Local archery prodigy takes gold at Canada Games

J.D. Potié
QUYON March 13, 2019
Quyon-raised archery phenomenon Alexandra Paquette is planning on propelling her sharpshooting talents to the international stage.
After taking home the gold medal in two events at the Canada Games in Red Deer, Alta. this past February, Paquette has cemented herself as one of the best young archers in the country, putting her in a position to compete in global events in the near future.
Despite her many successes of the past and rack of hooks overflowing with medals in her room, she said that nothing in her career has made her happier than being crowned as champion at the Canada Games. She calls it a culmination of seven years of blood, sweat, and sacrifice, which she admits wasn’t easy, especially on her parents.
“Getting this gold medal was more important than just winning the nationals,” said Paquette. “Mostly because I’ve been trying to go for seven years. I’ve worked so hard, for such a long time to get something and finally got it. Not only do I finally get it, but I got two golds on top of it. It represents seven years in the making.”
Despite feeling jetlagged from the two-hour time difference in Alberta during the competition, Paquette said she was certain that nothing in the world could’ve distracted her from getting the job done.
“When I’m really concentrated, there could be a bomb that goes off beside me and I will not move,” said Paquette. “I got that focus thing down pat. A lot of my competitors tell me that when I’m really focused I look intimidating. Well, I guess they mean it in a good way.”
Paquette certainly believes it’s a good thing. She said that being so focused on one thing keeps everything more lucid, thus allowing her to control the moment instead of letting the opposite manifest itself.

Competing in an economically taxing sport like archery, Paquette said she’s grateful for the countless sacrifices her father and coach has made for her, over the years, adding that she gave him a very personal special thank you after officially winning the gold in Red Deer.
“I had written on my card where my name-tag was on my target, I wrote we finally did it daddy! All the years of work that you’ve helped me get here, all the years that you’ve helped me be able to participate to this tournament, it’s finally paid off.”
Paquette largely credits her father for her success, as well as getting her into archery.
After purchasing her first bow when she was six years old, Paquette said she begged him to let her shoot arrows, as soon as she could. Always determined to participate in the sport, Paquette claims to have taken her first shot on her sixth birthday, which was on a cold, snowy January morning.
Now 18 years old and seeing her medal count accumulate by the competition, she isn’t planning on looking back anytime soon. Instead she asks herself what’s next and what’s bigger?
“Having the gold medal right now, it kind of closes the door nationally,” said Paquette. “But it kind of opens the door to more things. It was kind of that last step to actually move on.”
Paquette said her next step is to compete on the world stage. She’s looking at the upcoming world championships and even the Olympics as goals in the making and feels confident about where the sport might take her.
Her only problem right now, is finding a place in her room to display all her medals.
“I basically need another rack,” said Paquette. “There are a lot of medals. I don’t know. I’ve honestly lost count.”
Now, with no concrete roadmap detailing her trajectory, Paquette says she’s trying her best to enjoy the journey for as long as it lasts, adding that she’s not intending on retiring any time soon despite the sacrifices she’ll need to make.
“It’s something that changes from year to year. People have told me, if you’re gonna retire, retire when you’re up there,” said Paquette. “But, I personally know that my journey is not done. I know that I won’t be retiring anytime soon. But I have noticed that it will be a struggle, because I’m in nursing right now.”

 

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