Archery Preview
Less than 200 days out from the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, USA Archery has secured one men’s quota spot for the Games with Brady Ellison winning the gold medal at the world championships, and one women’s quota spot when Ellison and Casey Kaufhold won the mixed team event at Lima 2019. Having won silver at the last two Games, it is surprising that the U.S. has not yet locked up the full team quota – in fact, it is the first time since 1976, and the next chance to qualify a full men’s and women’s team will be just a month before the Games in Berlin. 

Ellison, the world No. 1, world champion and world record holder, had the greatest year of his career in 2019. Finally injury-free after many seasons of differing injuries, Ellison podiumed at every world cup event, including winning two stages and becoming the first man in history to win five world cup final champion titles. He additionally won the first U.S. recurve men’s world champion title since 1985, ending a 34-year drought. Ellison has won team silver at the last two Games in London and Rio, and the individual bronze in Rio. To start 2020, Ellison shot the first ever perfect 900-round score with the Olympic recurve, which he called his greatest accomplishment in archery. This is finally his time and he is hungry and ready for the gold in Tokyo. 

Other frontrunners include teenage sensation Jack Williams, who won team gold at the 2018 World Archery Youth Championships and finished in the top eight at the 2019 world championships, and Thomas Stanwood – a 40-year-old lawyer, drummer, father of twin baby boys and talented archer. 

On the women’s side, Rio 2016 Olympian Mackenzie Brown is still strong in the mix. Despite missing the world team this year, Brown is still ranked No. 1 in the U.S. and holds the highest world ranking of any U.S. recurve woman. Five-time Olympian Khatuna Lorig is gearing up for a comeback and 15-year-old Casey Kaufhold is the young phenomenon taking the world by storm with multiple international podium finishes this season.

2020 is Brady Ellison’s Year – Three-time Olympic medalist Ellison is finally injury-free and on top of his game. In the best shooting form of his life, Ellison has won two of three world cups this year, and took bronze at the third – his best year on the circuit since 2011. Ellison ended a 34-year world championship drought for Team USA, winning gold and bringing himself back to a world No. 1 ranking. He has been the best archer in the U.S. for well over a decade and Olympic gold is the last piece missing from his incredibly impressive resume. He has competed at more world cup stages and holds more final titles than anyone else in history; with all this experience and a peaking performance, it is finally Ellison’s time.

Women Making a Comeback – USA Archery is lauded worldwide as a leader in gender equality in the archery industry, with equal payouts and competition opportunities for men and women across the board. With outstanding female participation in world cups over the last two years, USA Archery was awarded first place for World Archery’s Member Associations and Female Athletes Award. The women are on the hunt for quota spots for Tokyo 2020 and are led by an impressive lineup including five-time Olympian Khatuna Lorig, Rio Olympian Mackenzie Brown, and 15-year-old teen phenom Casey Kaufhold.

Brady Ellison (Globe, Arizona)
Ellison podiumed at every world cup event this season (his best performance since 2011), including winning two stages, and he won the first U.S. recurve men’s world champion title since 1985, ending a 34-year drought. Ellison has won team silver at the last two Games in London and Rio, and the individual bronze in Rio. This is finally his time and he is hungry and ready for the gold in Tokyo.

Jack Williams (Irvine, California)
Teenage sensation Jack Williams, the reigning world youth team champion, just finished sixth at his first senior world championships to rank 10th in the world. Williams finished high school early to pursue his Olympic dreams, forgoing prom, graduation and other teenage milestones to lay it all on the line.

Casey Kaufhold (Lancaster, Pennsylvania)
At just 15 years old, Casey Kaufhold is the young superstar taking the archery world by storm. The youngest archer of her caliber since Denise Parker in 1988, Kaufhold has been shattering national records, including several that stood for decades. She has the highest indoor and outdoor scores of any U.S. archer in history and has started to see international success in the ramp up to Tokyo. Currently No. 1 in the Trials, Kaufhold is likely to represent Team USA with Ellison in the debut of the mixed team event on the Olympic Program.

Team USA has secured one men’s spot for Tokyo 2020 with a win at the 2019 world championships. The women qualified one spot at the 2019 Pan American Games, which will secure USA a spot in the mixed team event. 

There will be three men’s and three women’s team quota spots (three archers each) awarded to top finishers at a last-chance qualification tournament one month before Tokyo. For the full World Archery qualification procedures, click here.

To qualify for selection to the U.S. Olympic Archery Team, archers must shoot a minimum qualifying score, and compete in a four-part trials event.

The first event, which is open to all eligible U.S. residents with USA Archery membership, took place in Dublin, Ohio, last August, followed shortly by another qualification event in September in College Station, Texas, which narrowed the hopefuls to the top 16 men and women.

This spring, the field will be narrowed at the third event to the top eight men and women in Chula Vista, California, and finally in the fourth event in Newberry, Florida, to the number of slots we have qualified for the U.S.

If USA Archery has earned three Olympic quota slots in each division, the top three archers per division will be nominated to the U.S. Olympic Team. The athlete who is ranked fourth is named the alternate to the U.S. Olympic Team. If USA Archery has only earned one quota slot in a division, only the top finisher in the U.S. Olympic Team Trials will be named to the U.S. Olympic Archery Team. For the full selection procedures, click here.

Aug. 15-16, 2019: U.S. Olympic Trials – Archery, Stage 1 (Dublin, Ohio)
Sept. 28, Sept. 30 – Oct. 1, 2019: U.S. Olympic Trials – Archery, Stage 2 (College Station, Texas)
April 8 – 11, 2020: U.S. Olympic Trials – Archery, Stage 3 (Chula Vista, California)
May 23, May 25 – 26, 2020: U.S. Olympic Trials – Archery, Stage 4 (Newberry, Florida)
June 22 – 28, 2020: Final qualifying tournament, world cup (Berlin)