Keith Sanderson (Colorado Springs, CO) is this year’s USA Shooting Male Athlete of the Year. The Rapid Fire Pistol specialist and three-time Olympian earned the title with his gold-medal winning performance at the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Final. Sanderson finished the Final with 33 hits, just one away from the current World Record. Earlier in the season, he also won silver at the USA Shooting National Championships and finished in sixth place at the ISSF World Cup in Gabala, Azerbaijan. Additionally, Sanderson picked up his air pistol to compete at the recent Winter Air Gun Championships, finishing in fourth place overall and winning the day two final.
In 2015, Sanderson was the winner of the NRA National Precision Pistol Championships, that is him on the podium at Camp Perry in the image at the top of this page. His score that year was 2655, enough to defeat the defending champion, Brian Zins, by 14 points. Sanderson was also named USA Shooting Athlete of the Year for Pistol in 2014 and 2015 and Male Athlete of the Year in 2009.
“I’m really happy to receive this award, and very humbled by it too,” Sanderson said. “Every World Cup for me is training for the Olympics to have a consistent performance. I’m training for the Qualification and a Final and I’m happy to see that I’m closing in on how to do that better and get good at both. Pistol needs a role model right now so people can see that we can win. When more people in this country see they have a chance, we’ll get more people shooting pistol and we’re more likely to get someone winning an Olympic gold medal.”