As the world’s attention gets ready to turn to Tokyo for the 2021 Olympic Summer Games, we’re particularly excited about the shooting events. Skeet shooting competition is a fan favorite -- the precision and skill involved make it an engrossing sport to watch.
Is Skeet Shooting in the Olympics?
It sure is. Skeet - the second oldest version of clay pigeon shooting - started back in the 1920s and has been an Olympic sport since 1968. While it began as a male-only event, it’s now open to both sexes.
Domestic skeet is popular, but the Olympic version takes it to the next level. The clay targets used are both flatter and more durable - making them harder to break. Not only that, but increased speeds and wider arcs mean targets are thrown at greater distances. Finally, a 0-3 second delay after the shooter calls for the bird adds another hurdle to overcome.
What is Olympic Skeet Shooting?
For the Olympic Skeet Shooting Competition, groups of six shooters fire at a fixed course of 25 targets per round. Targets come from both high and low throwing machines and can be singles or doubles (although only one shot is permitted, regardless of how many targets are thrown). Men shoot 125 targets over two days while women shoot 75. From there, the top six shooters move into a final round with 25 more targets. Scores are tallied and medals awarded accordingly.
The 2021 Olympic US Skeet Shooters
Vincent Hancock - Back for his fourth Olympic games after clinching gold medals in both the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Olympics, Hancock is the only shooter to win the Olympic Men’s Skeet back-to-back. This year, he also won the USA Skeet Trials.
Phillip Jungman — The Tokyo games will be Jungman’s first time competing in the Olympics. At the USA Shooting Olympic Skeet Trials, he finished right behind Hancock and we look forward to seeing how he fares.
Austen Smith — This Texas skeet shooter makes her Olympic debut in Tokyo. Back in May, she won a gold medal in the ISSF Shooting World Cup Women’s Skeet Event with an impressive score of 55/60.
Amber English - The only US skeet shooter not from Texas, Amber hails from Colorado and will also be competing in her first Olympic games. She and Hancock were awarded bronze medals in the Skeet Mixed Team Event during the ISSF World Cup.
One person we’ll miss during the Tokyo Games? Kim Rhode. After competing in the past six Olympics, she failed to qualify for the US Team. But with 3 gold medals, 2 silver, and 1 bronze under her belt, she’s certainly an Olympic athlete to admire. We hope she comes back in 2028.
Beyond the Skeet Shooting competitions, Air Pistol, Air Rifle, and Trap are all worth watching. Ready to see how it all turns out? The official schedule for all of the 2021 Olympic shooting events is here.
Wild Hare & Your Skeet Shooting Gear
Whether you dream of competing in the Olympics one day, or simply shoot for fun, we love to see people enjoy this traditional, beloved sport. If you’re looking for skeet shooting gear, Wild Hare has you covered. Check out our products. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact us with any questions you have and we’ll help you out.