As an organization, USA Fencing understands the disappointment the fencing community experienced with the cancellation of the National Championship and July Challenge as well as the national events and championships in March and April.
The National Office is working together with constituents within the fencing community to determine the structure of the events schedule for the 2020-21 season. These constituents include representatives from the National Office, board of directors, Referees’ Commission and Tournament Committee as well as coaches, club owners, athletes and regional event organizers.
“Although it was heart-breaking for everyone to realize that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic would mean the ultimate cancellation of our national events, we know that the health and safety of our community must come before competition,” said USA Fencing President Donald K. Anthony Jr. “We are hopeful for the future as the fencing community returns to local, regional and, ultimately, national events. We are looking into how we can be creative in the use of event combinations as we prepare for the return of national events for the 2020-21 season. Tournaments may look different in the future as we continue through the phases of our Return to Fencing Guidelines, but, as fencers return to their clubs for camps and lessons this summer, I want to reassure all of you that we are working hard to create a national tournament structure next season that includes safe competition opportunities for all events.”
Updates regarding any changes to the existing national events schedule (currently set to begin at the October North American Cup in Richmond, Va. on Oct. 18-21) will be made in the coming weeks.
In May, USA Fencing Competitive members and tournament officials completed a survey in order to obtain feedback from the membership and gauge the interest of participants in returning to local, regional and national tournaments. A follow-up survey will be distributed on July 6. Regional organizers have been contacted in order to receive feedback as well.
USA Fencing will resume the sanctioning of local tournaments on Aug. 1 in locations where tournaments are permitted to be held by local and state laws, regulations, executive orders and other legal mandates regarding COVID-19.
Due to restrictions on large group gatherings in most areas of the country, regional tournaments that were postponed during the last three months due to COVID-19 will not be rescheduled. USA Fencing is working with regional tournament organizers on the scheduling of regional events for the 2020-21 season with more details to be released in the coming weeks. Individuals who registered for these regional events will be contacted directly regarding their refunds.
Regional patch winners for the 2019-20 season will be determined based on the regional events that took place throughout the course of the season prior to the COVID-19 cancellations with announcements to be made by the end of July. Winners will be mailed their patches in August.
The USA Fencing National Office, in conjunction with the Tournament Committee and the Youth Development Resource Team, determined the following plan regarding expiration of youth points:
Y10, Y12, Y14 Regional Points
Y10, Y12, Y14 National Points
In consultation with the Veterans Committee, the following determinations were made regarding the Veteran National Point Standings:
Updates will be made regarding Senior, Junior and Cadet National Points Standings following the release of details regarding the 2020-21 international events schedule from the Federation Internationale d’Escrime and the European Fencing Confederation.