Bauer takes triple gold as Germany impresses at World Cup warm-up

Katharina Bauer after winning in Antalya.

Katharina Bauer won a trio of gold medals and Florian Unruh took the recurve men’s title to push Germany to the top of the medal table and cap an impressive campaign at Europe’s first world ranking event of the season, the Spring Arrows tournament in Antalya, Turkey.

“A win is always nice and it’s so early in the season,” said recurve women’s winner Bauer. “It shows me that my process over the winter was good so I’m really, really happy.”

The 28-year-old looked confident in the arena as she beat the home nation’s Gulnaz Coskun, 7-1, in the final.

“Inside I wasn’t actually that calm,” she said. “I wanted to focus on my technique, on the points I worked on in my training. It doesn’t matter where I stand, in an arena or not, I just focus on my shot.”

Bauer’s other two gold medals in Antalya came in the recurve women’s team event, where Germany beat France (6-2) in the final, and the recurve mixed team competition. Paired with Nico Schiffhauer, Bauer was the deciding factor in a tense clash with Turkey’s Ezgi Basaran and Mete Gazoz.

Having built an early lead, some wayward arrows from Schiffhauer let the Turkish duo force a shoot-off. Bauer’s second arrow put the tiebreak out of reach and Germany took gold, 19-17.

The compound events this week in Antalya, which only featured archers from Turkey competing for individual honours, were won by Batuhan Akcaoglu and Yesim Bostan.

Olympic gold medallist and homegrown star Gazoz left the event without a gold, despite competing in three events and looking like the favourite after taking the top individual seed after qualifying on Thursday.

The world number two went out at the first hurdle in the recurve men’s competition, losing to Nicholas D’Amour, 6-2, after seemingly struggling in the first set and shooting a three. His Turkish recurve men’s team later lost their bronze medal match against Germany, 6-0.

D’Amour would subsequently make the recurve men’s final, but lose to Unruh, 7-3.

“I was a bit lucky with the second one but it was nice to end it like that,” said Unruh when asked about the perfect 30 he shot to wrap up the event. “I just wanted to shoot good shots and just see where they go. Now, I’m pretty confident for the next tournaments, we will see.”

The next event is the season-opening stage of the Hyundai Archery World Cup, which will take place on this very same field in just one week. The German team is staying in Antalya to train during the gap and through the event – and should be one of the teams to watch, if the performance of the past week is any indication of the squad’s form entering 2022.

Photos courtesy Saygin Akinci. Quotes courtesy Oyku Ergec.

Champions: Spring Arrows 2022

Medal table: Spring Arrows 2022

1. GER flag Germany: 5 (4 gold, 1 bronze)
2. TUR flag Turkey: 9 (2 gold, 4 silver, 3 bronze)
3. SLO flag Slovenia: 3 (1 gold, 2 bronze)

Athletes representing seven countries collected the 21 medals (seven gold, silver and bronze) available in Antalya. No team events were held for compound archers.