The PA CSC celebrated their 40th Anniversary and decided to host a Traditional and Barebow Archery shoot on 17th July 2017. The TBAC was one of the lucky invited clubs and it was a cosy affair with about 40 archers participating. We learnt that the shoot was put together within 2 weeks! Kudos go to the organizing committee (Potong Pasir CSC) for a job well done. Find out more about the Peoples’ Association Community Sports Club HERE.
The venue was the Shelton College grounds at Telok Blangah Rise. Eagles did well and almost made a clean sweep, collecting 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes in both Men’s and Women’s categories. In the Team KO event, we secured the 1st and 3rd prizes. All in, it was a very satisfying outing for us and we enjoyed renewing ties with some very interesting archers.
The TBAC Eagles practiced hard for this year’s Princess Cup! We had been squeezing out practice time from our busy schedules…. before, after work and even after dinner!
This was our second consecutive outing and a 10-archer squadron headed up for the annual competition (along with one honorary Manager), that took place once again at Bangkok’s Fashion Island Mall. We were also happy to see 3 recurve and 1 compound archer + team manager make the special trip for the annual games. TBAC Eagles fielded 3 competitive teams this year in the Traditional and Barebow Category. Our aim was to better our standings of last year, where we had one individual in the top 8 IKO and one team also made it to the top 8 TKO. The Traditional category is no more and the organiser converted it to Barebow (World Archery definition). We think that the event may eventually morph into a WA sanctioned competition and that will be great news.
It was a good outcome for us. Ex-Machina is the 2016 champion in the barebow category, emerging as the top ranked archer in the qualifying round AND winner in the IKO (Individual Knock Out)….. a Double Gold Medal and the first foreign national to win the Barebow/Traditional Category Princess Cup in its 10-year history!
Other Eagles did well too. 9 Eagles qualified for the IKO event, Mads and Kat made to the 1/32 level and Pochahontas powered to the 1/8 to give last year’s IKO champion a worthy fight. However, we did not improve in the team event with only 1 team making it to the 1/8 cut.
Take a look at the setups that were airborne to the Thailand Princess Cup. You can see a range of wood and metal risers. For a start, all unbraced bows must pass through a 12.2cm diameter ring. Some of us attached weights (allowed under WA rules) for better balance. The largest weight that an Eagle attached was 650g and we were surprised to see that some Thai archers had 1.3kg weights! Wow!!!
We all had a great time renewing ties, shooting and of course…………….. soaking in the Thai hospitality and food.
I recall watching Usain Bolt on TV during the 2009 Olympics, breaking the world sprint record with a (then) jaw dropping time of 9.69 seconds. It was an imperious, yet nonchalant performance by Usain. He cockily rubbed salt into his opponents’ wounded egos, easing off by a good distance from the finish line. Sure, this man worked hard at his Sport …… his Career. However, none can deny that such ability is a Gift. A Gift he did not squander or leave undeveloped.
We occasionally chance upon such gifted people amongst common people like us. Eschewing limelight, unlike Usain but meticulously, calmly, polishing their craft anonymously.
Now, as a middle-aged archer, I know one amongst us whom we consider to be extraordinarily gifted with the Bow. I will not mention name as this is a shy person. Yet, if given the right guidance (if required at all) and perhaps some youth, this archer is easily a world beater.
His is a used wooden club riser and the limbs are basic fibreglass. His arrows are beginner grade carbon-aluminium with nibb points weighted with leftover screws from his workshop. Not surprisingly, they are sometimes missing a vane. Often, we see this archer with a mixed tube of arrows as he is a prudent consumer. Waste not, want not.
I study the flight of his arrows. Frankly, they are not elegant…. they barrel, porpoise or fishtail. Confoundedly, they find their target. Here is an Archer who tunes himself to the equipment at hand. We tune our equipment in order to isolate problems down to archer error. Nothing else to blame on for a poor shot but the archer. This archer accepts his equipment totally. He is ONE with the Bow… It’s a supreme level of Zen-ness.