Tak­ing on the world

Camp­bell, Boudreau look­ing for­ward to world cham­pi­onships

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - FRONT PAGE - BY JA­SON MAL­LOY

Caitlin Camp­bell, Lu­cas Boudreau leave Fri­day to join Team Canada for the world youth and ju­nior biathlon cham­pi­onships.

Caitlin Camp­bell doesn’t have a lot of free time and she’s not com­plain­ing.

She trains with her Biathlon P.E.I. team­mates five or six days a week and trains 15 hours a week on her own — year-round.

“It takes up my life, ba­si­cally,” she smiled Wed­nes­day, “be­tween that and school and work.”

But the 19-year-old Cen­tral Bedeque na­tive’s ded­i­ca­tion has paid off.

Camp­bell and Emy­vale’s Lu­cas Boudreau leave Fri­day to join Team Canada for the world youth and ju­nior cham­pi­onships in Ro­ma­nia from Jan. 25 to Feb. 2.

“It was a goal to make this team this year, so it’s nice to achieve that goal with the work you put in,” Boudreau said.

The sport com­bines crosscoun­try ski­ing and shoot­ing tar­gets with a ri­fle in an out­door range.

“This year I feel I’ve taken big leaps with my ski­ing and my shoot­ing,” Boudreau said. “This is the first year I’ve ever (reached the podium) out­side the Mar­itimes. I’m start­ing to see re­sults now.”

Last year, Boudreau said, he would have strug­gled to hit 80 per cent of his tar­gets. This year, he has only missed hit­ting 80 per cent twice.

“It makes a dif­fer­ence when­ever you don’t have to ski penalty loops,” Boudreau said.

Camp­bell also has set 80 per cent shoot­ing as her goal for the worlds.

The Is­lan­ders are un­sure what the com­pe­ti­tion will be like, but they want to put their best foot for­ward on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

“You can’t re­ally think about it too much,” Camp­bell said of the other ath­letes. “Ski my own race and hope for the best.”

Boudreau is look­ing for­ward to new com­pe­ti­tion.

“I’ve been rac­ing against a lot of the same guys,” he said. “It’s go­ing to be fun to see what it’s like rac­ing against so many other new faces.”

Boudreau said he ex­pects the other com­peti­tors to be strong and the at­mos­phere to be in­tense.

He pointed to other Is­lan­ders, in­clud­ing Mark and Menno Arendz and Caitlin’s brother, Carsen, who have ex­celled in the sport as trail­blaz­ers for Is­land biath­letes.

“It helps that we’ve have nu­mer­ous ath­letes go through be­fore and do it,” he said. “It’s just nice to have those guys to look up to and see that it is pos­si­ble when­ever you put your mind to it.”

Camp­bell is com­pet­ing in the ju­nior women’s divi­sion and Boudreau in the youth men’s com­pe­ti­tion. They both have three Cana­dian team­mates in their re­spec­tive cat­e­gory.

Camp­bell and Boudreau are both hop­ing to make Canada’s re­lay team.

JA­SON MAL­LOY/THE GUARDIAN

Biath­lete Lu­cas Boudreau takes a shot dur­ing Wed­nes­day’s prac­tice in Brook­vale.

JA­SON MAL­LOY/THE GUARDIAN

Biath­lete Caitlin Camp­bell skis down a hill to­wards the range dur­ing Wed­nes­day’s prac­tice in Brook­vale.

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