Competing in any sport requires intense focus, training, and discipline. Brennan Laing ’23 has learned how to master the balance between academics, faith, and training to become a Junior Olympic shooting champion, awarded the gold medal in 10m Air Pistol at the Junior Olympic state match this January in the Men’s junior category for the third year running.
Laing competed against four athletes currently on the US Olympic team, as well as many others from across the nation. Maintaining his #1 state ranking, Laing now continues onto the Junior Olympic National Championships this April at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. He is on the cusp of being part of the US Olympic development team for shooting sports, with a chance to be part of the Paris 2024 Olympics for Team USA.
For Laing, balance and discipline have been key. In addition to the typical full plate of a high school senior applying to colleges, Laing also earned the rank of Eagle Scout this winter, is preparing to receive his First Communion and Confirmation this spring through Catholic Central’s Order of Christian Initiation for Teens (OCIT), and has been an active member of the marching, symphony, and jazz bands –all while maintaining a rigorous 15-hour weekly training schedule. Laing has also already begun flying lessons, in preparation for studying aviation at Eastern Michigan after graduation.
“Schoolwork takes priority over shooting, but weekend practices and matches are unchanged by school,” said Laing. “During practice, I try to work on the mental aspect of the sport, I try to make myself focus on shooting and nothing else since there are many distractions during a competition.”
Laing’s Eagle project entailed constructing a three-sided animal shelter for Maybury Farm in Northville. The farm relies solely on donations and volunteer efforts to exist, and Laing’s project leaves a lasting impact. In his scouting career, Laing earned 44 merit badges to which he was awarded two bronze, one gold, and one silver palm.
“I have no doubt that his discovery and exploration of his Catholic faith helped him, and continues to help him as he hits these achievements,” said Mrs. Laing. “The Catholic Central community has sculpted a young man that cherishes his faith and takes to heart the meaning of Brotherhood!”
Catholic Central sends its best to Laing as he prepares to head to Colorado Springs this April.