You could say Bryson Watson has archery in his blood.
It’s a sport that’s been in his family for a long time, and he first picked up a bow when he was four. Now, the sport is taking him to the 2018 B.C. Winter Games.
Watson, a 16-year-old Correlieu Secondary School student, has been doing archery for 12 years.
“My family is big into archery, so I just kind of inherited it,” he says.
“I had a six-year break in the middle, from 2011 to 2017, but that probably was a poor choice. I really enjoy archery now. I wasn’t enjoying it at the end there, which is fair; archery isn’t for everyone. But it ended up being for me.”
Watson’s mother, Jennifer Herman, says he got back into it because he was having a lot of success shooting grouse with his bow.
Watson trains with the Quesnel River Archers club and also trains at home.
“Right now, I’m doing a lot of shoot-offs, mainly with my family, my cousin and my grandpa,” says Watson.
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This will be Watson’s first time competing at the B.C. Winter Games, but two of his cousins have competed in the Games before.
Watson and his family members are all happy he qualified for this year’s games, which take place Feb. 22-25 in Kamloops.
“My grandpa was telling me I would [qualify], so I wasn’t totally surprised, but I was happy,” says Watson.
Watson, who recently won a silver medal in the Quesnel River Archers’ Gold Pan Tournament, will be competing in the Cadet Male Compound category, for archers age 15, 16 and 17.
“I’m hoping to at least get third in my category and shoot as well as I can,” he says.
Watson’s father lives in Kamloops, and his other grandfather will get to see him compete as well.
As Watson gets ready for the big event, he is also preparing to compete in the provincial championships in Victoria at the end of March.
This is the first in the Observer’s profiles of Quesnel athletes who have qualified for B.C. Winter Games. Keep an eye out in future editions and online. Quesnel is sending athletes for archery, alpine skiing, gymnastics, ringette and Special Olympics basketball.