Skydive Spaceland SpaceBlog

News and thoughts about what's going on at Skydive Spaceland, our state-of-the-art skydiving facility near Houston, Texas.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Nationals day 5, Friday (10/16)

8:15 am: We've been on a cloud hold, but load 1 is on a call; here we go!

9 am: We've got some really fantastic photos from the last day or two coming up for you soon, stay tuned for that! In the meantime, it's a busy time here at Skydive Spaceland. Currently we've got four events jumping--vertical formation skydiving (two teams) and 8-way finishing up, plus the artistic events have begun (freefly open/advanced and freestyle). And the 16-way registration will be closing today at 11 a.m., with draw and jumping to commence after 8-way jumps complete. Six rounds for 16-way... competitors are hoping we can squeeze all that in today after 8-way, but that event may run into tomorrow. We'll keep you posted!

We've got 6 teams registered now for 16-way; you've got time, keep 'em coming! :-)

SPX8 shirt Deguello shirt

Skydive Spaceland says... Go home teams!

11:10 am: Looks like finished 16-way registration with 6 teams: Deguello 17 and Arizona Airspeed of course, plus Staff Infected, Havoc SPX, Rogue Knights, and Rain on Saturday (Noooo!!).

8-way open has another round on the board, and Airspeed's still on top after matching the Knights' 15. Paraclete gave up four points to them on that round; their 11 was matched by Perris Moxie and Spaceland BFE Elsinore. Dallas Rogue posted a 13. Deguello 9 has withdrawn to practice 16-way, finishing with a 7.63 average in the 8 rounds they jumped... see you soon in the 16-way standings!

...and Airspeed/Paraclete have gotten scores for round 8; they've both posted 19s, and the Knights have yet to be scored.

In 8-way intermediate, Perris Cobra Kai and Ranch Deliverance both got 7s in round 8; Deliverance is still 10 points back. We've got a close race for bronze between Dallas Fusion and JellO Slots; Fusion has a one-point advantage at the moment.

Freefly/freestyle judging is off to a slow start; we'll bring you those results as soon as we can.

In the meantime... photographic stylings by Craig O'Brien:

Golden Knight Landing 8-way at sunset

11:25 am: The Knights also scored a 19 in round 8; they're hanging right in there, but making up 5 points in two rounds to take gold over Airspeed is a tall order... Freefly scores are coming in, IsIs is out to a one-point lead in intermediate over the InLaws. In open, SoCal Converge is up 2.1 points on Nor Cal Revolt.

More photos, this time by Ori Kuper (mostly):

Freestyle, ow...
Arizona Arsenal Tshirt

1 pm: We're still going strong here at Spaceland, it's a gorgeous sunny day with a high of 79 (what a welcome change!).

Perris Cobra Kai wins 8-way intermediate! Ranch Deliverance takes silver, and there will be a jumpoff later for bronze between Dallas Fusion and JellO Slots! Stay tuned, and congrats to all for a great performance!

Open judging isn't complete yet, but the three leaders have been scored and Paraclete XP beat up on both the Knights and Airspeed with a solid 20 in round 10 (Airspeed scored a 19 and the Knights took a 17). It wasn't quite enough to pull them up out of third, though; they finished 2 points behind the Knights with a total of 187 (Knights 189), and it looks like Airspeed will take the event with a total of 196 points!

2 pm: MAJOR drama in the judging room earlier... An 8-way intermediate team's videographer effectively shut down a judging panel for about 15 minutes by diving off the top of the Otter to the right (after sitting on top) instead of exiting from the left-side camera step. There are a couple of issues with this, the first and foremost being the safety issue. If the videographer should strike the tail on exit, the worst-case scenario involves damage to the tail that compromises the aircraft's maneuverability enough to result in a crash.

Secondly, when you put an airplane between yourself and the team, you're guaranteed to lose sight of them, which could certainly compromise their score.

