LONDON 2012: British shooting coach hopeful of medal success
BRITISH shooting coach Ian Coley insists there is no extra pressure to win an Olympic medal at London 2012 - despite the weight of home expectation and the reality of future financial funding.
LONG WAIT: Richard Faulds won double trap gold in Sydney eight years ago, which along with Ian Peel's trap silver, is Great Britain's last shooting Olympic medal success (Getty Images)
Shooting has been one of Great Britain's most successful Olympic sports, with 43 medals, including 12 golds, since the Games began.
But there hasn't been a single medal since Richard Faulds struck double trap gold in Sydney and Ian Peel won trap silver, leading to a cut in lottery funding by UK Sport at the start of this Olympic cycle.
But Coley, who works closely with Faulds and Peter Wilson, Team GB's best two medal hopes, who both compete in the men's double trap, remains optimistic.
Wilson, 25, won the European title in 2011 and set a new world record at the World Cup in Tucson earlier this year, while Faulds, 35, is selected for his fifth consecutive Olympic Games.
“I wouldn’t say we’re under pressure from the BOA or UK Sport to win medals,” said Coley. “Shooting is targeting one medal and that’s achievable and I would expect the shooters to actually achieve that.
“Not one gold medal, but one medal – of course we’d like to achieve that and we’re certainly thinking about gold but we would be satisfied with with a podium finish.
“I’m very conscious that Richard (Faulds) and Peter (Wilson) are strong medal hopes.
“But we’ve been there before when Richard won in Sydney, so we’ve had the tears of winning, but we’ve also had the tears of disappointment from athletes in some of the other Games.
“We’re very aware of what can happen. But for both Richard and Peter, there’s certainly a medal opportunity there for both of them.
“Peter has had a wonderful last 12 months – breaking the world record and winning the World Cup, which all add up to good things.
“Richard has not done quite as well in qualifying, which is good for him as he normally rises to the occasion, so I’m very hopeful.”
© Sportsbeat 2012