Canada’s wait for it’s first Olympic medal will unfortunately be extended four more years. Both Crispin Duenas of Ontario and Marie-Pier Beaudet of Quebec were eliminated in their opening match in London.
Crispin Duenas : http://www.tsn.ca/story/?id=402049
Marie-Pier Beaudet : http://www.tsn.ca/story/?id=401855
Nonetheless, I am very proud of them. While watching these games, I can empathize with the pressure that they are experiencing. After participating in the World Championship in Las Vegas this past winter, I have a new appreciation of the pressure that is cast-upon athletes at these competitions.
At large competitions like the Olympics and World Championships they try to make archery more viewer friendly for the spectators through the addition of commentators. This can be very nerve racking for the archers as they announce each shot and various competitors’ scores, sometimes right at the very moment of your release. In my team bronze medal match, the commentators were already declaring victory for the other team before we had finished shooting. It is almost impossible to block it out, at this level it is about who can manage their nerves and the pressure since they are all excellent shooters.
I have also read comments of news stories, blogs and twitter asking “Why is archery an Olympic sport?”. For those people, I challenge you to pull 50 pounds, hold for 7 seconds with enough calm composure to hit an apple 70 meters away, adjusting on the fly for all the elements. Now repeat 72 times, consistently. It takes strength, endurance, and composure, just like any other sport.
All of these archers are amazing athletes and deserve to represent their respective countries at these games. For Canada, eighth and twenty-ninth in the world are awesome!
Congratulations, Team Canada on a job well done.
Ah well, another 4 years, I think you might have to step up to the plate for that occasion. I fully understand your point about the pressure of competition and the surrounding hoopla, what is hard for me to understand, perhaps even makes me a little defensive that someone would question archery as an olympic sport.
I will be working everyday to have my chance. 🙂 and I too get a little defensive when people question archery as an Olympic sport. However, I remind myself that they just do not understand the level of athleticism required to compete or what is involved in the competition.