Italy triumphed at the Olympic Shooting Centre in Deodoro today, thanks to the first-time Olympian Bacosi and to the 2008 Olympic Champion Cainero. Kimberly Rhode won her sixth individual Olympic medal out of six consecutive Olympic participations, a record.
Diana Bacosi won an all-Italian gold medal match at today’s Skeet Women event at the Olympic Shooting Centre in Deodoro, beating her teammate Chiara Cainero 15 to 14 hits.
Bacosi, a 33-year old first-time Olympian, passed through the semi-final with a perfect score of 16 hits out 16 targets, advancing to the medal match together with the 2008 Olympic Champion Cainero (38). The two teammates, both world record holders and ranked 5th and 4th in the world, walked into the field of play hand in hand.
Once the match started, it was Cainero who missed first, on station one, losing two crucial clays, a mistake that placed her in second.
“I am very happy to finish this adventure with Chiara. We started together, we worked together on the road to Rio, and we finished together,” said Diana.
“This medals means a lot to me. This sport is a big part of my life. I walked into the field of play with the confidence that I could make it to the medals, but I was not expecting to finish atop of the podium.”
“I am happy to be on the podium with Diana,” said Cainero. “As a team, we could not do anything more for our country, today.”
“Three mums were on the podium today,” continued Chiara. “Diana, Kimberly, myself, we all have children, and we all know how difficult it is to be a competitive athlete and good parents at the same time.”
“I can’t really compare my four Olympics. I am happy to be here today, and to share this podium with my teammate,” continued Cainero. “In London, I walked into the Games aiming at the final, and I finished in fifth. Today I had more self-confidence, more determination, and - having gone through four Games - I was even more conscious of what was happening around me.”
USA’s Kimberly Rhode (37) climbed upon the third step of the podium, making history as she secured the sixth individual Olympic medal in her sixth consecutive Olympic Games participation, a record.
Rhode is also the most decorated women Olympic shooter in the history of the sport, having won 3 gold, 1 silver, and 2 bronze medals between 1996 and 2016, in two different events (Double Trap and Skeet Women).
The American shooter beat Wei Meng of the People’s Republic of China (27) by 7 to 6 hits in a shoot-off at the end of the bronze medal match, as the two athletes tied with 15 hits out of 16 targets each.
That was not the only tie-breaker she had to pass through, today. Indeed, at the end of the semi-final she had to shoot-off her teammate Morgan Craft (23), the world’s #2, to advance to the medal duel.
“I always say the bronze (medal match) is tough. The gold is easy, as you know you have at least a medal,” Rhode said, smiling after the match.
“I was 16-year old when I went to the Olympics (in Atlanta 1996). I was very emotional out there, having competed for the more than 20 years. Six for six, it’s truly unbelievable. I never even dreamed I would have the honour to represent the USA at six Olympics. I am completely humbled for the complete experience; it has been a great journey.”
But there’s more to come, she said.
“Hopefully I will see you back in Tokyo. I'm gonna go again. I'm gonna try for a seventh, this hopefully will not be my last.”