Casey Kaufhold and Kim Woojin lay down Olympic markers on Paris venue
A thrilling recurve women’s final between the two left-handers went down to the wire, with the US archer responding to losing the first set by taking the next two with scores of 28 and 29.
Roared on by a raucous Parisian crowd, Barbelin levelled matters in the fourth to set up a decider, in which Kaufhold came out on top 29-27 to seal a 6-4 victory.
“It’s kind of crazy and very emotional for me,” the 19-year-old said. “It was one of the loudest matches I’ve ever shot in.”
“It was a great match, it was cool to hear everyone cheering for her and she shot really well. It was a great day of archery overall.”
Kaufhold’s success came on a finals day doubling up as an official Olympic test event, which the American hopes will prove a good omen come next summer.
“It feels really good to have won gold on this stage, knowing Olympics will be here next year,” she added.
Kim Woojin became the first Korean man to win a recurve men’s individual World Cup gold this season in the very last match of the day, which ended the race for tickets to September’s Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in Mexico.
“To win individual feels really good and I’m hoping to keep my Paris streak going into next year,” she said.
Choi’s first World Cup medal of the season is not enough to qualify her for the Final in Hermosillo, however, as Lim Sihyeon and Kang Chae Young will be the Korean representatives in the recurve women’s individual competition.
Lim qualifies as a stage winner, with Kang’s points total superior to Choi’s across the campaign.
Kim Woojin will be part of Korea’s line-up in Mexico after winning recurve men’s gold, with Lee Woo Seok also joining the end-of-season highlight on points.
The 2022 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final winner, ensured he will be present to defend his crown by beating compatriot Lee in straight sets in the gold medal match.
After taking the opener, a perfect 30 was enough for Kim to stretch his lead in the second set.
Needing a 10 with his final shot in the third, he just about managed it with an arrow which needed a lengthy review before being adjudged within the line to seal the victory with two sets to spare.
“It was a lucky day for me,” Kim said. “I shot many on the line, but I am really satisfied with the result.”
“I haven’t shown perfect matches throughout this season so I was a bit disappointed, but for this match I showed everything.”
“I will give it my best, and if I keep doing this, I will be on top again at the Olympics in Paris next year.”
Lee will join his fellow Korean in Hermosillo, as will Marcus D’Almeida, who won bronze in Paris.
D’Almeida’s Final spot was already secure through his stage victory in Shanghai and having been beaten by Lee in his semifinal in Paris, the Brazilian beat Mauro Nespoli in a shoot-off for the final place on the podium.
Nespoli, competing in his 50th career World Cup stage, started and ended with 30s to make it 5-5 after five sets but could only find a nine in the tie-break, with D’Almeida picking out the 10 to secure bronze.
The recurve finals session closed competition in Paris.