posted on August 19, 2013 14:07
Second crown twice as nice for Buckmasters champ
By Tim H. Martin/Buckmasters Online Editor
Skipper Booth scooped a handful of fresh confetti, stuffed it in his pocket and fist pumped as he exited the 2013 Top Bow Indoor World Championship. It was clearly evident the Northport, Ala., native was savoring every moment after winning the Buckmasters competition, the highest paying single event in tournament archery.
"Can you believe it? I still can't," the emotional two-time winner said.
"No one will ever know how much hard work and practice it's taken me to get back to this point since 2008," continued Booth, referring to the last time he won Top Bow.
"For months, I've been getting up at 4:30 a.m., going to work six days a week and then driving 20 miles to my friend's range to practice."
Booth takes home the grand prize check of $15,000 plus a check for $750 for being the high-scoring archer of the week. But in the finale, he was only one stray arrow and four points away from losing to journeyman archer Larry Goza.
"After I'd missed two targets, I thought it was all over, especially after seeing how well Larry shot in the semifinal. After I stepped off the stand, all I could do was sit there and hope things would work out on the scoreboard.
"The final round was nowhere near my best of the week, but luckily for me, neither was Larry's.
"We'd both shot perfect rounds early on, so I when I missed the far runner, I figured I'd lost. But I just shook it off, kept my wits and continued focusing on the next target, which is what you have to do if you're going to have a chance to win Buckmasters Top Bow.
"Luckily, Larry shot well, but didn't clean house again (shoot a perfect round), and I hit the red dot at the end of the round, and that just might've been the difference."
Booth's final score was 114 to Larry Goza's 100, marking yet another Top Bow championship with an uncertain outcome until after the final arrow. As a two time runner-up, Booth knows all too well how it feels to be inched out.
"In 2009, I lost in the final round by a half inch, which was heartbreaking. In 2010, I didn't get it done, either, and was only one arrow away - so close!
"So, this win is extra sweet. I was beginning to believe I wasn't going to get it done again before I got too old!"