How Do I Qualify For The Summer Nationals and July Challenge?

How Do I Qualify For The Summer Nationals and July Challenge?

This chart represents the major qualification paths for the 2018-2019 season for the Summer Nationals and July Challenge which is a 10-day event held annually during the last week of June and first week of July. This tournament is the culminating event of the National Season.

Beginners Guide to Fencing Tournaments (Part 1)



7 Essential Things To Know To Start Competing in the Sport of Fencing!

1. Decide to Start Competing! (Do it!) 
We recommend that competition be a regular part of a student's development in the sport of fencing.

The key is selecting tournaments that are within a student's level and managing expectations (first tournaments are about learning!).

2. Get a USA Fencing "Competitive Membership" at the USA Fencing website. (Link Below) 

Everyone that competes must have a USA Fencing "Competitive Membership" which is $75 dollars and runs from when it is purchased until July 31 of the current year. 

Once you get a membership, you will a USA Fencing Membership # and you must have this number available when checking in at competitions. 


 3. Know your "Age Classification and Eligibility"

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Your USA Fencing "Age/Classification Eligibility" is based on a fencers BIRTH YEAR (Month and Day doesn't matter!). 

There are associated rules about which "age categories" a fencer can compete in based on their "classification age". You can be too young or too old.  

A General rule of thumb is that you can't compete in age categories BELOW your current age category but you can compete in some age categories above your age category. (Review the chart below)


4. Have All The Necessary Fencing Equipment: (Check Specifications)

Required Equipment: 

  1. Electric Saber Fencing Mask

  2. Fencing Jacket (Dry)

  3. Fencing Pants (Dry)

  4. Underarm Protector

  5. Electric Fencing Jacket for Saber (Buy Stainless steel! It will last longer)

  6. 2-Body Cords (You must always have a backup at a competition)

  7. 2-Head Clips (You must always have a backup at a competition)

  8. Fencing Socks (These are long socks - no skin can show between sneaker and the start of the fencing pants)

  9. ** 800-Newton Saber Fencing Glove (The Practice Gloves cannot be used in competitions!)

  10. 2 Sabers (Youth-10 must use "2" Length sabers" and Youth-12 and upwards can us a "5" Length Sabers. You must have a backup saber at a competition

Recommended: (But Not Required) 

  • Fencing bag (That fits all the equipment)

  • Fencing Shoes

5. Pick Your Competition!

Start with Local Competitions at your club or other fencing clubs!

You generally want to compete in your age category first, especially if you are Y8, Y10, Y12 or Y14. If you are a Cadet/Junior or Senior aged fencer the find  "Unrated" or "E and Under" competitions.

We recommend competing once a month after you have begun competing so that the fencer can get experience. Do not be deterred by the placement of the fencer in early competitions.)

6. Registering For Competitions: (There are three main places to find competitions)

* Generally, tournaments have entry deadlines, so ensure you register before the deadline or you may have to pay double fees. Local tournaments usually allow "day of" walk-ins but regional and national ones do not. 

Places to Find Competitions: 

1. Askfred:
This website generally has competitions hosted by fencing clubs. You can search by zip code. 

2. USA
The USA Fencing website now requires all regional and national tournament registration to go through their website. You will need to login to your account and search their database. 

Quick Guide to Fencing Tournament Acronyms: (Regional and National) 

SYC/RYC: Competitions for Youth-10, Youth-12 and Youth 14 fencers
RJCC: Competitions for Cadet (Under-17) and Junior (Under-20) competitions
ROC: (Fencers over 14). Categories: Open, Division 1A, Division 2 and Division 3 competitions
NAC: North American Cups. National Competitions. 

* At Tim Morehouse Fencing Club we have a Tournament Calendar and the Master Schedule includes all the regional, National and International Competitions that we recommend for our members. 

