This weekend, Britain's Olympic archers will be heading off to Macau to begin final preparations for Beijing.

Alan Wills, Larry Godfrey, Simon Terry, Alison Williamson, Naomi Folkard and Charlotte Burgess will be carrying British hopes of medals in this competition, and I genuinely believe they have prospects, both in the individual events, and certainly in the team tournaments.

They, and the 12 Paralympians who will be heading off later in August, were given a hearty send-off last weekend, with a big barbeque reception, and it was hard not to be excited on their behalf.

Britain's archers have high expectations, thanks in part to coach Peter Suk

Just by qualifying to take part, they have achieved what most of us can only ever dream of.

It was a pleasant evening, enjoyed by all, with the archers looking relaxed and confident, while partners, parents and other family members looked on with great pride.

And isn't it always interesting what you find out about people and their families at these kinds of events? You know the sort of thing I mean - talents that we never knew existed. On this occasion, credit must go to head coach Peter Suk and his wife, who proved themselves a musical couple of some note.

Peter Suk has done an outstanding job in the past three years and his impact is already making its mark in the countdown to the London 2012 Olympics, with the names Emma Downie and Tom Barber springing immediately to mind.

Both of them are reserves for this Olympics, but both have enormous potential, and - all things being equal - will be starting to make their impact felt over the next few years on the international stage, which they have already trodden with distinction.

Emma only took up archery six years ago, and after her raw and natural talent was spotted early on, Peter Suk has spent much time helping her continual development.

He has also invested much time and effort into the development of Tom, who's just 16, but a young man who can really make his mark over the next few years.

They are two to look out for in the longer term, but for now the attention is on the immediate future, and Beijing next month.

Nobody underestimates the task at hand, and the competition will be intense - but our archers are well prepared, determined, and confident in their own form and ability.

And hopefully that will be the cue for another pleasant barbeque on the terrace at Lilleshall, this time to raise a glass in celebration.

Peter Jones is a member of the sports team at BBC World and media adviser to archery's UK governing body, the GNAS - or Archery GB. Our FAQs should answer any questions you have.


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