Colombian world #2 Sara Lopez tops Pan American Championship qualifying in Medellin

16 August 2018
Medellin (COL)
Matt Sullivan, Brady Ellison and Alejandra Valencia also took top seeds.

Colombian compound woman and world number two Sara Lopez scored 701 out of a possible 720 points for the 72-arrow 50-metre qualification to rank first at the 2018 Pan American Championships in Medellin, Colombia, which also acts as the main qualification tournament for the Lima 2019 Pan American Games.

“It’s not bad but I know I can shoot better than that. I’m still happy because I helped my team to have a good qualification and also the mixed team,” said Lopez.

Colombia’s compound women seeded first thanks to Sara and second-seeded Nora Valdez’ 698. Lopez with Camilo Cardona ranked third in the pairs event.

“It’s great to have good scores together, it shows how good we are as a team and I’m happy for [Nora] because she shot her personal best today. We know what we can do together and it’s a great way to increase our confidence,” said Sara.

The USA’s Matt Sullivan and Kris Schaff tied atop the compound men’s field on 711 points, but Sullivan took pole on 10-count.

Alejandra Valencia and Brady Ellison, who said before the competition started that he’d have to work hard to win in Medellin, were the top seeded recurve archers. Valencia scored 660 points, Ellison 692.

“I was a little slow out of the gate, the first couple of ends, I had a lot of control. I think I ranked number one which is good, it sets up good for the rest of the week,” said Ellison.

“Hopefully I can just continue to maintain the control I had today through the eliminations and team rounds and stuff and hopefully we can win some medals.”

The 2018 Pan American Championships act as the primary qualification tournament for the Lima 2019 Pan American Games. A total of 62 places, 46 recurve and 16 compound, will be awarded by the end of the event.

As well as including competition for the senior categories, para, youth and masters athletes are competing in Medellin.

Timothy Palumbo, Fabiola Dergovics, Ben Thompson, Karen van Nest and Helcio Gomes ranked first in the para categories. 

Among the youth results was a new world record, subject to ratification, for Mexico’s recurve cadet mixed team. Valentina Vazquez and Carlos Vaca scored 1346 out of a possible 1440 points for the combined 72-arrow 60-metre ranking round to break the previous record by 94.

The 2018 Pan American and Para Pan American Championships take place on 14-19 August in Medellin, Colombia.