Commonwealth Games Scotland announced the selection of a further nine athletes today (31 October), to represent Team Scotland at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Eight shooters and one triathlete were added to the 23 track, field and road athletes and four squash players announced in September, bringing the total team size to 36 in what will be the last selections made in 2013.
The strength of Scotland’s shooters is evident, with six of the eight athletes announced today having contributed to all nine shooting medals won at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games, helping shooting to finish as Scotland’s top sport at the Games.
Heading the shooting line-up are the most successful male and female athletes overall from Delhi 2010, in Jonathan Hammond and Jennifer McIntosh. They won an impressive total of seven medals between them in Small Bore Rifle events including four gold. Both went on to represent Team GB at London 2012 and they are hoping for another successful Commonwealth Games on home soil next year.
Jen had her best World Cup placing with the Air Rifle this year, finishing 18th in Munich. Last year she made her first World Cup final taking 6th in the 50m Rifle 3P event also in Munich in her first year as a senior.
Originally from Aberdeen and now based in West Virginia, USA, Jon welcomed the news of his selection saying: “Now I am selected I can begin all the planning for the winter and next season in the lead up to Glasgow. Some of the new rules in our sport may alter how I prepare for the Games, but the biggest rules change of starting the scores from zero for the finals has really created a lot of equality and I think gives many more people the chance of winning a medal. All I can focus on is having the best performance possible and see what happens.
“Like London it will be very special to compete at home, it probably won’t happen ever again for us in a major international competition, so that is something to savour. With the shooting in Carnoustie my parents, family and friends will not have far to travel and that will be quite special having all of them there regardless of the outcome.”
Other shooters selected include Delhi medallists Neil Stirton who won gold and bronze in the 50m Rifle Prone Pairs and 50m Rifle 3 Position pairs (with Jonathan Hammond), building on his silver medal from the 2006 Commonwealth Games. Ian Shaw and Angus McLeod who took silver in the Full Bore Rifle pairs in Delhi have also booked their passage in both the individual and pairs events for Glasgow 2014.
Alford’s Shona Marshall who took silver in the Clay Target Trap event in Delhi has assured her place, having been a regular contender on the Great Britain team over the last two years, just missing out on London 2012. Shona finished 8th at World Cups this year in both Mexico and UAE, and those scores contributed towards selection.
Caroline Brownlie will make her second Games appearance in Glasgow in the 10m Air Pistol, having secured her place in June when she set a new Scottish record on the way to winning the British Pistol Club Championships. She also represented Great Britain for the first time at a World Cup in Granada this year.
Sian Bruce is the only new face amongst the shooters announced so far. The 20 year old from Dundee will make her Games debut in the Clay Target Skeet event. Sian was European U21 Champion in 2010, and also won silver at the Delhi Test Event in 2010. She finished 7th at both U21 World and European Championships this year in what will be her last year as a junior.
There are still a number of shooting places on the team which will not be decided until next May, such is the quality of the competition. For example in the Women’s 50m Rifle Prone event which was won by Jen McIntosh in Delhi, there are six Scottish athletes who have all met the selection standard so far and they will have to fight it out for the two places available.
Shooting Team Manger, Donald McIntosh said: I’m delighted to have six of our Delhi medallists selected along with Sian Bruce and Caroline Brownlie at this first stage in the process. We have seen some solid performances throughout the year as the athletes learn to deal with the substantial rule changes introduced after the London Olympic Games, and we can look forward to further progress from all of them before the Commonwealth Games begin.”
Triathlon makes a welcome return to the Commonwealth Games for a third time in Glasgow, having first been included on the programme in Manchester 2002, then in Melbourne 2006. For Glasgow 2014 an exciting new mixed team relay event will follow the individual men’s and women’s races, which are the first medal events of the Games on day one.
Scotland number one, David McNamee, has had an outstanding 2013 posting three top ten finishes in the Triathlon ITU World Championship Series and has been rewarded with early selection as a result. Originally from Irvine and an Accountancy graduate from the University of Stirling, David now trains down in Leeds as part of the GB programme with the world’s top two triathletes, the Brownlie brothers who look likely to be wearing England vests next July.
Welcoming his selection David McNamee said: “My last four years have been focused on reaching the Commonwealth Games and now to finally be selected is so exciting. I have never represented Scotland before which will be special and the fact it’s in Scotland makes it ten times more important.
“I picked up my first ever senior triathlon medal at a European Cup event at Strathclyde Park so I’ve fond memories competing there. To have everyone cheering your name gives you such a mental boost, even though in triathlon you’re not really fully aware of it until the run.”
Making the announcement Team Scotland Chef de Mission, Jon Doig said: “I am extremely pleased to announce a further nine athletes selected for Team Scotland for Glasgow 2014. All eight shooters have continued to demonstrate that they are on great form and increasingly competitive at international level, whilst triathlete David McNamee has also had his best season ever.
“We are delighted to welcome them all to represent Team Scotland at our home Games next year and they can now go into their winter training period fully focused on reaching their peak performance next July.”
Adding her congratulations, Commonwealth Games and Sports Minister Shona Robison said: “I congratulate the nine athletes, a mix of Commonwealth Games medallists and newcomers, and wish them all the best with their preparations. Team Scotland has all the ingredients to succeed, with outstanding facilities, high standards of coaching and an extra £1 million Scottish Government funding for elite sport. Like so many others, I am looking forward to seeing our athletes competing and Team Scotland shining next year at Scotland’s biggest ever sporting event.”
Many of the athletes announced today have benefited from the support of sportscotland the national agency for sport and in particular from the high performance support and expertise provided by the sportscotland institute of sport.
Louise Martin CBE, Chair of sportscotland, said: “Congratulations to all nine athletes who are the latest to secure their places in Team Scotland. Excitement around the Commonwealth Games continues to grow and, working with Games partners and the Scottish Governing Bodies of Sport, sportscotland is determined to capitalise on the unique opportunity to strengthen Scotland’s sporting pathways from grassroots to club to performance sport.
“It will be an absolute privilege for all of Team Scotland’s athletes to compete in front of a home crowd, and, given the meticulous preparation of the athletes, governing bodies, coaches and experts at the sportscotland institute of sport, they will be the best prepared Team Scotland to compete at the Commonwealth Games.”
Jonathan Hammond, Small Bore Rifle – 50m Rifle 3P (Aberdeen / West Virginia, USA)
Neil Stirton, Small Bore Rifle – 50m Rifle Prone (Aberdeen)
Jennifer McIntosh, Small Bore Rifle – 10m Air Rifle & 50m Rifle 3P (Falkirk / Edinburgh)
Caroline Brownlie, Pistol -10m Air Pistol (Edinburgh/Bishops Waltham, Hampshire)
Shona Marshall, Clay Target – Trap (Alford, Aberdeenshire)
Sian Bruce, Clay Target – Skeet (Dundee)
Angus McLeod, Full Bore Rifle – Queen’s Prize Individual & Pairs (Edinburgh/Warminster)
Ian Shaw, Full Bore Rifle – Queen’s Prize Individual & Pairs (Epsom, Surrey)
David McNamee, Individual Standard Race, (Irvine/Leeds)