The first U.S. gold in the Rio Olympics goes to Ginny Thrasher, 19, for her solid performance in shooting an air rifle. Despite Obama and the Democrats’ gun control efforts which affected the team’s training, Thrasher still pulled off a huge victory. That’s got to frustrate a few gun-controlling Democrats, like Obama and Hillary Clinton who have implemented extensive background checks that have made the process difficult for team members.
On Saturday morning, Ginny Thrasher’s score of 208 set a record in a final round at the Olympics in Rio. She won the gold over China’s Du Li by 1 point. Another China team member, Yi Siling came in third with a score of 185.4 to win the bronze. That’s pretty phenomenal, considering Yi Siling took a silver in the World Championships for Women in 2014.
Shooting the air rifle 10 meter event is interesting in itself. Thrasher wears specialized clothing that improves the stability of the gun and the shooting position and prevents back injuries. Shots are then fired from a standing position, 10 meters or 10.94 yards from the target. A 4.5mm caliber air rifle is used that weighs less than 12 pounds. The competitors get 40 competition shots all fired within 75 minutes during the qualifying round with a maximum 10 points for each shot.
In the finals, shooters start from scratch – all qualifying scores are eliminated. They begin 2 series of 3 shots each, fired within 150 seconds per series, followed by 14 single shots fired on command with 50 seconds per shot. Shooters are eliminated by lowest scores after 8 shots. This continues every 2 shots until they have a gold and silver winner with a total of 20 shots fired.
For Thrasher, winning is not new. As a freshman she was on the winning team at West Virginia University (WVU) for the NCAA’s Air Rifle Championship in March of 2016. She scored 208.8 and won the NCAA Championship’s Top Performer Award. Thrasher led the Mountaineers to their 4th consecutive championship.
What’s amazing is, Thrasher’s only been shooting a gun for about 5 years. In fact, she has her grandfather to thank for introducing her to guns. He took her deer hunting when she was in 8th grade. I’m guessing her grandfather is not a Democrat or a gun-control fanatic.
The sport of shooting has been caught up in discussions over gun rights and the associated political debate. Thrasher’s teammate, six-time Olympian Kim Rhode, spoke earlier this week about how new gun measures in her state of California had affected her training because she must complete extensive background checks to buy ammunition for practice. Rhode is an member of the National Rifle Association and previously spoke at the 2012 Republican National Convention.
We can be grateful that Obama hasn’t outlawed all guns yet, otherwise Team USA and Thrasher might not have the gold in Rio in the air rifle event. Let’s hope we can put a Republican back in the White House, that unlike Obama and Clinton, supports gun ownership and our 2nd Amendment Rights.
As for Ginny Thrasher, as a NRA member – Way To Go Girl! Keep on Shooting! America is proud of you!