South Korean men’s rapid-fire pistol standout Song Jong-ho (33-IBK) is determined to put his heartbreaking disqualification from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games two years ago behind him and strike gold.
The 2014 Incheon Asian Games gold medalist in the 25-meter rapid-fire pistol team event will go for gold in shooting at the Hangzhou Asian Games in September.
Song Jong-ho is a talented shooter who hasn’t had much luck on the international stage.
He won gold at the Asian Games nine years ago, but didn’t get a chance to add to his medal tally at the last edition in Palembang-Jakarta when the team event was canceled due to problems at the local shooting range.
He also suffered a setback at the Tokyo Olympics two years ago, when he was disqualified after failing a post-shot test in the 25-meter rapid-fire pistol event on the first day of competition.
Song Jong-ho, a member of the shooting team at the Hangzhou Asian Games, trains during a media day at the Changwon International Shooting Range in Changwon, Gyeongnam, on Friday afternoon. 2023.9.5/News1 ⓒ News1 Reporter Shin Woong-soo
After nearly five years of preparation, including a one-year postponement of the Olympics due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Song Jong-ho was frustrated by the lackluster results. He was disqualified if the average speed of his bullets did not exceed 250 meters per second.
Practicing a lot and shooting fast during the hot summer months can cause heat deformation of the gun, which Song Jong-ho was not aware of. It also means he didn’t take care of his guns. “I was too complacent,” he recalls. The bullet was traveling at 220 meters per second, and it became a ridiculous situation.”
He’s also had his fair share of disappointment at big events, including the 2016 Rio Olympics, where he qualified for the quota and then missed out on the domestic trials.
However, these losses made him stronger and naturally made him mentally stronger. “I went through a lot of ups and downs, and it was a great learning experience,” he said. “As long as I can finish the race as prepared, the results will follow.”
The matured Song has been on the rise, winning gold in rapid fire pistol at the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Granada Grand Prix last year, team and mixed gold at the Baku World Cup, and a third-place individual finish in rapid fire pistol at this year’s Jakarta World Cup.
Korean shooting, which is in the midst of a generational transition following the retirement of “shooting emperor” Jin Jong-oh, is aiming for three gold medals at the Hangzhou Games, with Song Jong-ho’s rapid-fire pistol being one of them.
Song is expected to compete with China’s Li Yuehong, the current world record holder, for the gold medal.
“All the (disappointing) times have already passed,” said Song, who is determined not to miss his chance this time around.토토사이트
Meanwhile, in the 25-meter rapid-fire pistol event, athletes must fire all five shots within the time limit. There are two 8-second shots, two 6-second shots, and two 4-second shots, for a total of 30 shots in the first and second rounds. In the final, the top six shooters will shoot eight 4-second shots to determine the medal color.