USA Shooting: Marco De La Rosa Wins 2023 Parapan American Games Gold Medal

Marco De La Rosa is the 2023 Parapan American Games champion in the P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1 event and earned the U.S. a Paralympic quota for Paris 2024.

by
at USA Shooting posted on November 21, 2023
Delarosa Parapangames 1
Marine Corps veteran Marco De La Rosa won gold in the P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1 event at the 2023 Parapan American Games in Santiago, Chile, Nov. 19.
USA Shooting

Marco De La Rosa won the gold medal in the 2023 Parapan American Games P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1 event in Santiago, Chile, on Sunday, November 19, also securing the United States a quota for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

“I wasn’t expecting it,” De La Rosa, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran said. “When I was in there, yeah, I was nervous, but I was just doing my process and kept on going. I kept seeing that it was me against the Cuban and it was exciting. We were looking at each other and smiling like, ‘this is getting tight.’”

De La Rosa clenched the P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1 gold medal by triumphing over Angelo Di Loriga of Cuba. The pair battled it out until the final shot. De La Rosa finished with a score of 227.6 and Di Loriga with 226.7.

YanXiao Gong finished in third place, putting two Team USA athletes on the podium. The duo also shared the podium alongside Mike Tagliapietra on Saturday, November 18. They took home all three medals in the Mixed P3 25m Sport Pistol SH1 event.

De La Rosa, a Chicago, Illinois, native who now resides in San Antonio, Texas, began shooting eight years ago through his local Dept. of Veterans Affairs chapter. He chose pistol over rifle, and a little bit of friendly competition motivated him to improve his marksmanship skills.

“We all started competing against each other and the loser had to buy coffee,” De La Rosa said. “I got better quick because it was Starbucks [coffee] and that stuff is $5 a cup.”

De La Rosa continued to excel after being coached in California by In Kim. Thanks in part to a new set of skills in his arsenal, he fired a match in 2015 with a score of 552.

“They all thought it was a fluke,” De La Rosa said. “But then I went to a competition in Poland, finished in second place and earned a Paralympic quota.”

De La Rosa mentioned that making friends all over the world has been the best part of his competitive shooting journey.

“Every time I go to their countries we exchange gifts,” he said. “I love them, and I know they love me. In every country I go to they are excited to see me, and I am excited to see them.”

De La Rosa is walking away from his second 2023 Parapan American Games competition with two medals. His gold medal is accompanied by a silver in Mixed P3 25m Sport Pistol SH1.

Air pistol and sport pistol shoot two different types of ammunition and differ in the scoring and match format.

“I am still kind of new at sport pistol,” De La Rosa said. “I am still trying to learn the rapid [portion]. I am good to go with the precision. With air, you have to take your time, it is unforgiving. You do anything with the front sights and it’s a 9.7 or 9.9.”

As of Tuesday, November 21, USA Shooting athletes have earned total of six medals at the 2023 Parapan American Games. See a breakdown below.

  1. YanXiao Gong: Gold, Mixed P3 25m Sport Pistol SH1
  2. Marco De La Rosa: Silver, Mixed P3 25m Sport Pistol SH1
  3. Mike Tagliapietra: Bronze, Mixed P3 25m Sport Pistol SH1
  4. Marco De La Rosa: Gold, P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1
  5. YanXiao Gong: Bronze, P3 Men’s Air Pistol SH1
  6. Stetson Bardfield: Gold, R5 Mixed Air Rifle Prone SH2

For official results and scores from the 2023 Parapan American Games, go to this link.

USA Shooting would like to thank the NRA Foundation, our platinum-level sponsor, for its support of the team. The NRA Foundation’s contributions are helping USA Shooting athletes achieve podium finishes at the 2023 Parapan American Games.

Learn more about USA Shooting at usashooting.org.

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