UK Rifle's Carr Continuing Career Climb
When Kentucky Rifle standout Hanna Carr was a child, she had no idea that the time she spent with her father shooting guns at soda cans would lead her to much, much bigger things. For Carr, it was just about being with her dad.
“It was always a really cool thing to do with my dad,” Hanna said of the informal target practice. “It was great to have father-daughter bonding time.”
Dad happens to be Ted Carr, who shot competitively for UK in the 1980s. He started Hanna and her brother shooting when they were little, while at the same time, laying the foundation for Hanna to become one of the best collegiate rifle shooters in the country.
“My dad took a lot of the guesswork out of it,” Carr said of her father’s rifle instruction. “It wasn’t like I started out knowing nothing. He took a lot of the position work out of it. He started me at a point that’s further along than where most people start.”
And when she started in competitive rifle, at age 12, Carr was a natural.
“I started doing this kind of rifle shooting when I was about 12,” Carr said. “I started in October and I made the (USA Shooting) Junior Olympic cut in December. And I ended up going, and I’ve stuck with it.”
Going to the Junior Olympics has become the norm for Carr, who makes the trip to Colorado Springs, Colorado on a regular basis. And it’s an event that she has grown to love.
“Two years ago, I got the silver medal overall, which was a really cool experience,” she said. “It was so much fun to be in the final. I was so excited to get some kind of reward for that. I was finally able to show what I could do.”
Then last year, Carr finally reached the top of the mountain by winning the Junior Olympic championship.
“Last year, winning, was so much fun,” Carr said. “The final was so good, it was so competitive. I was tied with (TCU’s) Rachel Garner going into the final. It came down to the last shot. I don’t think I knew (how close it was). It was really interesting. I was like ‘wow, I finally actually won’.”
She also participated in the World Cup in Munich, Germany last summer as a part of the gold medal-winning United States squad.
Carr and her teammates on the UK Rifle Team are off to a good start to the 2016-17 season. Carr, who was an All-American as a freshman last year, believes that this team could have big things in store for the season.
“I think we’re already doing better this year than we did last season,” Carr said. “It seems, this year, we get along better. On the range, behind the scenes, we’re more supportive of one another. This group is just tighter. We can do some really good things this year. Everyone appears to be growing. We’ve still got the whole season ahead of us.”
Carr's career path could lead to a national championship and/or possibly a bid to the Olympics. And if she accomplishes either, or both, of those feats, she can thank UK rifle coach Harry Mullins, but she can also thank her dad.