There are 4 Competition Levels: 
1. Local
2. Regional
3. National
4. International

7. What's Next? 

  • The 4 main things you can earn at fencing competitions:

    1. Fencing and Life Experience: (Invaluable if you learn from every tournament regardless of the result)

    2. "Ratings": (U (Unrated), E, D, C, B and A). These impact seeding at competitions. You start as a U.

    3. "Points": There are a number of different points lists. Regional, national and International. Generally, your region, national and international events all have systems where you earn points based on either top-32 finishes or top-40% in the field.

    4. Qualifying for Bigger Competitions: (You can qualify for one ofthe "Championships" through good results)

Qualification Competitions Include: 

  • Summer Nationals and July Challenge: This is one of the first big tournaments that students will qualify to compete in. This tournament is held over 10-days around the July 4 weekend every year. (There are events in every age category except Youth-8)

  • World Championship Teams - Only in Cadet, Junior and Senior divisions.

  • Division 1 NACs (The events that help qualify you for the Olympics or World Championships depending on the year): You must be a C and over-14 to compete. You earn "Div. 1 National points" through top-32 finishes.

  • Junior Olympics (Under-17 and Under-20)

  • Division 1 National Champions (You must have earned points in a "North American Cup (NAC)" competition to qualify. Generally, a top-32 results earns national points at a Division 1 event.

  • Competing in Cadet, Junior and Senior World Cups: (Generally, you must be ranked in the top-16 or better to qualify to compete in international competitions in the main age categories and Division 1)

The Bigger Competitions and Pinnacle Events in the Sport of Fencing: 

  • The Olympics: You must be top-8 (Minimum top-16) in the USA in Division 1 to even attempt to qualify for the Olympics. Top-8 fencers are qualified to fence in the Grand Prix and World Cup competitions. You qualify of the Olympics by earning points at World Cups and Grand Prix competitions (8 of them) and World Championships the year before the Olympics. (Only top-4 compete)

  • World Championships (Cadet, Junior and Senior/Division 1): The Top-3/4 fencers in the USA at the end of the qualification periods will qualify to represent the USA at the World Championship events. Cadet (Under-17), Junior (Under-20) and Senior/Division 1. (Above 14+)

  • Other Major Competitions: The Pan American Games (Every 4 years), the Pan American Championships (Every year), World University Games.

Remaining Tournaments This Season (March to May 2018)


Dear Club Members,

The competitive season is in the final stretches with only a few competitions left in the various age and age categories. Please review the remaining competitions and ensure you are registered on-time. These are the final opportunities to qualify for Summer Nationals and to improve your regional and national rankings. 

After this upcoming weekends RYC, there is one RYC and 2 SYCs remaining for the Youth-10, 12 and 14 fencers in Region 3 and only 1 RJCC  and 1 ROC remaining for the Cadet, Junior and Open level before Summer Nationals.  

Please email if you have questions about which competitions to register for in the upcoming months. 


1. Boston Fencing Club RJCC (April 7-8) - Deadline: March, 24 for Double Fees


  • This is the last RJCC in Region 3
  • AGE: CADET (U-16) AND JUNIOR (Under-20)
  • Qualification Points for Summer Nationals 2018
  • Qualification points for Junior Olympics 2019(!)


2. Fairfax SYC (April 13, 14 and 15) Deadline: March 26


  • 2nd to last SYC
  • Youth-10, 12 and 14
  • National Points Awarded.
  • Summer Nationals Qualification


3. Denise O’Connor RYC (April 21 and 22) Deadline: April 14


  • This is the last RYC in Region 3
  • Youth 10, 12 and 14
  • Regional Points and Summer Nationals Qualification


 4. Mission Long Island Challenge ROC  (April 28-29)   (Deadline: April 1)


  • Last ROC of the season
  • Age: Open Categories (13+)
  • Summer National Qualification for Div1a and Div. 2


5. Mission Long Island SYC (May 4-6) Deadline: April 9


  • Last SYC/Major Competition Before Summer Nationals
  •  Youth 10, 12 and 14
  • National Points
  • Summer National Qualification




Syd Hirsch Captures Silver at the Junior Olympics to Lead Tim Morehouse Fencing Club


  •  Syd Hirsch won a Silver Medal in Cadet Women’s Saber and also had a 7th place medal finish in Junior Women’s Saber
  • Nicka Lortkipanidze led the boys with a top-16 in Junior Men’s Saber and a top-32 in Cadet men’s Saber
  • 6 Members of the Club earned national points including Syd Hirsch, Josephine Chang, Amber White, Henry Nadile, Nicka Lortkipanidze and Owen Prevey Sullivan.

