Slovakia’s Veronika Vadovicova and Ukraine’s Oleksii Denysiuk opened the 2017 season in style on Wednesday (22 February), with wins at the World Shooting Para Sport World Cup in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.
Both events saw two world records, as a new finals format made its debut in the single position events. Finals now consist of two five shot series instead of a three shot series, upping the total number of shots to 24.
Paralympic champion Vadovicova eased through qualification in R3 (mixed 10m air rifle prone SH1) in pole position, going on to claim the win with a new world record score of 254.8.
Germany’s Rio 2016 silver medallist Natascha Hiltrop (252.2) was second, unable to match the shots of the Slovakian that included a 10.9 in the fifth elimination round.
France’s Cedric Fevre (229.3), the gold medallist from the London 2012 Paralympic Games, claimed third.
Alongside teammates Christophe Tanche and Didier Richard, Fevre stepped onto the top of the team podium with a combined score of 1891.2.
The hosts also enjoyed a top three finish in the team event, as Saif Alnuaimi, Abdullah Sultan Alaryani and Abdullah Saif Alaryani (1878.3) secured silver.
Thailand’s Jiradet Rodtapao, Atidet Intanon and Chutima Saenlar scored 1876.0 to take third.
Ukraine’s Oleksii Denysiuk set his own world record in P3 (mixed 25m pistol SH1).
The Paralympic bronze medallist from the 50m shot 25, racing ahead of Hungary’s Gyula Gurisatti in second.
The podium finish is Gurisatti’s first at a World Cup since 2014.
Sweden’s world champion and Rio 2016 silver medallist, Joackim Norberg, was third.
Competition continues in Al Ain on Thursday (23 February) with R1 (men’s 10m air rifle standing SH1), R8 (women’s 50m rifle three positions SH1), R9 (mixed 50m rifle prone SH2) and P1 (men’s 10m air pistol SH1).
Live results are available at World Shooting Para Sport website.
Updates, pictures and videos are also available at Facebook.com/WorldShootingParaSport and Twitter and Instagram (@ShootingPara).