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Round Up: 2024 Soft Archery Championships

22 May 2024

Yesterday we had 11 primary schools with around 35 pupils across P4/5 and P6/7 compete at the 2024 Soft Archery Championships – returning after a 5 year hiatus.  There were schools from across Scotland competing including Gracemount Primary School, Fishcross Primary School, Tillicoultry Primary School, Hillview Primary School, Carlibar Primary School and Redwell Primary School.  As we lead up to the Paralympics and Olympics, the event was a nod to the 2024 Paris Games, giving pupils a taste of competitive archery.

After a quick warm up, the pupils got straight into the qualifying rounds to allow pupils to get some practice, help prepare for the main event, as well allow them to adapt to the hall conditions and equipment.  This involved each team of 3 shooting 27 arrows – getting 9 arrows each to shoot.

From here, the schools were then split into pools.  There were six P4/5 teams which meant two pools of three teams were formed playing a series of round robin ties, which followed same 27 arrow format   The winners of each pool played a Gold medal match, second places a Silver medal match and Bronze medal match for the teams who finished third in their pools.  It was Hillview P.S came out on top clinching the gold medal winning 131-104 over Gracemount P.S.  In the Bronze medal match Gracemount P.S faced off against each other.  For 5th & 6th place playoff it was a convincing performance from Carlibar P.S  who scored 134 to win this tie over Fishcross P.S. 

With P6/7 category having only 5 teams this meant pupils competing across a series of round-robin fixtures.  There were some really close encounters including the opening tie between Redwell P.S and Carlibar P.S (103-97) which demonstrated the impressive level of the pupils.  In the final pool standings it was Tillicoutry P.S with a score of 676 who took Gold, narrowly beating silver medallist Gracemount P.S team with 650.  Again there was not much separating third and fourth, with Redwell P.S pipping Carlibar P.s to theBronze with only 21 points of difference.

We would like to take this opportunity to say well done to all the pupils who competed.  You did you school proud with your effort, determination and excellent behaviour throughout the day.

Robert Clark our Communities & Workforce Officer said when reflecting on the day:

‘‘It was great to see the competition after 5 years out due to COVID.  All the children really seemed to enjoy the day.  Thanks to everyone who helped out on the day in particular Duncan and the Young Leaders – it was full team effort and the event would not have been possible without them! We hope this has inspired a next generation of archers with many different schools across Scotland attending.’’

Of course we need to thank everyone who made the event possible and such a success.  This includes Duncan McNeil from East Kilbride Archery Club (EKAC) who was our Field Captain which ensured that the event flowed and conducted in a safe manner.  Also, we had S2 Sports Leaders from Eastwood High School who supported as Scorers, recording scores for the qualifying, round-robin and head-to-head ties.  It was very much appreciated the effort and enthusiasm that the leaders displayed who provided a really positive experience for the young primary pupils competing. 

Further to this we would like to thank the Eastwood High School PE Department who arranged training for the leaders and provided the facility space during school hours.  We also appreciate having U21 Scotland Pathway Academy athlete Kirsten Ward for showing the kids what real archery kit looked like and for presenting the medals and thanks to our board director Ainsley Ward for attending.  Finally, a thanks to the staff, teachers and Active Schools Coordinators who promoted this opportunity and who supported in bringing the pupils along to the competition.

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