Bow International



the car and drive 2500km to go in Sweden where the practice conditions were simply awesome. Essentiall­y, I'm in recovery mode, not performanc­e-oriented. A complicate­d recovery because the situation is new, we don't know where we are going."

The French internatio­nal team has a long history at the top level and at the Olympics. France is actually third on the all-time archery medal list for the Olympics, with 25 medals in total, just behind the United States and Korea. At least one French archery athlete has attended every Games since 1984. So it was a deep shock that the French recurve teams finished the qualifying tournament­s in 2019 without a single spot for the Games.

Even more frustratin­g, they came incredibly close. At the primary qualifier in Den Bosch, where the teams have to win a single match, the men's team shot superbly against the top-ranked Chinese Taipei, with Plihon rock-solid. All but one of their 24 arrows goes in the yellow, but just a few too many were nines, against their on-fire Asian opponents. It went to a tiebreak, which France then managed to lose. The women's team also left the Netherland­s empty handed.

A few weeks later at the European Games in Minsk, the French men’s team opened with an impressive win to take recurve team gold in Minsk, where Plihon moved to the anchor role usually reserved for teammate Jean-charles Valladont.

“It’s new for me, [anchoring] but it went well for me [in Minsk], and I’m in a good moment now, and I feel able to take charge and handle my emotions well enough to be there.” he said afterwards.

But it was only the individual and the mixed

Axcel Curve RX

Hoyt Formula Xi RH 25 inches, red / slate

Hoyt Formula Velos Bamboo in long, 44lb

Axcel Achieve XP Sight Pin: Axcel Curve RX with "small inner ring" / 0.29 red fibre Beiter

I shot Arc Système for years and they are just awesome. But I am testing a different kind of stabiliser in this period, so I can’t really say anything about at the moment. usually between 80° and 90° width and 10° down, and the front rod straight.

Custom grip made by Jerome Trouillet (available from Shibuya

Arc Système 0.25 Brownell XS2 / 1d serving Fairweathe­r RH, Large ring 23 Easton X10 (350 spine)

K&K archery 2,5inches

Beiter #2

Easton Tungsten 120 grains

team events that could garner them Olympic places. Plihon, after qualifying second, had a disastrous match against hometown hero Pavel Dalidovich of Belarus on Monday, where he lost 6-4. Despite coming close again, France left Belarus again without a single Olympic spot.

How are the French team training to get the remaining spots for the Games? "[Coach] Nicolas Rifaut visited me in Sweden in July to have a training camp and keep following the practice. Even if the crisis is here, I think we have the great luck to have a strong group, so we keep pushing each other and challengin­g basically except the thrill of competitio­n, the practice remains the same."

It should be noted that France's men won their last Olympic spots for Rio at the very last minute, at the final qualifying tournament; making Plihon partly responsibl­e for Valladont's silver medal in Rio. You would not put it past a repeat at the latest final qualifying tournament next year for Tokyo.

“In archery you shoot against you. It’s not really against another team. The first opponent is your own fear. It’s good to fight against it.”

"I will get up and I will be even better."

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 ??  ?? The Nimes tournament is one of the most important on the archery calendar.
The Nimes tournament is one of the most important on the archery calendar.

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