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Meet The Archer David Uprichard

I’ve met David Uprichard quite a few times now, and unusually (for me), the more time I spend with him, the more I like him. He is a quiet person, not typically shy perhaps, but a man with a calm confidence, an air of capability and reliability, a person who inspires trust. David began shooting back in 2004, when his long time friend and neighbour, Wellesley McGown invited him to have a go. Wellesley’s repeated invitations eventually prompted David to decide that a nice stress relieving hobby might be the antidote to his increasingly hectic and all consuming occupation. Within two weeks of starting to shoot, David was hooked, and determined to improve. He purchased his first bow, a recurve, the first of a series of Hoyts, which he continues to shoot to this day.

Kilmore was at this point, an Archery GB club, under the auspices of WA. In 2006, David was invited to represent Northern Ireland in The Commonwealth Target Archery Championships in India. Unfortunately, due to the nature of his work and his sole responsibility for calving 40 cows that month, he was unable to go. In 2008, whilst still shooting Archery GB, David went to the British Indoor Championships and was part of the Northern Irish squad, who placed third. This was his first big international. David continued to compete regularly, and during a family holiday to Canada in the summer of 2008, he took part in a 720 in Ontario, sharing a target with Canadian Olympian, Crispin Duenas as he set a new Canadian Record, which David signed as scorer. His career highlight (to date) remains WFAC in South Africa in 2018. The tournament was conducted over four separate field courses, all on private game reserves. David recalls the experience vividly, not only for the spectacular wildlife and scenery, but also because he was 4th overall in his bow style and won the “B” class Gold medal. David’s competition timeline is impressive to say the least, what is even more interesting to note is that he actually competes in two bow styles , preferring recurve for targets and compound for 3ds.

Aside from David’s impressive and varied history as a competitor, he is also a level three IFAA instructor, a qualification he gained at Kilmore , during the first ever non European mainland running of an IFAA level three course. David not only gained his level three, but played a bit part in facilitating the course at kilmore. This experience aided him during the planning and successful hosting of EIAC in 2020 in Belfast, where he was Director of Shooting. Despite covid, the archers that were able to attend declared it to be superbly staged and impeccably run.

When I asked David why he became an instructor, he told me that he had to be persuaded to do it because he felt more comfortable with cows than people, but that the experience helped to improve his own archery as much as he was helping others, so in giving back, he still gained so much. As a member of the Northern Ireland Target Squad he was coached to a high level and believes that support is vital to correct development. His advice to all archers, no matter their level of experience or bow style, is to put in the work. He says there is no substitute for hard work, but the efforts must be actually productive and not detrimental, which could be the case without supportive and directed help from a suitably qualified coach. “There’s no point in practicing the wrong thing” as David succinctly puts it. Perhaps it is because of his background in farming and having sole responsibility for the family farm that gives him an unshrinking and steadfast work ethic. The solid determination and quiet ability to complete whatever task is at hand is an attitude that I find inspirational and truly admire. He maintains that an open mind is the most important attribute an archer can have, and he certainly embodies this, having gone so far beyond his comfort zone and achieved so much, and in two bow styles simultaneously. He says he still gets nervous, particularly indoors, despite his wealth of experience.

UprichardDavid’s future plans include EIAC in Finland and the Dunbrody 100 in 2022, WIAC in the UK and EBHC in Finland, both in 2023.

David’s gear: Recurve Bow; Hoyt ionx 27" riser. Uukha VX+HM limbs 36lb ‘long’. (39lbs on David’s fingers) Giving a 72" bow. Custom made strings by Wellesley McGown. Stabilisation; Win & Win HMC 22 30" long rod, 13" short rods and V bar. 5" Extender. Extra weight on the end of the long rod. Hi Wrist Jagar grip. Beiter pressure button and clicker. Shibuya arrow rest. Sure-Loc Sight with Titan sight pin. AAE finger Tab (bought in Canada 2008). Avalon Chest guard (very important) Shoe lace finger sling Arrows; Carbon Express Medallion XR 600. Compound Bow; APA Mamba M34 (2015) 34 1/4" axle to axle 6 3/4" brace height 55lb draw weight Merlin 30" long rod 11" side rod Trophy Taker arrow rest with blade Truball Axcel AX4500 sight Ten Zone scope with Fibre Optic pin (no lens) T.R.U. Ball HT Back Tension Release Shoe lace finger sling Arrows; Carbon Express Medallion XR 500 with 110 grain points

Competition Timeline: Feb 2008; British Indoor Championships.( NI team finished 3rd ) Summer 2008; David shot a 720 round in Ontario, Canada alongside Crispin Duenas, who set a new Canadian Record. WIAC 2015 Estonia (Recurve) EBHC 2016 Austria (Compound) EIAC 2016 Spain (Recurve)…Bowstyle winner in the Flint Round WIAC 2017 (Recurve) Romania EIAC 2018 Hungary (Recurve). They had an indoor 3D competition running alongside the main EIAC competition and David won his Bowstyle in that. EBHC 2018 (Compound) Germany WFAC 2018 South Africa (Recurve). EFAC 2019 Holland (Recurve) Archery Ireland 3D Championships 2019…David set a new Masters Compound record for 1 day and 2 days EIAC 2020 Northern Ireland (Recurve). IFAF 3D Championships 2021…David set a new VMFU record for the 3D Hunting One Arrow round and the 3D Standard Two Arrow Round. UKIFAC… David shot the most recent Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales editions, all with his recurve bow.

Coaching: Level 1 IFAA instructor Certification May 2013 Level 2 early 2016 Level 3 Oct 2017.

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