BUSA Indoors 2003 Review

Results in full. [163kb]

The biggest competition British university archery has ever seen, with competitors from 29 institutions, spread over ten hours, three sessions, three halls and two buildings took place in Birmingham. A total of seven new BUSA scoring records were set (including three All Uni records) - itself probably a record. Edinburgh ran out convincing winners with a combined team score of 2269, missing out on Loughborough's 1998 record by only 1 point, team comprising three of the top four gents Tim Mundon (579), Alistair Whittingham (569), Matt Nowicki (567) and Claudine Jennings (554). Martin Russell, Edinburgh's fifth score missed out on a team place on X's. The winning margin of 85 points is the biggest recorded at BUSA Indoors since 1984. In second place were Imperial with 2189 team comprising Tim Sheldon (561), David Wilson (552), Laura Borrer-Closs (544) and Tim Bond (532). Third were NEUAL champions York with 2155, team comprising Andrew Ash (561), Tom Duncan (543), James Wickens (531) and Michael Ward (520). BUTTS emerged as the strongest league with teams in 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th and 11th. Oxford's 2126 saw off Cambridge by 10 points, who secured fifth placed team ahead of Loughborough on hits 240 to 239. Hosts Birmingham, largely inspired by Naomi Folkard (583) were seventh team on 2080, holding off Warwick again, 240 hits to 239. Surrey were close behind on 2076. Heriot-Watt completed the top 10 on 2066, with Lorna Provan (577) by far their highest score.

Gents recurve was dominated by Edinburgh archers with Tim Mundon winning with 579, the same score he finised second with in 1996. Alistair Whittingham finished third, as he did 1993, with 569. Matt Nowicki, shooting in the final session, narrowly missed out on a medal with 567. Benedict Huckvale from Oxford, broke the Edinburgh hegemony finishing second. Both Andrew Callaway (Bournemouth) and Andrew Ash (York) set off like trains (Ash matching Alison Williamson after two dozen) but fell back dramatically, Callaway fifth on 563, Ash sixth on golds from Tim Sheldon (Imperial) seventh on 561.

However the real headlines were made, perhaps inevitably in ladies recurve. Naomi Folkard (hosts, Birmingham) exactly tied the old BUSA record with 583, closely pursued by Lorna Provan (Heriot-Watt) 577. However in the third session, Marietta Scott (Manchester) stole what turned out to be third place with a magnificent 580. Marietta is also set to revive Mancester as a club next year. Treble Olympian and UKSAA Interviewee Alison Williamson (South Bank) cruised past even these scores with a towering 593 - breaking Jo Franks' 14 year old record (the oldest in the book) by 10 points and incidentally equalling Tim Mundon's (then Cardiff) 1998 BUSA Gents Compound record. Just to emphasize the quality of the ladies, in a combined field, first gent recurve would have failed to win a medal of any colour and Lorna Provan's 577 is without doubt the highest score ever to have not won a medal. Claudine Jennings (Edinburgh) was best of the rest, marooned in fifth with 554, 23 points adrift of Provan, but 10 points ahead of sixth placed Laura Borrer-Closs (Imperial).

Not to be outdone, the novices broke all three of their records. In the ladies Becky Gridley (Edinburgh) notched a tremendous 538, despite a relatively disappointing finsh and in the gents Philip Li (Loughborough) scored 531 [corr.]. Loughborough were second with 1516, Nottingham pipped Imperial to bronze 1505 to 1504. The Edinburgh novices Becky Gridley, Emma Downie second novice lady with 522 and John Bengtsson 504, despite equipment difficulties scored 1564 to beat the record already held by Edinburgh, set two years ago.

The compound field, already reduced by Tim Mundon (now the first person to have held both Compound and Recurve individual BUSA titles) and Alistair Whittingham shooting recurve lost a third Edinburgh compound, David Sewell. Sewell had repeated equipment problems but a 116 opening dozen put him in a commanding position before a stretching string forced him to retire. In the event, the leading four gents compound were separated by only two points. Richard Wilkins (Loughborough) struggled with the dark halls - as did all the compounds - to win with 566, Tim Keppie (Edinburgh) was second with 565. Mike Ampstead (Surrey) and Chris Millar (Edinburgh) were tied third on 564. Remarkably, Millar is a novice and smashed the novice compound record by 39 points. Claire Davy (Bath) won Ladies Compound. Both the Gents and Ladies barebow records were broken. Alistair Wilson (Bangor) improved his own record to 536 whilst novice Laura Tandela (Edinburgh) having only very recently taken up barebow, won with 428.

In order to create and maintain such a large scale event as this, there are various people mostly too numerous to go through and thank individually: the small army of judges, the ACME squad led by Ian McGibbon, all the Birmingham archers (and some co-opted Imperial archers too), the Lord Paramount and chief organiser both of BUTTS League and this tournament, Ed Rial. All in all a great event. Those that stayed for the party had a fab and possibly fresh night out too.