Nimes 2016: 10 Things you Need to Know
In Nimes in 2015, we were treated to a masterclass in 18-metre indoor archery by the man now known as Mister Perfect, the Netherland’s Mike Schloesser, who posted the first perfect 600 ranking round in competition in history. This year’s event has much to live up to!
Here’s 10 things you need to know before the tournament begins…
1. Parity in the rankings
Talking of Schloesser, he was the only archer to record solid points at each of the first two stages of this season’s Indoor Archery World Cup tour – in Marrakesh then Bangkok. He leads the compound men’s ranking by three over Stephan Hansen, who won in Morocco but only picked up a point in Thailand.
All the other divisions are drawn for the top spot.
Read the full rankings
2. (Two) Names to watch
A previous Vegas Champion and World Archery Champion, Canada’s Christopher Perkins headlines a shortlist of pros that stand out from the Nimes entry list. Longtime international para archer Alberto Simonelli, of Italy, has been posting huge qualification totals indoors recently.
3. Nothing to do with archery…
Nimes is famous for its phenomenally-well preserved Roman ampitheatre, dating back to AD 70 (and remodelled a little some 1800 years later.) If you’re visiting, well-worth checking it out – and if you’re not, then put it on your list for next year!
4. High cuts
The top-32 cuts to make the eliminations in Nimes in 2015 were the highest to date. The recurve men needed 577, women 566, and compounders 589 and 570, respectively. Will this be the year no sub-90 compound man gets to go head-to-head?
5. Korean women
Celine Schobinger was the last recurve woman not from Korea to take gold at the Indoor Archery World Cup stage in Nimes, back in 2013.
Last year it was an all-Kim, Kim (Min Jung) versus Kim (Eun Jung), final, which the former won. This time around, though, there’s a much smaller contingent from the Asian nation, probably because most of the top archers are focused on the season’s big prize. (That event in Brazil with the rings.)
If there’s ever a year to reclaim your tournament, French (or European) recurve women, it’s this year.
6. Same faces, new gear
The turn of a new year is typically the time for top archers to make any changes to the equipment they use in good time for the end of the indoor season and start of the new outdoor. Among those that switched for 2016 were Reo Wilde, Crystal Gauvin, Martin Damsbo, Peter Elzinga…
…and maybe we’ll spot a few more we didn’t know about during the weekend.
4. WATCH AND FOLLOW LIVE
We’ll have the finals from Nimes, both compound and recurve, live on Archery TV on the afternoon of Sunday 17 January 2016. Tune in!
8. The Latvian double
There’s only one archer shooting from Latvia – but two spaces on the target list. Julia Oleksejenko’s shooting in both the recurve and the compound competition, in consecutive sessions. She did the same thing at the Berlin Open and came second with her compound!
9. Big Prediction
PJ Deloche’s last big event was Copenhagen – and the World Archery Championships. Despite having a solid outdoor Archery World Cup ranking at that stage in the season, he took a break.
Back on home turf in Nimes, with a French crowd that typically adores the 33-year-old from Valence, Deloche is a strong bet to make his first tournament of 2016 a good one.
10. Another 600’s not likely…
…But, oh my, wouldn’t it be fantastic, incredible and beautifully poetic if Mike, or anybody else up to the challenge, posted only the world’s second 600-round at the same tournament as the first, one year later!
It’s actually been two years in a row that a huge record has been set at the indoor tournament in the south of France. The compound women’s world record stands at 595 since Erika Jones shot the score there in 2014, when it was hosting the World Archery Indoor Championships instead of the Indoor World Cup stage.
So, ladies and gentlemen, let’s make it three in a row. Who’s setting this year’s big world best?