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2022 Summer Nationals Preview: World’s Largest Fencing Tournament Will Bring Thousands of Fencers to Minneapolis

06/23/2022, 3:30pm CDT
By Bryan Wendell

From July 2-11, more than 4,500 fencers from 45 different states will gather at the Minneapolis Convention Center for the 2022 USA Fencing National Championships and July Challenge, also known as Summer Nationals.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — At last, it’s the moment for which they’ve been training all season long.

This July 2 to 11, more than 4,500 of the nation’s best fencers will gather in downtown Minneapolis for the 2022 USA Fencing National Championships and July Challenge, commonly known within the fencing community as Summer Nationals.

Fencers as young as 7 and as old as 84 will complete for national championships in their age group, classification, gender and weapon (foil, epee or saber).

A total of 66 national titles will be won by the tournament’s youngest competitors (Y10), its most seasoned veterans (Vet 80) and everyone in between. The field also features 11 Olympians and Paralympians, including five who competed at the Tokyo Olympics last summer.

USA Fencing hosts an average of seven national tournaments each year and saves the biggest for last. Summer Nationals, which marks the end of the 2021–22 season, is the largest USA Fencing tournament of the year.

In fact, with more than 4,500 athletes and more than 9,600 total registrations (some fencers compete in more than one event), Summer Nationals is considered the largest fencing tournament in the world.

Fencers come from 45 different states (plus D.C.), as well as 12 foreign countries: Australia, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, Germany, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.

The competition starts on Saturday, July 2, with Division I women's foil and Division I men's epee. Fencing action continues all day every until Monday, July 11, when the tournament concludes with six events — one for each gender and weapon.

See an overview of the schedule below, and go here for a more detailed schedule that includes start times for each event.

Visitor Information

  • Cost: There is no admission fee for spectators.
  • Masks: Everyone in attendance ages 3 and older, including coaches, athletes, spectators and staff must wear a mask that covers their mouth and nose at all times. The only exception is for fencers during live competition. They may choose to remove the face mask under their fencing mask. According to the USA Fencing mask mandate, masks must be two-layer cloth masks or surgical face coverings. Single-layer gaiters, bandannas, masks with vents, and inserts that clip into the fencing mask and do not fully contact the athlete's face are not permitted.
  • Proof of vaccination: Everyone in attendance ages 12 and older — including coaches, athletes, spectators and staff — must provide proof of vaccination. Everyone in attendance between the ages of 3 and 11 — including spectators — must provide proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test result from within 72 hours of arrival to the venue. When spectators arrive, they will be asked to show their proof of vaccination or negative test result at the registration desk. They will be given a wristband that grants access to the venue.

Olympians and Paralympians in the Field

Eleven Olympians and Paralympians scheduled to compete at Summer Nationals.

  • Sabrina Massialas (2020 Olympian)
    • Competing in Division I Women’s Foil on July 2
  • Courtney Hurley (2012, 2016 and 2020 Olympian; 2012 bronze medalist)
    • Competing in Division I Women’s Epee on July 4
  • Kelley Hurley (2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020 Olympian; 2012 bronze medalist)
    • Competing in Division I Women’s Epee on July 4
  • Francesca Russo (2020 Olympian)
    • Competing in Division I Women’s Saber on July 5
  • Eliza Stone (2020 Olympian)
    • Competing in Division I Women’s Saber on July 5
  • Ivan Lee (2004 Olympian)
    • Competing in Vet 40 Men’s Saber on July 5
  • Philip Reilly (1984 Olympian)
    • Competing in Vet 70 Men's Saber on July 5
  • Chris O'Loughlin (1992 Olympian) 
    • Competing in Vet 50 Men’s Epee on July 6
  • Timothy Glass (1980 Olympic team)
    • Competing in Vet 60 Men's Epee on July 6
  • Gary Van Der Wege (2004 and 2012 Paralympian)
    • Competing in Vet 60 Men's Epee on July 6
  • John Moreau (1984 and 1988 Olympian)
    • Competing in Vet 70 Men's Epee on July 6

Tag(s): Latest News  2022 Summer Nationals