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Events

    World Parachuting Championships 2016 - Day 4 Update

    Henrik Raimer by Daniel Hagström
    There is so much going on across the Mondial proceedings that keeping abreast of everything that is happening is probably impossible.
    As a competitor you are acutely aware of how well you are doing, your personal battles and what is going on directly above and below in your table. You are also probably loosely aware of what is playing out throughout the rest of your category but likely not the specifics. You might have a general picture of how the other members of your nation are doing, discussed in the downtime in your delegation tent. By the time you are reaching across the disciplines to those with which you have few connections the myriad complexities, technical acumen and gatherings of points can quickly retreat into mystery.
    Early call times and some long waits for the right conditions give people a chance to mooch around and learn a bit more about the strange animals on display. An important thing that one can and should take away from this event is that no matter how askance you look at the disciplines somewhat removed from what you do personally, and no matter how much more exciting and important you think your jam is - everyone here is under the same pressure and dealing in equal measures of precision to get the job done.



    Solaris Freestyle by Nicolas Campistron
    At this mid-point through the scheduled days the logistics and weather considerations mean that some disciplines are nearly complete, while some still have the lion’s share to go. The Accuracy area has proven a bit of a draw throughout some long hours when prohibitively low cloud puts paid to any freefall activities - there are something like two hundred representatives doing ten rounds each so they descend carefully from the sky in a seemingly endless precession as human after human plops down onto the pad with a projected sharpened heel presenting a score, most often just a mere couple or few centimetres from the dead centre - which when hit is celebrated with a ripple of applause and a happy squeak from the machinery.
    Formation Updates
    Formation Skydiving is serious business - with a level of skill and technical mastery that takes years to perfect as you evolve through the platforms. Belgium’s Hyabusa have been running away with the open category while a tight battle is playing out in the women’s category between the U.S. Golden Knights and the French ladies with at times just a single point a separating them. Talk of the town here is how much the Qatar team have improved and now throw down proudly in the middle of their peers despite only having become licensed skydivers in 2012.
    French Domination
    The French delegation get good support from their government throughout skydiving and as such their depth of skill is on display across the whole championships. Canopy Relative Work has Frenchies in strong medal positions across the three categories but at this point the exciting part is that both the French 4-way Rotation team and the Qatar 4-way Sequential team have broken world records early on then both proceeded to repeat the feat through subsequent rounds - Qatar doing so a half-dozen times.
    What's happening in freefly
    On the Freefly side of things, local team SDC Core have cleaned up in the business of turning points in VFS - yet despite being far enough out in front for it not to matter were forced to express some concern over a series of busts throughout one round for the same thing over and over which was explained away as them ‘doing it too fast’ even when reviewed on 70% speed.
    In the Artistic categories there is always the thorny issue of exactly what the judges like and don’t like, and the discrepancies between that and the points awarded and the opinions of the flyers taking part. This world meet is turning out to be the same story over again as the consensus of opinion from many of the teams is at odds somewhat with the positions on the scoreboard. However - few would argue that the Russians have been leading the way in Freefly for a few years now with amazing creativity and precision. The truest sign of being on top of the pile in freefly is that a lot of other performances start to look a bit like yours - and the Tunnel Rats influence can be traced down through the scoreboard. Freestyle is another category largely ruled over by the French, with their two teams battling it out for gold and silver by a clear margin. Freestyle is evolving and with a strong showing this year, interest from many other countries and a new generation of born and raised flyers on the way things look to be very exciting from here on.


    German Accuracy by Matthias Walde
    Team dynamics are interesting and complex - there is always a fair amount of conflict and cat-herding even amongst smaller teams, so it is no surprise that the very best 8-way FS teams are military concerns with the discipline and organisation to make it work. On the back of previous victories the Golden Knights are way out in front and show no signs of slipping. For me, the 8-way competition is the most interesting outside of my own as you can kind of make it out from the ground while laying back on an inflatable crocodile in the SDC pond.
    Big numbers in the speed skydiving category
    The biggest surprise of the event so far has come in the Speed category - Sweden’s Henrik Raimer not only broke 500km/h for the first time in an official competition but recorded a new world record with a difficult to comprehend 601km/h. For context - the speediest of the other forms of competitive skydiving operate at around half of that. This is like turning up at the Olympics and running the hundred meters a couple of seconds faster than everyone else. Zoom!

