RIO 2016: INTERVIEW WITH MAURO PERAZZI

Rio 2016: Perazzi has won three Olympic medals. A few days after the Olympic shooting events ended we asked Mauro Perazzi what his opinion was of the results.

Knowing the still unbeaten record of the 2012 Olympics with 12 out of 15 medals won by our shooters, we were aware that it would be impossible to achieve the same feat, considering that, immediately after London 2012, those who could not beat us with a better gun, had a compulsion to spend millions with the clear intent of acquiring as many skillful shooters as possible. Plus, if the shooters lost with their gun, at least they would not have won with ours. The resulting fact was that most of the champions who were used to their Perazzi gun were not now at the top, sometimes for entire seasons and even during the four-year Olympic cycle where they struggled to get their Olympic quota places – or failed to get them at all – and lost their position within the team, and their smiles. I consider this has damaged the sport, and it has affected not only those athletes who had to face major difficulties, but also those Countries who lost important medals which, in the past, could be won more easily. However, I must say that we expected to win a couple of more medals.
 
So, do you regard this edition of the Olympic games as a defeat..
 
We won 4 medals in Atlanta, 11 in Sydney, 12 in Athens, 11 in Beijing and 12 in London. We had become too used to these results! However, just like all the Olympic games, Rio also has its purpose. As I often repeat to my sons and collaborators, I strongly believe that each event, whether positive or negative, should be considered an opportunity. Therefore, even if three Olympic medals are below our expectations, I think that if you get an easy victory, then you tend to rest on your laurels; conversely, if you struggle to win, you necessarily become more strong and creative. It is no coincidence that, in the time between the gold medal won by Ennio Mattarelli in Tokyo 1964 and the Atlanta 1996 games, we just won a couple of Olympic medals, however in that period Perazzi began to grow at national and especially at international scale, and my father Daniele could fulfill his dreams: he started from scratch, yet was able to create a renowned product highly esteemed all over the world, to the extent that our guns are considered a modern myth. So, thinking back to Rio, the three medals won and the weather conditions during some competitions, I'd say that if a storm can’t turn off the stars, then neither can some raindrops!
 
What will your next steps be and what are your plans after the summer break?
 
Well, actually we are already back at work: some of us are in the United States for the famous "Grand American", my sister Roberta and I are going to the office a few hours a day. The factory will reopen on August 29, one week earlier than usual. This is because the new competition model designed and launched by our team two years ago, in spite of the deep crisis in the industry, has achieved an immediate success we initially had to work hard to process all the orders, we also had to increase the work shifts, hire more employees and reorganize the production line. Today, it takes at least six months to get a "High Tech". On the one hand this makes life more difficult for us, but on the other hand, we are satisfied and optimistic because as I have always stated, our main goals are to give employment to our workers and collaborators and, at the same time, to expand the project of our father Daniele. We are an Italian company, the whole Perazzi team, as I always call it, is made up of Italian people, our product is totally manufactured in Italy, all shares of the company are fully owned by the Perazzi family. So we are proud of the great success that we are achieving. 
 
Has the Olympic “disappointment” really moved to the background? 
 
Of course not! I would have been satisfied with half the medals won in London, but fortunately I always look to the future. This was my reaction after the 2012 Games and now, after the competitions in Rio.
 
Specifically, from the sporting point of view, have you considered the possibility to acquire new shooters?
 
Even before Rio 2016, we had been contacted by someone who had sought their fortune elsewhere, while others are applying to us at present. Yes, we are considering the acquisition of new shooters even if we do not have huge economic resources as we only produce guns for sport. But now I would like to thank those who remained with us and struggled till the end to win a medal in Rio: Fehaid Aldeehani, Edward Ling, Steven Scott, and also those who did not win. Thank you for all the sacrifices that you made and will make with us, with the utmost commitment and with the usual fun... and with the eyes gazing beyond an eastern horizon.. 
 
* in the picture, Mauro Perazzi and Fehaid Aldeehani (KUW), winner of the Double Trap Gold medal