Host City: Seoul, South Korea
Date Started: September 27, 1988
Date Finished: October 1, 1988
Participants: 146 (84 men and 62 women) from 41 countries
Youngest Participant: Denise Parker (14 years, 290 days)
Oldest Participant: Wrex Tarr (54 years, 96 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 5 athletes with 2 medals
Most Medals (Country): South Korea (6 medals)
The Olympic archery program expanded in 1988, adding a team event for men and women, to give two men’s and two women’s events. This would become the standard Olympic archery program, at least through 2012. The archery events were contested at the Hwarang Archery Field in Seoul. In archery-mad Korea, this field was constructed in 1985-86, and then upgraded for the 1988 Olympics. It still exists as an archery field. Korea won three of the four gold medals in 1988, interrupted only by American Jay Barrs in the men’s individual event.
The individual events also changed in 1988 with a new format. Previously the sport (1972-84) had always been contested at the Olympics with two FITA Rounds, the so-called Double FITA Round. A FITA Round consisted of 36 arrows at each of four distances – 30 metres, 50 metres, 70 metres, 90 metres (men), and 30 metres, 50 metres, 60 metres, 70 metres (women) – for a total of 144 arrows, or 288 arrows for the Double FITA Round. In 1988 all competitors shot a Single FITA Round as a ranking round, with the top 24 archers advancing to the elimination rounds. In round one the top 18 finishers advanced to the quarter-finals, from which 12 archers went on to the semi-finals, with the top 8 from the semis advancing to the final round. All the elimination rounds were shot with 36 arrows, nine from each distance.