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All you need to know about William Shaner Youngest American Olympics Gold Medalist

After being delayed by an entire year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 Summer Olympics were hosted in Japan from July 23 to August 8, 2021. 2,175 competitors competed in 339 different events, winning 2,402 medals overall. William Shaner is also a 2020 Olympic gold medalist. He competes in both domestic and international events. The young man has been making history ever since he began competing as an athlete. With his victory in the men’s 10 m air rifle competition, 20-year-old William Shaner became the second American to take home a gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games. The National Training Center Shooting Club counts William as a member. In the event, the young man defeated China’s Lihao Sheng by a total of 251.6 points and won the Olympic tournament.

Youngest in American History

William Shaner is the youngest American, being 20 years old, the Olympic rifle for men qualifier, and the second-youngest male 10-meter air rifle winner in history. Shaner had a strong desire to make a living doing what he loved. By having a significant interest in sports and the shooting range, William started his shooting career at a young age in 2018, and he is now a professional shooter.

Shaner was active in Colorado 4-H shooting sports from 2009 to 2014 while living in Rifle, Colorado, his hometown. Shaner began competing at the age of nine with Garfield County 4-H and continues to win numerous titles at the state and local levels. He earned his first junior Olympic gold medal in the 50-meter prone event at the age of 11 and, at the age of 14, after being selected for the junior national team, entered the international circuit. At the World Championship, he took home bronze in the 50-meter rifles-prone competition. When he assisted the University of Kentucky in winning, he also established a solid reputation for himself there. Due to this, he gets an early seat in the Shooters Hall of Fame.

NCAA’s Rookie Player of the Year

At the Summer Olympics in 2020, he won the gold medal in the men’s 10-meter rifle competition. Between 2018 and 2019, William Shaner was the NCAA’s Rookie Player of the Year. He achieved success in 2018 by taking home the bronze at the Junior World Championship (rifle prone). He went on to win the 2018 ISSF Suhl Junior World Cup with gold (rifle prone). When he was a freshman in college and a member of the All-American First Team in small bore and air rifle, he was named the NCAA Rookie of the Year. He also placed second in the NCAA air rifle competition.

Champion of Olympics 2020

At the men’s 10-meter air rifle competition at the Asaka Shooting Range in Tokyo, American William Shaner made an impressive Olympic debut by shooting his way to a gold medal. To beat China’s Sheng Lihao, a 16-year-old who won a silver medal with a score of 250.9, Shaner posted an Olympic-record score of 251.6. Yang Haoran of China, who scored 229.4, won the bronze medal. In the men’s 10-meter race, Shaner’s victory was the first for Team USA. He finished only 1.2 points less than Yu Haonan of China’s world record score of 252.8, which he established in 2019. In the final round, Lihao Sheng of China (250.9) was defeated by Shaner’s 251.6 scores, which is a new Olympic record.

William Shaner the Inspiration for Young Athletes

Shaner aspires to set an example for the following generation of young athletes, motivated by his quest for excellence and love for his small-town heritage. Shaner’s final year with Colorado 4-H in 2014 involved Carla Farrand, the CSU Extension Director for Garfield County. As Will improved and started to win 4-H shooting competitions, he began traveling to Colorado Springs to train at the Olympic Training Centers, bringing other 4-H members along for the experience. Shaner continues to inspire youths in Garfield County after leaving the 4-H program to pursue his Olympic goals in Colorado Springs.

Seven years later, Farrand noted, “even now, we still have 4-H members traveling down on weekends to meet him and to practice.” They are idolized by the young. It’s wonderful for them to watch their role models succeed.

Wrapping Up!

Shaner is the youngest American to compete in an Olympic rifle competition and the second-youngest shooter to win the match. He is one of the top talents in the world after winning gold in the men’s air rifle event at the 2021 ISSF World Cup in New Delhi and Croatia. In fewer than ten years, William Shaner will be the youngest American to qualify for the men’s rifle competition in the Olympics, according to known USAS records.

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