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Age based catagories


Irish-Pat

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Is there an upper age limit on 49er or Wrangler catagories? If a silver senior or elder statesman wanted to shoot with Wranglers or 49er catagory is that allowed? The handbook just states “and up” on those.  Irish ☘️ Pat

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One can step down and whip up on younger shooters. However, the youngsters can't move up into an older category. Doesn't make sense to me. What's the point of age based categories if you can jump around in order to finish ahead of younger, less skilled shooters?

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Only categories that have a maximum age are Buckaroo/Buckerett (13 and under) and Junior Boy/Girl (16 and under).

 

All other categories have a minimum age but no maximum

 

 

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22 minutes ago, Assassin said:

One can step down and whip up on younger shooters. However, the youngsters can't move up into an older category. Doesn't make sense to me. What's the point of age based categories if you can jump around in order to finish ahead of younger, less skilled shooters?

 

Age based SIMPLY means you may shoot within ANY age category you have ever qualified for. 

An 80 year old has AT SOME point been eligible to be a Cowboy, Wrangler, 49'r, Senior, Silver Senior, Elder Statesman.

So he is STILL eligible to shoot with any of those categories.

 

While there are plenty of older shooters that still perform at an extremely high level - the age breaks are there so a shooter of advancing age/ declining skills is still able to compete against like shooters.

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25 minutes ago, Creeker, SASS #43022 said:

 

Age based SIMPLY means you may shoot within ANY age category you have ever qualified for. 

An 80 year old has AT SOME point been eligible to be a Cowboy, Wrangler, 49'r, Senior, Silver Senior, Elder Statesman.

So he is STILL eligible to shoot with any of those categories.

 

While there are plenty of older shooters that still perform at an extremely high level - the age breaks are there so a shooter of advancing age/ declining skills is still able to compete against like shooters.

All other sports I've been involved with do not allow older shooters to step down into a younger category. By allowing shooters to bounce around it creates animosity amongst shooters. I've been to matches where better older shooters move down to a younger category and they prevent a younger shooter from receiving an award. I call BS on this type of gerrymandering. Shooters need to shoot in their age groups, or we need to get rid of some categories. If there aren't enough shooters to fill a category combine them. 

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I agree with Assassin. Shoot your age group. Or a ”specialty” category. 

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There have been a number of matches, large and small, in which I was the only entry in a category.  I have been known to shoot down in age just to have competition.  I have also been known to shoot percussion revolvers and  blackpowder loads  in smokeless categories, just to have competition.  I don’t place first very often if I do this, but it’s especially sweet when I do!!  :)

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I'm sorry, "Elder Statesman" is far too distinguished sounding to fit me.  How else am I to enjoy my second childhood if I can't compete with a more appropriate aged category?

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Why not go back to the first rule book and forget all the advances.  Why can't I shoot in any category my age lets me, as it isn't like you are going to win the pink rusted Nash by shooting a certain category?????

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44 minutes ago, Assassin said:

All other sports I've been involved with do not allow older shooters to step down into a younger category. By allowing shooters to bounce around it creates animosity amongst shooters. I've been to matches where better older shooters move down to a younger category and they prevent a younger shooter from receiving an award. I call BS on this type of gerrymandering. Shooters need to shoot in their age groups, or we need to get rid of some categories. If there aren't enough shooters to fill a category combine them. 

Call it anything you want and apparently this is SASS not "all other sports".

 

I have never seen any animosity towards any shooter that has chosen to move into a younger, theoretically more challenging category.

 

Any shooter moving categories for the "sole" purpose of bettering their finish against lesser skilled competition has to deal with their own insecurities and shortcomings - and no amount of rule changes will repair their character flaws.

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I've shot Cowboy category for years, ain't never whipped up on nobody.

 

Besides, I like trash talking the likes of Cobra Cat and others.... they are generally nice about it and enjoy the joke along with me.

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1 hour ago, Pee Wee #15785 said:

Why not go back to the first rule book and forget all the advances.  Why can't I shoot in any category my age lets me, as it isn't like you are going to win the pink rusted Nash by shooting a certain category?????

