2011 Archery World Cup, Stage 3

World-Cup-Finals-063_small.jpg

We just got home from Ogden Utah where we hosted the 2011 Archery World Cup, Stage 3. This was our second time running the event, but it was just as exciting as last year. Our work started with setting up the qualification and practice fields. Lines must be drawn on the field, targets setup, banners hung, sound systems checked, and much more. As athletes arrive at the Salt Lake City Airport they were greeted with small care packages filled with snacks and welcoming smiles from the volunteers. Our host hotel, the Marriott, was soon bustling with activity with teams checking in, event staff giving out credentials, and buses shuttling archers to and from the practice field.

Soon competition was underway! The recurve archers shot 70 meters while compound shot at 50 meters. The archers shoot a qualification round, team round, mixed team round, and Olympic Round. The final matches would be saved for later at the finals venue at Lindquist Field.

It’s amazing to have so many top level, international archers in one place. The atmosphere of the competition is serious, but also fun. Archers are here to win. However, smiles and laughter are common as friends from different countries re-unite. This sense of community with the archers really impressed me. Archery is the type of sport where competitors share their back-up equipment when another archer loses theirs to the airlines, and where friendships connect all across the globe and facebook.

The finals were held at Lindquist Field. Just before these matches, the qualification field had to be taken down and that equipment brought over to Lindquist for the finals. It is an exciting rush to get all of it setup in time. Two perfect targets are setup with a giant arch behind them, the World Archery media and scoring officials assemble their equipment in the dugouts, and vendors line the walkways leading to the stands. Soon spectators begin filling the stadium and anticipation for the matches builds. Prizes are tossed to the excited fans as the matches get underway. In the end, Team USA was extremely successful, taking home ten medals in front of a home crowd.