The mixed reviews I seem to be hearing about the VersaMax are what keeps holding me back from it... seems some love it, and others have issues with them. On the other hand, I've yet to hear of an issue with the SLP.
Only con, and not much of one, was the co witness weaver/rail mount, it was a little distracting at first when using the iron sights. I actually folding down the rear sight and used the red fiber optic front sight only.
The one time I shot an SLP (first 3-gun I shot, borrowed a friend's shotgun) I used it the same way. I found the Weaver rail and high-viz front sight together were more than good enough for the short ranges we encountered on the shotgun portions. Ended up being much faster to shoot it that way, too.
The Winchester SX3 seems to be a popular platform and claims to be the fastest cycling shotgun on the market today.
Is there a reason you aren't considering the SX3?
No, there really isn't - that's why I came looking here for advice. I wasn't sure what else on the market compared well to the SLP. Apparently the SX2/3 and the SLP are basically the same gun? In that case the only reason the FN would be ahead in my mind is that it comes set up the way I want it from the factory.
As for the recommendations on Benellis, I've shot an M4 before, and while I liked it, I found it to kick much harder than the SLP. To me that would be a big factor over a long day of competition.
Allaroundhunter, you said the M2 seemed softer-shooting than the SLP - is the M2 inertia-operated like the M4? If it's more or less the same system as the M4 I can say from experience I don't like it as much as the SLP, but if it's a very different gun I'll need to go check it out.