Zagreb 2014: what you need to know for the world field champs
Zagreb first held the World Archery Field Championships 40 years ago, when Croatia was part of Yugoslavia. In 2004, the nation held it again – and next week it will have the event for the third time, when Zagreb becomes only the second city to have hosted the world field twice.
(A little bit of trivia: the other city that’s held the field championships multiple times is Gothenburg in Sweden, which held it in 1976 and 2006.)
Not your usual set-up…
As well as the competition divisions seen on the World Cup and international target archery circuit – compound and recurve – the World Field Championships include a barebow category.
Using recurves without sights, stabilisers, clickers and other useful devices, barebow archers rely on fieldcraft, a precise sense of repetition and hugely difficult-to-master technique.
The tournament includes both individual and team competitions. Teams are formed by one archer of each bowtype.
Field archery is best described as a golf-course-style layout of targets in the woods. Archers (or teams) shoot three arrows at each target before moving onto the next.
Most of the targets are at marked distances, but one of the two days of 24-target qualification courses is shot at unmarked distances – which brings a completely different element to the competition.
The competition field is cut after qualification for an eliminations stage, before semifinals and finals shot as head-to-head matches.
The stage is set
Maksimir Park, one of the Zagreb’s oldest public spaces, is hosting the event. Three different 24-target courses have been laid out for the qualification and elimination rounds, with a spectator area for the four-target finals.
Competition starts with the unmarked qualification round on Wednesday, marked qualification is on Thursday, and eliminations on Friday. Team events on Saturday, and individual medal matches on Sunday.
All the finals are being streamed live on Archery TV.
Storylines to watch
Big rivalry is expected between the USA and European countries like France, Italy, Sweden, Slovenia, Great Britain, Germany and the host Croatian team.
German Elena RICHTER is likely make the recurve finals. If she does, it’ll be another achievement in a career year. She’s been consistently-impressive on the Archery World Cup circuit this year, has qualified for the Lausanne Final and is fast rising up the world rankings.
Croatian Mario VAVRO had good results on the last world field championship in Val d’Isere, France. Shooting as a local with family and friends watching live can only add to his determination to do well in Zagreb.