Archery: Bettles sets sights on Tokyo Olympics
PUBLISHED: 14:45 03 October 2019 | UPDATED: 14:45 03 October 2019
British archery hotshot Sarah Bettles may have missed out on a medal at the National Tour Finals, but is raring to go in Tokyo as the countdown to the 2020 Olympics intensifies.
Harold Wood-born Bettles is one of three British shooters with the required points to qualify for selection, having enjoyed an impressive 2019 season despite a shoot-out defeat to Bryony Pitman in the bronze medal match at Caldicot Castle on Sunday.
And with three selection spots up for grabs in Japan in the women's recurve 70m event, Bettles believes she has what it takes to book a seat on the plane.
"At the moment I have the scores I need to get one of the selection places, which is great," the 26-year-old said.
"We're then going on a full-time training plan from October, where we're going to be doing three weeks of hard training and then ten days away on an international trip.
"It will be like that solidly, all the way up to - hopefully - Tokyo if I can stay on the selection process.
"If I was to get a seat on that plane I'd give it everything to try and medal - just give it my all.
"The team have been shooting really well together and we medalled at the World Championships.
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"It will be a similar team at the Olympics so there's no reason why we can't make a repeat of it there."
It was Bettles' memorable outdoor season over the last few months that laid the foundations for her probable appearance in Tokyo, sealing the three British quota spots with a World Championship team bronze medal in Hertogenbosch.
The experienced Naomi Folkard and 22-year-old Pitman - who came second and third at the Tour Finals in South Wales - were Bettles' companions that day in Germany, a triumvirate who will hope to join forces once again at the Games next year.
And Bettles believes she personally can take great confidence from her considerable run of success this campaign.
"Getting Olympic quota places was definitely a highlight this season, and also taking a bronze team medal at the World Championships," she added.
"Then a week later taking gold in the team event at the European Games - it's been a really amazing season which gave me a lot of confidence coming into the Tour Finals.
"I've had quite a long international season this year and have relaxed a bit over the last couple of months, getting myself ready to start training hard again in October."
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