December 07, 2021

Junior National Indoor Championships 2021

The 2021 Junior National Indoor Championships, held at Stoneleigh Park, were another great success for Archery GB.

The Junior National Indoor Championships 2021 were another great success! We spoke to a couple of youth archers about their experience of shooting at the competition this year.

Fin Hicks

Finlay and Oliver Hicks, from Bowmen of Warfield, both shot barebow for their first time at Junior National Indoor Championships.

Speaking to their mum, Charlotte, "For both of them, the competition felt busy and was bigger than anticipated, but they were excited to shoot! It was also good to see juniors who they'd met at other competitions again, particularly the barebows, and meet new ones.
The trade stands offered the experience of visiting an archery shop to see and try products during breaks in the competition. Plus there were the favourite competition hoodies to wear through the year."
Fin's commented on his experience, "I was very pleased that I got a personal best in the qualification round! The prospect of doing my first head-to-head at such a big competition against talented barebow archers was daunting, but I'm glad I did it. Getting a medal was a great reward at the end of the shooting."
Fin took bronze in the Barebow Junior Men at the Junior National Indoor Championships 2021.

Ollie Hicks

Ollie Hicks shot in both the Junior and National Indoor Championships. Talking about the Junior Indoor Nationals, Ollie explained, "I felt relaxed throughout the Portsmouth round but nerves started to creep in during the head-to-head.
"I'm proud to come away with the gold medal and pleased that all those cold dark practices on winter evenings at Bowmen of Warfield have paid off! Really proud and pleased to share the podium with my brother".
Going on to explain his experience at the National Indoor Championships, Ollie said, "After my success at the Junior Nationals I arrived on Sunday determined to prove I deserved a place in the senior competition.
"I really appreciated the support of the other archers. There were some incredible barebow archers from around the country to compete against and I didn't really register the fact I was on the same shooting line as Olympians!
"The head to head were my favourite part of the weekend and it was a challenge trying to calm my nerves to shoot against some of the best barebow archers in the country.  The bronze medal match went to 4-4 and I went into the last set determined to put down 3 solid arrows.  Really pleased I held it together for a 10-10-9. I was really hoping I might get a medal but not convinced I'd be able to with the calibre of the other archers and the profile of the event."
Ollie took gold in the Barebow Junior Men in the Junior National Indoor Championships and bronze at the National Indoor Championships in the Barebow Men division.

Sinead Byrne

Sinead Byrne, a compound junior woman from Ballyvalley Archers Banbridge also competed in both the Junior National Indoor Championships and National Indoor Championships at the weekend.
She commented on her experience of shooting in both competitions, "For me, to compete in both Junior and Senior Nationals was nerve racking at the start. Especially when shooting the Seniors as there was such good quality competition out there."
Since the National Indoor Weekend is the pinnacle competition of the indoor calendar in the UK, we asked Sinead how it felt to shoot at such a big competition. "I have shot the competition for a few years now and competing in such a big event doesn't get any easier. I still have the nerves but it was good to get back out and shoot the big competitions again."
"My advice for younger athletes looking to progress to national level is to believe in yourself and to never give up! If you put in the work and believe in yourself I believe you can make it!"
Sinead took silver in the Compound Junior Women on Saturday and finished 17th in the Compound Women on Sunday.

Max Oakley

We spoke to Max about his experiences over the weekend, "I came third overall at the qualification stage on Saturday, and went on to do the head to heads. I lost my bronze medal match but it was still a good experience.

"This is my first time competing in the Seniors event at the National Indoor Championships - it has felt more pressured. I had to focus a lot more, and found I didn't relax enough. Although I didn't make the cut this time, I know what to expect now and think next year's Indoor Championships will be easier. I'm pretty pleased with how I've done over the weekend. I'll be shooting as much as I can next year - I'm really looking forward to the start of the outdoor season.”

Fletch the Lion

The European Youth Championships 2022 (to be hosted at Lilleshall NSC) mascot Fletch the Lion had a great weekend. He managed to meet a lot of new friends and get photos with a lot of you!

Parents at the Junior Indoor National Championships 2021

We managed to spend some time with some of the parents of the youth archers at the competition.

Adam Williams, 16, from Redhill Archers won the boys under 16 longbow.

Adam loves shooting longbow because it's the "original bow” and he enjoys it because of its simplicity "It's my second indoor season, I've done longbow for two years but started on recurve four or five years ago.” Adam enjoys shooting at a competition with lots of other juniors as he's usually the only junior shooting at his club's longbow club night.

Finlay Clark of Wyke and York Archers won silver in the boys under 16 compound.

The Junior Indoor National Championships 2021 was Finlay's third time at the indoors, but the first time he's won a medal. "My best moment was meeting my idol Mike Schloessor,” he said.

Finlay also shot in the National Indoor Championships the day after for the first time too and finished 39th in the Compound Men.

Saffron Knowles, 11, Bowmen of Wadebridge.

Saffron's mum, Emma, said: "It was her first time at the Junior Indoor Championships. It was also her first time at the Junior Outdoor National Championships as well this year and she came first in her age group and bow type, the under 12 recurve ladies.

"She loves coming to competitions and seeing her friends, there's a really strong community in archery. Saffron has made friends from all over the country and has even met her archery twin, another girl who shoots in the same category as her who also shares her birthday.”

Isobel Lindsley-Frost, 13, Royal Richmond.

Isobel's mum, Sasha, said: "This is the biggest competition we go to. Isobel won her age category (under 14 girls recurve). I used to get quite nervous, I couldn't look when she was shooting but now, I just let them get on with it and know she'll come to me if she has a problem.”

Zeyd Ajraou, 16, Nuneaton Archers.

Zeyd's dad, Abed said: "He's been shooting at the Junior Indoor National Championships since he was 12. We love coming here, it's a great atmosphere. At some competitions, there are not many juniors but this is just for juniors so it feels very special as it's for them.”


The Junior Indoor National Champions for 2021 are:

Recurve Junior's: Callum Piggott and Emelia Hughes

Compound Junior's: Oscar Orford and Hallie Boulton

Longbow Junior's: Adam Williams and Dotty Holt

Barebow Junior's: Oliver Hicks and Amelia Chumber

All age group winners can be found here.

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