Memphis, Tennessee (February, 2018) 15 members of Tim Morehouse Fencing Club traveled to the 2018 Junior Olympics to participate in the annual championship which draws the best fencer’s in the country in the Under-17 Cadet and Under-20 Junior categories.

The four-day tournament was held at the Memphis Cook Convention Center and included over 2000 athletes.

Sydney Hirsch finished her Cadet career with a Silver Medal in the Under-17 category losing 14-15 for the championship in an exciting back and forth match with Avante Garde’s Ryan Jenkins.  Sydney finished the season 7th in the country in the Cadet national standings. In the Junior event, Hirsch had a strong 7th place medal finish and she currently stands 23rd in the country in the Under-20 standings.

In the men’s saber events, Nicka Lortkipanidze led the way with a top-16 finish in the Junior men’s saber event and a top-32 result in Cadet men’s Saber. In the Cadet standings, Nicka moved up to 3rd in the country in the “Aged Out” Cadet rankings and he is currently 46th in the country in Junior men’s saber.

Owen Prevey-Sullivan finished 22nd in a strong Junior men’s saber field with 256 competitors. He is currently ranked 45th in the country in Junior men’s saber. Henry Nadile also earned national points in both Cadet and Junior categories with two top-64 finishes. Henry is currently 12th in the country in the “aged out” Cadet men’s saber rankings.

Tim Morehouse Fencing Club fielded teams in the men and women’s Junior team event who both finished in 6th place out of the twenty plus teams that competed in these categories.

Full Results:


Junior Women’s Saber (189 Competitors)
7th MEDAL- Sydney Hirsch (Earned National Points)
42nd Amber White (Earned National Points)
59th Josephine Chang (Earned National Points)
129th Rainer Dragon
156th Sophia Cannon
171st Grace Kelman

Junior Team Women’s Saber (22 Teams)
6th Place – Syd Hirsch, Josephine Chang, Rainer Dragon, Amber White

Cadet Men’s Saber (248 Competitors)
22nd Nicka Lortipanidze (Earned National Points)
57th Henry Nadile (Earned National Points)
69th Peter Hammer
91st Braden Vaccari
95th Phil Chien
119th Zach Wolin
176th Michael Parkhurst
197th Scott Wyche

Cadet Women’s Saber (175 Competitors)
SILVER MEDAL – Syd Hirsch (Earned National Points)
40th Josephine Chang (Earned National Points)
151st Josephine Cannon
159th Grace Kelman

Junior Team Men’s Saber (28 Teams)
6th Place
– Owen Prevey-Sullivan, Henry Nadile, Nicka Lortkipanidze, Peter Hammer

Junior Men’s Saber (256 Competitors)
13th Nicka Lortkipanidze (Earned National Points)
22nd Owen Prevey-Sullivan (Earned National Points)
48th Henry Nadile (Earned National Points)
81st Braden Vaccari
114th Zach Wolin

Tim Morehouse Fencing Club Students Win 3 Medals In Baltimore


  • Silver Medal for Aria Bevacqua in Youth-10 Girls
  • Bronze Medal for Shaun Kim in Youth-10 Boys
  • Top-8 Medal for Zach Wolin in Division 3 men’s saber
  • Top-16 finishes by Josephine Chang and Peter Hammer in Youth-14 and by Max Denner in Youth-12
  • 7 TM-FC Fencers earned National Points

Baltimore, Maryland (March, 2018) - 31 Members of Tim Morehouse Fencing Club (TM-FC) traveled to USA Fencing’s Youth North American Cup tournament to compete against the best fencers in the country in the youth 10, 12 and 14 age categories as well as Division 3.

