Nick Markel, General Manager and Chief Operating Officer at Country Club of Buffalo (CCB), called the multi-club competition “unique,” and noted he is unaware of a similar event at other clubs. There will be a four-team sporting clays competition on Nov. 4 and an individual contest on Nov. 5. CCB’s five-member team will compete against five-member squads from The Country Club of Rochester (N.Y.), The Country Club (Brookline, Mass.) and Longue Vue in Verona, Pa., near Pittsburgh. “Our intent is to bring together clubs that enjoy sporting clays and just have some camaraderie, have some socialization around the sport,” Markel said.
Country Club of Buffalo (N.Y.) will host its first ever Sporting Clays Invitational Tournament on Nov. 4 and 5.
Nick Markel, General Manager and Chief Operating Officer at Country Club of Buffalo (CCB), called the multi-club competition “unique,” and noted he is unaware of a similar event at other clubs.
Markel said CCB has five full fields on 8 acres dedicated to clay shooting, including the Brushwalk, which is a half-mile trail with 40 traps on each side. There are fields for trap, skeet, five-stand and crazy quail shooting.
“[It’s] very unique for a top 100 classic design golf course to also have that prolific shooting experience,” Markel stated.
He said he and club leaders decided to invite other clubs that offer golf and shooting to participate in a sporting clays tournament. Club officials went through a list of top 100 classic and contemporary design golf courses and found 21 clubs that have at least one field for sporting clays. They reached out to see if they would like to participate in a tournament. An invitational event with four other clubs was scheduled in fall of 2021, but Markel said a rise in COVID-19 cases led to its cancellation.
This year, there will be a four-team sporting clays competition on Nov. 4 and an individual contest on Nov. 5. CCB’s five-member team will compete against five-member squads from The Country Club of Rochester (N.Y.), The Country Club (Brookline, Mass.) and Longue Vue in Verona, Pa., near Pittsburgh.
“Our intent is to bring together clubs that enjoy sporting clays and just have some camaraderie, have some socialization around the sport,” Markel said. “For us, sporting clays through COVID has been one of the fastest-growing lists of participants that we have…it’s really a great sport and something our members really enjoy.”
On Nov. 3, competition participants can register between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. and will also have the opportunity to play the club’s Donald Ross-designed golf course.
On Nov. 4, registration will take place from 8 to 9:30 a.m., followed by optional field practice from 9:30 a.m. to noon, and lunch in the Grille Room from noon to 1 p.m. The Premiere Five-Man Field Competition will happen from 1 to 5:30 p.m.
There will be cocktails at 6:30 p.m., and then a dinner with awards at 7:30.
On Nov. 5, breakfast will happen in the Grille Room at 7:30 a.m., and then the individual field events will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Awards will be given out at 1 p.m. in the Clay Shooting Lounge and then lunch will be served in the Grille Room.
Participants are then invited to stay and continue shooting or take part in some other fun events planned by club officials.
A member has invited participants to an optional pheasant hunt on his property on Nov. 6.
Each club is allowed to bring up to eight competitors who can all participate in the individual events, but each organization will select five members for the team contest.
The team competition will consist of 125 birds per team member or a total of 500 birds per team. The field events will be: traditional trap; skeet; five-stand; and both sides of the Brushwalk. Any gauge shotgun is allowed. If a tie occurs, a 25-bird team shoot-off will happen.
The individual events are: traditional trap from the 16-yard line; traditional doubles trap from the 16-yard line; traditional skeet; five-stand; Brushwalk (both sides); sub-gauge 28 skeet; sub-gauge 20 five-stand; sub-gauge 28 gauge brush walk.
There will be 100 birds in the double trap event, and 50 birds for each of the other individual contests.
“Some of the allure is that it’s a shooting competition spread over many disciplines,” Markel said.”…You’ve got guys that are good at one or two [disciplines], but maybe not good with the others, so there’s some strategic placement of your team in shooting events.”
The chairman of the event committee is Kevin Clarke.
Markel said they are hoping this will become an annual event with the number of teams participating capped at eight.
He added they are willing to allow one or two more teams to participate as long as they are in the top 100 classic and contemporary design golf courses, and have at least one field for sporting clays.
If a club meets that criteria and wants to participate, they can email Markel at [email protected].