Fast Back Ropes Coy Upchurch of
Ateam roper since he was 13 years old, Coy Upchurch is the general manager at Fast Back Ropes—a role he took on in late 2015.
Despite the relative newness of his position, Upchurch and Fast Back go back a ways, to before he had even begun his career in the rope industry.
“Back when I was still buying ropes for myself,” Upchurch noted, “I was buying Fast Back.”
When Upchurch did join the ropework force, he spent a solid 10 years with another company before finding his fit at Fast Back, and it’s a tale that parallels Fast Back’s own beginnings. Whereas Cactus Ropes perhaps exemplifies one end of the start-up spectrum with a crew that simply rolled up their sleeves and took their best shot at some- thing they technically knew nothing about, Fast Back represents the opposite end of the spectrum, where, in 1995, the entire crew came together with working knowledge of what would be required and how to do it.
And that kind of experience, Upchurch points out, makes each member of the team an asset.
“It’s a really good crew. The guys on the machines, they work on their own machines. I mean, I have input. And the shop manager, he has input, but we kind of turn these guys loose.
“The employees here have a lot of say in the final product,” Upchurch continued. “They’re very much concerned with the quality of the product and the rope that we’re putting out, and it’s very much a collective effort.”
A particular point of pride for Upchurch is the company’s commitment to attention to detail, which, he feels, allows for the best-feeling rope, right out of the twisties.
“There are differences in how we do things,” he explained. “It costs a little more money and it takes a little more time, but all the little things, I think, add up to a better-feeling rope.”
Upchurch’s love of team roping revolves around the great people in the community, and it’s a value that carries over into his work at Fast Back.
“One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is to get the best people you can get and listen to them. The team here, they’re not just punching the clock and getting their check. And, if a customer has a problem, the team here takes care of it quick. It’s not just the guys in the back. It’s the office, the endorsees, the sales team. It’s just a really good collection of people”
EMPLOYEE BILL SHRUM TIES EYES IN THE FAST BACK ROPE SHOP. INSET: COY UPCHURCH.