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News from the 300-way - the day before

 


Premier billvon  (D 16479)
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Dec 6, 2002, 8:57 PM
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News from the 300-way - the day before Can't Post

 
DAY 0

Julie and I got to Eloy late last night to get a head start on registration and warm-up for the 300-way in Eloy, Arizona. It was one of those mind-numbing five hour drives through a pitch-dark desert, on a road so deserted that often you couldn't even _see_ any other cars. And on roads that go straight for 60 miles on a flat desert, that's saying a lot.

This morning we got to the DZ around 9 and started all the dozens of housekeeping and bureacratic details that go in to a record attempt. I dropped my backup rig off with Kevin the rigger to get a borrowed cypress put in. I decided that, during an attempt of this size, it was worth it to have a cypres on both my rigs. I had already swapped out my Safire 119 in my main rig for a borrowed Spectre 150 (thanks Greg) to give me a little more margin of error when trying to land with a pack of 300 other canopies. My backup rig had an even bigger main (bigger reserve, too) and would serve both as a backup in case I had a mal and as an option if I needed more weight to match fallrates.

The registration process took around an hour, with a lot of "You gotta go to manifest and do that first" and "You filled out the wrong photography waiver." It was cool to see people from all over the world check in - I saw Elena the russian chick, a couple from Germany who had gotten their visas at the last minute, even two guys from Paris in the parking lot.

After we registered we did some pick-up 40 and 60 ways. It was very cool to dirt dive a 40 way in 10 minutes and then go up and get two points on it, but with the caliber of the people at this event, such things happen. You can actually break off a 40-way at 4500 feet without worrying about it too much - everyone can track like a bat out of hell.

Then the Go Fast bus arrived. They've become a big sponsor for this event, to the extent that it is now officially the "Go Fast 300 way world record." This means free stuff for us, including an oxygn A3 helmet for our use during the attempt (with an integral oxygen system built into it, important for 22,000 foot jumps) and a bunch of T-shirts. Of course it also means that you get to be a walking billboard for Go Fast, but such is life. After our last jump Julie and I went to wait in the long line in front of the bus.

By the time we got to the front of the line they were trying to talk people out of using the 'official' helmets since they were running short of them. They almost talked me out of it, but my current full-face (an old FP-1) is in pretty bad shape, and it would suck to have it come apart halfway through the event. I ended up with an extra large A3 that I could barely squeeze my head into. Tonight's task is to take some padding out to see if I can make it fit a little better.

From talking to people at the event, everyone is taking this _very_ seriously. There wasn't much of the usual "what are you doing tonight? Who's going to be at the bent prop?" going on; most people were going to their hotels to go to sleep after they left the DZ. Julie and I left before sunset and headed to the usual places (K-mart, Albertson's) to stock up on food, water, and supplies for the week.

The real jumping starts tomorrow, with the 300-way breaking into three groups for practice on specific skills (base building, wacker building and flying, and team breakoffs.) The planes and people aren't all here yet, so we're starting late, at 10am. By Sunday we'll be starting at 8am and going until sunset.

One unusual thing about this dive is how many chiefs, and how many rules, there are. We have three primary organizers, 13 sector captains and 13 co-captains. We have a total of 13 plane captains. We have tracking teams A, B, C and D, with each team having between 4 and 8 tracking leaders. We have designated exit slots, approach lanes, build orders, breakoff altitudes, track leaders, track patterns, pull altitudes and even three separate landing areas for various parts of the formation. It's going to be a lot to remember compressed into 110 seconds of freefall.


JJohnson  (D 22675)

Dec 6, 2002, 10:44 PM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

Too cool Billy. Thanks for the update. Wish you all safety and victory.
JJ


Unutsch

Dec 6, 2002, 11:06 PM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

yeah, brothers and sisters, go on!!!!!!!!!!!!! build this mother f*****!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Premier skymama  (D 26699)
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Dec 7, 2002, 5:16 AM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

Oh, this was such interesting reading, Bill. I have no idea what goes into building a formation so large. Please keep us updated as much as you can!


ltdiver  (D 20506)

Dec 7, 2002, 6:14 AM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

Incredible, Bill!
We can just feel the palpable pulse of the event in your writing. It's like the adrenaline of JFTC all over again...Smile

Post as you can. We love it!
ltdiver


Enrique  (C 32172)

Dec 7, 2002, 11:00 AM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
DAY 0

Julie and I got to Eloy late last night to get a head start on registration and warm-up for the 300-way in Eloy, Arizona.
Quote:

Bill, I am sorry I missed you and Julie (I left a message on her cell phone). I wish you guys a great time and a swift victory. Be safeand have tons of fun.
I hope to see you there next Saturday.

Say HI to Julie for me.

Think "300" "300" "300" "300" "300" "300"

Enrique


mustard  (D 14580)

Dec 7, 2002, 12:31 PM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

I'll be watching this threat, Bill, and wishing you the very best of luck. Hope you have your own computer or something, I remember last winter how hard it was to get onto those dinosaurs in the internet cafe. But DZ.com actually is pretty easy to use with any browser.

I got onto www.300-way.com and read avidly all about the details after reading your post. With such a wonderful lineup, I suspect that the record will be gotten by midweek! Blue skies and fast tracks! I looked at your position close to the base, it looks like a good one.


flyangel2

Dec 7, 2002, 4:15 PM
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Re: [mustard] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

I looked at your position close to the base, it looks like a good one.
Let's hope he brought plenty of weights with himWink

Bill, be safe and I look forward to your posting.
Mary


coltmodel70  (Student)

Dec 7, 2002, 5:23 PM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

thinking "300" !!!!!!!!! best wishes to all participating. anyone see "GREG", a ARMY golden knight, tell him skydive coastal carolina is hopeing for him, and all to get it done..........................Cool


drenaline  (C License)

Dec 7, 2002, 8:29 PM
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Re: [billvon] News from the 300-way - the day before [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey Bill!

Hope you get to build that "small" formation Wink
Lotsa Blue Skies for everybody mate!



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