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Sat., May 4, 2013, 9:56 a.m.

Youth sporting clays championships underway at Double Barrel

SHOOTING --  The Washington Scholastic Clay Target Program Championships kicked off Friday for a three-day run at Double Barrel Ranch Sporting Clays near Spokane.

More that 100 shooters from around the state participated in a round of sporting clays, the first of three shooting events taking place this weekend (May 3-5).

The WASTCP is a statewide nonprofit organization initiated originally in 2010 by Colville, Washington sportsmen, and is dedicated to introducing and coaching school-age youths in the supervised activity of clay target sports. The Program’s mission is to promote and perpetuate opportunities for young student athletes to safely and enjoyably participate and compete in high quality, team-based clays shooting sports led by trained adult coaches.

Read on for more details about this weekend's events and the 30 youth teams competing at Double Barrel as reported by Bob Dunn, a master sporting clays shooter from Spokane:

This year’s Championship is being held in Spokane and has over 30 teams participating from across the State, almost double from last year. Teams are comprised of youth shooters who are actively involved in school clubs such as 4-H, Future Farmers of America, and the Boy Scouts. Team members consist of both boys and girls ranging in ages from elementary grades through college age shooters. The three-day, 3 event Championship involves sporting clays, skeet, and trap competitions and has over 335 total registered youth shooters for the weekend’s Championship Program. The skeet and trap events are being held at and hosted by the Spokane Gun Club located in the Spokane Valley, to conclude on Sunday with the award ceremony recognizing Washington State’s top youth clays shooters, both in individual and team categories.

The Championship has more than just ‘top shot’ honors and bragging rights at stake for these young athletes. Filson Outdoor Clothing, one of the sponsors for this year’s Championship, donated 3 entries for 3 youth shooters to attend the 11th Annual Western Open Sporting Clays Championship at the prestigious Top Gun Course in Mount Vernon, Washington, August 3-4, 2013, which will include private instruction by Hall of Fame Sporting Clays Champion Andy Duffy. Additionally, the National Scholastic Clay Target Program has ensured that over $240,000 will be available to the WASTCP for deposit into the individual endowment accounts for each of this year’s participating youth teams. Those endowment funds are in turn allocated percentage-wise based upon how each team performs during the competition, with portions of each team’s endowment fund being available annually for use by it to further the goals and mission of the Scholastic Clay Target Program.

The success of the 3 Championship events, spread between Double Barrel and the Spokane Gun Club, is only possible because of the hard work and support of the hundreds of volunteers and family members. They are involved in the coaching, transportation, event management, trapping and scorekeeping activities with the assistance of sponsors like Midway USA Foundation, Filson, and the Spokane Bird Dog Association, all of whom are dedicated to seeing youth involvement in clays sports grow and thrive in Washington State.

More information about the WASTCP and how youngsters can become involved can be found at its website

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Outdoors blog

Rich Landers writes and photographs stories and columns for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including Outdoors feature sections on Sunday and Thursday.