Rio 2016 venue: National Shooting Center (Deodoro Zone)
Competition dates: Aug. 6-14
Medal events: 15 (5 pistol, 4 rifle, 6 shotgun)
Olympic introduction: 1896 (Athens, Greece)

Twenty athletes comprise the 2016 U.S. Olympic Shooting Team, 11 of whom are returning from the London 12 Games, and 12 with experience on the Olympic stage. Proof of their combined shooting prowess lies in the fact that the six Olympic medalists on the team have collectively amassed 13 medals. Collectively, the team has made 28 Olympic Games appearances.  

Proven commodities like Kim Rhode, Matt Emmons, Vincent Hancock, Glenn Eller, Corey Cogdell-Unrein and Emil Milev join forces with both accomplished veterans and young stars anxious to showcase their Olympic readiness and add to USA Shooting’s impressive Olympic medal count.

Josh Richmond, Frank Thompson, Keith Sanderson, Michael McPhail, Enkelejda Shehaj and Sarah Scherer all fought hard to earn another Olympic opportunity. Now they’re ready to put some close calls and Olympic disappointments behind them and with a hunger to earn the type of Olympic prestige their teammates have found.

Young guns like Morgan Craft, Lydia Paterson, Will Brown, Lucas Kozeniesky, Dan Lowe and David Higgins were all teenagers during the last Olympic cycle, and rifle phenom Ginny Thrasher still is one. Still, they’ve all grown up fast over the last year to represent an exciting youth movement in the sport. These sharpshooters have a steely determination about them and compete well beyond their years. 

Shooting competition at the Olympic Games consists of 15 medal events across three disciplines for both men’s and women’s – pistol, rifle and shotgun. Depending on the event, the athlete’s position is either standing, kneeling or prone, shooting at distances 10 meters, 25 meters or 50 meters from the target. Each event consists of qualification rounds – in which the number of shots fired ranges from 40-120 – and a final phase, in which each athlete shoots between 20 and 45 times, with the exception of the 25-meter pistol, which may require additional shots in the final.

The U.S. team carries a proud tradition of medal-winning success with 107 Olympic medals, including four at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Athletes To Watch

Morgan Craft 

In a discipline full of stars, including five-time Olympic medalist Kim Rhode, it was Craft who shined the brightest in 2015. Her season included two world cup podium finishes with silver and bronze medals. She proved those results were no fluke by topping American teammate Caitlin Connor to capture the world championship title and secure her ticket to the Rio Games. She ended the 2015 season by earning a bronze medal at the 2015 World Cup Final. 

Matt Emmons
One of the best marksmen in history, Emmons has won three Olympic medals and two individual world championship medals. At London in 2012, he became just the fourth shooter ever to win individual rifle medals at three or more Olympic Games. He earned a nomination to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Shooting Team by winning the men’s 50-meter 3-position rifle competition at the ISSF World Cup Final in September 2015, ending the points system with 33 points and the right to fill Team USA’s sole 3-position rifle quota spot at the Rio Games.

Vincent Hancock 
Hancock, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and current world champion, has secured a nomination to the U.S. Olympic Team via the USA Shooting points system. In 2015, he also won two world cup gold medals and a silver at the world cup final. En route to his gold-medal win at the ISSF World Cup Acapulco, Hancock equaled a world record by hitting all 125 targets in qualification, as well as all of the targets in both the semifinal and gold-medal matches. If he continues his golden ways in Rio, he would be the first shooting athlete to win three Olympic gold medals in the same event, and only the eighth Team USA athlete to win three consecutive golds in the same event.

Michael McPhail
Ascending to the No. 1 world ranking in prone rifle shooting, McPhail was dominant in international competition in 2015, winning two world cup titles and the 2015 World Cup Finals crown en route to earning a 2016 U.S. Olympic Team nomination. The 2012 Olympian welcomed the arrival of his second child in October and is now ready to pursue an Olympic medal in Rio.

Kim Rhode
Having made her Olympic debut in 1996, Rhode is the only American to win an individual medal in five consecutive Olympic Games. Of her five medals, three are gold (1996 - double trap, 2004 - double trap, 2012 - skeet), one is silver (2008 - skeet) and one bronze (2000 - double trap). Rhode broke the women's skeet Olympic record with a near-perfect score of 99 at the London 2012 Olympic Games. She is also the only woman to win three individual gold medals in the sport of shooting. Additionally, she was the only athlete to either set or tie a world record at the 2015 Pan American Games as she defended her title in women’s skeet shooting.

Ginny Thrasher
In March 2016, Thrasher became the first freshman in NCAA history to sweep both individual rifle titles in helping lead West Virginia University to its 18th national championship. Just 25 days later, she won the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Smallbore to earn her spot in Women’s three-position rifle. At her most recent world cup in Munich, Germany, the 19-year-old qualified for the finals in both women’s rifle events.


  • Five-time U.S. Olympic shotgun athlete Kim Rhode, who won a U.S. Olympic record five medals in five consecutive Games and is also the first Olympic shooter, male or female, to compete in all three shotgun events – trap, double trap and skeet – now has her sights set on making history again in Rio. Rhode was the only Team USA athlete to either set or tie a world record at the 2015 Pan American Games when she tied the record of 74/75 targets in women’s skeet. Rhode, who gave birth to her son, Carter, in May 2013, will be seeking her sixth Olympic medal.
  • Vincent Hancock has had no greater love and appreciation for this sport than he does right now and it is one of the main ingredients fueling his desire for continued perfection at the 2016 Olympic Games. Now living in Fort Worth, Texas, his deepest conviction lies in both providing for his sport and his family. Having already won back-to-back gold medals in 2008 and 2012, he is poised to become the first shooting athlete to win three Olympic gold medals in the same event, and only the eighth Team USA athlete to win three consecutive golds in the same event.
  • One of the best marksmen in history, rifle shooter Matt Emmons has once again secured a nomination to the U.S. Olympic Team in three-position rifle for 2016. Emmons won three Olympic medals and two individual world championship medals to become just the fourth shooter ever to win individual rifle medals at three or more Games. Emmons’ two best Olympic finishes have come in prone – a gold at the Athens 2004 Games and silver at the Beijing 2008 Games – but he has continued to improve his three-position placement in Olympic competition, going from eighth in 2004 to fourth in 2008 before finally earning bronze at the London 2012 Games. The New Jersey native currently resides in the Czech Republic with his wife, 2008 Czech Olympic champion Katerina Kurkova. The two met at the 2004 Olympics, married in 2007 and now have two children. Kurkova-Emmons has also competed at three Games and earned one medal of each color.