From USA Shooting - Injury Forces Olympic Gold Medalist Jamie (Beyerle) Gray to Retire

Colorado Springs, Colorado - There comes a time in every elite athlete’s life where they eventually succumb to the pain they place upon their body to perform the sport they love. Today is that day for reigning Olympic gold medalist Jamie (Beyerle) Gray (Lebanon, Pa.) as she reluctantly retires from her competitive rifle career. 

No doubt that the gold medal she earned in London helped make the decision a little bit easier as did the new life she’s building in Kalispell, Mont. But more than that, Gray wasn’t willing to forego her long-term health for the opportunity to continue shooting. 

Since 2010, Gray has tolerated a lower back that was unbearable at times and something that worsened each time she put in the training time necessary to compete at the very best. Simply put, her back could no longer bear the brunt and it told her so every time she tried.  

“It has taken a toll on my body, mind and life since,” Gray acknowledged. “At the Olympics, I had three injections in my back after the air rifle match, which allowed me to be successful in smallbore.” 

More on the retirement of Olympic Gold Rifle Medalist Jamie Gray ...

From USA Shooting - Current & Future Stars Gather in Colorado Springs for 2014 Nat'l Jr. Olympic Shooting Championships

Women's Air Pistol will be intense despite the bond Lydia Paterson (left), Alana Townsend (middle) and Darian Shenk (right) have formed as the current and future stars of the sport. Colorado Springs, Colorado - The current and future stars of USA Shooting are set to begin 17 days of competition during the 2014 National Junior Olympic Shooting (NJOSC) Championships taking place at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., April 10-26.  The best junior men’s and women’s pistol competitors will get things underway beginning Thursday.

Following pistol, Women’s Rifle takes to the range April 16-20, and then NJOSC will conclude with Men’s Rifle, April 22-27. Both rifle weeks will consist of an Air Rifle and Three-Position (smallbore) competition. In order to compete in this year’s NJOSC, competitors must have been born in 1994 or later, providing for a junior competition that is unparalleled in the shooting sports.

There is a lot at stake for the young shooters that will travel to Colorado from all corners of the country. Each event will provide two opportunities to be appointed to USA Shooting’s National Junior Team. This is a remarkable opportunity for the nation’s top young shooters to gain valuable experience through different camps and international events ... Find out more about these Junior Olympic shooters ...

From USA Shooting - Scherer Wins Bronze, Sowash Finishes Fourth at World Cup USA

China's Jing Chang, Italy's Petra Zublasing and USA's Sarah Schere take 2nd, 1st and 3rd in Smallbore Rifle World Cup Fort Benning, Georgia - 2012 Olympian Sarah Scherer (Woburn, Mass., pictured right) picked up the first medal for the United States today at the International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF) World Cup in Fort Benning, Ga. in the Women’s Three-Position Rifle event. U.S. teammate Amy Sowash (Richmond, Ky.) also finished in fourth place.

Scherer qualified for the Final in sixth place with a score of 583 and Sowash qualified in third with a score of 589. Petra Zublasing of Italy qualified in first place and set a World Record in qualification with her score of 591.

More on Women's Smallbore Rifle World Cup Championships in Georgia ...

National Guard trains biathlon team at NRA 3-Position Smallbore Championships

Members of the Ohio National Guard's Biathlon Team at NRA Championships in Camp Perry

Camp Perry, Ohio - Two competitors are dominating the Biathlon at this year's Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia — Belarus' Darya Domracheva and France's Martin Fourcade. Winning four out of the first six events outright, Domracheva and Fourcade personify the marksmanship, discipline and stamina required to succeed at such a demanding sport on the international level.

Seven months earlier and 5,500 miles to the east, we met up with another group of biathletes who share those same characteristics. Those of the Ohio National Guard.

More on the Ohio National Guard Biathlon team ...

Shooting Sports USA sits down with Olympic silver medalist and shooting sports legend Ruby Fox

Ruby Fox at the 1996 NRA National Championships at Camp Perry courtesy Joe Roberts

Fairfax, Virginia - So you fancy yourself a competitive shooter. Have you heard of Ruby Fox? This month's Shooting Sports USA has an excellent interview with the former Olympic silver medalist about her life in the world of competitive shooting.

