Shooting Preview

USA Shooting will send a team of 20 athletes to this summer’s Olympic Games in Tokyo, the culmination of a qualifying process that began at the ISSF World Shooting Championships in September 2018 and wrapped up in May 2021. The U.S. earned eight quota spots in shotgun, eight quota spots in rifle and six quota spots in the pistol discipline.

The U.S. shotgun team consists of four athletes in skeet: Amber English, two-time Olympic gold medalist Vincent Hancock, Phillip Jungman and Austen Smith. Skeet has been Team USA’s most successful discipline at recent Games. The U.S. trap team includes Madelynn Bernau, Kayle Browning, Brian Burrows and Derrick Mein.

Leading the way for USA Shooting on the Road to Tokyo is Team USA and Olympic Games veteran, Vincent Hancock. Hancock is in pursuit of his fourth straight Olympic Games having earned back-to-back gold medals in Bejing 2008 and London 2012, where he shot a perfect score in the finals. As the only USA Shooting athlete on the Tokyo Roster to win two consecutive Olympic gold medals, he’s looking to add yet another gold to his collection in Tokyo this summer. 

Other U.S. shotgun athletes are poised to break out on the Olympic stage in Tokyo such as U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit and World Class Athlete Program Solider, Amber English, who is ready to compete on the Olympic stage this summer having barely missed a spot on the team in 2016. Let’s not forget recent high school graduate, Austen Smith, who won the individual gold at the 2019 ISSF Junior World Cup in Suhl and recently added another individual gold medal at ISSF World Cup Lonato just three months shy of the Tokyo Games. Smith is the youngest Olympic Shooting Athlete and will turn 20 years old the day of Opening Ceremonies. The spotlight will also fall on the U.S. men’s trap program, as it fields its first Olympians since 2008. The historic 1-2 finish by Brian Burrows and Derek Haldeman at the 2019 Pan American Games secured two quota places for Team USA after a 12-year drought. Burrows and Mein went on to fill those quotas and are getting the chance to represent Team USA in Tokyo. 

The U.S. air rifle team consists of four athletes: Lucas Kozeniesky, Will Shaner, Mary Tucker and Ali Weisz. The U.S. smallbore rifle team consists of Sagen Maddalena, Nick Mowrer, Patrick Sunderman and Mary Tucker doing double duty. The lone smallbore rifle event on the Olympic program is rifle three position, which Team USA last medaled in in 2012.

Mary Tucker is one of two University of Kentucky Rifle athletes set to compete in Tokyo. Coming off an incredible sophomore year, Tucker won the NCAA individual titles in both air and smallbore rifle. She then followed that up a week later with an individual gold in women’s air rifle at ISSF World Cup New Delhi in March 2021. She heads to her first Olympic Games ranked #2 in the World. William Shaner is the other rifle athlete who will represent University of Kentucky at the Olympic Games. Shaner is coming off his first ISSF World Cup gold medal in the 10m air rifle event in Croatia just a month out from his first Games appearance. Every member of the 2020 air rifle Olympic Team has won an individual World Cup medal in the past year, including three golds and one silver.  

Other rifle athletes to watch include 2016 Olympian Lucas Kozeniesky who tied the U.S. World Record and set a new National Record at Air Rifle Trials back in February 2020. He’s since broke his own National Record two times and won his first individual gold medal at ISSF World Cup New Delhi in the men’s air rifle event. The team of Kozeniesky and Tucker and Shaner and Weisz will compete in the first ever debut of the 10m air rifle mixed event in Tokyo. 

The U.S. pistol team includes Mowrer (air), James Hall (air), Alexis Lagan (sport), Sandra Uptagrafft (sport), and brothers Henry and Jackson Leverett (rapid fire). The most recent U.S. Olympic medal in pistol came in 2008, when Jason Turner, current National Coach, won bronze in air pistol. 

Mowrer this year has already made history as a Tokyo 2020 Team nomination in both the rifle and pistol disciplines. The London 2012 Olympian earned World Cup medals in both pistol and rifle disciplines, the only shooting athlete in history to do so. The Leverett brothers share almost everything, and they’ll now add Olympic experience to that list. The Ohio State University Pistol Team members will both make their Olympic debut in the rapid fire pistol event. Younger brother, Henry Leverett, won the U.S. Quota from his finish at World Cup Bejing back in 2018. 

Updated on July 8, 2021. For more information, contact the sport press officer here

Skeet Treat: Since 2016, the U.S. women’s skeet team has been on the rise in international competition. Team USA swept the podium at the 2018 World Championships, with Caitlin Connor earning the title, Kim Rhode claiming silver, and Amber English capturing bronze. The U.S.’s depth is unmatched in women’s skeet. For the first time since 1996, USA Shooting will debut a women’s skeet team with two new Olympic athletes on the roster, Amber English and Austen Smith. Both women harbor the potential to continue the tradition excellence and earning Olympic medals. 

Sport Changes: Gone from the Olympic program are prone rifle, free pistol, and double trap, replaced by mixed team events in 10m air rifle, 10m air pistol, and trap. Additionally, women and men now shoot the same course of fire in all events, whereas previously women had fewer shots in Olympic competition.


• Seeking a third Olympic gold medal, Vincent Hancock will be Team USA’s most decorated shooter at the Games. The 32-year-old owns more Olympic gold medals than any other men’s skeet shooter and also is the only one with four world championships.

• Austen Smith has only been shooting for six years and did not expect to make it to Tokyo. She was competing on the junior circuit just a year prior. Smith, who turns 20 on July 23, won world championship silver in 2017 and bronze in 2018 in the junior skeet event, which she rounded out with a junior individual world cup gold and junior mixed team gold in 2019. She beat out U.S. skeet legend Kim Rhode to earn her spot on the team.

• Nick Mowrer has earned World Cup medals in both pistol and rifle disciplines, the only shooting athlete in history to do so. At his first Olympic Games in 2012, Mowrer was the youngest athlete at the Games in men’s free pistol at the age of 23. Now 32, Mowrer is back to seek his first Olympic medal.

• Mary Tucker now has the Olympic berth to match the tattoo of the Olympic rings on her forearm. An exercise science major at the University of Kentucky, Tucker is also a two-time individual NCAA champion for the Wildcats. Tucker, who will turn 20 on July 20, is the number 2 athlete in the world in air rifle and has added smallbore to her repertoire for Tokyo.

• July 24, 2021: Olympic competition begins with qualifying and finals in women’s 10-meter air rifle and men’s 10-meter air pistol
• July 25, 2021: Finals in women’s 10-meter air pistol and men’s 10-meter air rifle
• July 26, 2021: Men’s and women’s skeet finals
• July 27, 2021: Finals in 10-meter air pistol mixed team and 10-meter air rifle mixed team
• July 29, 2021: Men’s and women’s trap finals
• July 30, 2021: Women’s 25-meter pistol finals
• July 31, 2021: Trap mixed team finals and women’s 50-meter three positions finals
• August 2, 2021: Olympic competition concludes with men’s 25-meter rapid fire pistol finals and 50-meter rifle three positions finals