NSSF has provided a $50k grant to fund the new Scholastic Steel Challenge Program.
In support of a new youth target shooting initiative, the National Shooting Sports Foundation will contribute $50,000 to the Scholastic Steel Challenge program of the United States Practical Shooting Association and Steel Challenge Shooting Association.
The Scholastic Steel Challenge program is being modeled after the NSSF-developed Scholastic Clay Target Program that in addition to safety emphasizes building character and citizenship through teamwork.
I think this is an excellent idea on the part of NSSF – the Scholastic Clay Target program is a tremendous success, and it’s only logical to expand that program into the action pistol games. With Steel Challenge being a relatively stable competition genre (the stages are always the same) as well as having the added benefit of being tremendously fun, NSSF is opening the door to an entire generation of new shooters. This is exactly the sort of “development program” that our sports need to keep them thriving in the upcoming years. Much as I said on last night’s show, this gives us as shooters an opportunity to take those kids who are playing with skateboards and dirtbikes and introduce them to a whole new kind of racing.
I think Steel Challenge is a perfect fit for this program. One of the reasons that novice shooters react so well to shotgun sports is because they receive instant feedback from a clay bird – if it breaks, you did your job. The exact same is true of steel plates, you know instantly if you’ve made your hits or not, because the the steel will tell you. Combining that instant feedback with the “drag racing” nature of Steel Challenge makes it the perfect “high octane” sport for young shooters.