Bulkley Valley Biathletes Angus Tweedie and Ben Kinkela will be heading to Vernon Feb. 24-28 to represent the Northwest at the BC Winter Games as they look to capture the podium against some of the toughest competition in the province.
Both Tweedie and Kinkela qualified last month for the Winter Games and say although they have raced against most of the competitors for years it will be the execution of strategies that will bring them out on top.
“So far I’m pretty excited,” said Tweedie. “I’m looking forward to it because even though I know most of the people I’ll be racing against it’s going to be a new venue for me. Should be interesting.”
Over 1,500 participants are expected to turn out. Tweedie will be watching out for Sam Ruse and Marcus Kline, both very skilled at shooting and skiing. However Tweedie hopes both BV Biathletes will dawn the podium.
“I’d like to see two of us place in at least one of the races, if not all three of us,” Tweedie said.
Kinkela, the younger of the pair has just entered into a new skill level and is tightening up technique to ensure his best performance.
“I’m quite excited, never been before.” Kinkela said. “Hopefully it’s going to be a great time.
“Technique with skiing and to keep my breathing down for shooting.”
This will be the first Winter Games for the Smithers athletes. The Winter Games take place every two years which will give them two chances to be eligible for a birth at the games. This time around will be a learning experience for everyone including their coach, Peter Tweedie who says the athletes endurance level will play a big factor in winning their events.
“The team will have to withstand the lack of sleep,” said Tweedie. “There’s a lot going on, lot of activities, a lot of travel…so it’s focus when their there and let their training kick in.”
So far this year the BV Biathletes have had a great season, with solid victories at home and away the team looks as ready as they’ve ever been and are hoping to carry some of that momentum to the Winter Games as well.
“I’m as excited as they are. I’ve heard lots over the years about it. About different venues so very interested to see how it’s going to be.