Mike Schloesser was the most accurate he’s ever been in 2022
He’s gone on to win three of those seven events – plus taken the title at three consecutive editions of the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final dating back to 2019 (and four in his career).
This past season was, again, a great season for the 28-year-old Dutch pro…
…and it might have been his best yet.
Schloesser set statistical career highs for scoring power (9.88 points per arrow) and win rate (90%) though six appearances at continental and world championships in 2022.
“We were very fortunate with the weather,” he says. “I had one of my better years for sure and with the weather, it was a good combo.”
Through qualification and matchplay, Mister Perfect has averaged at least 9.83 points per arrow in every season since 2017. That scoring power translates to just under 708 points on a 72-arrow qualifying round.
This season, his rate of 9.88 translated to more than 711.
“I was strong in the mental part, especially in the beginning of the season, and that helps in the short 15-arrow matches,” explains Mike.
There’s still one statistic that doesn’t match up – tiebreaks.
Over his decade-plus international career, the 28-year-old world number one has just a 33% win rate when a match comes down to a single-arrow shoot-off.
Since 2017, which is the only season in which he won more tiebreaks than he lost (three wins, two losses), he’s 4-7 in extra time.
And this year, he faced the most single-shot deciders of his career – six – going an even three wins, three losses.
“A shoot-off is sometimes a coin flip. I shot two of those shoot-offs very well but my opponent shot a better arrow and you can’t complain about it,” says Mike.
“And I definitely have the feeling that sometimes the best in people comes out when they shoot against me.”
And why shouldn’t that be the case?
Against the reigning world number one, there’s nothing to lose. Invariably the top seed, he’s invariably the favourite – and he’s been in that position for so long now. Fall short in matchplay, it’s expected; win and cause the upset, it’s simply a bonus.
“Sometimes I feel like I shoot have a better statistic because I often lose these shoot-offs with a very good arrow,” Schloesser adds.
Mister Perfect might like to credit his statistical highs to the weather, at least partly, but unless conditions have been improving year-in, year-out since 2017, there’s certainly more at play.
He’s not just kept his international scoring power at 9.83 or above over the past six years, he’s improved it each and every year.
After 9.83 points per shot in 2017, his average arrow sat at a consistent 9.85 in 2018 and 2019. And then in the post-pandemic season, it edged up to 9.86. Now, this year, to 9.88 – already an all-time record.
Breaking 9.90 would be stratospheric.
“I had a really good season,” Schloesser said after winning that fourth Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in Tlaxcala. “This is the cherry on top.”
Next year, 2023, will mark the 10th anniversary of Schloesser’s win at the world championships. (Which came in Belek, Turkey in 2013.)
A decade on, he remains the gold standard in compound archery.