“It kind of sucks,” Gibson says. “It would have meant funding and support. We don’t get UK Sport funding, so nobody gets paid anything and most of the trips we do we have to fund ourselves. Taking part in a World Cup cost £2,000. Archery GB do as much as they can with the money they have, but it’s not much.”
Due to her status as a non-Olympic athlete, Gibson will not spend much time in GB Archery’s state-of-the-art shooting range. She instead benefits from a homemade practice range, located in the unconventional setting of an ice cream factory. Gibson’s family owns Dolcetti Ice Cream in Cirencester and 18 months ago, when the company moved into a bigger warehouse, her father made her a 25-metre indoor range.
“It’s perfect because indoors, I shoot 18 metres,” Gibson says. “Outside, it’s 50 metres. So if it’s really bad weather I can shoot 25 metres at half the size of the target face, so simulation-wise in terms of aiming, it feels the same.”
With her dyed hair and thick eyeliner, Healey, who became recurve Indoor World Series Finals champion last year, resembles more of a rock star than an archer, but is one of the sport’s brightest young talents.
The 18-year-old shoots at a 70-metre indoor distance at a 122cm target (the equivalent of trying to hit a DVD across the width of a football pitch) and won European Grand Prix gold in April, before landing her first World Cup title in Antalya, Turkey, the following month, which meant she rose to No 1 in the world rankings.