Shooting Australia would like to congratulate Russell Mark!

Russell Mark did more than just win Olympic gold, he put the sport of shooting on the map in Australia with his steady aim and likeable personality – hitting targets on and off the range.

Through six Olympic Games, including the home Games in Sydney and his golden Games in Atlanta, Mark was a popular member of the team. From his first appearance in Seoul in 1988 to his swansong at the age of 48 in London in 2012, Mark was an Olympic fixture, so much so that even
though he missed selection for Athens in 2004, he still went to the Games as an Athlete Liaison Officer for the Australian Olympic Team.

At the Atlanta Games in 1996 Mark won the gold medal in the double trap, setting a world record of 189 points by hitting 48 of 50 targets in the final round. With the win he became the first shotgun shooter to win all four of the world’s major individual titles – the World Cup, the World Cup Final,
the World Championship and the Olympics. When he won silver in the double trap at the Sydney Games, he completed the set of silver medals in all four majors as well.

Mark’s exploits will be celebrated at the 35th Induction and Awards Gala Dinner on Thursday 10th October 2019 when he is inducted as an Athlete Member of The Sport Australia Hall of Fame and receives one of the highest honours that can be bestowed in Australian sport.

Mark said the inclusion amongst Australia’s sporting elite is something he would never take for granted.

“It’s not something when you start your sporting career you say your ambition and goal is to be inducted in the Hall of Fame of sport. But once it happens it makes you look back and reflect and it’s a huge honour obviously, but I think without being too much of a cliché it’s probably a great thing for our sport,” Mark said.

It was a near medal miss in Barcelona in 1992, when he didn’t make the final by just two targets, that had a profound impact on the rest of his career.

“I remember thinking how good I was going to look in this golden Holden in Watton Street in Werribee… I missed the next shot, hit the next one and then missed the one after it and immediately lost the gold medal opportunity by two points. I was put in exactly the same position four years later and didn’t make the same mistake. I can honestly say I learnt from my mistakes from the previous Olympics.”

Immediately following the Games, in September 1992, at a major tournament in Tamworth, NSW, Mark became the first Australian to hit more than 1000 targets in succession. He finished the competition with 1177 hits in a row, breaking his own Australian record of 859 set eight months

“I took it out on everybody in Tamworth that weekend. That was probably an effort out of left field for me but I was so angry with how mentally weak I turned out in Barcelona that I swore I’d learn from it. All I could think of that weekend was Barcelona and I think mentally I became a tougher
competitor by losing an Olympic Games and that then allowed me to win one.”

Like the targets he shot at, four years later in Atlanta, the opportunity for redemption wasn’t missed.

“I’d learnt from what happened four years before and I swore I’d never look at the scoreboard until I could hear everyone cheering to know that I was far enough in front that I couldn’t lose. I actually didn’t miss until my 40th shot out of 50 in that final but by then it was over, I ended up winning by a record amount by six points.”

Mark also competed in six Commonwealth Games, winning gold in the Double Trap Pairs at Melbourne 2006, two silver in the Double Trap Singles and Double Trap Pairs at Manchester 2002 and bronze in the Olympic Trap Pairs at the Auckland 1990 Games.

He competed in 22 world championships, winning two individual titles (1994 and 1997) and two team titles (1998 and 1999), as well as six World Cups and 39 Australian Open Championships, the first as a 16-year-old junior competitor when he also set a national scoring record. He had a run of twenty consecutive years from 1988 to 2007 where he won at least one Australian title each year.

“But you’ve got to win the Olympics,” Mark says. “And it’s a mental barrier, the word Olympics changes how small the targets look and how fast they appear to go and that’s truly what happens. Everything is perfect when you get to the Olympic Games – there’s no bad backgrounds, there’s no bad technical issues on the range, everything’s perfect, it really is. Technically it should be the easiest to win but mentally those five rings do strange things to people.”

Mark entered the sport almost by accident as a 14-year-old after suffering a football injury.

“I hurt my ankle at footy training and one weekend had to turn up and watch the guys play at the Sebastopol Recreational Centre because I couldn’t play and behind me there was a guy shooting clay
targets,” Mark says.

“My dad had shot a lot of clay targets and said why don’t you have a shot during half time… I went home that night and said I wouldn’t mind having a shot, I’m pretty good at this and it started by accident. I went back and played footy and cricket and never shot for Australia as a junior because I
went to university and got a degree but never really got involved in it until 1986 when I tried out for the Australian Commonwealth Games team, missed out, but then made the next handful of Olympics and I ended up going to six.”

“The lure of it being an Olympic sport, I have no doubt saying that’s what got me interested in it. I wanted to go to the Olympic Games, AFL football and cricket wasn’t going to provide that path and I loved the Olympics.”

Mark is just the fourth shooter to be inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame, joining the late Percy Pavey MBE (1985), Donald Mackintosh (1987) and Judith Trim (1999) to be afforded the honour. Mark says he’s thrilled to join them all, Mackintosh in particular, who was never listed as an
Olympic medallist during his lifetime, but in 1987 was declared the gold and bronze medallist from the 1900 Paris Olympics.

“I’d love to be always associated with Donald Mackintosh. Obviously, I’ve never met him but his exploits in the sport, there’s perpetual trophies left right and centre after Donald Mackintosh’s name. He put the sport on the map and when you get your name associated with people like that
you can’t be anything but proud.”

Mark credits his father Brian, who passed away in 2009, with his success.

“My father gave me the opportunities. Brian was very keen to make sure I had an education before I followed my sporting goals and made sure I got a diploma in studies at RMIT and got all the boxes ticked away and then he really gave me the opportunity to then try and become an Olympic

In 2009 Mark was named by the International Shooting Sports Federation as the greatest ever double trap competitor and one of the top 10 greatest marksmen of all time. The same year he was inducted into the Australian Clay Target Association’s Hall of Fame as its youngest ever member. In
1997 he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to the sport as a gold medallist at the Atlanta Olympic Games.

Chair of the Sport Australia Hall of Fame Selection Committee Rob de Castella AO MBE said: “Russell’s domination in his sport is without peer. Olympics, World Championships, World Cups both individual and teams, he’s done it all, and done it again and again at the highest level for nearly a 25 year period. Just incredible.”

Sport Australia Hall of Fame Chair John Bertrand AO said: “To be recognised as the greatest ever in your discipline by your world governing body is the ultimate accolade. A great both on and off the field.”

Russell Mark will be inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame on Australian sport’s “Night of Nights” – the 35th Sport Australia Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Gala Dinner on Thursday 10th October at Palladium at Crown, Melbourne.

Established in 1985, The Sport Australia Hall of Fame exists to preserve and celebrate the history of Australian sport and to inspire all Australians to achieve their potential both in sport and life.

The Sport Australia Hall of Fame plays a vital role in preserving and perpetuating Australia’s rich sporting heritage, whilst promoting the values of courage, sportsmanship, integrity, mateship, persistence, and excellence, all underpinned by generosity, modesty, pride and ambition.

Along with the seven new inductees, ‘The Don’ Award will be presented to the athlete who has most inspired the nation and the Scholarship and Mentoring program recipients will be awarded. In addition, the 41st Legend of Australian sport will be celebrated.

The 35th Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner
Book Now
What: Australia’s most prestigious sporting awards ceremony
Date: Thursday 10th October 2019
Time: From 5:45pm (Media, VIP and Members) and 6:30pm (Guests)
Where: Palladium at Crown, Melbourne
Who: The largest collective gathering of Australian sporting greats and luminaries


The Induction of seven new Australian sporting greats into The Sport Australia Hall of Fame
Elevation of one member as the 41st Legend of Australian Sport
Naming of ‘The Don’ Award winner
Presentation to 2020 recipients of the Scholarship and Mentoring Program


The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is determined to carry to Australians everywhere the symbol of excellence as represented by its 565 Members across all sports and genders. Membership of The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is the crowning achievement of a sporting career and represents the highest level of peer recognition for an individual’s contribution to his or her sport. For more information about criteria and how to nominate click here.

For further information, please contact:
 Tania Sullivan – The Sport Australia Hall of Fame
 T: 03 9510 2066
 E: [email protected]

 David Culbert – Jump Media & Marketing
 T: 0417 272 641
 E: [email protected]

Penny Smith took the Gold at the ISSF World Cup in Lahti, Finland overnight in Women’s Trap. Smith looked focused and unstoppable during the final securing a quota for Australia in the event.

“It is such a relief to get the second Women’s Trap quota for Australia. I believed in myself and took a positive attitude into the final, and I am really proud of my performance here in Finland!”

A proud Shotgun National Team Coach Rich Sammon commented: “Penny’s placing today is well-deserved and a testament to the resilience and courage she has demonstrated in recent years.”

Also on the podium was teammate Laetisha Scanlan, who also came away with the bronze medal. Sammon remarked: “Another final and another medal for Laetisha to finish an incredible year. Her record of 7 of a possible 9 finals at this level is phenomenal,” while Scanlan herself commented “To finish off this year’s World Cup season with a Bronze medal is fantastic. I’m so proud to win another medal for Australia!”

Sammon continued, “Australia came very close to having three athletes in the final. Catherine Skinner showed her quality with a ninth-place finish even though it was her first World Cup competition since early last year.”

The Finland World Cup features competition among 473 athletes from 76 nations. Up for grabs are two Quota Places for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games in each of the four individual events as well as valuable points that may determine qualification for the 2019 World Cup Final.

With thunder and lightning raging overhead and a torrential downpour sending spectators scurrying for cover, the organisers said the Para trap finals had an apocalyptic feel at the World Shooting Para Sport World Cup in Osijek, Croatia.

Arguably the happiest man in the venue was Australia’s Matthew Tingate who won PT2 bronze in his first international competition.

“It was a bit nerve racking, you’re under a bit of pressure, but at the end of the day it was so much fun,” Tingate said. “The people in this sport make it worthwhile. They’re all incredibly supportive. For example, if you run out of shells, you have all the other countries donating shells, they’ll look after you.”

