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ON TARGET – Archers hoping to make the 2020 Arctic Winter Games Team Yukon archery team take aim at the target during trials on Dec. 15.

Archers hit the mark at 2020 AWG trials

The Arctic Winter Games are creeping ever closer and trials are still being held in January, while some teams who have already had their trials haven’t finalized their rosters yet.

By John Tonin on January 8, 2020

The Arctic Winter Games are creeping ever closer and trials are still being held in January, while some teams who have already had their trials haven’t finalized their rosters yet.

Archery had their last tryout on Dec. 15, as well as one in late November. Coach Warren Kapaniuk said he was thankful for the opportunity to run the early tryout because kids from the communities were in town.

Kapaniuk said archery made a conscious effort in the fall to get the communities more involved in the sport.

“We pushed this fall to restart archery in the communities,” said Kapaniuk.

“There were six communities represented at the tryouts and that was our biggest achievement.”

Across the two trial sessions, Kapaniuk said they saw about 30 archers try out for eight positions. Archers competing at the Arctic Winter Games will either shoot with a compound bow or a barebow recurve. Each class of bow will have two males and two females competing it.

The final eight have not been finalized yet, there is a training squad of 13 and the final selection will be made Jan. 11.

To determine the final eight, Kapaniuk said they will have a competition mirroring what they will experience at the Games. They will shoot a 600 round and then do match play - where archers shoot head-to-head.

Archery is making its return to the Arctic Winter Games in Whitehorse and all nine contingents will be sending archery teams.

Kapaniuk said he doesn’t know what to expect from the other contingents but he is excited.

“I don’t know across the contingents but us and the Northwest Territories have an idea on the calibre of archers,” said Kapaniuk. “The others I have no idea at all but I’m really excited to see them shoot.”

Kapaniuk also said he is curious to see how the equipment may differ between the contingents.

Archery is very much an individual sport, said Kapaniuk, however, they have been talking to the team about being part of Team Yukon and what that means.

Yukon archers have seen success at their last couple of meets and Kapaniuk hopes that continues. He did mention there will be more pressure competing at home.

“You can shoot well in practice but it gets a lot harder in a competition,” said Kapaniuk. “They got to get through that to perform in front of their family and friends.”

As far as expectations go, Kapaniuk said he wants the eight archers selected to go and place well, even though they have no clue about their competition’s skill-level.

Because of recent successes Yukon archers have seen, Kapaniuk said it has helped the sport grow.

“Archery is becoming more accepted as a sport,” said Kapaniuk. “People are seeing the success. All the young archers they all volunteer to help and are inspiring the younger archers to move forward.”

The archery competition is U18. Each class will compete in individual and mixed team competitions. The target sits 18 metres away from the archer.

A new wrinkle at the Arctic Winter Games archery meet, Kapaniuk said, is that the archers will have less time to shoot their arrow.

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