GB archers pursue glory in Tokyo
With fewer than 100 days to go, the countdown is on to the Tokyo Games. By the end of April, our Olympic and Paralympic archery teams will be announced!
After a year that has presented challenges for many, thousands will be looking forward to one of the most spectacular global sporting events that attracts a potential audience of 3.2 billion*.
At the end of April, we are set to see the Archery GB Olympic and Paralympic teams announced.
Olympic team hopefuls
The women’s Olympic team is already nominated to the BOA for selection for the Tokyo Games following the World Championship bronze medal won by Sarah Bettles, Naomi Folkard and Bryony Pitman. A travelling reserve women’s team member will be confirmed once a selection process has been completed.
Six male archers took part in a Selection Shoot this month at the prestigious St George’s Park – home of the English Football Association – at Burton upon Trent. Those involved were Tom Barber, Alex Wise, Patrick Huston, Keith Harding and James Woodgate. The leading three men at the end of the process will be nominated to the BOA for selection to the Tokyo Games and the fourth placed man nominated as the travelling reserve athlete.
Paralympic team hopefuls
Archery is a naturally inclusive sport given its nature, and we have strong Paralympic contenders: Jess Stretton MBE, Nathan MacQueen, John Stubbs MBE, Jodie Grinham, Hazel Chaisty, Tania Nadarajah and Dave Phillips. Having secured five Paralympic places at the World Para-archery Championships in 2019, the team has further opportunities to secure more Paralympic places at the Final Qualifying Tournament in July 2021.
Jess won gold at Rio in 2016 in the Women’s Individual Compound W1 at the age of 16. The following year she was made an MBE for services to archery and she is the highest profile para-archer thanks to her incredible accomplishments in the sport.
Jess Stretton MBE won her first gold at Rio aged just 16
Commenting on the prospects for the squad at the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics this summer, Neil Armitage, CEO at Archery GB, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to bring archery into the homes of the UK TV audience and we know that our athletes representing Team GB will bring home respect and admiration for archery as a sport as well as their own personal glory, whatever the final medal count.
“We have three Team GB representatives in the top 60 world archers – Naomi Folkard, Bryony Pitman and Sarah Bettles – and as we all know in any world class competition, but particularly archery, the margins for success are minuscule and anything can happen on the day. It will be Naomi’s fifth Olympics and a new life-changing experience for both Bryony and Sarah. The mixed team competition is new to the Olympics and it will be very exciting to see the concentration and skill of our teams showcased on the Olympic stage.
“We are enormously proud of our whole Performance Archery squad and are excited to see their journey from formal squad selection through to competition in Tokyo. We will be celebrating their achievements in bringing archery to the attention of sports fans across the UK.”
The Archery GB Olympic and Paralympic teams will be confirmed by the end of April.
- Main image: A selection of Tokyo Olympics-hopefuls, from left to right: Alex Wise, Sarah Bettles, Tom Barber, Louisa Piper, Tom Hall, Naomi Folkard, Patrick Huston, Bryony Pitman; and two Paralympic-hopefuls: Nathan MacQueen and Jodie Grinham.
- *3.2 billion worldwide watched the summer Olympics at Rio de Janeiro in 2016