Whitehorse Daily Star

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LETTING IT FLY – Yukon archers competed in the Indoor Nationals on March 8 at Takhini Elementary School. The archers' scores were submitted and matched against competitors across the country.

Arrows fly in indoor nationals

A day after the 2020 Arctic Winter Games were announced cancelled on March 7, Archery Yukon competed in the Indoor Nationals at Takhini Elementary School.

By John Tonin on March 17, 2020

A day after the 2020 Arctic Winter Games were announced cancelled on March 7, Archery Yukon competed in the Indoor Nationals at Takhini Elementary School.

Archery Canada runs the indoor nationals as a multi-site competition – this format has been used for years, said Yukon Archery's coach, Warren Kapaniuk, and was not in response to growing COVID-19 concerns.

A club submits to host a site and clubs across the country compete and submit their scores to Archery Canada.

Kapaniuk said any club can host an 18-metre shoot.

"It's easier to get people involved," said Kapaniuk. "It's not done for outdoor."

The Yukon had 13 archers involved including the Arctic Winter Games team – this was supposed to be their last tune-up competition before the Games commenced on March 15.

Although they were shooting after the new dropped about the Games cancellation, Kapaniuk said the archers performed well.

"I was happy with the results," said Kapaniuk. "Especially after the Games were cancelled. They still had to go out and shoot their best.

"It was pretty exciting. It showed me how mentally tough the athletes are and that their mental training is working. They moved past the cancellation of the Arctic Winter Games for the event, then processed it."

The archers, in the Yukon and elsewhere, shot a 600 round, 60 arrows worth a maximum of 10 points each. An athlete had two minutes to shoot their round of three arrows.

Kapaniuk said there were lots of archers across the country competing and the different categories had large groups of athletes.

"They really get a sense of where they are at," said Kapaniuk.

The goals for each archer varied and Kapaniuk said all the archers attained what they were aiming for.

"Each archer had their own goals and all achieved personal goals," said Kapaniuk. "They picked goals that were achievable but challenging."

Kapaniuk said for most, their goals weren't placing instead, it was about becoming a stronger archer in a competitive setting.

"All the archers are in the learn to train, learn to compete stage," said Kapaniuk. "They are somewhere on that scale.

"Some of our athletes thrive in pressure situations. That's a skill that's got to be learned and practised. They need to tune out any outside distractions."

The Yukon team saw good results on the scoreboards as the team earned six medals – two gold, three silver, and one bronze.

Kemper Murray in cub barebow shot 437 out of 600 to win gold in his age category. Cub compound archer Emmett Kapaniuk shot 560 to secure gold.

Junior barebow athlete Emma Tom Tom, 260, pre-cub barebow Delia Therriault, 417, and cadet barebow Mitchell Rudolph, 447, all earned silver medals in their respective categories.

Cadet barebow Gabriela Browning, 342, earned the Yukon its lone bronze medal.

Arctics were supposed to be another competition on the calendar for the archers as they had other trips planned. However, the BC provincials have been cancelled due to COVID-19, and they are awaiting word on what will happen with upcoming outdoor meets.

In the interim, Kapaniuk said the club will try to organize other shoots so the athletes can register scores to Archery Canada.

"It's important to continue to provide scores to Archery Canada," said Kapaniuk.

Those scores will be considered when athletes are trying to qualify for future competitions.

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