m air pistol final, her Macedonian team-mate Lidija Krsteska finishing in third.

The SH1 10m air rifle final saw Germany’s Natascha Hiltrop score 205.3 putting Slovakia’s London 2012 bronze medal winner, Veronika Vadovicova into second.

Skelhon meanwhile is confident of his chances going into the next World Cup in Great Britain.

“I'm in good shape - shooting well - so looking forward to it - would be nice to get the qualifying world record next.”

The next IPC Shooting World Cup will be held in Stoke Mandeville, Great Britain from 2-4 July, ahead of the European Championships in Alicante, Spain from 20-25 October 2013.