When I tried to check out the streaming coverage of the Olympics this morning, I found that I couldn’t watch it without “logging in” via my cable provider. Well, we don’t have cable.
However, the actual Olympics website has a cool feature for shooting sports coverage. They feature the targets of the winners during the final rounds. Take a look at the difference between first place and last place in the first medal event of the entire Games – Women’s 10m Air Rifle. For even the best shooters who read this blog, the “last” place target would be incredible on their best days. For an Olympic shooter, it’s pretty easy to see the shot that made this a an eighth place target.
UPDATE: Want to know more about exactly how these targets are scored? Olympian Jamie Gray answered a question about it from the comments! From her comment:
All the scoring is done electronically. So instead of shooting at a paper taget with scoring rings you shoot at a black dot. There is black paper (black rubber in Smallbore) that advances every shot. There are microphones that read the sound of the shot hitting the paper to calculate where the shot actually hit the target. The shot then appears on a monitor that is next to the shooter. These targets are very accurate. The qualification rounds are scored in full value, so you can shoot a 10,9,8,7â€¦the score needed to make the final in this Olympics was 397. That is missing the pencil dot hole in the center of the target no more than 3 times. The final is scored in tenths of points, where the best shot is a 10.9. So the rings are broken into tenths, 10.9, 10.8, 10.7â€¦10.0, 9.9â€¦this is all scored electronically as well.
Wow. That makes me feel a bit like a loser for finding silhouette hard to shoot. Regardless, it’s all the more reason to be amazed by what our athletes do over there.
In this event, there were no 10.9s shot. However, there were five 10.8s. The interesting thing about it is that three of those nearly perfect shots were shot by the silver medalist. However, when the “lowest” shot from the woman who won gold was a 10.0, you can see why she won the gold.
We thank Jamie Gray, a native of Lebanon, PA, for stopping by in the comments. Good luck in the Women’s 50m Rifle event on the 4th!