Cyprus, Spain and hosts Italy topped the podiums at the Lonato del Garda 2021 World Shooting Para Sport Para Trap World Championships on Saturday (25 September) taking the PT1, PT2 and PT3 individual titles, respectively.
None of the best-performers in the qualifying stage reached the podium in the finals. The PT1 – mixed trap seated SG-S saw Cyprus bag a Para trap gold medal for the first time with Nikolaou Neofytos.
The Cypriot shooter, who finished in fourth place on day one, scored 37 in the final ahead of local favourite and Sydney 2019 world champion Oreste Lai (34) with the United Arab Emirates taking bronze with Mohammed Alhebsi (27).
“I want to dedicate this medal to my dad, my friends and all my team,” said Neofytos, who improved from his bronze at the 2018 Worlds in Lonato.
Ignacio Javier Oloriz put Spain on the top of the podium in the The PT2 – mixed trap standing SG-L scoring 39 – four ahead of Finland’s Vesa Jarvinen (35), the world champion from the 2018 Worlds in Lonato. Italy’s Antonio Ventre finished third with 27.
Oloriz came to the final with the second-best score in the first round behind Great Britain’s George Glover – who had to settle for a fourth place in the final.
“This medal represents all the work and effort. I love this sport and, finally, I got the result I always wanted,” said the Spaniard.
Italy has dominated the international stage since Para trap became an approved World Shooting Para Sport discipline in 2017 but had failed to top the podium at home until the PT3 – mixed trap standing SG-U final.
Emilio Poli had finished the qualifying stage in sixth place but put on an impressive display on Saturday to take gold scoring 39 and equalling the world record.
“It was very difficult because I train in this range, I know a lot of people and they come to you and tell you ‘shoot well, go to the podium’, so there is a lot of emotions,” said Poli.
“But in the final it is another play, it is only one shot [per time] and it changed all because I worked hard for this,” he added.
Two-time world champion Francesco Nespeca made it an Italian one-two finish with 34 leaving Spain’s Meliton Brinas in third (27).
“I was very happy that we finished with silver and gold, Francesco Nespeca and I. I wanted to thank him because he helped me in shooting, we are friends inside and outside the sport,” gold medallist Poli said about his compatriot.
Italy also took gold in the PT2 and PT3 team events while UAE triumphed in the PT1 team event.
Complete results from Lonato del Garda 2021 are available here.
The Para Trap World Championships finals can be watched on World Shooting Para Sport Facebook page.