Born in Los Angeles, CA, Ruby Ellen Fox learned how to shoot from her competitive shooting husband, Art. At the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, Canada’s Linda Thom and Ruby tied for first in the women’s 25-meter sport pistol with record-setting 585s. Thom won the shoot-off 198 to 197, earning Fox the silver. Ruby also competed in the 1988 and 1992 Summer Olympics.

More on Ruby Fox's Shooting Sports USA interview . . .

From USA Shooting - 2013 National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships

West Virginia's Garrett Spurgeon accepts second place belt buckle at NRA 2012 Metric Championships
West Virginia's Garrett Spurgeon accepts second place belt buckle at NRA's 2012 Metric Championships
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado - Over 200 of the best junior rifle and pistol shooters have competed in Colorado Springs over the past two weeks during the 2013 National Junior Olympic Shooting Championships. The annual three-week event comes to an end Friday, as the best male junior rifle shooters get set to compete in three events (air, smallbore prone and three-position).

Qualifying for the National competition begins at the state level as State Junior Olympic Championships included competition in 47 states utilizing 80 different USA Shooting clubs. The 2013 competition consisted of over 2,200 individual participants in rifle and pistol events. State champions and those who qualify via high scores are invited to Colorado Springs to compete in the NJSOC. The top-two finishers in each event earn a spot on USA Shooting’s National Junior Team.

More on the National Junior Olympic Shooting Team competition ...

Barb Baird sits down with Tracy and Lanny Barnes for the NRA

Olympic biathletes Tracy and Lanny Barnes sit down with Barbara Baird for NRA's Shooting Sports USA

Fairfax, Virginia - This month we have a twofer from Women's Outdoor News' Barb Baird.

In this month's 'Whats In Your Range Bag?' column for Shooting Sports USA, Barb got a hold of twin Olympic biathletes Tracy and Lanny Barnes. These 29 year-olds have been getting it done for the United States on the biggest biathlon stages in the world and we couldn't be more proud.

The two don't stay still for very long, but Barb was able to pick their brains for a minute and find out what equipment they carry to not only keep themselves warm, but accurate on the firing line.

Shooting accurately at targets while in a still position can be difficult. Add skiing at top speeds to get to the shooting area, then dropping into the prone position or taking a knee, and you get the sport of biathlon.

More on what's inside Tracy and Lanny Barnes' range bags...

One of skeet shooting's top stars lets the NRA peek in his bag

Two time Olympic gold medalist and US Army sergeant Vincent Hancock

Fairfax, Virginia - Four years ago US Army sergeant Vincent Hancock won Olympic gold in Beijing at the age of 19. This past summer he took home another gold and became the first skeet shooter to win consecutive Olympic titles. Now 23, Hancock is still substantially younger than the average medal-round qualifier and looks to have a bright future ahead of him.

Barbara Baird of Women's Outdoor News recently caught up with Vincent to ask a very important question for this month's issue of Shooting Sports USA: What's in your range bag?

Vincent Hancock is the first skeet shooter to win consecutive gold medals in the Olympics, winning in Beijing in 2008 and London this year. Hancock, also a sergeant in the United States Army and a member of the Army Marksmanship Unit at Fort Benning, GA, packs a very small range bag. He keeps spare parts for his Beretta DT10 Trident shotgun in his gun case. He says he has been shooting this Beretta for 10 years and has never had any problems with it. He is so trusting of this gun that he does not even carry a back-up gun to competitions.

More on what's inside Vincent Hancock's range bag...

How about NRA Double Distinguished in both Sporter and Precision Air Rifle?

NRA National Junior Indoor Rifle Championships

Fairfax, Virginia - Hey air gun shooters! Do you dream of an overall win in the NRA Indoor National Championships? Or how about your air rifle skills earning you Olympic gold?

All that may be a few years off, but did you know that you can work on becoming an NRA Distinguished shooter in Sporter and Precision Air Rifle right now?

More on becoming a Distinguished Air Rifle shooter with the NRA...

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