    By admin, in Events,

    Para Gear Photo Submissions For Catalog 82

    Para Gear is interested in photographic submissions that you may have for the 2019 - 2020 Para Gear Catalog #82. We have taken the time to briefly describe the format and certain criteria that we look for, in order to help you to see if you have something worth submitting. We have included examples of previous catalog covers for your reference.
    http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.290693934285998.71336.290673160954742&type=3 or http://www.dropzone.com/photos/zArchive/Article_Photos/Para_Gear_Covers/index.html
    Over the years Para Gear has used photos from all of skydiving's disciplines. We do not have a preference as far as what type of skydiving photo it is, rather we look for something that either is eye-catching or pleasing to the eye. In light of the digital age, we are also able to use photos that in one way or another may be less than perfect and enhance them, removing blemishes, flipping images, altering colors, etc.


    Front cover of catalog 81

    Back cover of catalog 81
    The following are preferences. However what we prefer and what we get, or choose, are not always the same. If however we came down to a choice between two photos of equal quality, we would opt for the one that met more of our preferences. We typically prefer that the photo be brighter. In the past we have used sunset photos and even a night jump photo, although by and large most of the photos are daytime. We like the subject of the image to have contrast with the background. Subjects that are wearing brighter more colorful clothing usually stand out more. We prefer to have the people in the photo wearing equipment since that is what we sell. Headgear, goggles, jumpsuits, altimeters, audible altimeters, and gloves are all good. We also prefer to see skydivers wearing head and foot protection.
    We do not print any BASE jumping nor any Tandem photographs. No submissions of these will be accepted. We are not interested an any photos of individual or groups of skydivers standing on the ground.


    Front cover 2016

    Back cover 2016

    Our basic criteria is as follows:
    Vertical Format. The front and back covers of the catalog are both in a vertical format. We can use a horizontal (landscape) shot, as opposed to a vertical (portrait), and then crop it as long as the image lies within a vertical cropping.
    Photo Quality. The front and back cover shots will be printed as 8 ½ x 11 in 300 dpi format. Any film that can hold its quality up to this size and print dpi is fine. Digital format is preferred. In the event of a final cover choice, we prefer to be sent the original digital image or slide for getting the best quality out of the image.
    Back Cover Photo. The back cover photo is no different from the front except in one respect. We need to have room on the left side of the image for the thumb index. In the past we have taken images and been able to horizontally flip them thereby creating this room.
    Originality. Anything that is original, eye-catching, or makes someone take more notice of the catalog covers is something we look for. It could be a photo from a unique camera position or angle, a scenic skydive, shots under canopy, landings, etc. We look for photos that have not been previously published and most likely would not accept them if they have, as we want a photo that no one else has seen yet. We also do not want any photos that are chosen as the front or back covers to be used for other non Para Gear advertising for a period of one year.
    Para Gear offers $500.00 each for both the front and back covers we choose. Our current deadline for catalog cover submissions is November 16th 2018. Sending sample pictures by e-mail to [email protected], If you are sending sample digital pictures please note that they do not need to be in a very large format. If we like the sample picture we will then ask you to send the higher quality original. Please feel free to contact me directly with any questions.

    By admin, in Events,

    World Parachuting Championships 2016 - Introduction

    Photo by Joel Strickland There is much to love about spending time in America. For every little chuckle outsiders have about the way they do things here there is a cultural counterpoint that raises the place above its oddities. For every ludicrous psychedelic foodstuff lining the shelves of Walmart there is a dining experience that you will talk about forever, and for each curious use of language or baffling advertisement there is an example of doing things with such brio and flair it will makes you wish wherever it is you are from was a little more like it is over here.
    It has been a long while since the World Championships was held in the United States. Eloy presented the World Cup in 2005 but not since 1993 has skydiving biggest shown been to town. When discovering a place like Skydive Chicago it seems curious that it has been so long. Rook Nelson’s SDC is a great example of American bigness in the way the space and resources available here are presented. Manicured grass spills out and rolls off in every direction, looking for all the world like it is someone’s job to perpetually ride a mower in the manner of Sisyphus pushing that rock up that mountain. Uniform aircraft proceed in a unbroken cycle around a bespoke creation in a land-load-takeoff cycle eating up the ever increasing demand for lift capacity as one nation after another arrives to shake off the jet lag and get used to the place.
    By Friday the floorspace in the huge hanger is at a premium as there are more than 800 competitors from 37 nations scheduled to arrive from all over the world in time for the opening ceremony on Sunday afternoon. We are a well connected bunch so there is lots of catching up to do - perhaps just days have past between friends and rivals - or there are those have not seen since the last world meet in the Czech Republic two years ago. Teams weigh each other up. Progress is mostly hidden in the sky so much of the judgement is expressed about who has the nicest delegation gear to wear about while on the ground. This is parachuting’s biggest affair so everyone acts like it - style points, swagger, matching colours, matching luggage. The colourful menagerie of the length and breadth of skydiving is present - everything from nations where parachuting is largely a military concern representing proudly in canopy formation work and accuracy jumping, through the storied history and wide appeal of flat flying to the fresh faced kids turing up to throw down the new new way in the artistic categories.