I agree, the little pocket rule book was much simpler and if one did win something it had much more meaning than the plethora of categories we have today, 

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What other shooting sports have age based categories as SASS does?  The other action shooting sports have equipment based categories. They will recognize the top junior, senior, super senior, lady at a match but they don't  have separate categories. 

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I will never shoot an age based category. The only ones we should have is Buckaroo/Junior and Silver Senior and above. IMHO

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3 hours ago, Pee Wee #15785 said:

Why not go back to the first rule book and forget all the advances.  
...

 

How far back do you want to go?

"Duelist" was added in 1993...there was no separate "Frontiersman" category (and note the reference to "Women's" category).


image.png

 

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7 hours ago, PaleWolf Brunelle, #2495L said:

 

How far back do you want to go?

"Duelist" was added in 1993...there was no separate "Frontiersman" category (and note the reference to "Women's" category).


image.png

 

Win one of those categories and you've done something. 

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I was trying to be sarcastic to Assassin's first post.  I would not want to go backwards but this sport like any other has advanced as the more competitive people have looked for a way to go faster be it good or bad for the sport.  Name another sport that the people spend $1000's over the years doing it with no prize money etc at the end.  Do I like where it is today "NO"  but would not change it as it bets the other gun sports hands down.  What sport keeps their shooters coming back as the advance in age slows the ability to win the big prize?  Most people doing SASS get much more out of it than just shooting.  I think it is a much safer sport now than when I start shooting it.  

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As with other proposed changes to the rules, I'll offer this advice... Try it out at your club... see how it goes over.  

 

IMO your assumption that older, more experienced shooters are dropping down in age to "whip up" on younger, less experienced is basically flawed.  You're making assumptions based on a narrow spectrum of the national or international field of players.  Your statement that it leads to animosity among the younger crowd, sounds contrary to many other's experiences.  Envy of someone else's talents, maybe, animosity, I don't believe so.  I think I'm pretty "normal" in my reactions to events... most competitors in my local area are far better than I am... a few are older, most younger.   If those older than me drop down into my category, so be it... I'm going to drop down another placing... oh wait... last is still last!  I've been doing this long enough to remember there was a time that they couldn't do that...  not that the rule has changed, but I hadn't been rode as hard & put away wet as many times back then!  

 

Even at larger events, isn't a more likely scenario that the lone El Patron Duelist feels competing in his age category a hollow victory?  Wouldn't dividing a field of 10 Frontiersmen into Senior and Silver Senior Frontiersman just to hand out 6 buckles to the top 3 place winners a little overly generous on the club's part?  While I'm sure that beating a field of younger, probably much more athletic group of competitors is very gratifying to an older competitor, and probably grating to those s/he bested... I can only say one thing.  Suck it up Cowboy, Life ain't always roses and belt buckles, sometimes to really savor those times when you win, you need to have picked your carcass up outta the mud, waved to the crowd and shown that you're man enough to admit defeat a few times.  Life ain't "fair", sure is hard at times, but I still believe it beats the alternative.

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1 hour ago, Griff said:

As with other proposed changes to the rules, I'll offer this advice... Try it out at your club... see how it goes over.  

 

IMO your assumption that older, more experienced shooters are dropping down in age to "whip up" on younger, less experienced is basically flawed.  You're making assumptions based on a narrow spectrum of the national or international field of players.  Your statement that it leads to animosity among the younger crowd, sounds contrary to many other's experiences.  Envy of someone else's talents, maybe, animosity, I don't believe so.  I think I'm pretty "normal" in my reactions to events... most competitors in my local area are far better than I am... a few are older, most younger.   If those older than me drop down into my category, so be it... I'm going to drop down another placing... oh wait... last is still last!  I've been doing this long enough to remember there was a time that they couldn't do that...  not that the rule has changed, but I hadn't been rode as hard & put away wet as many times back then!  

