Medellin: 2022 Hyundai Archery World Cup Stage 4 Wrap-up
The Unidad Deportiva de Belen, the training field of the Colombian national team, and Parque del Rio finals arena hosted nearly 300 athletes for the fourth stage of the 2022 Hyundai Archery World Cup which took place in Medellin, Colombia from 18 to 24 July 2022.
'City of eternal spring' delivers memorable moments
The Colombian metropolis returned as the Americas leg of the Hyundai Archery World Cup after hosting a stage from 2013 to 2016 and in 2019.
The question on everyone's lips (except for the archers themselves maybe) was: 'can Sara Lopez / Brady Ellison qualify for Mexico?' Neither had so far and both were in danger of not making it, Ellison the most vulnerable.
Lopez was, statistically, having her worst season since 2016 in terms of scoring power and was yet to make a final four on the circuit in 2022.
Marcus D'Almeida was also fresh off his Paris gold medal-winning performance, a result which he had already dreamt as archers from across the continent, many appearing in their first stage of the season, descended upon Colombia.
Both world number ones scored 712 out of a possible 720 points for the 72-arrow 50-metre round. With Schloesser recording his seventh, straight top seed. “I am really happy, I came here to extend the streak,” said the Dutch legend.
For Gibson, it was a career-best and beat the European record she shot earlier this year. After shooting 359 out of a possible 360 for the first 36 arrows, she looked odds-on to break Sara Lopez’s world record of 713 points – and on Lopez’s home ground, too, but she dropped points in the second half of qualification. She needed a 60 from her last end – but dropped two nines.
“To be honest, I’m feeling pretty angry and disappointed with myself. I was really close to the world record and I feel like I let it slip again so I’m probably not as happy as maybe I should be,” said Gibson, who had knocked Lopez off the world number one ranking spot at the beginning of the week.
In the recurve, An San led the Korean domination, recording her best total since the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games to seed top in the recurve women, while Kim Je Deok secured number one in men.
A taster of the soon-to-be-played compound women's individual semifinal between the new and old world number one and two in Sara Lopez and Ella Gibson, saw the Lopez-led Colombia win compound women's team gold, defeating Great Britain in the final, 232-228.
"I am very happy because the goal of the day for me was this medal," said Lopez, who shot with Maria Valentina Suarez and Alejandra Usquiano. "The individual medal takes a back seat when you have a team responsibility. I already have individual medals, and for me the objective was the team gold."
The compound mixed team gold went to Denmark, who defeated the USA 157-150, with the USA's Linda Ochoa-Anderson securing silver in her 41st and final Hyundai Archery World Cup stage appearance.
In the compound men's team final Colombia could not make it another gold, losing 231-233 to France. The US took men's bronze, defeating Korea while Korea's women won their third-place match, defeating Mexico.
Further medals came for Korea's teams in the recurve, with their men's and women's teams winning both golds on offer, both games ending 6-0.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Champion trio of Korea's Kim Je Deok, Kim Woojin and Oh Jin Hyek breezed past Spain for gold to take their third, successive stage win in a row.
"It went well, like how we practiced and thanks to two veterans in Oh Jin Hyek and Kim Woojin I could rely on them and then we could [play] our own game here,” said 18-year-old Kim Je Deok.
Korea's recurve women's team Olympic Champions An San, Kang Chae Young were joined by youngster Lee Gahyun and they also took gold over Great Britain, putting to bed their seventh place finish at stage in Paris, France last month.
“After we had a little bit of disappointment in Paris, we had practised more and then we tried to be much better than that," said An. "That really helped us to win this stage.”
Brazil's duo of Ana Luiza Sliachticas Caetano and Marcus D'Almeida caused an upset by beating the Olympic Champions San and Je Deok to win bronze, the same colour medal which Germany's men's and Mexico women's teams won.
Britain's Ella Gibson became the first Hyundai Archery World Cup triple-stage winner since 2016 after defeating Dafne Quintero (147-141) in the compound women's individual final.
