The National Republican Congressional Committee has named 11 more candidates to "Young Guns" status, the top designation in its three-level recruitment program.

The GOP hopefuls are the third round of candidates to receive the designation in the training program designed to provide support to challenger and open-seat candidates nationwide. The NRCC's announcement brings the total number of Young Guns candidates to 32. 

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"Candidates that reach 'Young Gun' status have met a series of rigorous goals that will put them in position to win on Election Day," NRCC Chairman Greg Walden (R-Ore.) said in a statement. "Our job as a committee is to help elect Republicans to office that will serve as a check and balance on the Obama administration." 

Included in the list of new Young Guns are two former political aides facing competitive open-seat challenges. The NRCC gave a nod to Elise Stefanik, a former White House aide vying for Rep. Bill Owens's (D-N.Y.) open seat, and David Young, a former Capitol Hill aide chosen in the GOP nominating convention to face state Sen. Staci Appel in the contest for Rep. Tom Latham's (R-Iowa) seat. Both Owens and Latham are retiring at the end of the year. 

The committee recognized four other open-seat candidates: French Hill, vying for Rep. Tim GriffinJohn (Tim) Timothy GriffinFlynn discloses lobbying that may have helped Turkey Tea Party class reassesses record Huckabee's daughter to run '16 campaign MORE's (R-Ark.) seat; Bruce Westerman, running for Rep. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonGOP senator says he suggested Greenland purchase to Trump, met with Danish ambassador It's time to empower military families with education freedom Cotton warns China: Crackdown on Hong Kong would be 'grave miscalculation' MORE's (R-Ark.) seat; Ryan Zinke, seeking Rep. Steve Daines's (R-Mont.) seat; and Rod Blum, pursuing Rep. Bruce BraleyBruce Lowell BraleyOPINION | Tax reform, not Trump-McConnell feuds, will make 2018 a win for GOP Ten years later, House Dems reunite and look forward Trump: Ernst wanted 'more seasoning' before entertaining VP offer MORE's (D-Iowa) seat. Cotton, Daines and Braley are all seeking Senate seats, while Griffin is running for lieutenant governor. 

Also achieving Young Guns status are Mariannette Miller-Meeks, challenging Rep. Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa); Lee Zeldin, challenging Rep. Tim BishopTimothy (Tim) Howard BishopDem candidate 'struck by the parallels' between Trump's rise and Hitler's Dems separated by 29 votes in NY House primary Flint residents hire first K Street firm MORE (D-N.Y.); former Rep. Nan Hayworth, running in a rematch against Rep. Sean Maloney (D-N.Y.); John Katko, challenging Rep. Dan Maffei (D-N.Y.); and Will Hurd, facing Rep. Pete GallegoPete Pena GallegoGOP candidate scores upset win in Texas state Senate runoff Koch group launches digital ads in tight Texas House race Iraq War vet wins Texas Dem runoff MORE (D-Texas). All of these races are considered to lean toward Democratic candidate.