    Photos by Joel Strickland

    Photo by Craig Poxon By the time Sunday morning arrives the place is packed out. A day of heavy rain broke the oppressive humidity of earlier in the week but also flooded out the ancillary dropzone at Cushing Field (‘Swamp’) - so every category is here trying to get in their final practice efforts. Jumping only goes until noon to allow for the briefings and draws and to allow time for everyone to get to town for the opening ceremony. The usually perfectly adequate manifesting software was been set aside in favour of good old paper and pencils for which the result is a gigantic snake of humans at the window putting names in for thirty loads down the line. Pressure builds as we get closer to the start of the competition and everyone is deep in their own affairs - but getting this done should be recognised as no small achievement by the SDC staff as half a dozen aircraft do multiple passes and multiple heights - juggling every single category and jumping everyone safely.
    Some nations present huge delegations for the FAI Worlds using their full allotment of qualifiable teams. France, Great Britain and the USA itself each bring a small crowd to Ottawa Township High School brandishing flags to be introduced and applauded in turn. It is the smaller delegations though that raise the biggest cheers - the UAE has three representatives, Israel two, but the crowd rise to their feet for Cuba and India - nations both with a single member in the competition.

    Photo by Will Penny The UK is not so far removed from the USA - we have been trading culture back and forth for a long time. Even so the images of a thousand movies echo in my imagination as we parade around the local high school football field in our delegation uniforms and it makes me wonder how representatives from more exotic nations find it here. The bleachers, the line of proud veterans with old bolt-action rifles, the national anthem perfectly timed with a formation flypast from the SDC aircraft and an enormous flag demo - Old Glory blazing in the strong afternoon sun. Americans are good at this stuff.
    The competition kicks off in the morning with an early start for some and a more relaxed call of noon for others. For now though we are thirsty and intent on embracing the invitation of hospitality from the mayor and the local community as we ooze out of the school into the town and the setting sun.
    Stay tuned for further updates out of Skydive Chicago by Joel.

    By admin, in Events,

    National Skydiving Museum Weekend and Hall of Fame Celebration

    Fredericksburg, VA (April 6, 2012) - Mark your calendars for November 9 - 11 to be at Skydive Arizona (Eloy) for the 2012 National Skydiving Museum Weekend and Hall of Fame Celebration.
    The weekend's activities will focus on the “Birth of Formation Skydiving - The Star Crest Recipient Award” with the highlight of the weekend Saturday evening when seven skydiving legends will join 17 others into the museum's Hall of Fame. More than 300 people from around the world are expected to join in the festivities and the event is expected to bring in more than $125,000 to support building the museum.
    The activities start Friday morning and include exhibit displays with some of the rich history of the sport, a theatre featuring great skydiving footage, and a special display on the history of the Star Crest Recipient Awards (SCR). Throughout the weekend, a group of large-formation skydivers will be building 64-way formations to commemorate the birth of relative work.
    For those looking to share skydiving memories and catch up with old friends, the “Pioneers Lounge” sponsored by Pope Valley Parachute Ranch will serve as reunion headquarters. On Friday evening there will be a BBQ where Bill Newell, Jerry Bird and others will share stories about the SCR Awards program and its contributions to the sport.
    The culmination of the weekend will be the Hall of Fame reception and dinner Saturday evening presented by the Parachute Industry Association. The 2012 inductees are Carl Boenish (posthumous); Bob Buquor (posthumous); Claude Gillard; Craig Girard; Dan Poynter; and Hank (posthumous) and Muriel Simbro. The Hall of Fame recognizes and honors those, who through leadership, innovation and/or outstanding achievements have defined, promoted, inspired and advanced skydiving at the highest and sustained levels in the past, present and for future generations of skydivers. Seating is limited at the dinner so make your reservations early.
    Skydive Arizona™, located half way between Phoenix and Tucson, is the premier place for skydivers of all skill levels. With Arizona's beautiful weather, one of the largest aircraft fleets, amazing facilities and the largest drop zone in the world, Skydive Arizona has the ability to offer more sun, more fun and more jumps. This skydiving resort has become a mecca for the skydiving community!
    The fundraiser will benefit the National Skydiving Museum's $6-million capital program that will raise the necessary funds to build the museum in Fredericksburg, VA. The museum has already acquired the land that is situated adjacent to the U.S. Parachute Association. When completed, the 15,000 square foot National Skydiving Museum will recognize and promote the sport of skydiving through public education and awareness; recognize the contribution to skydiving by its participants, suppliers and supporters; capture forever the history of the sport through is events, equipment and personalities; and enhance aviation safety as it pertains to skydiving. It is expected the museum will draw visitors from throughout the world to experience the thrill of skydiving through its history of people, equipment and events.
    The National Skydiving Museum is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation governed by a Board of Trustees.
    For more information and to register for the National Skydiving Museum Weekend and Hall of Fame celebration, visit www.skydivingmuseum.org or contact museum administrator, Nancy Kemble, at 540-604-9745 or [email protected] There are also a variety of sponsorship opportunities available for the event to show your support.