“I became world number one at the beginning of this week [and] that puts a lot of expectation on yourself," said Gibson after her stage four victory on the 2022 circuit, which had followed her stage 1 and stage 3 golds.
The USA's James Lutz booked his Hyundai Archery World Cup Final spot with a win over Miguel Becerra after his Mexican opponent recorded a miss with his fifth arrow and was left with too much to catch-up.
"I'm happy that I'm going to Mexico but I’m heartbroken for Miguel," said Lutz, who immediately consoled his opponent when their match completed. Becerra had seen off Mike Schloesser in his semifinal via a tiebreak after the Dutchman had a strong flinch when needing to shoot a 9 to win and shot an 8.
In the recurve, An San and Kim Woojin celebrated their Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games anniversary with recurve women's and men's individual golds in Medellin.
Woojin had already won his place in Mexico with a stage win in Gwangju in May, and dropped just three points in his gold medal clash against Tokyo 2020 silver medallist Mauro Nespoli, winning 7-1. Spain's Miguel Alvarino Garcia defeated the USA's Jack Williams 6-4 for bronze.
"It's very memorable for me this month because I got the gold medals a year ago," said An about her triple podium-topping performance 12 months previously in Japan (she won the recurve women's individual and team event plus the recurve mixed team event).
Even though the stage winners took centre stage and rightly so, home nation hero Sara Lopez added yet another accolade to her impressive list, setting a world record with a 150 in her bronze medal compound women's match against Andrea Becerra.
What it means
What doesn't it mean?
Well, one thing is for sure, all 2022 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final spots were confirmed (except for the names of who will take the host nation allocation spots for Mexico). 14 recurve (7 in men's, 7 in women's, plus one host spot each) and 14 in compound.
Through on points are Mete Gazoz, Kim Je Deok, Mauro Nespoli, Katharina Bauer, Kuo Tzu Ying and Pen Chia-Mao. Previous stage winners Miguel Alvarino Garcia, Marcus D'Almeida, Bryony Pitman, Choi Misun and Utano Agu join them.
Who would have thought that last year when both were going for their record-breaking sixth Hyundai Archery World Cup Final titles in Yankton?
The big one. A long wait , but it's worth it: October will see the world's best archers converge on Tlaxcala, Mexico for the 2022 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final.
Six-time circuit winner Lopez and five-time winner Ellison will be there.
Individual champions: Medellin 2022
- Recurve men: Kim Woojin, Korea
- Recurve women: An San, Korea
- Compound men: James Lutz, United States of America
- Compound women: Ella Gibson, Great Britain
Team champions: Medellin 2022
- Recurve men: Korea (Kim Je Deok, Kim Woojin, Oh Jin Hyek)
- Recurve women: Korea (An San, Kang Chae Young, Lee Gahyun)
- Recurve mixed: Chinese Taipei (Lei Chien-Ying, Tang Chih-Chun)
- Compound men: France (Adrien Gontier, Jean Philippe Boulch, Nicolas Girard)
- Compound women: Colombia (Sara Lopez, Maria Valentina Suarez, Alejandra Usquiano)
Compound mixed: Denmark (Tanja Gellenthien, Mathias Fullerton)
Medal table: Medellin 2022
- Korea: 7 (4 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze)
- United States of America: 4 (1 gold, 2 silver, 1 bronze)
- Great Britain: 3 (1 gold, 2 silver)
- Colombia: 3 (1 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze)
- France: 2 (1 gold, 1 bronze)
- Chinese Taipei: 1 (1 gold)
= Denmark: 1 (1 gold)
- (No 7th place due to equal 6th)
- Mexico: 3 (2 silver, 1 bronze)
- Spain: 2 (1 silver, 1 bronze)
- Italy: 1 (1 silver)
- Netherlands: 1 (1 bronze)
= Germany: 1 (1 bronze)
= Brazil: 1 (1 bronze)
Athletes representing 13 countries collected 30 medals across 10 events in Medellin.