South London News
London 2012 Olympics Guide - Part 1: Archery
It is now more than four years since Jacques Rogge, the president of the International Olympic Committee, announced London as the host for the 2012 Olympic Games, beating off rival bids from Paris, Madrid, Moscow and New York.
Winning the Games was just the start of it, though. And the organisers of London 2012, headed by Lord Sebastian Coe, have been, are, and will be, working around the clock to make sure everything is in place when it all gets underway on August 12, 2012.
In the countdown to the London Olympics, worklifelive.com will be providing a guide to all the Olympic sports - a monthly feature to include a bit of history, Britain's previous record in that particular sport, the leading British hopefuls, and how to get involved if you fancy taking up the sport yourself.
This month we feature one of the oldest of all sports: Archery...
ARCHERY at the London 2012 Olympic Games, will be held at the Lords cricket ground. The tournament will take place over five days during the first week of the Games, and will involve men's and women's individual and team competitions.
In the modern era - since 1972, when archery returned to the Olympics - the Koreans have won 29 medals: 17 gold, 8 silver, and 4 bronze. Britain won four medals in that time: all of them bronze medals - at Seoul, Barcelona (2) and Athens.
It was at the second modern Olympics - in Paris, 1900 - that archery made its first appearance. It was included again four years later at St Louis, in the United States, though there was no international flavour to this tournament - the competitors were all American!
Again, in London in 1908, archery was part of the Olympic schedule, but failed to feature in Stockholm in 1912, re-appearing eight years later, in Antwerp. But that was to be the last archery tournament at an Olympic Games for 52 years.
It was not until Munich 1972 that archery again featured as an Olympic sport, and has been there ever since. Between 1972 and 1984, archery at the Olympics was restricted to a men's and women's individual competition.
But at Seoul in 1988, the team competition was added, and four years later, in Barcelona, the Olympic Round - with head-to-head matches on a knock-out basis - was adopted, and has been used ever since. The idea of this was to make it more of a spectacle for television viewers, and it has paid dividends, with some gripping and tense matches making for terrific viewing.
British Olympic archery medal winners:
• 1908 (London): Gold: William Dod, Queenie Newall. Silver: Reginald Brooks-King, Lottie Dod. Bronze: Beatrice Hill-Lowe.
• 1988 (Seoul): Men‚s team bronze ˆ Steven Hallard, Richard Priestman, Leroy Watson
• 1992 (Barcelona): Men‚s individual bronze ˆ Simon Terry. Men‚s team bronze - Terry, Hallard, Priestman
• 2004: (Athens): Women‚s individual bronze ˆ Alison Williamson
British archery has a proud Paralympic record:
Team GB has a proud Paralympic record. Tim Hazell is Team GB's dedicated Paralympic coach, and has been full time since 2006. The British squad currently includes both Paralympic and world champions. GB won two golds in Beijing last year, thanks to Danielle Brown and John Stubbs. John Cavanagh won a silver, and Mel Clarke a bronze.
British hopefuls ahead of London 2012?
Well, there's three years to go, but the six who represented GB at the Beijing Olympics will be very much the likely lads and lasses for 2012. That's Simon Terry, Alan Wills and Larry Godfrey in the men's event, and Alison Williamson, Naomi Folkard and Charlotte Burgess in the women's.
Archery is the ultimate sport for all. You can take it up at any age, and you can shoot alongside fellow archers of all abilities and ages, able bodied, or disabled. Indeed, Paralympians and Olympians regularly shoot together.
So you fancy having a go? Just contact Archery GB either by clicking www.archerygb.org or phone on 01952 677888. The best advice is to start by booking up a Beginners course: usually six lessons, teaching you the basic techniques, and giving you the opportunity to see if this sport is for you and after that, the most important thing is to enjoy yourself!