Young Indian shooters have great talent and commitment: Austria's Martin Strempfl 

Strempfl was stunned by Junior Asian Champion Yash Vardhan in the 10m Air Rifle event at the International Online Shooting Championship
By Samrat Chakraborty

Tokyo Olympics quota winner Martin Strempfl, a member of the Austrian Armed Forces, is set to represent his country at the sporting showpiece event.

But ahead of the Games, the 36-year-old, faced some stiff challenge from young Indian shooters and was mightily impressed with their commitment. So much so that he is convinced that the young Indian shooters will leave a mark on the world map.

"For me, the online competitions from an Indian website (in May) was a great opportunity to stay in a certain competition style, which also increased my motivation for the training," Strempfl told the Olympic Channel. "It is impressive to see what great talents and professional commitment India has. I am convinced that we will hear a lot more from these very young shooters."

Strempfl was stunned by Junior Asian Champion Yash Vardhan in the 10m Air Rifle event at the 6th edition of the International Online Shooting Championship (IOSC) in December 2020. The Indian shot 251.9 to beat Strempfl by a margin of 1.2 points and bag his first IOSC title.

It has been more than two decades since he took up the sport. He began his journey in 1998 as his parents believed his mental focus could improve through the sport. He now wants to put his best foot forward for the Tokyo Olympics.

Martin Strempfl (Pic Courtesy: Martin Strempfl)

"Since I started shooting in 1998, the ÖSB (Austrian Rifle Federation) has continued to develop and got more and more professional. In cooperation with the Austrian Armed Forces, it is great to support for me," he said.

"My parents brought me to this sport with the hope that my concentration and attention would improve. I belong to the ÖSB since 1998. The level at the International Shooting Sport is now very high. If I am sent from the ÖOC (Austrian Olympic Committee) to Tokyo, it is my goal to have a good shooting competition, then a final placement should be possible," he added.

He started out on SCATT training, which uses an advanced optical sensor, attached to the gun and combined with special software, allowing the shooters to see immediate and detailed visualized feedback on the entire aiming process. The data collected in the process allows the shooters to eradicate their aiming errors.

"At the beginning, I only trained on SCATT. As I am in the fortunate position of being in the armed forces, I have 40 hours a week for training, which I use for shooting, endurance, torso and mental training. Unfortunately, it is a bit difficult to get factual information on this subject, because it is very emotionally charged," he said.