It’s a shame to say goodbye to Odense (pronounced something like ohuhrndunseu said very fast), the almost ludicrously charming third-largest city in Denmark. A beautiful flatland of trundling bikes, elegantly dressed people, and medieval architecture. A town of 300k where Saturday nights aren’t wild. A smart town of great coffee, genteel applause, and terrible poker players (long story).
This year’s World Cup final is in the books. In the modern World Archery parlance, it’s “part of history” – everybody was trying to think of a better phrase than ‘delivered’, the usual, but uninspiring language of the sports event production world.
For compound, the men’s was uneventful apart from Seppe Cilliers’ classy run, the women’s had a huge Sara Lopez-shaped hole in the field, which Marcella Tonioli managed to jump right through. Recurve day featured four golden Koreans, all of whom looked tired and jet-lagged from a late arrival and a ridiculously busy post-Olympics schedule. There was even some apparent confusion over who would be shooting the mixed team final. Still, they produced the goods, and Tan Ya-Ting didn’t quite have enough on the day to scythe down the women.
No-one looked 100% in form. Brady Ellison took down a title he admitted afterwards he may not have deserved. Sjef was unlucky. Horribly unlucky. It was good to see longtime TIC favourite Ki Bo Bae take down the title. She looked exhausted in the morning, but from the first match you could see how badly she still wanted it. Once she got past Tan it was in the bag. A re-run of 2012, then. A beautiful setting, in a town where no-one locks their bikes up (was a somewhat different from the last event in Rio). A great tournament. A great turnout. A wonderful staff and volunteers.
Mr. (and Mrs.) Ellison had brought all their Olympic medals out for a photo op. I didn’t get a picture, but was shown first hand that his bronze from Rio was already damaged – the coating on the top was wearing off. Rio 2016 had to work with quite a few low bids. This was just another little one.