Matt Coward-Holley and Kirsty Hegarty laid down a marker to their Olympic rivals with Tokyo 2020 on the horizon by claiming a superb mixed team trap gold at the Shotgun World Cup in Italy.
The duo were two of four shooters selected to represent Team GB at Tokyo 2020 this summer back in January and served notice to the rest of the field that they are a force to be reckoned with.
In a fiercely contested qualification round, Coward-Holley hit every one of his 75 targets, while Hegarty only missed five of hers, for a total of 145.
'A fine reward' - GB's Coward-Holley wins bronze in men’s trap
That was matched by San Marino pair Gian Marco Berti and Alessandra Perilli to set up the gold medal match, with no other team able to shoot better than 142 out of 150.
As the rain started to fall in Lonato, shooting conditions became trickier and the final was a lower-scoring affair as both teams missed with regularity.
The Brits had pulled into a 16-11 lead after two rounds, although San Marino shot perfectly in round three to narrow the deficit to just two points.
But rounds four and five saw GB pull away once more as Coward-Holley and Hegarty missed only two further targets apiece, while Perilli in particular struggled for their opponents, by faltering five times out of ten.
That secured a 39-34 victory and World Cup gold for Coward-Holley and Hegarty, who will likely combine in the mixed team trap when it makes its Olympic debut in Tokyo this summer as well as contesting their individual trap events.
The gold was GB's second medal of the Lonato World Cup after Amber Hill climbed the podium for the second time this season earlier in the event.
Having won gold in the opening World Cup of the season, Hill took a creditable silver in the women's skeet final in Italy to maintain her promising form as she guns for Olympic selection before the Games.
Coward-Holley takes bronze in men’s trap
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