The Military Army Blog

Stourbridge shooter aiming for medals at Rio paralympics (From …

STOURBRIDGE shooter Richard Davies is a man on a mission in Rio, determined to channel the experience of four years ago into a medal-winning performance on his second Paralympic Games appearance. Back at London 2012, Davies placed 16th in the R4 10m Air Rifle Standing mixed SH2. The 45-year-old openly concedes the pressure of his Paralympic Games debut on home soil was at a level he had not experienced before.

But now four years on, and with a total of four British titles in the R4 10m air rifle standing mixed SH2 under his belt, not to mention a shooting World Cup silver in 2013, Davies is ready to use his experience to bid for a podium finish.

I can t wait to get out there. The training has been a lot more through and I expect a better outcome then what happened in London, said Davies, who is paralyzed from the chest down following a swimming pool accident in 1990.

In London I failed to make the final just because of naivety I believe. Now I am more experienced. I have been ranked number one in the world in the last four years.

I am happy and very confident of bringing some medals back. After the Games there was a lot of talk about home pressure and that for me was the pinnacle of pressure.

I have never done anything as hard so I am happy with the learning curve I have been on and now ready for Rio.

There is no home crowd pressure which suits me. A registered charity, the British Paralympic Association is the organisation responsible for funding, selecting and managing the Great Britain and Northern Ireland team that competes at the Paralympic Games. And while Davies now competes in an individual sport, he insists nothing beats the feeling of being part of the whole Paralympics GB team.

It is a great feeling to put on the kit and it gives us a sense of belonging and we are a force to be reckoned with, added Davies, who was speaking at the Paralympics GB team launch ceremony in London.

Paralympians are very proud people, and none more so than shooting.

I did 14 years of wheelchair rugby and then I was de-selected for the Beijing squad in 2008. Prior to my accident I had done shooting with the Territorial Army, and so I fancied having another go.

It is an individual sport and after so long of doing team sport, it suited me.

It was an interesting learning curve when I was dropped in 2008, let s put it like that.

I decided to go away and do it myself, and get out of a team environment.

I have an incredibly understanding wife and children, I miss them a lot. I am away a couple of days a week but they are very supportive.

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