Rifle Shooter Snjezana Pejcic of Croatia & Shotgun Shooter Vincent Hancock of USA have been named as ISSF Shooters of the Year 2016.
They have been in news for their unique performances all through the year and hence got the votes of award panel made of Members of ISSF Coaches Advisory Committee and ISSF Athletes Committee and a International media representatives.
Snjezana Pejcic, 33, has been one of the key performers of the 2015 ISSF World Cup Series. She won two World Cup Golds in Changwon, Korea, in 2005, as well as two Silvers at the ISSF World Cup Stage in Fort Benning, USA, in both 10m Air Rifle and 50m Rifle 3 Positions Women events.
“The Shooter of the Year award is one of those titles I was missing, and I really wanted to win. It’s a real honor, especially because it’s cross-discipline, and there are so many good shooters out there. I really did not expect to win.”
The Croatian shooter won another Gold medal at the ISSF World Cup in Changwon 50m rifle 3 positions women event, with a new final world record of 463.0 points.
“It’s the first time, and I hope it’s not the last one, that I win this prestigious award”
The 2008 Olympic Bronze Medallist Pejcic ruled 10m Air Rifle Women Final in Changwon, ISSF World Cup.
“2015 has been my best season, so far. It started off in a great way, with four world cup medals, and it ended well with a world cup final podium. I am just sorry that I did not make it to the European Games’ podium.The goal is now the Olympic Games & I will be competing in all four ISSF World Cup Stages next year, and at the European Championships, trying to be prepared for Rio 2016.”
Vincent Hancock, on the other hand, got the award for his performance in men’s event, a 2008 and 2012 Skeet Men Olympic Champion from USA also had great performances during the 2015 season.
“It’s an amazing honor for being selected as 2015 ISSF Shooter of the year for the second time in my career, ten years after winning the title the first time back in 2005. A lot of things changed in these years, and it’s nice to be honored again.”
Vincent started competing when he was just 11 years old. He holds several national records in Men’s Skeet. In 2005, Vincent, 16, won his first World Championship title in Men’s Skeet and went on to win the prestigious International Shooting Sport Federation’s Shooter of the Year award.
“I had a good season again last year, and I fulfilled my goal to make it to the US Olympic team. 2015 has been an important stepping stone toward 2016.”
The American shooter won his third World Championships title in career, at the ISSF Shotgun World Championships in Lonato, Italy, exactly ten years after his first victory.
“I will continue to build up for the Olympics throughout the season. Rio 2016 is the ultimate goal: I want to win my third Olympic Gold medal there.”
He also won two ISSF World Cup Stages – in Acapulco (Mexico) and Gabala (Azerbaijan) – equaling the world record and then won a Silver medal at the 2015 ISSF World Cup Final in Nicosia, Cyprus.
The two will be officially awarded during the occasion of one of the first 2016 ISSF World Cup Stages.