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Redmond teen makes national archery team
Fifteen-year-old Alexis Drake, a Redmond resident and student at the International Community School in Kirkland, recently was named to the United States Archery Team in the Cadet division (17 and under).
Although she has been shooting for just two years, she took second place at both the World Archery Americas International Championships and the South Dakota Cup earlier this year.
She trains with local coach Mike Wichser five days a week at Kenmore Gun Range. Wichser has been in the sport 35 years as a participant and coach, and has coached eight junior national champions as well as two junior world team members.
"What Alexis has accomplished in two years is amazing," Wichser said. "(It's) the fastest rise to the elite level of any of my shooters in 25 years of coaching."
Currently, Drake shoots a recurve bow outdoors at 60 meters, the only Olympic archery sport. Recurve bows require the archer to hold more than 30 pounds of weight and does not allow magnified sights like other bows.
“I’m still amazed I made the national team – it hasn’t really hit me yet," said Drake, who maintains a 4.0 GPA. “I use to dream about archery – in my mind it just seemed so smooth, perfect, and right. My dreams were inspired by books and movies and now they are driven by a passion.”
Starting in September 2011, Drake will begin the archery trials to qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games in London.