Olympics Notebook: Practice Builds Confidence for Columbus State Student

(Jonathan Hall, a Columbus State University student, and Jamie Gray, assistant coach of CSU's Rifle Team, are both on the 20-member U.S. Shooting Team competing in the Summer Olympics. Here's another of Hall's occasional reports.)

Hello again from London!

Sunday started official PET (Pre-Event Training). My match takes place Monday morning at 9 a.m. London time. I arrived at the range at 9 a.m. and met with our team physio for a quick routine stretch and muscle warm up at 9:30.

My training started at 11:30. I felt confident and comfortable with my training leading up to this point. All of our training camps and preparation up to this point seems to have paid off. I kept my cool even though I was standing on the firing line where I am about to take place in shooting at the Olympics — the thought I am trying not to let hit me again like it did the other day.

I shot around 40 shots, only dropping one point (my last shot). I feel as comfortable as I can going into the big game for Monday, and if I can have a repeat of what practice was, I will be bringing home something shiny. (The color doesn't really matter to me. After all, this is my first Olympics.)

After building my confidence in training today, I went to watch shotgun women's finals, where Kim Rhode from USA shot an amazing 99 out of 100 birds, only dropping one and setting a NEW OLYMPIC RECORD, as well as setting the record as the only woman in the history of the Olympics to have won five consecutive medals. (That's five Olympics back to back! Twenty years of Olympic greatness!) So watching that definitely lit the fire for me! Congrats Kim Rhode!

I am off to bed now, dreaming of my day to come ...

Jonathan D. Hall
USA Olympic Rifle Team