October 19 to 27 saw the windup of the 2019 National Sporting Clays Association Tour, Powered by Winchester.The “American Legend “ adds to its long-standing commitment to the shooting sports with the title sponsorship of the National Sporting Clays Association (NSCA Championship Tour) with the National Championship held at the National Shooting Complex in San Antonio, Texas, bringing together 4,000 of the most dedicated and expert clays shooters to be found.
Sporting clays is the more than century-old shotgun sport that started in England to let shooters experience the nearest thing to actual field conditions during the off season. With six different sized targets and always variable distances, speeds, and angles, everything from duck to pheasant to rabbit hunting can be simulated.
In 1989 the NSCA was founded in San Antonio to be the governing body of the sport in the US. The association keeps the official records of competition scores, registers shoots for clays clubs and associations, and holds the Regional, Open, and National Championships every year. Today, the NSCA has 30,000 members in all fifty states and ten foreign countries, with 600 member clubs.
This year, four Team Winchester shooters competed in the championship. The four were Zach Kienbaum, Desi Edmunds, Rollins Brown, and Anthony Matarese, Jr.
The nine days of shooting began in warm, clear October weather that gradually cooled as the championship went on, the wind generally mild but subject to gusts. This year’s standout was Kienbaum. All season long at the sport’s main events he’s posted a notable winning record, taking a third at 5-Stand at the South Central Regional; Runner Up in 5-Stand and High Overall scorer in FITASC at the South East Regional; HOA 5-Stand and Main Event Champion at the North Central Regional; FITASC Runner Up and Main Event HOA Champion at the Western Regional; blazing through the US Open with a FITASC Runner Up, Main Event Runner Up, and the 5-Stand HOA championship; and culminating in a FITASC Third and the Main Event HOA championship in San Antonio.
Kienbaum’s Main Event score at the National Championship was an outstanding 290 out of 300, and for Zack that made it back-to-back championships in 2018 and 2019.
Sporting clays really doesn’t take an off season, with many shooters on the courses for recreation, and even competition, throughout the fall and winter. Why not, for a sport that is all about trying to recreate actual hunting conditions as closely as possible?
“We continue to align our legendary brand among the millions of shooting sports enthusiasts,” said Brett Flaugher, president of Winchester Ammunition. “The popularity of shooting sporting clays has risen and Winchester is excited to have its famous AA shotshell as the featured brand of ammunition on the NSCA Championship Tour.”
Regional Championship shoots start up again next March in Florida and span the country out to Nevada in September, with a stop in Kansas for the US Open, winding up again in the fall in San Antonio for the National Championship, at which Team Winchester is certain to represent. (Log onto https://nsca.nssa-nsca.org for a calendar of upcoming National Sporting Clays Association Tour (Powered by Winchester) events.)
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