While there was some pretty capable flying on the part of the videographer in that his team was out of frame for only about a second or less, that counts for exactly nothing. Instead, the team received a zero and the DZO ejected the videographer from the drop zone for the rest of the event. Fun is fun, but putting safety issues in front of a panel of national and international judges at the United States Parachute Association Nationals is not smart.

Here's what chief judge Judy Celaya had to say about it on the scoresheet:


2:30 pm: And it's official, Arizona Airspeed takes home the gold in 8-way open, followed by the Golden Knights with a silver and Paraclete XP for bronze. Congratulations to the winners!!!!

We're still waiting on the jumpoff results for 8-way intermediate bronze, stay tuned...

Freefly open scoring hasn't progressed, but intermediate has round 2 judged and IsIs has widened their lead over SDH Outlaws to 2 points, with InLaws only 0.3 points back from Outlaws. (Crooks and straights, anyone? :-)

2:45 pm: Just heard that there is currently no feminine national record for most points in an 8-way skydive, likely because there is not yet a category for it... Hey Moxie, want to talk to the competition committee about that? That was a pretty sweet 15 points in round 4!

3:40 pm: Dallas Fusion bested JellO Slots by one point in the jumpoff to take the intermediate bronze medal! Great job guys, congratulations!!!!

4:30 pm: Awards presentation for VFS and 8-way will be at 7:30 pm. 10-way registration will close TONIGHT at 7 pm. Draw at 7:30 Scores are rolling in for freefly and freestyle; in freefly open, it's still SoCal Convergence by 6.9 points over Orlando XP. Nor Cal Revolt is in third by 2 points, and guest team Romance is only 0.10 point in fourth. Intermediate round 3 scores are rolling in; we'll catch up on that in a bit.

16-way round 1 is complete and round 2 scores are showing up; so far it's Airspeed with a strong lead, starting with their 11 in round 1 (nearest neighbor Golden Knights scored a 7, followed closely by Deguello's 6). Rain on Saturday was next with a 4. (Did you know that team originally was two teams--Rain on Saturday and Wind on Sunday? :) It looks like we'll get through three rounds of 16-way today.

In freestyle open, Team Flew Id is 0.9 points up on Dragons after one round's judging. Suicide Transition is 1.8 points back, with CSC Trinity chasing 1.1 points.

...we're up to three 10-way teams, let's keep it up!

5:55 pm: Two rounds into 16-way and Airspeed's still on top with a 23 after pulling a 12 in round 2, same as the Knights who are 4 points back. Deguello got a 9, and they're 4 more points back, followed by Rain on Saturday (that's just wrong) 5 points back.

In freefly intermediate, IsIs is broadening their lead over InLaws, but that last round was pretty close, they were only 0.1 points up. SDH Outlaws are just 0.2 points in third, no doubt hungry for that brighter silver...

VRW Advanced has had a bit of a changeup; remember that two of the three teams finished yesterday, but Elsinore VFS had people doing 8way as well... today they're rolling, they've taken the gold medal by 7 points over Gravity Rats (total score: 35)! Congratulations Elsinore VFS!! Proskydiving VFS picks up third place with a total score of 8.

And lastly, VRW Open is complete as well--no surprises there, Arizona Arsenal is still on top. Spaceland Vertical Force did not meet manifest calls after round 3, so they remain in third place behind SDC Standard XP.

Congratulations everyone!!

6:30 pm: Woohoo, Deguello just took off for round 4, looks like we're a little ahead of schedule! Round 3 is partly judged and it's still Airspeed on top; they scored a 10. Deguello and the Knights tied with 7s. More to follow!

Let's talk 10-way... I don't know if everyone is aware of this, but there's a judges' award for the team that entertains the judges the most after the scoring formation is built. Skydivers are so creative--show us your ideas and win a prize! :) (Boy, I sound like a carny... but it sure makes for great video to watch later over beverages!)

By the way, I hear some new formations are being proposed for the 10-way pool, and there's no reason you couldn't practice one or a few of them after scoring your time as there's no longer a rule against it! Or come up with your own, or whatever--have fun, that's what 10-way is all about!

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