Archaeologist Faye Wills is digging in hoping to realise her Olympic dream.
The 24-year-old shooter from Kennington gave up the sport for two years due to financial reasons but a trip to a Talent Identification Day last October saw her win a place on British Shooting’s Talent Pathway to train in the Olympic skeet discipline.
Wills got the shooting bug while working at Greenfields Academy at Sturry, near Canterbury, admitting: “I was hooked.”
However, her commitment to the hard work and dedication necessary for anyone selected for the Pathway was tested only last week after she was delayed with her husband Tony on the couple’s return from a holiday in Mexico, a prize for winning a competition on Twitter.
It meant a rush home from the airport, before jumping straight into the car to drive to the National Shooting Centre at Bisley in Surrey for a prearranged lesson with her coach.
She arrived with just minutes to spare but despite the lack of sleep was delighted with the session.
Writing on her personal blog, she said: “The adrenaline and excitement of shooting so well eliminated a vast amount of my tiredness....without doubt my best training session so far.
“Everything fell into brilliantly, I was ecstatic.”
Faye’s journey to the Pathway has had its own difficulties – having given up the sport, being unable to afford travel, equipment and entry fees.
She eventually returned to the sport two years ago, winning place county competitions, a place in the Kent skeet team and invited to shoot on the Olympic trap team.
Faye said: “I am presently working as a freelance on a site near Aylesham and also have a second job working at Eurotunnel in Folkestone.
“I am still largely self-funded, and also receive support from the Kent Sport Fund FANS Scheme, while Tony supports me in every way possible.
“The sport isn’t cheap – 1,000 cartridges cost £200 which cover 10 shoots while 100 clays can be anything between £28 and £35, plus fuel costs.”
Faye admits the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo may come to soon but having rediscovered her shooting mojo, she is now targeting 2024.
Paris or Los Angeles are vying to host those Games, with a decision expected soon.
Faye Wills takes aim