Shooting sports at world level has very few top-notch performers capable of measuring up to the achievements of Romanian Corneliu Ion. The Romanian was, in turn, a world record holder as well as an Olympic and European champion. Also, Corneliu Ion walked away with medals in all major shooting sports competitions. In the rapid-fire pistol event, Corneliu Ion was two times capable of getting the maximum number of points, 600 out of 600.
Corneliu Ion was born in Focsani on June 27, 1951. Between 1971 and 1988, he was signed up by Steaua Bucharest sports club. As early as 1974 Corneliu Ion took international rankings by storm, winning the silver medal at the World Championships. Corneliu Ion became a European Champion in Bucharest, in 1977
We should note, however, that Corneliu Ion's career best is the gold medal he won in Moscow in 1980. At the end of a cut-throat contest, Corneliu Ion outperformed his challenger from the then German Democratic Republic, Jürgen Wiefel, after no less than three play-off ties. We recall Romania came in 7th in the nations' competition at the aforementioned edition of the Olympics, with six gold medals. Back then, an appreciable number of Western countries boycotted the Olympic Games.
In Los Angeles in 1984, countries belonging to the then Communist Bloc boycotted the Olympic Games. Romania did not join in, in a form of protest that was masterminded by the then Soviet leaders. In the nations' competition, Romania was the runner-up delegation, with a tally of 20 medals. In the rapid-fire pistol event, Corneliu Ion walked away with silver. In 1985, Corneliu Ion became a European champion, which was his last remarkable performance as a competitor.
Corneliu Ion graduated from the Academy of Economic Sciences in Bucharest. In 1989 he graduated from the International shooting sports trainers School in Wiesbaden, Germany. Corneliu Ion's specialised background as well as his business studies enabled him to be a successful holder of several management positions in the world of sports. Corneliu Ion retired from competition in 1988 and for 12 years he was head of the shooting sports section with Steaua Army Club in Bucharest. Between 1990 and 2001 Corneliu Ion was president of the Romanian Shooting Sports Federation. During his term, a couple of excellent sports shooters, such as Sorin Babii, got prestigious results in world-level competitions.
(Translation by Eugen Nasta)