Pro-Shooter Spotlight: Kelly Ward
Pro-Shooter Spotlight: Kelly WardApril 18, 2008 - Joel
1. How many years have you been competing in archery?
I have been competing for over 20 years!
2. How did you get into the sport of archery? When did you make the decision to go pro?
I shot with my brother back in the 80's (!) and decided this was a good sport for me to be competitive in. I wasn't the fast runner or cheerleader type… leaving archery to fit the bill and satisfy my competitive drive. In 1994 I won 5 out of 6 national events! I decided to step up my training regimen and reach my goal of becoming among the best women archers in the country. I went pro in 1995 and during my first year I finished 4th overall for shooter of the year! It was very exciting for me to even be competitive with the best of the best!
3. What class do you compete in?
I compete in Woman's Pro.
4. What is your equipment set up?
I have different set ups for different venues. For indoors, I shoot Mathews Apex7 set at 50lbs, with 2512 arrows, accompanied with a 4x scope. For 3D and field tournaments, I shoot a Mathews Prestige, set at 54 lbs, with 620 ACE arrows, and a 4x scope. All of my bow set-ups include a Doinker stabilizer, Axcel sights, Classic 4x scope, and a Carter back-tension release. When I shoot moving targets… I shoot the Mathews Apex7 set at 60lbs, with a Carter index release, and ACE's if they apply (2212 aluminums if needed).
5. Describe your most memorable archery moment.
It really is hard to pick just one! I have so many to choose from… From my first big win… to the silver metal in the Great Outdoors Games… to ASA Shooter of the Year… IBO Triple crown… tying for first place in Vegas (only to settle with 2nd in a shoot down). If I had to pick just one; it would be Vegas.
I was fortunate to win the silver metal in the Great Outdoor Games. Since it was the Games first year, I was a bit reluctant to go. But I went and just had a great time! I had people coming up to me in public to ask if I was the girl that beat the men on TV!!! Of course, this was just the best feeling! But the best part; the next year ESPN wanted to do a promo commercial with me! They wanted it to be bit personnel so I was lucky enough to include my mom and my grandma. Now I have my spunky 89 year old grandmother immortalized on tape. She has gone to be with her savior, but I get to reflect on the joy that my success brought her and my mom every time I watch that commercial. I relish these life long cherished memories and realize how fortunate I have been in archery. Don't get me wrong; I love to win events, but that was something special that could not be replaced for any amount of wins. Sorry to ramble on!
6. Do you have any pre tournament rituals? What are they?
Not really, I do try and steer clear of caffeine. I also will call my husband so he can remind me that I can ‘get it done' with the best of'em!
7. What do you do to keep focused while competing?
WOW! I guess think about the office!
8. Who has made the biggest impact on your archery career?
The biggest impact has come from a couple of really close friends that share the passion of the sport with me and my husband who supports me thru-out this career. And I cannot forget OBT; my best buddy who has pushed me more than I thought possible. When I first started to shoot he told me, "K-Ward you have talent, but you need targets." I said, "Well, I know but….." Needless to say we now have an indoor range, outdoor 3d range with 70 plus targets, a field range, and anything you could ever want to shoot at! He has delivered!
9. If you had to pick a song to sum up your archery career what would it be and why? Wow, you got me there! Something from Queen I'm sure!
10. Describe your practice routine.
I shoot indoor rounds about 3 nights a week and practice outdoors on alternating days. Some weeks I shoot every day and some weeks I don't get to shoot but a couple of days. I always try to make good shots in practice. If I am having an off day I will pack it up for the next day!
11. What is the next goal you would like to accomplish in your archery career?
I would like to leave a mark in field and indoor archery. I have been lucky to win many titles in 3D. Just this year, I have made a mark in winning the NAA Indoor Nationals… so maybe I am on my way!
12. What do you do in your spare time and when you not are competing?
Spare time? What spare time?! My husband and I have a farm in the Virginia Mountains; we like to go there to relax and take in nature.
13. What is your home town and where do you currently reside?
Greensboro, NC; born and raised!
14. Do you have any nicknames?
My dad always called me toehead! I have no idea why, the only thing I can think of is that my hair is as dark as it gets without being black. Most of my friends call me k-ward.
15. Favorites: Food, Movie, Ice Cream Flavor, TV Show, Restaurant, book…?
Favorite movie: Camelot with Richard Geer and Shawn Connery. Favorite food: my husband always makes me a scratch birthday cake….yellow cake with chocolate icing! Very yummy! Favorite TV show: I used to watch Days of our Lives until I got put in a timeout, so now I am addicted to House, 24, My Names Earl, and Dirty Jobs. Favorite Ice Cream: Chocolate, is there any other kind!?!? Favorite Book: I have read all of John Sauls novels; very scary!