Scottie Brydon also came away with the bronze in the Shotgun PT1 – Mixed Trap Seated SG-S.

This is the third World Shooting Para Sport for Osijek, Croatia and is the first ever competition that includes Rifle, Pistol, Para Trap, and VI making this an exciting opportunity to earn MQS spots ahead of our 2019 World Championships in Sydney.

Mitchell Iles has taken silver medals in the Trap Men Junior and the Trap Men Junior team with teammates Thomas Armstrong and Adam Bylsma.

Mitch’s medal exploits elevated him into the top qualifying world cup junior mens trap athletes in 2019, allowing him to join the other top world cup athletes to shoot for the Super Cup – and he came away with the Gold!

The ISSF Junior World Cup in Suhl is a “Who’s Who” of the world junior competitors with 650 athletes from 60 nations competing. The Junior World Cup 2019 concludes on 20 July.

The World Championship 2019 Shotgun event has gone off with a bang for Australia at the ISSF World Championship Shotgun in Lonato del Garda Italy.

Laetisha Scanlan and James Willett took gold in the Trap Mixed Teams in a 44-44 shoot-off, but it didn’t stop there — fellow Australians Penny Smith and Thomas Grice also reached the podium, taking bronze.

The competition is held near Lake Garda, one of the northern Italy’s most beautiful destinations. The Lonato del Garda Trap range is one of international shooting’s most important venues, with 616 athletes from 86 countries competing in the World Championship 2019 Shotgun.

The World Championship 2019 Shotgun will conclude on 11 July.

The Board of Shooting Australia is pleased to announce the appointment of Luke van Kempen to the position of Chief Executive Officer.

Shooting Australia President, Cath Fettell said “Luke excels at leading innovation. He has personal experience in leading successful change management projects in sporting organisations.”

“Luke’s sports-industry experience and his understanding of sports governance and commercialisation make him a great addition to our team.”

Van Kempen expressed a commitment to providing strong and collaborative leadership as Shooting Australia moves into an important phase of the Olympic Games cycle.

“”I’m honoured to be given the opportunity to lead an organisation with such a rich history at the Olympic Games and within the Australian sporting community. I look forward to working with the Board, our Staff and Member Organisations to maximise the potential of our athletes in Tokyo 2020, while ensuring the sport continues to prosper at the community level,” he said.

Shooting Australia has a record of surpassing expectations at Olympic Games, and the President and Board are excited by this appointment as Shooting Australia continues its great work and continues its’ campaign for Tokyo 2020.

For more information please contact Kelly Wright, Shooting Australia 0411 149 995 or [email protected]

Shooting Australia is the peak body responsible for the growth, sustainability, and success of target shooting sports in Australia.

Shooting Australia is disappointed that our sport has been unsuccessful in its bid to be re-included among the events to be contested at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. Target shooting had previously been included in the 2022 Games lineup until original host city Durban South Africa withdrew in February 2017; hosting rights then went to Birmingham, and that city’s games organising committee decided that target shooting would be excluded. Despite an intensive lobbying effort by Shooting Australia and the target-shooting peak bodies of other Commonwealth nations, and the ISSF, the sport has not been reinstated.

It goes without saying that this is hugely disappointing for the extended shooting performance and participation family, and most especially for our Olympic, Commonwealth, and World Cup gold-winning athletes, some of whom are reigning Commonwealth champions.

The Commonwealth Games and Team Australia will continue to receive our support and goodwill, and we hope to be readmitted to the program for the next Commonwealth Games in 2026 wherever they may be.

Please see linked here the article that was produced by British Shooting.

The Board of Shooting Australia is delighted to announce the appointment of Deserie Baynes to the board.

“It is an honour to be accepted on to the board of Shooting Australia. I look forward to making a positive contribution to the future of all shooting disciplines–in particular shotgun–and to assist in enhancing the relationships between the member bodies, athletes, and spectators.”

Deserie is a Commonwealth and Olympic Games Medallist in Trap and an inductee to the Australian Clay Target Association Hall of Fame. Deserie has been the assistant Shotgun Coach for the Australian Shotgun team since 2018 and has been an active member of the Clay Target Sport community for 49 years.

Shooting Australia Board President Cath Fettell said: “We are very excited to have Deserie join the Board. Deserie brings extensive experience and high achievement in competition shooting, business acumen, and knowledge of participation strategies to help address the challenges facing our sport. We look forward to Deserie’s contributions to our thinking, planning, and delivery in pursuit of target shooting’s future success.” 

Deserie is a successful business administrator and mother of three.

Australia’s James Willett has taken bronze in the Trap Men event at the ISSF World Cup Shotgun in Changwon after scoring 122 from 125 targets in qualification.

After the medal ceremony Willett commented: “Stoked with my performance here at Changwon. It was really tough final but I’m proud to come away with a medal for Australia!”

This performance builds on Willett’s gold-medal turn at the World Cup Trap Men competition in Acapulco earlier this year.