JAI Francis (15) will represent Australia at the World Youth Archery Championships in Spain after a record-breaking performance at this year’s nationals.
The High Wycombe bowman shone at the 2019 National Youth Archery Championships in NSW in April taking home gold and bronze as well as breaking the world record for a 60m distance.
Francis trains with Kalamunda Governor Stirling Archers in Maida Vale and has broken many club records since he first picked up the bow at the age of 12.
“I tried many sports such as football, jujitsu, basketball and water polo but never really felt they were for me,” he said.
“For my 12th birthday my aunty offered to pay for some archery sessions.
“I hadn’t thought much about this sport before but liked the idea and couldn’t wait to give it a go.
“After trying one session I was hooked and have not looked back since.”
In 2016 Francis won the state and national indoor competition and was approached by Archery Western Australia to apply for the 2017 Australian nationals state team.
“From that day on I worked hard to make the state team by winning all state competitions, indoor, field, target and clout,” he said.
“ I am proud that I did make the team and competed very successfully in the 2017 Youth Nationals winning two gold and one bronze as well as the Best All Round Male Compound award.”
Francis said he was looking forward to the future.
“The type of bow (compound) that I shoot is not in the Olympics but we are hoping it will be in the next Commonwealth Games in Birmingham England 2022,” he said.
“This is something I will be keeping a close eye on with the hope of competing.”
The World Youth Archery Championships run from August 19 to 25 in Spain.
To help fund Francis’ trip to Madrid go www.gofundme.com/help-me-get-to-youth-worlds-in-madrid