By Karen Price | March 24, 2019, 7:46 p.m. (ET)

Kim Rhode poses for a photo after winning the shotgun world cup on March 24, 2019 in Acapulco, Mexico.

 

If it’s a women’s skeet competition and Kim Rhode is in it, you just know she’s going to be at the top of the pack.

The most decorated Olympic shooting sports athlete ever qualified for the final of the first shooting world cup of the season in third place but commanded the final from the very start on Sunday in Acapulco, Mexico. 

She won the gold medal in dominating fashion, missing just three targets — and just one of the first 55 — for a score of 57 to beat New Zealand’s Chloe Tipple. That score was just one off of the world record that she set in April 2018 at a world cup event in Changwon, South Korea.

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Tipple finished second with a score of 48 and China’s Donglian Zhang was third with a score of 42.

This week’s competition has Olympic quota implications for Team USA, just not for the skeet athletes. Team USA already has five Olympic quotas, including the maximum in men’s and women’s skeet, so that much was not on the line for the U.S. women on Sunday.

That didn’t deter Rhode from shooting like the consummate pro that she is, of course.

Also qualifying for the final was U.S. national silver medalist Samantha Simonton, 20, who set a qualification world record and a qualification junior world record with a score of 123 out of 125. She finished in fifth place in the final with a score of 25.

The world cup action concludes on Monday with the men’s skeet final, which is set to begin at 7 p.m. ET.

Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.