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HomeSportsArmy Marksman Takes Gold in Skeet Competition

Army Marksman Takes Gold in Skeet Competition

By Tim Hipps
Army Installation Management Command

U.S. ArmyLondon, England – In double record-setting fashion, U.S. Army Sgt. Vincent Hancock became the first shotgun shooter to win consecutive Olympic gold medals in men’s skeet at the Royal Artillery Barracks here yesterday.

Hancock, 23, a soldier in the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit from Eatonton, GA, eclipsed his own records set at the 2008 Beijing Games for both qualification (123) and total (148) scores. He struck gold in China with a qualification score of 121 and total of 145.

Sgt. Vincent Hancock is a two-time Olympic Gold medalist in Skeet shooting. (Kevin Heermann/U.S. Army)
Sgt. Vincent Hancock is a two-time Olympic Gold medalist in Skeet shooting. (Kevin Heermann/U.S. Army)

Hancock prevailed by two shots over silver medalist Anders Golding (146) of Denmark and by four shots over Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiya (144), who secured the bronze medal by winning a shoot-off against Russia’s Valeriy Shomin.

Hancock, 22, joined the Army in June 2006 and completed basic training the same year at Fort Sill, OK. Upon graduation, Hancock entered Advanced Individual Training at Fort Leonard Wood, MO, and earned an Military Occupational Specialty as a Motor Vehicle Operator.

He began shooting as a young child and started competing when he was 11 years old. He has won World Cup events in 2005, 2006, and 2008; was named USA Shooting Shotgun Shooter of the Year in 2007 and USA Shooting Shooter of the Year in 2006; won the World Championship in Men’s Skeet in 2005; and in 2003 was the Junior Men’s Skeet National champion.

Hancock was profiled by Shooting USA before the 2008 Olympics.

Hancock has earned the National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Distinguished International Shooter Badge and Accessions Support Brigade Soldier of the Quarter, 1st Quarter, 2008.

Athletic Achievements

2012

  • First Place, Men’s Skeet, Olympic Trials, Tucson

2011

  • Gold Medal, Skeet, Pan American Games, Mexico
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, USA Shooting National Championships

2010

  • Fifth Place, Men’s Skeet, World Championships, Munich
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, USA Shooting National Championships
  • Bronze Medal, Skeet, Italy World Cup, Lonota, Italy
  • First Place, Men’s Skeet, Zone 3 Championships, Fort Benning, Ga.

2009

  • Silver Medal, Skeet, World Cup Final, Beijing, China
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, Fall Selection, Kerrville, Texas
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, World Championships
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, U.S. National Championships, Colorado Springs, Colo.

2008

  • Gold Medal, Skeet, Olympics, Beijing, China
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, National Skeet Shooting Association World Championships
  • Gold Medal, Skeet, World Cup, Suhl, German
  • Silver Medal, World Cup Final, Minsk, Belarus
  • Accessions Support Brigade Soldier of the Quarter

2007

  • Gold Medal and World Record, Men’s Skeet, World Cup, Lonato, Italy

About the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit

The United States Army Marksmanship Unit (USAMU) was established 1 March 1956 at the direction of President Dwight D. Eisenhower to raise the standards of marksmanship throughout the U.S. Army.

Since 1956, members of the USAMU have gained worldwide respect by winning hundreds of individual and team national titles, more than 40 World Championships, and 23 Olympic medals.

The USAMU enhances combat readiness through the unit’s provision of technical and advisory assistance in the development of military match-type small arms, equipment and ammunition. Upon request, USAMU will coordinate and conduct rifle and pistol marksmanship train-the-trainer clinics for U.S. military units throughout the world.

Additionally, the unit has the responsibility to promote the U.S. Army by heightening public trust and confidence in Army Marksmanship. These efforts are accomplished through active public information awareness programs, which assist the U.S. Army Accessions Command’s increasing requirement for top quality new recruits. The basis for these efforts focuses on the accomplishments and capabilities of USAMU shooters and technicians. USAMU soldiers also serve to enhance the public trust and confidence in the Army’s lethality with small arms.

USAMU is composed of six competitive shooting sections utilizing world class facilities for both training and competition. Facilities consist of 260 acres with 7 ranges and 18 buildings. Service Rifle, Service Pistol, Action Shooting, International Rifle, International Pistol, and Shotgun comprise the shooting sections and are renowned as the “best in the world”. Of these teams, only International Rifle, International Pistol, and Shotgun are Olympic sports. Support is provided to these Soldier-athletes through the Custom Firearms Shop and the support branches of supply, operations and administration.

The unit makes or customizes its own small arms and much of its own ammunition through the Custom Firearms Shop. The Custom Firearms Shop, made up of gunsmiths, machinists, range technicians and ammunition loaders, could be called the “backbone” of the unit and is equivalent to the “pit crew” of NASCAR. In fact, it was the first section formed when the unit was established. In order to compete successfully, it was determined better arms and ammunition were required. Here, gunsmiths build top-quality competitive-grade rifles and pistols for our competitive teams…many from the ground up. The custom Firearm Shop’s research and development efforts have led not only to enhanced accuracy and reliability of our competitive weapon systems and ammunition, but have intensified the combat effectiveness of the entire Army. It is here that the M-21 and M-24 Sniper Systems, Special Purpose Receiver Rifles and Squad Designated Marksman Rifles were developed and tested.

The extraordinary combined efforts of the assigned soldiers and civilians of the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit are why we have come to be known as
“The Home of Champions”.

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