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New Mexico 4-H shooter excels in 3-position Junior Olympics

PERALTA Rachel Martin, a New Mexico 4-H Junior with the Valencia County Rocky Mountain Clovers Club, attended the 2009, 3-Position Airgun Junior Olympics at Camp Perry, Ohio, placing 12th overall and winning the J3 age group championship in the precision air rifle category.

4-H air rifle shooter Rachel Martin won the 2009, 3-Position Airgun Junior Olympics J3 age group championship and placed 12th overall at the event held at Camp Perry, Ohio. The Valencia County Rocky Mountain Clovers Club member also received the Junior Distinguished Marksman Badge from the Civilian Marksmanship Program. (NMSU Photo)

sion air rifle is the same type of rifle used in the Olympic Games. Martin fired a personal record of 1174-75X in the two day event with a perfect 200 in the prone position on day two.

This performance also completed Martin's quest for the Junior Distinguished Marksman Badge. Badge number 283 was issued to her by the Civilian Marksmanship Program. Less than 300 badges have been issued by the program since its beginnings in 2001. Martin joins 4-H club teammates Kaite Martin, badge number 178; Steven Arrington, badge number 244, and Robert Arrington, badge number 271, in this unique club of national level junior shooters.

Martin competes representing the Valencia County 4-H Shooting Sports organization. She began her shooting sports career as a novice shooting archery. In 2005 she began shooting sporter air rifle and switched to a precision rifle in 2008. Martin fires a small-bore rifle as well, and in the Olympic style Junior Olympics held in April, placed second in the international air rifle event and third in the small-bore rifle event.

She will attend the prestigious American Legion National Airgun Championship in August, an invitation only match where a shooter must go through two rounds of qualification beginning the previous December. Only the top 15 juniors in the sporter and precision rifle categories are invited to an expense paid trip to fire this match at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

More information about the Valencia County 4-H Shooting Sports can be found at http://www.VC4HSS.com. Shooting sports is one of the many projects available through the New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Services' 4-H Youth Development Program.