Allan Harding headed to Rio di Janeiro this week for stage 2 of the 2016 International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Series, which began on March 1.
Harding said one of his coaches – Patrick Haynes – told him things would be different in Rio, compared to other World Cup events he’s been to. The competition will be higher, Haynes said, and so will the level of the other shooters.
“I was thinking, it’s already high given that a lot of the top shooters are full time and get paid to do this,” Harding said. “It should be interesting to see and just to experience all the buzz in Rio with the Olympics only a few months away. My goal is to stick to my training plan.”
This is Harding’s first World Cup at an Olympic venue, although he’s shot at many legacy Olympic venues in the past. A legacy venue is one where the Olympics have taken place. In Rio, Harding will be shooting at the venue before the Olympics happen.
“The Rio 2016 Olympics in August aren’t something I can go to, so there’s no need for me to spend any mental cycles concerned with it,” Harding said. “For me, it’s about Tokyo 2020 and making adjustments to get me there to represent Canada.”
Harding is in Rio de Janeiro April 13 to 24. He returns to Canada to shoot in the Legacy venue at the Pan Am Games on April 29 and 30 in Toronto. He’ll finish his tour in Munich May 18 to 26, where he will compete in stage 3 of the ISSF World Cup Series.