Many may question the ability of someone without sight to shoot an air rifle accurately. However, vision impaired athletes can do this with minor modifications to the aiming device of the rifle. The sights are replaced with an electronic device that detects the target and produces audio signals that are relayed to the athlete via earphones enabling them to shoot accurately. As well as the special aiming device, the shooter has a sighted assistant to provide additional information, such as where shots have hit the target.
I am Michael Whapples the top vision impaired shooter in the UK. In 2018 I took part in the International Shooting Competition of Hanover winning the gold medal in standing and later that year took the silver medal for standing in the World Cup in France. In March 2019 I started shooting in the prone position as well and took the prone silver medal at the World Cup in Croatia. For more information why not follow my page on FaceBook
, visit my blog
or find me on twitter
In October 2019 vision impaired shooting will be included, for the first time, in the World Shooting ParaSport World Championships these are to be held in Sydney, Australia. Based upon previous performance I feel I should be competing for a medal at this World Championships and so would like the opportunity to compete. As vision impaired shooting is not, as yet, included in the Paralympics there is no funding for vision impaired shooters in the UK. This means I will have to cover all the costs related to competing at both the qualification competition and the World Championships myself.
Costs will include, competition fees, travel expenses, equipment, training sundries. As I cannot see I also require an assistant who’s costs I will also need to find as without them I cannot compete. I am asking for your help to get me to these events, any funds over and above my needs will be used to further vision impaired shooting in the UK.