    By admin, in Events,

    World Cup of Indoor Skydiving 2016 - Part 2

    With the conclusion of the FAI World Cup of Indoor Skydiving 2016 we have proved a few things, re-affirmed some others and learned a couple more. The standard of flying on display and the speed at which teams of humans fling themselves around the tube has been of an eye-bulging, jaw-dropping standard throughout. Dynamic teams are separated by the kind of times that require lasers to accurately judge and the 4-Way scores can be upwards of forty points. Juniors in every category across the competition demonstrate that they are skilled and able to step up and battle the grown-ups whenever they choose that they are ready.
    The Dynamic 2-Way competition kicked of with everyone fighting for where they would be seeded into the knockout stage. The eight fastest teams got a buy through the early battles with the exception of the 2015 Suisse 1. Defending world champions Filip Crnjakovic and Fabian Ramseyer made a small early error which snowballed into them performing a whole speed round the wrong way - and subsequently had to work against some strong mid-table opponents to make the finals. Tie-break speed rounds separated the positions at the top - with the Polish Flyspot locals the Vipers taking the gold after sub-one second wins over the French team from Windoor. Special mention should be made for crowd favourites iFly Aspire (Kayleigh and Noah Wittenberg - formerly of Mini Maktoum) and Firefly Singapore (one of which - Kyra Poh - won gold in the Junior Freestyle) as both teams are now competition veterans despite being children - who place among the highest level and are certainly capable of victory.

    The battle raged in the 4-Way Open between Belgium’s Hyabusa and the French team representing the Weembi tunnel (counting a former Hyabusa member among their number) as the two traded rounds until the later part of the competition where the Belgian’s took it. After a slow start the French ladies began to put up scores in the 4-Way Female that would see them place highly in the open category - leaving the two British teams Volition and NFTO to weigh each other up for the remaining positions on the podium. A very healthy turnout of 8 teams for 4-Way Junior saw the Canadians win a gold, with France occupying 2nd and 3rd and proposing that the next crop of French flyers might represent as strongly in skydiving competitions as the current generation. VFS was all about the imperious performance of Mondial champions SDC Core - who intend to continue for for another few trips around the calendar and don’t show any signs of being beaten just yet. However, the young Golden Knights team are looking promising after their battle for Silver with the Russians and have vowed to go hard into next season.
    If they can bring the same pedigree to their new vertical team that the Golden Knights have to their FS interests things might get very interesting.

    The last few competitions have seen indoor Solo Freestyle settle into a legitimate position in the proceedings (and gather a huge number of views with some viral videos) and things are only getting more interesting. The standard of this gathering was high enough that a few mere tenths of points arranged the rankings. Interested competitors now seem to understand that cobbling together your best tunnel moves into a loose sequence is not enough to play at the top - that you have to present all the details properly.
    While not a competition in which music was a part of the rules, many believe it was successfully demonstrated that a well choreographed routine is only added to by a soundtrack - although it remains to be seen exactly how far this element of the format can be taken as the balance between theatre and the parameters actually written down caused some conflict between the judges scores. Leonid Volkov came from Russia with seven separate routines each accompanied by its own piece of music - yet went home with a Silver medal. There is certainly something to be said for that kind of effort and variety but the ruleset does not specify any criteria for rewarding it. He was beaten but one tenth of a point by Finland’s Inka Titto who performed an intricate, technical free round built from the kind of moves the rest of us can only dream of.
    Some scuttlebutt about the nature of the competition - that modern tunnel skills are somewhat overlooked in favour of classical freestyle - can be analysed in the battle for third place. Mad Raven Martin Dedek of the Czech Republic beat young Polish local Maja Kuczyńska to the bronze medal by the same single tenth that decided the top two with a fast, powerful dynamic routine that included enough creative elements and concessions to presentation to secure the win over Maja’s prettier, more classical set.
    This has been the first competition in which the entries in the Dynamic flying category has outnumbered those in the 4-Way open. After some dismissive thinking and comment over the elitist nature of high-end tunnel flying over recent times - that it is solely the province of tunnel instructors and professional coaches - the amount of non-pro and aspiring teams is growing all the time. This reflects the advances we have been making in teaching technique and the accessibility of our sport as a whole. Despite tweaks from one competition to the next - the rules and competition format work with some efficiency, and the rate at which tunnel facilities are sprouting up out of the earth like mushrooms with no signs of slowing down means these world gatherings look set to carry on and continue to grow.
    Full results can be found on the official IPC website at: http://ipc-wcresults.org.uk/
    A wealth of images and more information is available on the WCIS Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/search/top/?q=2nd%20fai%20world%20cup%20of%20indoor%20skydiving

