Monday, August 30, 2010

Benelli KITE - miracle on the market

A piece of interview with Mikhail Nestruev, multiple Olympic, world and European champion. The interview taken on the 6th Mai 2010.

Do you collaborate with any foreign company as co-developer or tester?
Yes, sometimes. I had already such experience. In the year 2004 after Olympics and World championship a representative of Benelli came to me. We talked a little bit and in the end of our conversion Italian asked me: «what do you need, with your skills as shooter and gunsmith, to modify Benelli air pistol and then win with it international tournament?». I answered: «I need two copies of your pistol». I got two pistols and one big box with spare parts. After returning home I started to work on it. I experimented a lot, I have worked with CNC-machine. I have changed compensator and the groups were right away tighter. I have worked on grip, I changed configuration of the air valve, changed balance and even appearance of the pistol. The pistol was radically modified. In six months I started with this pistol on European championship in Hungary. With this pistol I established record of Moscow (592 points). Up to now it is my best personal result. Later, we — I and my friend or even teacher Tanyu Kiriakov — we both were in final of European championship. He speaks Russian very well. We talked and Tanyu said that he has bought Benelli air pistol and he cannot achieve good results with it. After the competitions I gave him my compensator and later Tanyu won World Cup with his Benelli and my compensator. So little part, seemingly insignificant, makes sense.

Are you collaborating with Benelli now?
We have lost contact with Benelli, since a responsible manager quitted his job. But thanks to my and Tanyu efforts this company became popular. A little bit more efforts and Benelli could even take second place in the world behind Steyr. Steyr is out of concurrency here.

Full version of the interview in Russian language you will find here.

UPDATE: Here I must correct the text above — it must be meant year 2002 (after World Championship in Lahti, since European Championship in Györ was in 2003 and won by Nestruev with Benelli) and best personal Nestruev’s score must be 593 (Russian Championship, Mai 2005) — I was personally in final hall. Journalist or Mikhail made a small mistake here.


  1. The rest of the interview is also very interesting. Even with Google translation it is great.

  2. Yup, great info - thank you!

  3. Anonymous10/3/11 18:13

    Great ! Thanks. Too bad about the Benelli, sometimes companies really don't have a clue - shows how much they care about Olympic shooting.

  4. Is this compensator for sale? The drawings would also be helpful