Posted November. 18, 2010 13:31,
The number of adult competitors registered with the Korea Shooting Federation is just 267. Despite the limited number of athletes, the Korean shooting community has achieved a miracle at the Guangzhou Asian Games.
Korea added two gold medals in individual and group competitions for the mens 25-meter standard pistol Wednesday, bringing the number of golds in the sport to 10. China is a global shooting powerhouse, but Chinese officials say they are amazed over Koreas stellar performance and can hardly believe the results.
The Korean shooters are members of the Seosan City Hall shooting team in South Chungcheong Province. One of the 39 shooting teams affiliated with companies or organizations in Korea, all five competitors sent by the Seosan City Hall have won gold in Guangzhou.
Hong Seong-hwan, 27, Hwang Yoon-sam, 27, and Jang Dae-kyu, 34, who won the team gold with a combined 1,708 points in the mens 25-meter standard pistol Wednesday, all belong to the Seosan squad.
Hong also won the gold in the mens individual 25-meter standard pistol competition with 575 points, defeating North Koreas Kim Jong Su with 573 points.
Gim Yun-mi, 28, who won two golds in the womens 10-meter air pistol Sunday despite being seven months pregnant, and Kim Byung-hee, 28, who helped Korea win the group competition, are both from the Seosan team.
The Seosan City Hall has thus contributed the most to Korean shooting, a sport in which the nation has excelled at the Asiad.
As recently as two years ago, the Seosan team was one of the weakest even in domestic competitions. Team members who won golds at this years Asiad are hardly known in international tournaments.
After many of the players moved to the Seosan City Hall en masse last year and this year, however, the team and its athletes have improved their performances. The athletes renewed their commitment in pledging a fresh start and challenge, and the team has also tried to maximize its strengths in a comfortable environment.