Koreans set two new qualification world records in Nanjing, including huge 704
“Everything just came together, I guess,” LEE Woo Seok said after learning he’d broken the previous recurve cadet men’s world mark by 18 points. “I don’t really know what happened.”
The first-time international is currently a student at high school in Korea, where archery athletes shoot the full men’s 1440 round: at 90, 70, 50 and 30 metres. This is the first time he’s really shot 60 metres in competition.
“I’m enjoying it,” the young man said with a huge grin.
His massive 704-point total was 16 ahead of India’s Verma ATUL. Marcus DALMEIDA, the Brazilian flag bearer at these Youth Olympic Games who will shoot at this year’s Archery World Cup Final, landed the third seed with 683 for his 72-arrows.Nanjing 2014 21-26 August
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France’s Thomas KOENIG shot a personal best for competition with 679. “I’ve never shot 680 and that’s what I was aiming for,” he explained. “One point off is pretty good.”
Of his Korean opponent’s shooting, Thomas was nothing by complementary: “It was super impressive,” KOENIG said, talking about the arrow grouping LEE was drilling into the target end after end. “The conditions here are good and the atmosphere is ace. I can really feel that it is an Olympics.”
Korean archer LEE’s 681 total for 72 arrows was a world record by five points.
She conceded that while her shooting was okay, she wanted more. While Eun Gyeong is used to shooting 60 metres as part of the women’s 1440 round, it’s a distance she doesn’t feel her best at.
“I feel very strong at 70 metres,” she said. “But not at 60, so it was a little difficult.”
More than anything, LEE is enjoying being part of the atmosphere of these Youth Olympics. Although, it is touching when she admits: “I’d really like to speak with some of the other archers, but I don’t speak any English so it’s nearly impossible.”
After a very poor first 36 arrows that ranked her just 28th in the field, Regina ROMERO recovered to 19th position by the end of qualification. The Guatemalan is expected to do well in Nanjing after finishing fourth at the last world championships.
“It was all nerves,” she explained. “I sat myself down at halfway and just said: ‘come on, you can do this’.”
ROMERO’s strength, she said, comes in head-to-heads, where she can focus on just three arrows and winning matches one set at a time. Working on her qualification game can wait, because individual eliminations start tomorrow in Nanjing – with the first mixed team matches scheduled for this afternoon.