Monday, November 6
Okay, okay! The tidbits.htm page is fixed! Somehow that file
was corrupted when I updated the photo last night. Sorry about
The weather forecast is not good for today, and there are high
clouds as the sun tries to come out this morning. First call is
for Women's 4-way round 5 at 0800.
As I drove home last night I reflected on the performances of
the 4-way leaders. My impressions are:
- Airspeed Vertical. Skydiving in a very clean,
methodical style, yet very physical on the block moves and
quick on the randoms. Their camera work needs to be steeper at
times or they may not get credit for that occasional freeze
- Perris France Maubeuge. My in box is peppered with
“Allez France Maubeuge!” from some of their many fans.
This young and very talented team is skydiving very fast, but
sometimes they seem to lose synch with each other and stumble
for just a moment. If they find their groove they will be very
tough to beat.
- DeLand Norgies. This team continues to impress me
with their steady improvement and clean presentation to the
judges. Some of their block moves show some creativity,
possibly the influence of coach Solly Williams. They have
really improved their random work since Corowa and I think
they will be putting the heat on Vertical and Maubeuge.
- FX. The defending cup champions showed their random
prowess by scoring a 29 on round three, two better than the
next best. If they can muscle through the blocks and avoid the
bust bug -- and stay healthy -- I think they will be right
there on round 10. And I'm still finding red and black FX
Rocks around the DZ from the 1998 Nationals.
- PD Blue. Their style resembles their DeLand training
buddies (the Norgies) with a presentation that is probably the
cleanest and easiest to judge of all the top teams, helped in
no small part by the excellent camera work of Eric Taylor.
These guys have come a long way in just a couple of years.
Bottom Line: The team that avoids mistakes will win. I
give Airspeed Vertical the edge right now, but it is a very small
one. We will see!
0800: Change of Plans
They are starting with 8-way this morning, and the four teams
are on a call. It will be interesting indeed to see how the
Russians and Airspeed 8 match up...
Airspeed 8 creeping under the eye of the Discovery
Airspeed Blue door jamming for the eye of Tom Sanders.
Murphy is messing around with our mixer in the judges' room.
Where's the Murphy repellant? T1 is running around with a big can
of it. Go Bro!
8-Way has completed two rounds, and Airspeed 8 has jumped out
to a quick 9 point lead over a bust-prone Russian squad. It would
be an even bigger margin had Airspeed not been busted themselves
on round 2. Meanwhile the ladies have finished round five, and
Synchronicity holds on to their lead over Norway. The weather is
holding up and the meet drives on...
...at 1140, we are now on a weather hold that may keep us on
the ground for a few hours. What the hey, I could really use the
break anyway. Come back soon for an update.
listen up, I'm going to admit it: I WAS WRONG. I have
previously stated my mild opposition to having a female
category for formation skydiving because 1) men have no
physical advantage over women in freefall and 2) what's
the point of a women's category without a men's category?
Well, I'm going to withdraw my opinion. The Russian
delegation is far more attractive than ever before!
1400: Day Two is Done
With a large storm system covering most of Arizona, the meet
director got on the public address and said “First call is at
0800 tomorrow, and I'm headed for the bar.” With that comes the
end of day two and a photo of the FS judges. See you tomorrow!
Formation Skydiving Judges:
Salmela Pekka Barry McAuley
Klaus Wellens Deby Daniel Anne
Elisabet Pettersson Gail Bradley
Sara Sacchet Bob Charter Pia
Rina Gallo Julie Nichol Pia
Berggren Doris Hunziker