So what are the differences between the
at the

At many larger Raider meets, both a CHALLENGE and MASTERS Level competition can be held. These names are a bit misleading implying a wide gulf where often this is not the case. In fact, the Levels share so many similarities, they are far more similar than they are different for sure!

Both Levels are held at the same facility on many of the same courses during the same weekend! However often, the Challenge Level is designed to maintain newer Raider teams that do not yet have the overall abilities to match their more seasoned counterparts. In general, it is simply a way to allow more teams of similar talent to compete against one another and give all a better esxperience. Both Levels are hosted in the same event but often trophied seperately. This is how national youth event manager Sports Network International handles their events. The two teams are entered through the same system from within the same website structure. Both events have exceptional extras with gorgeous trophies and often have shirts, medallions, and/or team photos and other nice extras to reward the cadets for their efforts win or lose.

Army Champs

The Masters and Challenge Levels will have the same shirt design, medallion design etc. as they are the same event. Of course all THREE division of Male, Female and Mixed will have their own champions! Also, no school will gain a significant advantage by "pre-competing" should they look to enter a team into both events because no cadets entering the Challenge Level of an event should be allowed to also compete in the Masters side the following day. .

The only other difference is the degree of difficulty each event may maintain. As several of these are newer programs with less experieced cadets, some of the higher obstacles and more difficult actions within the event may be scaled back or off-limits to these Challenge Level programs. Many schools will enter their top teams in the Masters Level but younger Freshmen or "JV" teams may be in the Challenge Level. Doing this, they are not forced to compete against one another. This is primarily to protect the less ecperienced cadets, but also can be done for a time savings to ensure the events move along during the day at a similar pace between the Levels as the Challenge Teams tend to take a bit longer to accomplish many of the same tasks the Masters Level teams move through more quickly.

Raider Gauntlet Tunnels

Currently, the fact is that Army JROTC leads the nation in both the depth of teams and cadets involved in Raider, and by far from what we have seen in competitions throughout the southeastern United States, they currently have the most talented teams as well. This is due to many factors but the biggest two factors remain THEY COMPETE IN UPWARDS OF 7-8 RAIDER COMPETITIONS A YEAR WHICH IS FAR MORE THAN MOST AGAINST GREAT SCHOOLS EVENT WEEK and THEY HAVE BEEN DOING IT FOR DECADES whereas most other programs have not! Having both a Challenge Level and Masters Level builds and devlops older and newer teams, allowing the pool of Raider talent to grow deeper and stronger from ALL SERVICES. This better allows all programs to gain the experience they need to compete and continue to raise the bar of excellence. Several fine Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force units in the nation have Raider teams and going forward, we foresee these programs continuing to improve each each year and soon being able to compete with the best programs from the Army or any service.

Bottom line, we know both competition Levels will provide the fantastic, competitive homes they are designed to maintain. Teams that have historically finished near the bottom of the standings in the Masters Level are often given the chance to revert back to Challenge to "right the ship" the following year(s). Top teams in Challenge also are moved up into Masters the following year. This type of balanced approach to competition entry should do nothing but make the competitions more spirited, more evenly balanced, and give all cadets a home to show their talent.

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