Two local athletes brought home medals from the B.C. Winter Games which wrapped up in Penticton Feb. 28.
Aiden Hare of Parksville earned a silver and a gold in archery and Olivia Bau earned silver in figure skating.
Hare, took second in the boys two-day aggregate bare bow category and first in the boys match play bare bow.
It was the first archery competition the 15-year-old took part in, other than the qualifier, he said. He took up archery when a friend invited him along last spring and said for now he’s still just having fun.
Said 14-year-old Olivia Bau of Nanoose Bay who earned silver in the pre-novice skating category:
“It felt really good, I haven’t gotten that big a win before.”
The only other Parksville Qualicum Beach individual to earn a medal at this year’s B.C. Winter Games, Bau competed at the games two years ago and came in fifth in a younger age category, so this felt like a real accomplishment, she said.
Tyler Bidnyk, Bau’s Sandy Shores Skating Club coach and the Zone 6 team coach, said she also came in fifth in her age group at the most recent provincials, “so to finish second was a real accomplishment.”
“She definitely has the skill to go all the way,” Bidnyk said, adding that there are so many complicated factors that go into a sport career it’s hard to say, but that “she’s super talented, a super hard worker, she’s the whole package.”
Bau lights up when asked about her skating ambitions and said she is interested in pursuing figure skating as a career, and she’s putting in the work to prove it spending at least 12 hours a week on the ice and at least that much more time in off-ice training and planning.
The young athletes were representing the Zone 6 Team (Vancouver Island-Central Coast) at the games, which brought back 53 medals in all, including 14 gold.
More than 1,700 athletes, coaches and officials and 1,800 volunteers took part in the bi-annual games in Penticton, which happens to be where the games were launched in 1978 according to their website. Visit www.bcgames.org for more information and results.