Sharon Vennard

Nationality:

British

Discipline:

Target Recurve

Archery Career Span:

15 years

Performance Archery Coaching Period:

2006 – Present

Major Achievements:

• 2009 Arizona Cup – Ladies Compound Team – Silver

• 2011 Czech Ranking Tournament – Ladies Recurve Team – Gold Medal

• 2012 Paralympic Games – Ladies Recurve – Quarter Finalist

Coaching Story:

I started shooting in 1997 as a recurve archer and represented Northern
Ireland every year from 1998 until 2006. I suffer from osteoarthritis and
by 2006 I had had two spinal operations and pain was making shooting
increasingly difficult. I was on the verge of giving up archery completely
until Alistair suggested I try changing to compound. Within a year of
changing, under Alistair’s tutelage, I became Northern Ireland Outdoor Target
Champion and Irish Open Indoor Champion. I represented NI at the British
Indoor Championships and Euronations from 2007 until 2010.

In 2009 I was classified as a disabled archer and was invited onto the GB
Paralympic Squad. In April 2009 I represented GB at the Arizona Cup and
was a member of the Ladies Compound Team, winning the silver medal.

In 2010, I represented GB again at the Arizona Cup. By August of that
year, however, my condition had worsened and I was having problems with
balance and stability. I started shooting from a stool and found that this
enabled me to change back to recurve.

Alistair continued as my coach and in 2011 I represented GB at the Para
World Championships in Turin as well as tournaments in the Czech Republic
and at Stoke Mandeville. As a member of the Ladies Recurve Team I won
Gold medals at Czech Republic and Stoke.

In 2012 I won both Paralympic selection shoots and gained a place on the
GB team at the Paralympics. In July I won silver medals in both individual and
team at Stoke Mandeville.

The highlight of my archery career was competing at the London 2012
Paralympic Games. I was a quarter finalist in the individual Ladies Recurve
where I was defeated by the eventual Gold medal winner.

I could not have achieved any of this without Alistair’s knowledge and
coaching ability in both recurve and compound. In fact without his input six
years ago I would have stopped shooting completely.

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