The SASP national staff would like to thank you very much for your patience as we carefully evaluated the possible scenarios for the 2020 SASP National Championships in July. The SASP recognizes that our athletes have lost so much this year, but in good conscience cannot hold Nationals in person at the Cardinal Center this year. Understanding the importance of a National Championship experience, we will instead proceed with a virtual match over a three-week window, July 5th-July 26th, complete with awards being sent to our winners. Registration is currently open and closes July 2nd at 12:00 PM CST.
This decision took careful consideration of a number of factors. This spring we kept a very close eye on how COVID-19 affected our communities and youth sports as a whole. It took time to get our bearings on the situation in a way we could confidently evaluate the logistics and safety of holding a large sporting event.
The safety of our members, staff, volunteers, partners and spectators is our first priority. Social distancing in our sport is extremely difficult. Our national staff has been carefully utilizing information from the Morrow County (OH) Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and representatives from the Cardinal Center. We were also lucky to have advisement from some of our members that are medical professionals who deal directly with COVID-19 in their communities. Additionally, we surveyed our coaches across both programs to get their feedback. With over 400 responses, this survey helped give us important member-driven data that helped shape our decision to proceed forward with the 2020 SASP National Championships as a virtual event.
Although we will not be able to come together for a physical match, the competitive spirit of the SASP National Championships is very much alive in virtual format. This format gives those who cannot yet travel due to local mandates or those who are uncomfortable with the thought of doing so the opportunity to compete at the national level. If the logistics of your team traveling to Ohio was previously a barrier to compete, you now have the opportunity to participate in a national championship this year. Already the largest action shooting event in the world, this gives the potential opportunity for our national championship to be bigger than ever.
This three-week window also allows for teams who participate in both the SASP and SCTP, the ability to participate in both National Championship events and the opportunity to compete in the CZ-USA Top Gun Challenge. Athletes competing in the CZ-USA Top Gun Challenge will shoot trap, skeet, a rifle discipline of choice, and a centerfire pistol (iron, optic, or 1911), with their scores from each event being compiled to calculate the winners.
Participating teams should observe their local guidelines and general best practices published by the CDC which is meant to supplement the respective local laws, rules, and regulations with which youth sports organizations must comply.