Jen McIntosh stepped proudly out from the shadow of her mother Shirley’s achievements today when she won Silver in the 50m Rifle Prone to become Team Scotland’s most successful female athlete, based on the number of medals won.
Shirley McIntosh’s record of four Shooting medals (Gold, Silver and two Bronze) won across the 1994 and 1998 Games had stood for 16 years before Jen held her nerve to win her second medal of these Games, and take her total medal tally over two Games to five.
With two Commonwealth Games Golds, a Silver and two Bronze to her name, Macintosh’s five medal tally sets the record for a Team Scotland athlete. The timing of her medal was made all the more poignant, becoming the Team’s 34th overall medal which surpassed the record total of 33 set at the Edinburgh Games in 1986.
Asked about replacing her mother in the Team Scotland record books, Jen said with a wry smile, “Pretty smug about that one – not going to lie! It’s been nearly 20 years. Pretty cool at 23 years old, and in this sport I could still be doing this at 40!”
It took a Games record by Jasmine Ser from Singapore to beat McIntosh who shot consistently well in difficult conditions on the range. The lead changed hands several times in a nail-biting elimination round, going down to the final shot when McIntosh shot an uncharacteristic 7.9 when she needed a 10.5 to win.
Asked about what was going through her mind on that tense last shot she said, “If I was honest it was to put it in the black, that’s all I could ask.”
In the same event, Sarah Henderson continued her impressive Games debut finishing as the next highest placed UK shooter behind McIntosh.
The testing winds on the range on the last day of competition was a challenge for two of Scotland’s other medal hopefuls, Jon Hammond and Neil Stirton in the Men’s 50m Rifle 3 Position. Gold medallists from Delhi 2010, both shooters showed promising form on the way to the finals with Hammond leading the field in both the Kneeling and Prone, before dropping back to seventh in his weaker Standing discipline.
Stirton also remained in the hunt for medals in the final until the Standing discipline which was also his undoing. Both Stirton and Hammond finished just outside the medals in 4th and 5th places respectively.
“Prone and Kneeling are my better positions,” said Hammond. “For me it’s about building a buffer going into Standing. I had hoped to go in with a bigger buffer.”
The winds added to the challenge. “Not only was the bullet being pushed around but you were also being physically buffeted around,” said Stirton.
“It made it more of a physical battle and a mental battle,” added Hammond.
If there was one event that’s guaranteed to feel the impact of strong winds it’s the Fullbore event which was moving up to the third and final day of competition where Bronze medallists in the Pairs Ian Shaw and Angus McLeod were shooting at the extreme distances of 900 and 1,000 yards.
“The wind was fishtailing from behind and at an unbelievable speed,” said Shaw. “You thought you were on it and it had changed,” he explained. Shaw eventually finished the event in ninth and Mcleod one place lower in 10th.
In Men’s Trap, Jonathan Reid and John Macdonald both fell short of progressing to the Final elimination round with Reid finishing 13th and Macdonald in 19th.
Photo credit: John Lindsay