Over 2000 students from around the country took part in the competition that was held March 9-12 at the Baltimore Convention Center.

The Club won 3 national medals including a Silver Medal won by Aria Bevacqua in Youth-10 girls saber, a bronze medal by Shaun Kim in Youth-10 boys saber and a top-8 medal finish by Zach Wolin in Division 3 men’s saber. The medals won by Bevacqua and Kim represent the first North Americn Cup medals won by the Club in these age categories.

Nine members of the Club earned national points including Josephine Chang (Youth-14), Peter Hammer (Youth-14), Adele Bois (Youth-14 and Youth-12), Aria Bevacqua (Youth-10), Alen Matsui (Youth-14), Max Denner (Youth-12) and Shaun Kim (Youth-10), Gabriel McCarthy (Youth-10) and Robert Wang (Youth-10).

The Club also fielded teams in the Youth-14 boys ad girls team competition and they placed in the top-16 respectively of those events. Josephine Chang, Peter Hammer and Max Denner also registered top-16 finishes amongst very competitive fields.

The Club fielded its largest group to-date at a national competition and this was the first North American Cup competition for 20 of the clubs 30 competing members. 

In the New National Rankings: (March, 2018)

  • Aria Bevacqua is now ranked 5th, Catelyn So 16th and Alanna Guilfoyle 22nd in Youth-10 Girls Saber
  • Shaun Kim 11th, Gabriel McCarthy 17th, Emilio Gonzalez 35th and Robert Wang 43rd in Youth-10 Boys Saber
  • Max Denner 8th and William Morrill 43rd in Youth-12 Boys Saber
  • Adele Bois 34th and Marina Ferrarri-Bridgers 39th in Youth-12 Girls Saber
  • Josephine Chang 23rd in Youth-14 Girls Saber
  • Peter Hammer 22nd in Youth-14 Boys Saber

Full Club Results Below:

Division 3 Men’s Saber (107 Competitors)
7th (Medal) Zach Wolin
34thScott Wyche
78th Alexander Sanfilippo-Scherer

Youth-14 Women’s Saber (139 Competitors)
14th (National Points) – Josephine Chang
64th (National Points) – Adele Bois
81st Marinella Ferrari-Bridgers
94th Sophia Cannon
97th Fiona Neibart
129th Amaya Javeri
132nd Caroline Sullivan

Youth-10 Girls Saber (39 Competitors)
Silver Medal – Aria Bevacqua
18th Catelyn So
21st Charlotte Young
25th Audrey Young

Youth-12 Girls Saber (90 Competitors)
29th (National Points) Adele Bois
34th Aria Bevacqua
39th Marinella Ferrari-Bridgers
61st Amaya Javeri
78th Madison Ducket

Youth-14 Boys Saber (214 Competitors)
10th Place (National Points) Peter Hammer
56th Pace (National Points) Alen Matsui
92nd Alex Chan
108th Justin Morrill
113th Max Denner
120th William Morrill

Youth-14 Girls Team (21 Teams)
13th Place (Josephine Chang, Eve Boise, Sophia Cannon and Marinelli Ferrari-Bridges)

Youth-12 Boys Saber (156 Competitors)
13th (National) Max Denner
74th William Morrill
76th Winston Chien
86th Dylan Vig
117th Robert Wang
126th Gabriel McCarthy
127th Shaun Kim
150th Charles Leonard

Youth-10 Boys Saber (63 Competitors)
Bronze Medal – Shaun Kim
22nd (National Points) – Robert Wang
26th (National Points) – Gabriel McCarthy
35th Emilio Gonzalez
42nd Enzo Bera
59th Myles Duckett

Youth-14 Boys Team
13th Place Max Denner, Alex Chan, Peter Hammer and Alen Matsui

Full Results: