Mike Krei, Director of the NRA's Competitive Shooting Division, reports from the 50th Anniversary International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Championships in Munich, Germany:
The importance of this year's ISSF Championship rest in the sixty-nine Quota Places for the 2012 London Olympics that are up for grabs. More than 2,400 athletes from 90+ countries are here in Munich to stake their claim to these coveted Olympic Quota Places.
Bob Aylward, Executive Officer, USAMU and USA Shooting Team Leader, is overseeing 115 athletes, coaches and officials for the United States. “The next few days will be toughest," said Aylward. "The hardest part will be making sure that 115 people, 230 firearms, and a quarter of a million rounds of ammunition end up where they need to be."
Thousands of people filled the city center of Munich to hear German bands, speeches from notables, and watch the parade of flags from participating countries during the opening ceremonies.
Athletes from the competing countries, including the United States, jostled for position as keynote speakers IOC President Jacques Rogge, ISSF President Olegario Vazquez Rena, and Lord Mayor of Munich Christian Ude welcomed the crowd.