 

Even at larger events, isn't a more likely scenario that the lone El Patron Duelist feels competing in his age category a hollow victory?  Wouldn't dividing a field of 10 Frontiersmen into Senior and Silver Senior Frontiersman just to hand out 6 buckles to the top 3 place winners a little overly generous on the club's part?  While I'm sure that beating a field of younger, probably much more athletic group of competitors is very gratifying to an older competitor, and probably grating to those s/he bested... I can only say one thing.  Suck it up Cowboy, Life ain't always roses and belt buckles, sometimes to really savor those times when you win, you need to have picked your carcass up outta the mud, waved to the crowd and shown that you're man enough to admit defeat a few times.  Life ain't "fair", sure is hard at times, but I still believe it beats the alternative.

First of all it isn't an assumption, there are experienced shooters that do cherry pick categories just so they can win their first place award, it happens all the time. To me it's a form of "bullying". I have enough buckles and plaques for a lifetime, it certainly isn't about me. I'd be content with a sticky note on a box of primers over a buckle or plaque. I shoot in the Senior category because I am a senior, 61.  I can still compete with the 49'rs, Wranglers, and Cowboys on a local level. Shooting 49r for many years it was time for me to move to the next category. Some shooters may be happy I moved out of 49'r, some may be unhappy I moved into Senior. If we're going to have true champions how will we ever know who they are if shooters are allowed to cherry pick categories? 

 

Considering it's supposed to be about fun what's the point of having all the categories, aged based or otherwise. 25 years ago it was more fun, before all the categories were implemented, awards were sparse and winning an award had true meaning. 

 

The number of active members is dropping, perhaps it time to address the number of categories. 

 

 

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

Peanuts!!!  Popcorn!!!!  Cracker Jacks!!!  Get yer Cold Beer!!!!

I'll take a bag of popcorn and a beer! 

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 From my personal experience, I HAVE seen age category cherry picking and it has caused hard feelings. I know of at least one shooter who left the game entirely because of this. I shoot a costume category that used to be non age divided but now more and more matches are offering senior in CC.  Not sure how that effects me except that most larger matches it divides up the amount of classics and the competition is still pretty tough in either category. CC can be tough! :D And i love it!

 

As an aside... For those of you familiar with who Dick Butkus is that mean SOB could probably walk onto a football field and still cave heads in left and right regardless of his age today. ;)

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27 minutes ago, Assassin said:

If we're going to have true champions; how will we ever know who they are - if shooters are allowed to cherry pick categories? 

 

If my "championship" is won because another shooter is FORCED by advanced age to shoot a different category - am I the "true" champion?

 

If another shooter, at the same match, under the same conditions, shooting the same style surpasses my performance (regardless of their age/ gender/ shoe size) - I am NOT the best at that match.

Not the "true" champion.

 

If a shooter eligible for a different age category can move down and whip me (and there are many Senior Gunfighters who can) - then that's on ME to put forth the effort to work harder, practice better, improve my equipment, etc.

It is NOT their responsibility "to stay in their lane" so my fragile ego is not impacted.

 

Age divisions are a CHOICE.

They exist to provide VOLUNTARY competitive protection FOR the older shooter - not to be a MANDATORY competitive protection FROM the older shooter.

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So let me this straight.....we came up with Wrangler because a fellow aged 36 can't compete with with a fellow aged 24.....and we came up with 49r because a fellow aged 49 can't compete with a fellow aged 36....and we came up with Senior because a fellow aged 60 can't compete with a fellow aged 49.....am I correct so far?

 

Now the argument is that an older shooter should not be allowed to drop down to lower age brackets because it's unfair to the younger shooters. 

 

PULEZZZZZZZEEEEE.....Either the old guys need protection from the young guys or they don't. IT CAN"T BE BOTH WAYS!!!!!!

 

So it's not ok for an older shooter to drop down IF the shooters in that category are not "as seasoned" ie as good.....I see......we don't want to hurt their feelings. BUT a brand new shooter that happens to be a 49r it's ok for him to get beat by me. That won't bother him because we are the same age. 