    By admin, in Events,

    World Cup of Indoor Skydiving 2016 - Part 1

    Over the last few years - as tunnel competitions have grown ever more popular - it began to look increasingly necessary that some kind of formalisation was in order. A small central element of the involved and interested had been doing a splendid job of arranging indoor skydiving competitions, yet the exponential growth of the industry was bringing with it showdowns of condensing frequency - to the point where it was creating an overall muddle in which not a handful of months would pass without a new set of winners earning a small window of opportunity to declare themselves and be declared the best in the land - right up until the next gathering rolled around.
    Alongside a strong sense of independence from the tunnel community there was a building desire for more intricate and complex measures that could and would validate victory in the form of accepted world champions with trophies and medals and such. Despite the obvious symbiotic relationship between the sky and the tube there was no small resistance to the idea of joining forces with the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, and although it seemed some form of cooperation was a likely outcome - voices could be heard on both sides of the line.
    Perspectives were argued and both had validity. One view held that the FAI was nothing to do with the tunnel (A somewhat ironic switcharoo from the resistance indoor flying was subject to from skydiving traditionalists in its primary years as not being ‘proper’) and that the tunnel community had been doing a bang-up job so far, so what were they really offering other than to assume control over something that belonged to us?
    Yet with the increase in scale across all areas of tunnel business there was the question of the organisational structure that could be offered - was the flying community able to manage all of the bureaucratic considerations for operating what are now truly widespread international shenanigans? Could they create and produce all of the documents suitable and necessary to conduct professional sporting events? The office nitty gritty and the formational nuts and bolts? Who was going to do all that?
    On the other side - throwing in with the FAI meant access to a support structure that has been in place for many years across myriad airborne disciplines - including the ones out there are already related to skydiving. However the FAI might bring with it the problems that have become routine in artistic skydiving competitions - issues with judging, format and structure and an unwieldy ability to change enough and fast enough despite being continually presented and queried about the problems - thus hanging an albatross around the neck of something that is moving too quickly and altering form from one event to the next while still finding its feet and discovering the best way to find out who is the best.
    After some to-ing and fro-ing the result was more-or-less ‘Let’s give it a try and see what happens’. The proof would be in the pudding.
    After a tentative first go at iFly Austin in 2014, the Hurricane Factory in Prague hosted the first formal World Indoor Skydiving Championships a year later with broad success, and now with over 200 teams from 29 countries spread across 4-Way Open, 4-Way Female, VFS, 2-Way Dynamic and Solo Freestyle descending on Poland’s FlySpot on the outskirts of Warsaw - it would seem that the overall appeal has proved the relationship to be valid as the World Cup 2016 gets going.

    Opening Ceremony Notably absent from proceedings is a 4-Way Dynamic competition. 4-Way Dynamic is the most dazzling display of what can currently be done in the tunnel and it is a shame that not quite enough teams were ready for this one - also likely indicative of the combination of high difficulty and a still shifting dive pool that sees teams struggle to commit or even spit up into the 2-Way competition.
    There is also a strong turnout in the Junior Freestyle category, with two thirds as many members as the open version and many kids also present across the belly competition. Everyone has been saying it for years - that the next generation of flyers, raised up in a tube before having anything to do with skydiving would soon be upon us. Well, with some of even the smallest participants electing to fly with the grown-ups and earn their way on a level playing field - here they are.
    Many here keenly feel the absence of two of our best loved and most talented individuals, both of whom we lost to accidents in the mountains this year while pursuing their dreams - Ty Baird, a peerless, perma-smiling ambassador for the sport in general and FlySpot in particular, and Dave Reader - equally influential in quieter ways. The fingerprints of these two are all over the place - not just directly on how people fly by way of their students - but on the evolution of the very techniques we use and also on the composition of some of the elements of the competition itself. They are much missed.
    Each time out things are bit bigger and a little smoother. The rules are starting to settle into a reliable shape, the technological gremlins behind the scenes are becoming more manageable, the live presentation gets a bit slicker and as a result our exposure to the outside world a little wider. There is still some work to do to perfect the system, but everything is only getting better - which just leaves us wondering exactly how many people it might be possible to fit in this room to watch what unfolds over the next few days.
    More information, including the live stream, is available at http://wcis2016.com
     

