Photo: Archer Casey Kaufhold, 13, has set the highest score of any woman in U.S. history at any age, breaking the senior, junior and cadet national records: – Photo Courtesy Rob Kaufhold.
At the U.S. National Indoor Championships in Lancaster, Penn., 13-year-old Casey Kaufhold shot the highest score of any woman in U.S. history at any age, breaking the senior, junior and cadet national records with an outstanding 1162 out of 1200.
Her best half tied the national record out of 600 with 584, and then the next day in practice, she beat that with a 586.
The championship tournament was held February 23 to 25.
"I had shot that score before in practice so I knew I could do it, I just had to keep my head in the game to finally get it," Casey said about her record performance. "It's pretty crazy and hard to believe. I was just so happy.
“I got off the line and I knew I did it so I just burst into tears and hugged all my friends. They were so happy for me and I was just so grateful they were there to experience it with me."
Casey comes from quite an archery legacy. Her parents, Rob and Carole Kaufhold, are the owners of Lancaster Archery Supply, and her brother Connor is also a highly competitive archer.
However, Casey is blazing her own trail in the sport, making the World Archery Youth Championships team last summer and finishing first in the cadet rankings for the 2018 U.S. Archery Team.
Next up for her is likely the U.S. National Indoor Championships Final. While several locations still must compete before invitations are finalized, she is currently in first with her national record score, and she is looking forward to the competition.
This would not be Casey's first time on a major senior archery stage as she has had top finishes at the Lancaster Classic the past few years.
"It will be kind of like the Classic all over again, which is really exciting because I always love shooting at the Classic up on the big stage and the adrenaline rush you get because you know you want to win. You just have to work for it so it would just be such a cool experience to do that again," she said.
Casey is looking ahead to Tokyo 2020 with ambitious Olympic dreams. To get ready, she plans to compete on the senior stage much more this year.
"I'll be starting with Arizona Cup as a senior. It's a goal of mine this year to make World Cups because then I could potentially be on the same team as Brady [Ellison] and Mackenzie [Brown], which would be such a cool experience to have," she said.
Casey said Olympians Brady Ellison and Mackenzie Brown are her biggest role models in the sport.
"They are probably the most inspiring archers out there and they always have a way to them that they're confident and ready to go."
As for being able to compete at the same level as her role models, shooting scores near identical to Brown's on several occasions, Casey said, "It means so much to me that I'm at that skill level and I know that I can do it. It's a big confidence booster for me to know that I can achieve what they can."
She is great at keeping herself motivated and passionate about growing in the sport: "I just love having goals to work toward and the motivation of the competition. Everyone who is trying to shoot new national records just like I am, and is working just as hard for it."
One big lesson Casey has already learned at such a young age is to respect the achievements of her role models, but to be her own person and look up to who she wants to be.
"When there is someone who I admire, I always used to try to be like them, but I realized that I don't have to be exactly like them, I can still be myself and still accomplish everything that they can do and it's always good to have that as motivation."
The future looks very bright for Casey Kaufhold!
You can follow her archery journey in the U.S. Indoor National Championships here.
To learn more about what it means to use an Olympic bow in competition, click here to read this story by Buckmasters Whitetail Magazine Field Editor P.J. Reilly.
USA Archery is the National Governing Body for the Olympic sport of archery in the United States. USA Archery selects and trains Olympic, Paralympic, World Championship, and World Cup teams, as well as developing archery at the grassroots level across the United States. For more information visit www.usarchery.org.