USA Shooting Athletes Achieve Podium Finishes At 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup

Austen Smith wins Women’s Skeet gold with six-point cushion, Dania Vizzi and Dustan Taylor claim Mixed Team Skeet silver at the 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup, May 1-12.

by
at USA Shooting posted on May 15, 2024
Usashootingmay2024baku 1
USA Shooting shotgun athlete Austen Smith (center) on the podium with her Women’s Skeet gold medal won at the 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup held in Baku, Azerbaijan, May 1-12.
Photo courtesy of ISSF

Three USA Shooting athletes—Austen Smith, Dania Vizzi and Dustan Taylor—brought home medals from the 2024 International Shooting Sports Federation Baku World Cup, May 1-12.

Austen Smith, who is qualified for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, topped the podium in Women’s Skeet, winning a gold medal. Smith was among the top six athletes to qualify for the final after shooting a score of 119 of 125. Smith was in a five-way tie for third place after the qualification round and won the shoot-off to earn the third place bib for the final.

Hailing from Keller, Texas, Smith earned her ISSF Women’s Skeet gold medal by outshooting Martina Maruzzo of Italy by six points, the latter finishing in second place, 56-50. Smith’s victory added to her overall international medal count which is now at an impressive 23. She went on to compete in the Mixed Team Skeet event with Conner Prince at the 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup. The duo finished fourth overall with a score of 41. Additionally, Prince will be joining Smith at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games this summer.

Dania Vizzi and Dustan Taylor took their place on the podium after capturing a silver medal in Mixed Team Skeet. They finished first overall in the qualification round after shooting a remarkable combined score of 146 of 150. Both athletes only dropped two targets each. The pair competed in the gold medal match, falling three points short of the gold-medal winning Chilean team, 45-42.

Dustan Taylor’s medal comes as no surprise as he has seen international success lately. At the 2023 Pan American Games, Taylor teamed up with Smith to earn a bronze medal in Mixed Team Skeet. Taylor, of Staley, North Carolina, saw more international achievement last year when he won gold in Men’s Skeet Team at the 2023 ISSF Rabat World Cup.

Vizzi has also been on a roll in the international realm. The Odessa, Florida, native joined her U.S. teammate Vincent Hancock on the podium at the 2023 Pan American Games after winning a gold medal in the Mixed Skeet Team event. Vizzi’s international medal count is up to a mind-boggling total of 19. A 2017 World Champion, she is qualified for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and will be competing in Women’s Skeet, along with Mixed Team Skeet with Conner Prince.

Rachel Tozier and Aeriel Skinner both made appearances in the Women’s Trap final. Tozier, who is qualified for Paris 2024, shot 115 of 125, landing her in a four-way tie for second place. After a handful of shoot-offs, her qualification round placement was third. Tozier went on to land in fourth place in the final with a score of 29. Skinner, of Jackson, California, also found herself in the four-way tie for second place by shooting 115 of 125 in qualification. In the final, Skinner finished fifth overall with a score of 22.

Also making finals appearances at the 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup were USA Shooting rifle athletes Mary Tucker and Rylan Kissell. Kissell made the Men’s 10m Air Rifle final after posting a score of 632 in the qualification round. The Denver, Colorado, native finished seventh overall in the final with a score of 143.0. Kissell is no stranger to international success. A University of Alaska-Fairbanks alumnus, he earned two medals at the 2023 Pan American Games and was a member of the 2023 ISSF World Championship team. In addition, Kissell finished second overall in Men’s Air Rifle at the U.S. Olympic Trials-Shooting.

Mary Tucker, who is qualified for Paris 2024, earned a spot in the Women’s 10m Air Rifle final by shooting a qualification score of 631.8. The Tokyo Olympics silver medalist finished fifth overall in the final with a score of 186.0. Tucker brought home her own share of medals from the 2023 Pan American Games, earning two gold medals and one bronze.

The duo of Tucker and Kissell went on to shoot in the 10m Air Rifle Mixed Team event at the 2024 ISSF Baku World Cup, an event that will also be in contention at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. They exited the qualification round in 11th place with a score of 628.7.

See the full results of the 2024 International Shooting Sport Federation Baku World Cup at this link.

With just about two months until the Paris 2024 Olympic Games begin, the USA Shooting team is buckling down and preparing for the event of a lifetime.

Learn more about USA Shooting at usashooting.org.

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