    By admin, in Events,

    World Parachuting Championships 2016 - Wrap Up

    As the 2016 Mondial draws to a close it has got me thinking about what competitive skydiving means to our community as a whole. Most of the world has little or no idea that the act of falling from aeroplanes can qualify in form and function as a sport - let alone into the myriad ways of counting up points to assess who is the best at all its different disciplines. Many of us begin our careers in this same way - learning to skydive because it is exciting and cool before knowing anything about the existence of a competitive element. During the height of a serious competition it can sometimes seem a long road from those initial intentions of hoofing about in the sky with your friends - serious faces glued to monitors, disappointment in a missed move or a weak round, tension amongst a team, arguments about the rules and controversy over judging. With the pressure on it can be easy to cast an envious glance at the easy body language of the fun-jumper loads sprinkled here and there amongst the motivated and meaningful march of team after team after team.
    Yet competition is a big part is how we evolve. Gathering the most accomplished of our peers into a single place for the purpose of deciding who is best is a huge undertaking - the collected years of refined skill on display at a world level skydiving competition is amazing to witness and the sheer amount of training put into the last week or so here at Skydive Chicago often represents the accumulated knowledge of entire careers in the sky - years and decades - to which the end result of all this is more than simply deciding who is the best. Friendships are made and plans for the future created. Lines of communication are drawn across borders in the skydiving world where perhaps there were none. Skills in every discipline that have been honed to a fine edge over recent weeks and months scatter across the globe as this great swarm disperses - to filter back into the progress of skydiving’s nations, communities and individuals.

    Putting on the Mondial represents a three-year project for Skydive Chicago, and their attention to detail came together with few hiccups. The main issue they have had to wrestle is that the sheer amount of accuracy teams represented meant that despite recognising the task it and going hard from the start they were still trying to get finished after all the other disciplines had long since wrapped up their business. Medal ceremonies were held as the separate competitions ended - starting with the artistic categories, VFS and the eight-way awards first then moving through the others each evening that they finished. There are lot of disciplines at the Mondial which involves much applause, hugs, standing respectfully and proudly for national anthems, and positioning for endless photos. It was an entirely sensible choice to break the awards up over empty evenings as to do it all at once would take a long time indeed - yet this perhaps resulted in a slight sense of fragmentation after the grand communion of the opening ceremony and the weeks proceedings as teams began to scatter once their affairs grew complete. It might have been missing a trick to not keep everyone together until the end - giving the finale a touch more scale and bombast. Yet these are small things in an otherwise impressive undertaking.

    With the end in sight the SDC staff even put in the extra work to bring the banquet and party forward a day to breathe a little room into those tight travel schedules or perhaps allow time to pursue an adventure in the city - for which many are grateful. Many are now in debt to SDC for a free day through which to nurse a hangover brought on by the multiple encouragements of a table-service banquet, a local funk band, the famous SDC fireworks display and Jay Moledzki playing records late into the night.
    So what is next for us? New champions have been created and numerous wold records broken (some obliterated). What we could really use though is some more exposure for our sport. The people of Ottawa and the surrounding communities of Illinois have been as welcoming and hospitable as that for which the people of the United States are celebrated by anyone who has ever actually been here. However despite it being on their very doorstep, when you say “skydiving” and “world championships” together in a sentence there is that familiar battle behind people’s eyes between admiration and incomprehension as they try to commute one idea to the next with no frame of reference. With advances in training methods and equipment skydiving only grows more accessible so the way ahead is bright and clear. That there are places like Skydive Chicago in the world - with the space, support structure and lift capacity to make the demands of a forty-nation get together seem relaxed and efficient means we can plan healthily for the future competitive skydiving - building on our successes and see the sport as a whole continue to grow, educate and amaze people around the world.
    View full list of results here

    By admin, in Events,

    Jump-Tandem Festival 2017 Report

    The first annual JUMP-TANDEM V.I.P. FESTIVAL took place at the Dropzone Prostejov in the Czech Republic on July 11-16 2017.
    As the coaches arrived, there was nobody smaller than Léo Blanchon of the Bro’s (FF) and Kim Törnwall (FF), Rolf Brombach (WS), Regan Tetlow (FS), David Nimmo and Luis Adolfo Lopez-Mendez of Fly Warriors (FF).
    Each of them trained a small group of skydivers 4,200 meters in V.I.P. style so that everybody made great progress in their skills during the festival. There were also jumps made from two hot air balloons hovering at 4000 meters! Everybody landed safely in the drop zone.




