Vegas 2018: Schedule, favourites and tournament preview

It’s yet another record-setting year for The Vegas Shoot, with the world’s largest indoor tournament topping 3500 entries for the first time in its existence. The event has doubled in size over the past five years – and shows no sign of slowing down.

It’s a big event, too. As well as being its own namesake tournament, The Vegas Shoot hosts the last stage of the Indoor Archery World Cup over its first two days and the circuit final after day two.

We’ll focus on the tour here, but the organisers at the USA’s National Field Archery Association have published a beginners’ guide to The Vegas Shoot that you might want to read.


8 February: Practice

9 February: Qualification day 1, Indoor Archery World Cup stage day 1

10 February: Qualification day 2, Indoor Archery World Cup stage day 2 and Indoor Archery World Cup Final

11 February: Qualification day 3, Vegas Shootdowns

Each day of qualification consists of 30 arrows. Archers shoot each day.

Tournament preview

Over 3500 competitors: Olympic and world champions, world-class athletes, kids in the schools programme, and recreational and competitive archers from around the globe. There’s some major differences between this event and most others.

Championship archers shoot a triangle tri-spot, while amateurs can choose this or a single face. 

Compounds score recurve 10s, but still record Xs, because that’s what’s used to put together their score for the stage of the Indoor Archery World Cup over the first two days.

The journey from qualified for the final, through top 16 to semifinal eliminations and then the gold medal matches takes all of four hours…

…and in terms of The Vegas Shoot’s main event: In 2015, 15 archers shot perfect scores in the men’s championship, in 2016 it was five – and then in 2017 it was 15 in the updated open category.

One day, there’s going to be over 20 perfect scores; is that day 11 February 2018?


Individual winners of the Indoor Archery World Cup Final: Paige Pearce-Gore, Braden Gellenthien, Jin Yun and Brady Ellison.

I’m predicting a strong US showing this time around. Brady medalled in Nimes and won Lancaster; Gellenthien has a chance to be world cup champ indoor and out; and Paige is having a season.

Kim Surin and Sim Yeji have done the one-two at the last two indoor stages – so what about it being teammate Jin Yun’s turn?

Vegas Shoot open champion: Kris Schaff, Paul Tedford or Stephan Hansen.

Picking one winner from a field of so many talented championship contenders is a fool’s errand – so here’s three.

Schaff’s emergence over the past year has been impressive. He won Nimes, took medals at major world outdoor stages and said recently that he’s “finally broken over that little hump”.

Teford won Lancaster and has been there or thereabouts for a while – and Hansen, who only just lost out in 2017, is a headhunter for titles that he hasn’t yet claimed (and there aren’t many).

None of these three have won before. 

– Chris

The fourth stage and final of the 2017/2018 Indoor Archery World Cup season takes place in Las Vegas, USA on 9-10 February; The Vegas Shoot concludes on 11 February.