I love SASS & will always support them. I knew all the original Wild Bunch on a first name basis & they all knew me.
I have been away from CAS for quite a while, as I was fairly young when I joined (23). I took time off to get married & raise a family. Life & other priorities took precedence. Now that my children are almost out on their own I want to get involved again, but like the legendary titans that were displaced by Zeus & his newer gods, I feel out of place. From what I am seeing this is not the CAS I remember.
I have seen recent videos of shooters shooting at machine gun speed at close targets, countless talk of short-strokes, Codymatics 3rd, 4th, 5th generations (?), & other modifications that were not allowed when SASS started. I feel so intimidated that I am not sure I would enjoy shooting at anything higher than a local match because of the emphasis that appears to be on speed & close targets.
Now, I am not saying there is anything wrong with speed; I am merely stating my 2 cents, & maybe other past SASS members feel the same way. Maybe that is the reason why they have strayed from the herd?
The very first stage I ever shot, before we could even engage a target we had to knock over the dynamite (wood prop) with a bull whip. It was hilarious to watch as some were decent & some took forever. I had been practicing with a bullwhip at the time & was fairly accurate, so I was actually able to grab the TNT & yank it back- I then proceeded to miss all five targets because of the adrenaline rush! The thing about it though... IT WAS FUN!!! I was hooked after that. Having to ride a stick pony to a designated spot? Silly, but FUN! The guns were unmodified, except for action jobs, & only a few shooters had any semblance of real speed. With no disrespect to any of these skilled shooters nowadays, back then it was commonly preached & understood that when SASS became a speed race with modified guns, that would be the day it began its decline. The motto was, "if it didn't exist in the old west or if you wouldn't see John Wayne using it, it was not allowed."
i have always been more interested in the costuming & comraderie, so I will enjoy myself no matter what, but as far as shooting I currently feel like maybe it's not for me anymore? I am not competitive-driven in this sport but after being away for so long I have no wish to look the fool, either. I joined many moons ago because it was fun, not because I had to be fast. Maybe SASS should think about breaking out these amazingly fast shooters & putting them in an entirely new class... I don't know. I am only saying that intimidation may keep a lot of people away from participating.
Want to get the numbers back up? Make the stages fun again & not just a speed race. I personally cannot see how rattling off 20 rounds in less than 2 seconds (exaggeration?) can be considered cowboy shooting. Impressive? Hell yes, but cowboy? Not in my book. Thank you for your time.