Dan Repacholi

Dan Repacholi is not only a champion shooter, but he’s a Federal MP who is rapidly changing opinions – and is in the running to compete at the Paris Olympics

Prefer the audio version?

Dan Repacholi – a national star

DAN REPACHOLI is a household name in Australian shooting as a champion in the 10m air and 50m .22 pistol events.

With 5 Olympics and a handful of Commonwealth Games medals under his belt, Dan is also a Federal MP after winning the Division of Hunter in NSW for the ALP in 2022.

A young Dan Repacholi

Then 23yo Dan Repacholi with David Moore after winning gold at the 50m event at the 2006 Commonwealth Games

That places him in an exclusive class of MPs who have already been on the world stage such as Zali Steggall and John Alexander – but is going one step further

Dan’s not only still competing at the top level of pistol shooting in Australia, but is currently in the running for pre-selection to compete for Australia at this year’s Paris Olympics.

Imagine that – a sitting MP who is still in line to compete at the Olympics … in shooting!

Dan’s electorate result

The Division of Hunter in NSW includes the Hunter Valley towns of Cessnock, Singleton and Muswellbrook as well as the urban areas on the western shore of Lake Macquarie.

As you will hear, this area has a lot of shooters who have been knocking on his door – in his words “hundreds and hundreds of calls every month” from shooters who are concerned about what’s happening with our gun laws.

Dan Repacholi - Division of Hunter

Dan makes the valid point that it is the job of an MP to listen to constituents’ concerns – which he does. His area has approximately 135,000 constituents.

Compare this with the state electorate of Darling Range in WA which as around 31,000 constituents.

Hugh Jones MP

That’s around the quarter the size of Dan’s electorate, and is held by the elusive , Hugh Jones, who runs a mile whenever shooters who live in his area approach him. 

You might recall we wrote this article on the elusive Hugh Jones last year – and will surface again as the 2025 WA State Election approaches.

What is encouraging about Dan’s approach, is that shooters are keen to speak with him.

Each of them might think they lone voices, but it’s clear that they are not.

The significant number of shooters who call Dan’s office each month means means that their voices ARE being heard – and Dan’s in the right position to be able to relay their concerns to wherever they need to go

Reception

It’s not to hard to imagine that many on his side of politics have shown a interest in his chosen sport.

However, what we didn’t expect to hear was that he’s not only seeing interest from other political parties – including the Greens, and that the interest has been “massive”.

Dan Repacholi

Standing 2.02m, Dan is hard to miss. The funny thing is, David Moore (pictured from the 2006 Commonwealth Games is 6 feet tall himself. Is there something about pistol shooting we don’t know?

This level of interest is vital to the future of the shooting sports.

That’s because many of the problems shooters face, start with the assumptions about what we do 

Many of those are based on what people like politicians see on TV.

It’s made worse by  ‘gun control’ advocates who always lack the most basic of relevant qualifications – which is a firearms licence.

It’s like aviation safety: who could put any weight in the opinions of people who have no relevant qualifications, such a pilot’s licence or background in aviation engineering?

Yet those MPs can quickly find out from Dan how wrong those assumptions are, simply by asking the right questions.

What the shooting community needs to do

Throughout the interview, one thing that shone through was Dan’s burning passion for the shooting sports, and his desire to change views on it.

When we asked one question about what the shooting community can do to improve out lot, it was clear from the look on his face that we had asked exactly the right question.

PR podcast image - Dan RepacholiThat’s because it is his strong and passionate view that the shooting sports need to engage quality lobbyists to represent the sport to politicians everywhere, particularly at state level.

That’s because it is political skills – not shooting skills – that are needed to fix our political problems.

Dan specifically pointed to lobbyists who share our same values who can help navigate the political processes without the emotion that many of us would otherwise bring to the table.

That’s because political discussions are often technical and complex – and you can’t get those skills simply by being a shooter.

Some shooting organisations have, and continue to, engage lobbyists but their pockets simply aren’t deep enough to sustain this approach.

However, it what we need to do and we’re hopeful that Politics Reloaded will become a vehicle to support that.

Dan is also of the view that our leaders in the shooting community need to do a lot more to sell the benefits of what they do, for fear of how they might be treated in the media.  This is where lobbyists can also provide some help.

Pathway to Paris

Dan’s not quite there yet. There’s another event he needs to compete at in the Olympic selection process before heading off to yet another couple of events that will finalise the top 50 who will be going to Paris.

However his parliamentary colleagues remain very interested in his journey, and are asking the right questions. 

Let’s hope Dan makes it there – and comes home with even greater stories.


Why not put this on your club’s noticeboard? 

guest

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

LIKE OUR WORK?
SIGN UP to get our regular email updates.

You'll also get direct access to our podcasts to stay up to date while driving the car, on the way to work, or when you're tinkering in the shed!
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x