British Shooters at the Olympic Games (Part 3)
Part 3 of our history of British clay target shooters at the Olympics focuses on the years 1968 - 1980.
Between Tokyo and the ’68 Olympics in Mexico, Braithwaite won the British Trap Grand Prix in four consecutive years consolidating his position as Britain's number one Trap shooter. He followed this up at the ’68 Games, taking Great Britain’s first Olympic Gold medal in clay shooting.
Vic Harker spoke to Braithwaite at the age of 84 and remembered the event:
“I was just loading and shooting and didn't realise that I’d shot my last target until the man on my right didn't move. I nearly asked him what the hell he was doing,” he recalls.
Brian Coleman brought him to by taking his gun and offering him a cigarette.
Was the medal ceremony an emotional experience?
“Certainly not," he says. “They very clearly didn't expect me to win and they couldn't find a recording of the British National Anthem for some time.”
At the same event Alec Bonnett came in 14th in the Skeet event and Colin Sephton 26th.
Ronald Carter and Brian Bailey represented GB in the Mixed Trap event coming in 21st and 25th respectively. Joe Neville shot 194 over eight days of Skeet to just miss the podium at fourth while his compatriot Colin Sephton had climbed to 16th.
Held in Montreal, Canada, Malcolm Jenkins shot 177 to come in 18th place, followed by Peter Boden in 28th in the Mixed Trap event. The Skeet event saw Joe Neville down at 22nd equal while Brian Hebditch managed 47th equal.
Due to the boycott of the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow, no British shooters attended the Games.
To read part 4 covering clay pigeon disciplines at the Olympics from 1984- 1996, click here.