 

You guys are talking about SKILL SETS not age.

 

We were sold a pig in a poke over all the age categories by the WB.......it's not about AGE it's about SKILLS!

 

It will NEVER be fair under the current platform.

 

Stan

 

 

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On the other side, I often see folks go down in categories to allow others the same age to have a chance to win their age category.  It's been going on for decades, especially at local matches.  And they vary their category to allow younger folks to win as well - if needed.

 

And I've seen many get discouraged because they could not complete against those in their age group against the top shooters in that age group.  So they shopped for other categories where they felt more competitive - be it a different style, clothing category, etc.

 

One time I heard someone complain that they had trouble winning their category (49er).  They didn't realize that at more than 5 of the top shooters in that club could have shot it and the complainer would not have even placed.  We joked about having everyone that qualified shoot that category once just fer fun - but we never did.

 

Life is not fair. 

 

We all have different skill sets that vary.  We can attempt to make things more "level" such as with age categories, but we don't all age the same, so it may help but it won't be perfect.  And if it were, folks still would not be happy.

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4 minutes ago, Creeker, SASS #43022 said:

49'rIf my "championship" is won because another shooter is FORCED by advanced age to shoot a different category - am I the "true" champion?

 

If another shooter, at the same match, under the same conditions, shooting the same style surpasses my performance (regardless of their age/ gender/ shoe size) - I am NOT the best at that match.

Not the "true" champion.

 

If a shooter eligible for a different age category can move down and whip me (and there are many Senior Gunfighters who can) - then that's on ME to put forth the effort to work harder, practice better, improve my equipment, etc.

It is NOT their responsibility "to stay in their lane" so my fragile ego is not impacted.

 

Age divisions are a CHOICE.

They exist to provide VOLUNTARY competitive protection FOR the older shooter - not to be a MANDATORY competitive protection FROM the older shooter.

I know the rules, been shooting for a while. Yes, you would be the true champion in that age group at that particular match, numbers don't lie. Subjectively, you would not be the overall champion of that shooting style in your mind. The whole category system needs to be revisited, it is skewed at best and was set up when we had growing numbers. I follow the rules as written, even if I don't agree with them, I also question some of the rules that don't make sense to me. Locally I don't look at results for category wins, I look at the overall. Even shooting at WR or any major match I look at the overall, category wins mean little. This is like tax law, some folks take advantage of the loop holes, some don't. I see the ability of stepping down into a younger category as a loop hole, just my opinion. 

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1 hour ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

If all you're innit for . . . . is WINNING some obscure Cattle Gory . . . . GO HOME.  This is suppose to be about FUN !!!

Some people consider winning to be fun.


The comment we hear a lot here on the wire that I wish would be retired is "I'm just in it for fun."  I'm pretty sure all of us are just in it for fun.  Some think old guns are fun.  Some think BP is fun.  Some think shooting really fast and winning a match are fun, but we're all in it for the same reason.

Vent over.

 

Back to the categories.

 

There are too many. 

 

It's like participation awards.  I shot a match recently and every person there 'won' except two people.

 

I 'won' my category.  Means nothing to me.  I was second overall, my objective was first overall, THAT would have meant something to me.  Doesn't happen very often, but I enjoy it when it does happen.  

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I like El Rey because no one objects if we need to take a break to go to the bathroom!  :P

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At the 2017 Fort Miller Annual shoot, my friend Desperado Derek and I (aged 28 and 30 respectively at the time) found out at the awards banquet that we had been absolutely stomped by much older shooters in the Cowboy Category (17+) and I distinctly recall asking rhetorically, "What are all these old guys doing in our category?! And, more importantly, how did they beat us so soundly?!" I'm utterly  convinced it had absolutely nothing to do with me being a new shooter and definitely not my 23 misses in the first 2 stages of day 1 due to both of my rifles being ammo sensitive and locking up for 19 misses and 4 righteous misses with my pistols. There's just no way any of that factored in. But as I am routinely the only shooter in Cowboy Category at the monthly shoots, it was nice to have some competition.

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