Lausanne, Jan 20, 2014: Danish compound archer Martin DAMSBO won the 2013 World Cup Final in Paris before a team title at the World Championships and starting strong this indoor season. Voters decided it was a year worthy of World Archery’s 2013 Male Athlete of the Year title!
The Athlete of the Year award expanded in 2013 to include both a male and female award (previously there has been just one winner), with seven archers shortlisted as finalists in each category. Erika JONES won the women’s title, as announced last week.
The online votes of over 12,000 archery fans were averaged with those of members of World Archery’s Athletes and Coaches Committees to decide the final rankings below.
Your World Archery Male Athlete of the Year 2013 winner and finalists:
1) Martin DAMSBO (DEN) – 27% (public: 35%, committee: 19%)
Last year might have been Martin DAMSBO’s most consistent since he became a fixture on the international circuit back in 2004. The Danish compound archer made the final four in each of the first three World Cup stages this season, before storming to gold at his third World Cup Final. Leading the Danish compound team to a world title in Belek, and dominating the Berlin Open to finish the year, solidified DAMSBO’s claim on this honour – and indicated his top form will continue into 2014.
2) Mike SCHLOESSER (NED) – 26% (public: 41%, committee: 10%)
Twenty-year-old SCHLOESSER’s first international podium was a big one. He was the high-est compound scorer in every eliminations stage at the 2013 World Archery Championships before beating experienced French archer PJ DELOCHE by five points in the gold medal match in Belek. A new fan favourite? SCHLOESSER had 41% of the archery public’s vote for Athlete of the Year!
3) Reo WILDE (USA) – 15% (public: 13%, committee: 18%)
Although not quite as phenomenal as his record-setting 2012 (three World Cup stage wins in a row and six individual golds – and a silver – out of seven international tournaments), Reo WILDE added a seventh career World Cup stage win in Medellin last season. Partnered with World Archery’s Female Athlete of the Year for 2013, Erika JONES, the States com-pound archer also picked up the World Games mixed team title.
4) OH Jin Hyek (KOR) – 15% (public: 1%, committee: 28%)
Since getting over the gold medal hump at London 2012 (of all places), OH has found re-climbing the podium steps a great deal easier! He did it at the Shanghai World Cup stage to start the year, then in Turkey, then in Paris at the World Cup Final. Korea’s leading recurve man was not able to complete the triple (Olympics – World Cup Final – Worlds), as although he won mixed team gold with KI Bo Bae at the World Championships in Belek, the individual title evaded him…
5) LEE Seungyun (KOR) – 9% (public: 0%, committee: 18%)
…when new Korean face LEE Seungyun beat OH in the Belek recurve gold medal match. LEE, in his first international season, never finished out of the top eight in competition. As well as his world title, he qualified for the World Cup Final courtesy of an individual gold medal at the fourth World Cup stage of the year in Wroclaw. Definitely one to watch.
6) John STUBBS (GBR) – 4% (public: 4%, committee: 4%)
The two golds and a silver STUBBS collected helped Great Britain to seven-medal haul at the World Para-Archery Championships in 2013. He took the individual compound open title, improving on his silver from 2011, team compound title and won the mixed team silver with double Paralympic champion partner Danielle BROWN. No para-archer had a better time in Bangkok!
7) Jean Charles VALLADONT (FRA) – 4% (public: 5%, committee: 3%)
Reigning World Field Archery Champion from 2012, Jean Charles VALLADONT competed with a vengeance in the two Indoor Archery World Cup legs of this season in 2013. Second in Marrakesh and winner in Singapore, the recurve archer has been on a roll since his emotional last arrow in Belek. At the World Archery Championships, as well as finishing fifth individually, VALLADONT and French teammate FAUCHERON both shot 10s in the last end of their bronze medal match against Korea to claim the medal by a single point. —- WA