    There was a party every night with happy hour, live bands and DJs. The final night featured a raffle with prizes in value of more than € 7,000.
    JUMP-TANDEM Dropzone Prostejov has already organized two Vector Festivals (2011, 2012), World Parachuting Championships (2014) and many World Cups and European Championships (2005-2013), for which it has become well-known.


    Plans are for only one V.I.P. mark in Europe next year too, which means that there is going to be very limited space available for registrations. If you don’t want to miss your slot on the very special 2018 JT V.I.P. FESTIVAL, check either the website or Facebook page regularly for more information about the event.
    More available at www.jumptandemfestival.com or www.facebook.com/jumptandem1/.
    Special thanks to festival partners Aerodyne and Cypres for their support.

    By admin, in Events,

    2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit Flying

    The TOP Wingsuit flyers from around the globe will get together at Skydive Fyrosity℠, Overton, NV to compete in one of the most challenging skydiving competition – 2nd FAI World cup of Wingsuit Flying.
    Nov 1-9, 2017 50-70 athletes from over 10 countries and five continents will test their mental and physical strength against each other in two disciplines – Performance Flying and Acrobatic Flying.
    For years, wingsuit flying has allowed humans to realize the age-old dream of personal human flight - Zipping through the air like Superman. With the invention of the modern wingsuit, growth of pilot skills and wingsuit technology in the last 2 decades, now this dream is a reality.
    Today, we live in spectacular and adventurous new era of aerial sports and Wingsuit flying history – World level competition!
    The 2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit flying will crown the best wingsuit pilot – the fastest, the toughest and the most accurate one will take the gold.
    The Event
    2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit Flying 2017 will be held at Skydive Fyrosity℠ . The skydiving Drop Zone is located at Overton-Perkins Field, NV only 60 miles NE of Las Vegas directly east to the Valley of Fire and North of Lake Mead National Park.
    The official bid to host the Event, was presented by Randy Connell – Director of Competition USPA and an Alternate USA Delegate to IPC on behalf of USA / USPA (United States Parachute Association) and Skydive Fyrosity℠ at the 67th IPC (International Parachuting Commission) meeting held in Faro, Portugal – Jan 25 – 29, 2017. The bid was voted and approved on Jan 29th, 2017 - http://www.fai.org/parachuting.
    IPC (International Parachuting Commission) is the world governing body of competitions skydiving under the umbrella of the FAI (Fédération Aéronautique Internationale).
    50 to 70 of the world’s best wing suit flyers and competitors, plus head of international delegations, judges, FAI / IPC officials USPA Officials, family, friends, skydivers, and guests from around the world are expected to descend upon Overton, NV from Nov 1 – 9, 2017 to compete for the gold in one of the most physically and mentally challenging sporting competition – Wingsuit Flying. Overton will be renamed to “Wingsuit City” for the duration of the event and will forever be recorded into the skydiving history as the home of the 2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit Flying - 2017.
    Marilyn Kirkpatrick, the Clark County Commissioner for this area, is so excited to have Skydive Fyrosity℠ as part of the Clark County family and sees great potential benefits for the northeast area as this thrilling sport continues to grow.
    Wing suiting development and Las Vegas have a long history together going back to 1996 – 97, one of the original developers of the modern wingsuit is a local Las Vegas resident and current Drop Zone owner of Skydive Fyrosity℠ – Sammy Vassilev.
    “It is an incredible honor to have been part of the wing suiting from the very beginning and now to be able to host the 2nd FAI World Cup Wingsuit Flying at our home DZ here in NV is just the most incredible feeling”.
    One of the original modern wingsuit designs is on a display at Skydive Fyrosity℠ and is available for anyone to see.
    The Disciplines
    The 2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit Flying consists of 2 separate events: Acrobatic Event and Performance Events.
    The acrobatic competition event consists of team of 3 people, 2 acrobatic performers and a 1 camera man capturing the performance on video. The team of 3 will exit the aircraft at 12,500 above the ground and the performers have a working time of 65 seconds to demonstrate to the judges their ability and acrobatic skills, consisting of flyovers, flips, turns, relative flight. The Artistic event has 7 rounds (jumps) and is judged for accuracy of performance, artistic performance, completion of the formations, grips, and quality of the camera work. The camera man and the image the competitor camera person delivers is part of the acrobatic performance. Each jump is considered 1 round, 1 round is considered complete when all competitors have successfully completed the jump for each round including re-jumps.

