Bauer, Wieser win Germany’s first-ever mixed team gold

Katharina Bauer and Felix Wieser celebrate Germany’s first mixed team win.

Katharina Bauer and Felix Wieser won Germany’s first-ever recurve mixed team gold medal on the Hyundai Archery World Cup circuit with a four-set win over US Olympians Brady Ellison and Casey Kaufhold at this year’s second stage in Gwangju, Korea.

“It feels awesome. We are really happy,” said Bauer. “We are such a good team. We also practice together at home so winning it with Felix feels like a little dream coming true.”

On a morning in which Korea looked traditionally dominant, the German duo produced the lone alternative anthem.

In fact, Korea didn’t make the medal matches in the mixed team event, having lost to the Netherlands in straight sets in the quarterfinals earlier in the week. The Dutch duo were then eliminated by the USA while Germany, the second-seeded mixed team in Gwangju, cruised through its matches on the opposite side of the brackets.

It set up probably the most exciting final on recurve Sunday in Korea.

The German pair trailed Ellison and Kaufhold, 3-1, after two sets – as the US archers looked to be getting comfortable in the windy conditions. But that impression didn’t last long.

A nine average wouldn’t do it as Bauer and Wieser stormed through, shooting back-to-back sets of 38 points (two down) to win, 5-3.

The German pair shot two 10s with their last two arrows and stood, watching, as their opponents needed to match them to force a tiebreak and maintain any chance of winning the match. Ellison and Kaufhold finished with two nines.

“It was an interesting feeling,” explained Wieser about watching those closing shots. “We had to keep calm and when Brady shot his nine we [knew] we did it. It was difficult to keep calm, focused and stay a good sportsman.”

For Bauer, her first gold medal on the circuit comes just weeks ahead of the European Archery Championships, which are being held in Munich in June.

“It’s definitely a boost of confidence,” she said. “We are really looking forward to the European Championships… it’s our home event.”

This medal caps a phenomenal start to the international season for an ascendant German squad.

At the season opener in Antalya, Germany won compound women’s team gold, recurve women’s team silver and put two recurve women into the individual final four, with Bauer collecting bronze.

She then added a further two medals in Gwangju as the German recurve women took a second straight silver medal – and she and Wieser secured this historic mixed team win.

All signs point towards an exciting home Europeans next month – and, looking further ahead, an intriguing home world championships in 2023.

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