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Hancock sets Olympic record to retain men's skeet gold in London

08-01-2012 00:44 BJT Special Report:2012 London Olympic Games |

LONDON, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Vincent Hancock of the United States hit 148 out of the 150 targets to retain the men's skeet gold medal at the London Olympic Games on Tuesday.

Anders Golding from Denmark got the silver with 146 hits. Nasser Al-Attiya from Qatar won the shoot-off 6-5 against Russian veteran Valeriy Shomin for the bronze medal after both tied at 144 hits.

The 23-year-old Hancock did a steady job in the qualifying stage, losing two targets out of a total of 125 clays. His 123 hits also set an Olympic record.

Hancock maintained his perfect form in the final, hitting all of the 25 targets to keep his leading place until the last shot.

"It's just an unbelievable feeling. I'll thank God every day from here on out that he gave me the opportunity to do it," said Hancock.

"Being able to stand up there again and listen to the national anthem it's got to be better. But it hasn't set in fully yet but going out there and doing it again, taking the opportunity the guys have given me to get out on the field and to compete for the Olympic gold medal again. There's just no feeling like it."

Hancock planned to leave the Army in November 2012 to help his father Craig open the Hancock Shooting Academy in Eatonton, Georgia. He also planned to go to college at Lindenwood University in St. Louis, Missouri, or the University of Georgia.

The final was also memorable for the third placed Al-Attiya, who had experienced four straight Olympic Games without a gold.

"I tried my best to achieve the final, and suddenly came the shootoff," said Al-Attiya, who lost the shootoff and the bronze medal four years ago in Beijing. "I was in the same situation in Beijing. This time I was very happy to win the bronze, to become the first shooter in Qatar to win an Olympic medal."

41-year-old Al-Attiya was not only known for his shooting skill, but also for his title at the 2011 Dakar Rally racing.

He also competed in rally car racing and took part in the 2012 Dakar Rally to defend his 2011 title. But the race was happening at the same time as the Asian shooting championships. Instead of finishing the rally, he retired on day nine to return home and compete in the shooting competition.

He equalled a world record in the clay pigeon event by hitting a complete score of 150. That qualified him for the 2012 Olympic Games in London. He said if he had been leading the Dakar Rally he would not have retired from the race.

"My dreams will be over and not compete in Olympic Games. Sometimes you have to lose something to win another thing. It was my only way to compete in the Olympics. I was so lucky to have the last moment," said Al-Attiya.


Editor:Bai Yang |Source: Xinhua

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