DAVE Oates never expected to win the 2013 Orange Sportsperson of the Year.
In fact the pistol shooter had already tipped another finalist to claim the prize at Tuesday's Orange Credit Union Sports Awards.
“I sort of expected (Jason) Belmonte to win,” Oates said.
So, you can imagine Oates’ surprise when he took out the major award on Tuesday night.
“It was a bit out of left field,” he said.
Oates was certainly a deserving winner after an unforgettable 2013 on the range.
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He won three NSW and two ACT individual state titles.
At the Australian championships he claimed the WA1500 Pistol gold, silver in the WA1500 revolver and bronze in the service pistol and unrestricted service pistol.
He also won three team gold medals and one silver.
As part of the Pistol Australia team at the WA1500 World Championships, Oates won silver in the individual revolver and gold in the international team pistol.
“It’s a bit humbling,” Oates said of the sportsperson accolade.
“I was just reading the names on that shield and there’s Olympic gold medallists, Commonwealth Games medallists and world champions all over the place.”
But he’s a world champion too.
“Well, yeah, but it doesn’t sink in a bit.”