HOUSTON - The USA Shooting Team has begun final preparations in anticipation of the inaugural National Sporting Clay Cup, a national fundraiser set to induce a philanthropic rush on behalf of the team with one enthusiastic goal in mind, medal success in Rio de Janeiro.
Fifty teams have signed up for the July 11 VIP Shoot, which is the maximum number. With the event being sold out, USA Shooting decided to encourage participation in the July 12 main event by reducing the entry fee for a team to $1,500. Individuals wishing to take advantage of this great opportunity are encouraged to call Sara Daum at USA Shooting (719-866-4883) to sign up for a team.
The event is hosted by the American Shooting Center in Houston, Texas. The sporting clays event will include a lot of team interaction and plenty of shooting thrills in one of the hottest event disciplines the sport has going.
Eleven USA Shooting Team athletes including four Olympians will participate in the upcoming National Sporting Clay Cup.
USA Shooting will be well represented - 11 prominent team members, including four Olympians, will participate in the event.
Hometown hero, 2008 Olympic gold medalist and current World Champion Glenn Eller will headline the team's participation. Eller is coming off the recent Munich World Cup where he picked up a silver medal in the Double Trap event he competes in.
He'll be joined by his double trap teammates Josh Richmond, of Hillsgrove, a 2012 Olympian and two-time World Cup winner on the season; as well as Derek Haldeman, of Ohio.
Other Olympians participating include rifle expert Sarah Scherer, of Massachusetts, who finished seventh in her first Olympic Games in London, along with three-time Olympian and 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Jason Turner, of Rochester.
National Team athletes and Olympic hopefuls Ryan Hadden, of Oregon; Seth Inman, of Missouri; Mark Weeks, of Michigan; Haley Dunn, of Iowa; Caitlin Connor, of Louisiana; and Will Brown, of Idaho, are set to participate as well. Hadden, Inman, Dunn and Brown all will participate in the World Championships this summer.
The USA Shooting Team is off to a tremendous start in an all-important year that is highlighted by the 2014 World Shooting Championships this September in Granada, Spain. The event is the biggest shooting event in the world and will feature over 95 U.S. Team members in competition with the first Olympic qualifying spots on the line.
The team has competed in four World Cup events, piling up 16 medals, including 13 in the shotgun disciplines.
The event begins with a Major Benefactors dinner on July 10 at the Palm Restaurant.
Sporting Clay action kicks off the next day, July 11, with a 50-team competition available to the event's biggest contributors. The main event will take place July 12 and is limited to 200 teams.
"Our sights are set on making this the premier sporting clays fundraiser of the summer," said event organizer and USA Shooting board member Butch Eller. "Our USA Shooting Team is full of devoted individuals with the desire to represent the best that the shooting sports has to offer and it's important that we come together to rally behind them with the moral and financial support they need to be successful. It is our intent to raise the profile of the athletes who represent America and serve as great ambassadors for the shooting sports in their everyday pursuits."