Holwell Rifle Club young guns target World Cup success

Katie Gleeson takes aim in the final at Dortmund. Picture: Heinz Reinkmeier EMN-190515-124759002
Katie Gleeson takes aim in the final at Dortmund. Picture: Heinz Reinkmeier EMN-190515-124759002
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It may be relatively small, but members of Holwell Rifle Club are making a big mark on the national and international shooting scene.

The club, tucked away behind Holwell Sports FC’s Welby Road ground in Asfordby Hill, has a good reputation within the sport, with two of its current crop, potentially targeting a shot at the Olympics.

Katie (right) on the podium in Berlin with winner Andrea Bruhlmann  Picture: Heinz Reinkmeier EMN-190515-124738002

Katie (right) on the podium in Berlin with winner Andrea Bruhlmann Picture: Heinz Reinkmeier EMN-190515-124738002

Katie Gleeson has shot to success in a series of international matches in Europe this season.

The British Talent Squad member headed to the ISAS Dortmund, an international competition which attracted shooters from across the world looking to prepare for a run at next year’s Tokyo Olympics.

But Gleeson, a sport science student at Loughborough University, wasn’t fazed by the high-calibre field and made the 50m Three-Position Rifle final.

She then headed to Berlin for the 2019 IWK match and there she found her form.

British champion Kim Tzabach. Picture: National Smallbore Rifle Association EMN-190515-124809002

British champion Kim Tzabach. Picture: National Smallbore Rifle Association EMN-190515-124809002

Building on her performance in Dortmund, the Holwell markswoman claimed the silver medal between two Swiss shooters.

She finished a mere half-point behind the winner, Andrea Bruhlmann, scoring 453.3.

Gleeson’s next international event will bring another trip to Germany, where she will use a match in Hannover as a warm-up for the ISSF World Cup in Munich.

There she will be joined in the British squad by Holwell clubmate Kim Tzabach who has been selected to compete in the 10m air rifle event.

Holwell dominated the women's Open 10m Air Rifle podium at the British Air Gun Championships, with Kim Tzabach (centre) taking gold and Pauline Thornton (right) the bronze. Picture: National Smallbore Rifle Association EMN-190515-124748002

Holwell dominated the women's Open 10m Air Rifle podium at the British Air Gun Championships, with Kim Tzabach (centre) taking gold and Pauline Thornton (right) the bronze. Picture: National Smallbore Rifle Association EMN-190515-124748002

Tzabach hit the headlines in February as Holwell celebrated a double success at the British Open Airgun Championships at Bisley.

The Nottingham Trent University student won the women’s open 10m air rifle title, pipping experienced clubmate Pauline Thornton who had to settle for the bronze.

Tzabach is reading pharmaceutical and medicinal chemistry at university, but is making a name for herself in her chosen sport, having first taken up shooting through the Scout movement.

She holds the English women’s record for 10m air rifle with a score of 625.6, achieved at the 2018 Commonwealth Shooting Federation Championships.

Both Tzabach and Thornton, a retired Leicestershire police officer and army veteran have a full competition schedule ahead for the coming year and will next compete at the England Championships and then the British 50m Championships.