• name: Niccolo CAMPRIANI
  • year of birth: 1987
  • nationality: Italian
  • birthplace: Firenze
  • discipline(s): AR60,FR3X40,FR60PR
  • pb: 633.4 in Air Rifle (600/600), 628.2 Prone (599/600), 1185 3P, London 2012 3P Gold and 10m Air Rifle Silver
  • coach: Gaby Buhlmann
  • shoots with: Bleiker Challenger action and stock


Niccolo started shooting in 2000 at 13 years old when his father, a keen pistol shooter, took him to the range for the first time. It only took a few weeks to realise that the rifle discipline was his favourite, inspiring a passion in the sport that would be rewarded with great success in years to come.

A key development for Niccolo was during the Beijing 2008 Olympics when he shot an eight and missed out on qualifying for the Air Rifle final. This disappointment led to a move to the USA to train and study at the West Virginia University. There he met Edward Etzel, a great sport psychologist and Prone Olympic champion in Los Angeles 1984, who was a real game changer for Niccolo.

The move also gave him the opportunity to train with Matt Emmons and the rest of the USA Team. Matt, who had always been a role model for Niccolo, became a loyal friend and an exceptional training partner.

Niccolo has said that without that eight in Beijing he could never have succeeded in London 2012 and become an Olympic champion. Shooting has taught him how to deal with his deepest thoughts and emotions, and he finds it a great way to learn about himself, accept his weaknesses and improve his strengths. To Niccolo shooting is a school of life, and he is still learning.

60 seconds with Niccolo

tell us an interesting fact about yourself

I am an engineer and my thesis was written on the ‘Analysis of the vibration characteristics of a small-bore rifle in relation to different clamping and holding conditions’.

what sporting interests besides shooting do you have?

Mountain biking and hiking. I love mountains!

what qualifications do you hold?

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from West Virginia University in the USA and a Master’s degree in Sport Engineering at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK.

what is your proudest moment?

When I met my parents at the airport on my way back from the London Olympics.

what training tips can you offer?

Shooting 10s is just a consequence, not a real goal. Feeling positive is the priority so focus on that, trust what your body is telling you and stop counting points!

what is the best advice you’ve ever been given?

Try to have fun otherwise what's the point?!