Davies looks to Rio after London heartbreak

Richard Davies

Richard Davies

First published in Sport

NORTON shooter Richard Davies is already thinking of Rio following his Paralympic heartbreak.

The 41-year-old had high hopes of grabbing gold at London 2012 but his dreams went up in smoke in yesterday’s mixed R4-10m standing event, when he failed to qualify for the final.

Despite the disappointment, Davies has no plans to quit and has vowed to bounce back stronger at the 2016 Games in Brazil four years from now.

He said: “I’m already counting down the days. “I’ve been given a taste of the Paralympics and now I want more.

“There are a couple of international competitions early next year.

“I’ve just got to keep up there playing against the big boys until I catch them up.”

Davies’ score of 596 out of 600 was only good enough for 16th place, with only the top eight qualifiers going through to the final.

In a sport of fine margins, his challenge was effectively over by the halfway stage as he missed the centre of the target with three of his first 30 shots.

The dad-of-three couldn’t put his finger on exactly what had gone wrong but admitted the pressure had been intense.

He said: “People go on about home crowd advantage but for me it was home crowd pressure.

“It was something I hadn’t really factored into my build up.

“We’d put in all the hard work and even trained at the venue. During my practice round I shot an equal world record and I went in there with my confidence high.

“But for whatever reason it just slipped away from me. If you drop four points at this level of competition then you stand no chance, I knew 598 points would pretty much be the cut off.”

Davies also apologised to his supporters, adding: “I’m sorry to all those people who were following me.

“I’ve had so many well-wishers contact me in the weeks leading up to the Games.

“I’m just disappointed I’m not bringing a gold medal back to Stourbridge.”

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