PORT Fairy shooter Julie Holcombe already has plans to chase a fifth World Masters Games gold medal.
Holcombe, 52, yesterday touched down in Australia after claiming her fourth consecutive win on the international stage at the 2013 Games in Torino.
The eagle-eyed rifle shooter scored 579 out of 600, with 23 bullseyes, from 60 shots in the women’s 50-metre prone class on August 4.
She beat Germany’s Dorothea Winkler-Hubsch and Slovenian Vesna Mele by eight points before celebrating with a holiday through Italy.
Holcombe said the score was far below her personal best but came in stifling Italian heat, which made shooting challenging.
“We were shooting on tables, which I’ve never done before,” Holcombe said.
Instead of shooting on the ground you were on tables.
“I trained on the Friday and thought this is going to be no good.
‘‘It was so hot it raised your heartbeat, that’s all you could feel.
“The morning of the match was a little cooler.
‘‘I shot at 11.30 in the morning.
‘‘Although it was hot, I shot quickly and got it done before the heartbeat went up.”
“I was pleased with the way I shot.”
Holcombe began shooting as a teenager in 1976 and has gone on to represent Australia four times.
Her last Australian campaign was the 2011 Oceania championships, in which she competed beside her daughter Emma Knights.
She contested her first World Masters Games in Melbourne in 2002, signing up on the advice of friends but surprising herself by winning gold.
Wins at Edmonton in 2005, Sydney in 2009 and now Turin in 2013 have established her as one of the premier veteran shooters in the world.
“The World Masters Games, although it’s a competition it’s more of a celebration of enjoying something you love, regardless of your age,” she said.
Holcombe said she had already committed herself to contesting the 2017 Games in Auckland.
She said she enjoyed the individual nature of rifle shooting.
“I think you become quite driven and focused to do it,” she said.
“Everyone is competitive and I like to do well, it’s human nature I suppose.
“It makes you work hard.
‘‘It’s ranked the second-highest mental sport in the world behind weightlifting.
“It’s you and your mind more so than the physicality.”