Two-time para world champion Kevin Evans retires

Kevin Evans aiming.

Canada’s Kevin Evans has officially announced his retirement from the sport.

The 61-year-old was most notably known for winning gold in the World Archery Para Championships in Cheongju 2007 and in Nymburk 2009 and the Guadalajara 2022 Para Pan American Games in the compound men’s category.

I’m getting older, younger archers are coming in. And it’s just time, Evans told Archery Canada when asked why he’s made the decision to retire. I have grandkids now and I want to devote time to them too.

I had a couple of injuries that kind of set me back, and it became a struggle to be fit and ready to compete and those things.

A guy can always run middle of the pack, but if you know deep down, there’s no hope to win a medal, what’s the sense?

The former compound archer however isn’t leaving the sport entirely as he is set to begin work as a development coach for Canada at the upcoming 2024 Pan American Para Championships in Sao Paulo.

Evans, who has coached both able-bodied and para archers at local clubs near his home in Kootenay, British Columbia, explained why helping the next generation of Canadian archers is so important to him.

One of my hopes was more so for recruitment, but in Canada, that seems to have been one of our hurdles.

I think that’s why I stayed as long as I did – because we didn’t really have anybody really coming up in the ranks to take our place.

I didn’t want to see all our work go to waste. The biggest part for me was to still be some sort of support to the para team, and so for Brazil, I’m there to be the chauffeur, guinea pig, whatever they need.

Kevin Evans aiming.

Canada only have at least three athletes heading to Paris this summer. They managed to gain just one quota (one compound man) for the upcoming Paris 2024 Paralympic Games and so far two quotas (one man, one woman) for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Looking back on his illustrious career that featured three Paralympic Games, Evans revealed his most proud moments weren’t winning the sport’s biggest competitions individually but participating them with like-minded people.

One of those people was former teammate Bob Hudson.

We were both in Italy [for the Turin 2011 World Archery Para Championships] and that was our first world championships, and I remember telling him ‘We’ll be on the podium one day’, and the very next time for worlds, we were, and that was a pretty special moment to me.

Winning a gold was pretty special too, but being there with a good friend and knowing what he had gone through with his disability, and then making the podium together was pretty special, Evans added.

Winning an individual medal is a special moment too, but the ones that I’m the most proud of are the team ones.

He may not be on the cameras as much now but should Evans fully pursue a coaching career, his selflessness and wisdom mean Canadian archery lies in good hands in years to come.

Career highlights: Kevin Evans

  • 2007: World Archery Para Champion, mixed team bronze
  • 2008: Hyundai Archery World Cup Stage 4 men’s team bronze (able-bodied) 
  • 2007: World Archery Para Champion
  • 2011: Para Pan American Games Champion
  • 2016: Para Pan American Championships individual silver, men’s team silver
  • 2018: Para Pan American Championships mixed team silver

Paralympic Games: 2008, 2012, 2016
World Archery Para Championships: 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017, 2019, 2022
Para Pan American Games: 2011, 2015

Member Associations