Rio Paralympic Games day 3: No fairy-tale ending for Aussie Air Rifle shooters

There was no fairy-tale ending for Libby Kosmala, the oldest athlete competing at the Rio Paralympics, in the Mixed R3 10m Air Rifle Prone SH1 event. The 74-year-old from Klemzig, South Australia, had to settle for 37th place to finish well adrift of medal contention.

It was a similar tale for her Aussie team-mates Anton Zappelli and Natalie Smith. Zappelli managed to land 18th spot, while Smith bowed out of the qualifying stages after coming 31st.

Slovakia’s Veronika Vadovicova stayed ahead of her rivals to claim her second gold medal at the Games. Three women moved into the final with Vadovicova and silver medallist Natascha Hiltrop, of Germany, taking charge from the start. South Korea’s Jangho Lee secured the bronze medal in his debut Paralympic Games. “It’s a very big satisfaction for me,” said the double gold medallist Vadovicova.

Also out of luck were the Aussie duo of Bradley Mark and Luke Cain, who made early exits in the Mixed R4 10m Air Rifle Standing SH2 category. Mark, 59, who had also competed at the London Games, put in a respectable performance to earn 12th spot. Cain followed him home further down the field with a 26th finishing position.

It was a Slovakian clean-up in the medal berths, with Veselka Pevek grabbing gold and Gorazd Francek Tirsek claiming silver. The bronze medal went to South Korea’s Geunsoo Kim.

Australian handgunner Christopher Pitt will compete tomorrow in the Mixed P3 25m Pistol SH1 Precision event.

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