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05.02.2019

Andreas Henne: “Сrossbow sport is not just community, it’s a real crossbow family!”

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High goals and big plans, modernized formats and updated rules, entertainment and increased interest – International Crossbow Shooting Union has entered an era of change. The Chairman of the Technical Committee Andreas Henne spoke in an exclusive interview about Field Division: what it was, is and will be like.

- Mr Henne, our today's conversation would be more devoted to the topic of the IAU modernization in the Field division. The World Cup final showed that most athletes were happy to accept the changes and highly appreciated the new format of competitions in the form of duels. Was this decision and its implementation difficult?

- I am very happy to have positive feedback from our athletes! After all, all the changes in the format of the World Cup final - 2018 are designed specifically for them, and not for the officials of national teams. In the course of the work of the Technical Committee Field we had a long discussion on the modernization of the competition format, and I also spoke a lot with crossbow shooters from different countries. Now we are on the way of modernization and the final change of the format! We will soon test this format at the World Cup 2019 in Croatia and the Czech Republic, then we will be able to see its work in action and evaluate the results.

- In your opinion, is the new format successful, what do the judges say about this?

- Unfortunately, I could not attend the first in the history World Cup final - 2018 in Orel. But I carefully watched every competition day, read all the news, watched all the photos and videos of the tournament on the IAU official website. I want to thank the organizers, my Russian colleagues. You have done a wonderful, tremendous job for our beautiful sport! However we can summarize the final result only after testing at the World Cup - 2019. As for the judges, nothing has changed in their work, the rules have remained the same. The changes have affected only the format of the shooting.

- Will this practice of changes (when it is necessary) be applied in the future?

- Yes, definitely! We strive to change for the better. I am sure that we will focus all our forces on positive changes in the future!

- What is the decision to modernize the format of competitions in the Field division connected with? What are the objectives of the International Crossbow Shooting Union?

- In the field crossbow our goal is to make this sport interesting and attractive, especially for our athletes. But it is also important to attract the media and sponsors! Indeed, without sponsorship investments and media attention it is impossible to talk about the further development of crossbow shooting. It is also very important for me to make the field crossbow interesting for more shooters from all over the world. The goal of the IAU is to develop crossbow shooting around the world. It is important for us to expand the geography of countries in order to be able to become part of the GAISF (Global Association of International Sports Federations). Then we plan to take part in the World Games, where all non-Olympic disciplines are represented. This will allow us to be the focus of the Olympic Committee!

- Your work includes constant analysis, control, critical and strategic thinking. Is it difficult to be the Chairman of the Technical Committee Field?

- No, it is not difficult! But only if you have such a team of professionals with a lot of experience and a great desire to develop our sport! (laughs)

- Nevertheless, what difficulties do you face in your work?

- The main difficulty is to see and not to miss the moment when changes are necessary, just as it happens now. The IAU has a strong foothold - the new President and the General Secretary. They work very hard to develop crossbow shooting around the world. The task of the IAU Technical Committee in the Field Division is to develop and improve directly this part of our sport. Fortunately, our leaders know and understand this area pretty well, so a constructive conversation with professionals is always easier.

- Do you remember how you got acquainted with crossbow shooting?

- Surely! Of course, I am old, but not as old as not to remember! (laughs) It was about 35 years ago when I started shooting from a distance of 10 meters, a year later 30 meters, and I got acquainted with field crossbow in 1989.

- What is the uniqueness and appeal of crossbow shooting for you?

- Since 1982 I have practiced air rifle shooting and crossbow shooting from 10 meters. The disciplines are, in fact, very similar. But very soon I realized that these communities are completely different. I have never seen such an honest shooting community as crossbow sport! In my opinion, crossbow shooting is not just a sport or a community, it is a real “crossbow family”! You always feel at home, crossbow shooters around the world are always happy to see you.

- What can we expect from the upcoming World Cup - 2019 crossbow shooting in Ulyanovsk?

- This year World Championship will be held in Ulyanovsk, in Russia, and our Russian colleagues will organize this tournament. I was lucky to take part in the World Championship - 2015 in Ulan-Ude, which was hosted by the Russian Federation. I will say that if you saw the fantastic organization of the 2015 World Championship, then you absolutely do not worry about the World Championship in 2019.

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