“I had been a European champion and Paralympic champion, but I had never been an individual world champion, so the victory in Bangkok was kind of a self-affirmation for me.”
When Timur Tuchinov returned home to his small Russian village of Aginskoe after winning double gold in archery at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, he received a hero’s welcome.
He was given a new three-room apartment in Aginskoe, thanks to his victories in the men’s individual recurve standing and men’s team recurve open events.
But something was still missing from his collection come 2013 – an individual world title.
That completely changed on 7 November in Bangkok, Thailand, where Tuchinov, who has one leg shorter than the other, claimed double gold at the 2013 World Archery Para-Championships.
He cruised to gold in the men’s individual recurve standing event, in addition to repeating as the men’s team open compound champions with compatriots Mikhail Oyun and Oleg Shestakov.
“I had been a European champion and Paralympic champion, but I had never been an individual world champion, so the victory in Bangkok was kind of a self-affirmation for me,” Tuchinov said.
“My training sessions this year were organised to have me be in top form by the time I got to the World Championships – the major event of the year.”
Tuchinov defeated Ukraine’s Yuriy Kopiy in the gold-medal match of the men’s individual recurve standing final in Bangkok, leaving no room for error with a 6-2 victory in the fourth set.
To make his Bangkok campaign even sweeter, he joined up with Oyun and Shestakov later in the same day to beat the French trio of Stephane Gilbert, Armando Cabreira and Alexandre Lasvenes, 200-198, in the men’s team recurve open finals. They were able to successfully defend the title they had first claimed at the 2011 World Archery Para-Championships in Torino, Italy.
Tuchinov, who will return to Aginskoe this week in hopes of another hero’s welcome, claimed it was his will, spirit and self-discipline over the past year that finally vaulted him to his first individual world title.
And Tuchinov, who has been shooting the bow since age 14, is not done just quite yet.
In fact, his road to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games has just begun.
“Next, there will be the European Championships in Switzerland next year, where I would like to compete up to par, and I have to continue to train properly in order to do so,” he said.