The race for Olympic qualification in shooting had started with the shotgun World championship in Osijek, Croatia, in September last year. It will continue in a new format, much different from the past, till June 2024, for the Paris Games scheduled from July 26 to August 11.
Unlike in the past, the World Cups will not have any Olympic quota attached to them. Only World Championships and the Continental championships will offer Olympic quotas in the current cycle.
India has already gathered three Olympic quota places through Bhowneesh Mendiratta (trap), Rudrankksh Patil (air rifle) and Swapnil Kusale (rifle 3-position) in the two World Championships held last year. The rifle and pistol World Championship was held in Cairo, Egypt, In October.
The International Shooting Federation, ISSF, will be conducting its regular World Championship for all events, hosted once in four years, this season in Baku Azerbaijan, from August 14 to 31. It will offer 48 quota places, four each in the 12 events.
The Asian Championship is scheduled to be staged in Changwon, Korea, from October 22 to November 2. It will have 24 quota places, two in each of the 12 individual events.
Additionally, the Asian shotgun championship to be held in Kuwait in January 2024, will offer eight quota places in trap and skeet.
The Asian rifle and pistol championship in Jakarta, Indonesia, in February 2024, will offer 16 Olympic quota places.
The most significant of the new qualification process is that a country can win only one quota place in an event, in a championship. In the past, a country could win both its quota places in one championship.
Otherwise, a country is eligible to win two Olympic quota places in every event, subject to a maximum of 12 male and 12 female shooters.
Also, the quota places can only be won by the eight finalists in an event.
After the qualification process, the best ranked shooters who do not have the Olympic quota place will be awarded one each in the 12 events. These quotas will belong to the athletes and the national federation will not be able to field anyone else in their spot, unlike the other Olympic quota places which belong to the country and not to the athletes who win them.
Shooting at the Olympics will have 15 events, as was the case in Tokyo, including three mixed events in air rifle, air pistol and skeet.
There will be 340 shooters in all, making it to Paris, through qualification process, ranking and Universality places. There will be equal participation of 170 male and 170 female shooters.
To be eligible to compete in the Olympics in their main events and additional events, the shooters have to participate in at least two ISSF championships during the qualifying period for each of the individual events in which they seek to compete in Paris.