The Archery GB TRUBall Axcel Back2Back has finished for another year, naming the new champions for 2022.
After two rounds of group head-to-head matches, the top six athletes in each category moved onto the live shoot down finals.
Whereas the first two rounds were four-end matches with a total of 120 points up for grabs, the finals had the archers shooting on five-spot faces with 11 zone scoring. With each end, the lowest scoring athlete was knocked out of the competition.
The final six recurve women were Gaby Schloesser, Penny Healey, Bryony Pitman, Jaspreet Sagoo, Malgorzata Sobieraj and Louisa Piper.
Louisa made it to the final three, but a 46 was not enough to stay in the running for first place, and she took home the bronze medal.
The last two women were Gaby, the world ranked number eight, and Penny, the 2021 Indoor World Series champion. These women were also the final two of the recurve women’s final last year, with Gaby being the victor. Both athletes shot a 51 each, but it was Penny who was able to use this rematch to her advantage, winning the gold by shooting the closest to the centre.
“It feels amazing. That's the first time that I've actually beaten Gaby in the shootdown. My new technique and new mental routine are working for me. I realised that I wasn’t being on my front arm and with my release, so it seems to have worked,” Penny said.
The archers making up the last six for the recurve men were James Woodgate, Conor Hall, Alex Wise, Sum Hin Moses Cheung, Monty Orton and Roger Castillo-Alquezar.
Last year’s runner up, Alex, just missed out on being one of the final two men this time around. He shot a 48 to the pair of 50s shot by Monty and Moses, earning him the bronze.
Monty, this year’s under 21 European champion, shot a 46 to finish the finals. However, the National Tour Final bronze medallist Moses shot a 47, besting Monty to the top podium spot.
“This time we had five spots for the Back2Back. It's very stressful, but I found it a very interesting format and I really like it. I hope when we come back next year they keep the five spot,” Moses said.
The final six compound women were Ella Gibson, Sarah Prieels, Bayley Rose Sargeant Buden, Hallie Boulton, Phoebe Paterson Pine and Grace Chappell.
Taking home the bronze was Bayley, who narrowly missed out on making the top two with a 52-point finish.
Going for that coveted gold medal were Ella, the world ranked number one, and Sarah, the world ranked number seven. Sarah finished her day with a very strong 54-point end, however a clean 55 from Ella earned her first place.
“It always feels great to finish the shoot winning. Every shoot you have to just take as the start of something new. I still got super nervous right at the end, so it's always a challenge. It's never given, it’s never easy. So I’m really happy, proud and thankful to win again today,” Ella said.
For the compound men, the six finalists were Mike Schloesser, Domagoj Buden, Kai Thomas-Prause, Adam Ravenscroft, Chris White and Ajay Scott.
National Tour Final silver medallist Kai earned himself the bronze medal, closely missing out on a place in the last two by shooting a 53 to his opponents’ 54s.
Going for gold was last year’s champion and the world ranked number one, Mike Scholesser, versus nineteen-year-old Ajay Scott. Mike shot a 54 end against Ajay’s 53, to retain his title for a second year running.
“I'm very happy. I'm happy that I shot today, and I shot some good matches. I love coming back, it’s a brilliant tournament. The people are nice, the environment is really nice,” Mike told us.
All the scores from the event can be found here.