    The Performance Event is an individual competitor event consisting of 3 tasks – Speed, Time and Distance. Each task consists of 3 rounds (jumps) for the total of 9 competition rounds (jumps). The performance event does not have aerial video, however ground-to-air video can be used if such equipment is available. Therefore, the performance event is judged by state of the art GPS system which records the performance of each competitor delivered to the judges after each jump for evaluation. Once the data is downloaded into the software and evaluated the person going the fastest, furthest and spends the most time in the air is declared the winter in each task. The aircraft exit altitude is 12,500 above the ground up to 4 miles away from the landing area and the beginning of the performance evaluation starts at 3000 meters / 9,842.5 ft above the ground and ends at 2000 meters / 6,561.6 ft. The competitor performing the best within the 1000 meter / 3,280 ft evaluation window gets the gold medal.
    2016 World Champions of Wingsuit Performance Flying:

    1. Chris Geiler – USA - View profile
    2. Travis Mickle- USA - View profile
    3. Espen Fadnes – NOR - MView profile

    2016 World Champions of Wingsuit Acrobatic Flying:


    1. USA TEAM
    2. USA TEAM
    3. RUSSIA

    The History of Wingsuit And How It Is Related to Las Vegas
    An early attempt at wingsuit flying was made on 4 February 1912 by a 33-year-old tailor, Franz Reichelt, who jumped from the Eiffel Tower to test his invention of a combination of parachute and wing, which was similar to modern wingsuits. He misled the guards by saying that the experiment was going to be conducted with a dummy. He hesitated quite a long time before he jumped, and was killed when he hit the ground head first, opening a measurable hole in the frozen ground.
    A wingsuit was first used in 1930 by a 19-year-old American, Rex Finney of Los Angeles, California, as an attempt to increase horizontal movement and maneuverability during a parachute jump.
    These early wingsuits were made of materials such as canvas, wood, silk, steel, and whalebone. They were not very reliable, although some "birdmen", notably Clem Sohn and Leo Valentin, claimed to have glided for miles.
    Las Vegas
    In the mid-1990s, the modern wingsuit was developed by the French skydiver Patrick de Gayardon, adapted from the model used by John Carta. Patrick loved Las Vegas and few people know that he did a lot of jumps testing his suit and prepping it for the Grand Canyon flights in Las Vegas.
    In 1997, in Las Vegas the Bulgarian second generation skydiver Sammy Vassilev a.k.a (Popov) designed and built a wingsuit which had a larger wing between the legs and longer wings on the arms. His prototype was developed at Boulder City, Nevada. Testing was conducted in a vertical wind tunnel in Las Vegas at Flyaway Las Vegas. Vassilev’s (Popov's) wingsuit first flew in October 1998 over Jean, Nevada, but it never went into commercial production. Vassilev’s (Popov's) design was a great improvement in creating lift; it was able to slow the vertical speed to 30 km/h while gliding horizontally at speeds over 200 km/h.
    Today exactly 20 years later Sammy Vassilev is one of the co-founders of Skydive Fyrosity Las Vegas and will be hosting the 2nd FAI World Cup of Wingsuit flying!
    The original wing suit built by Sammy Vassilev will be exhibited during the World Cup at Skydive Fyrosity℠. The suit was jumped during the World Championships of Wingsuit flying from the test pilot for INTRUDAIR - Benedikt Hovelmann and it is still flying fast and stable.
    More history:
    In 1998, Chuck "Da Kine" Raggs built a version which incorporated hard ribs inside the wing airfoils. Although these more rigid wings were better able to keep their shape in flight, this made the wingsuit heavier and more difficult to fly. Raggs' design also never went into commercial production. Flying together for the first time, Popov and Raggs showcased their designs side-by-side at the World Free-fall Convention at Quincy, Illinois, in August 1999. Both designs performed well. At the same event, multiple-formation wingsuit skydives were made which included de Gayardon's, Vassilev’s (Popov's), and Raggs' suits.
    Commercial era
    In 1999, Jari Kuosma of Finland and Robert Pečnik of Croatia teamed up to create a wingsuit that was safe and accessible to all skydivers. Kuosma established Bird-Man International Ltd. the same year. Birdman’s "Classic", designed by Pečnik, was the first wingsuit offered to the general skydiving public. Birdman was the first manufacturer to advocate the safe use of wingsuits by creating an instructor program. Created by Kuosma, the instructor program's aim was to remove the stigma that wingsuits were dangerous and to provide wingsuit beginners (generally, skydivers with a minimum of 200 jumps) with a way to safely enjoy what was once considered the most dangerous feat in the skydiving world. With the help of Birdman instructors Scott Campos, Chuck Blue and Kim Griffin, a standardized program of instruction was developed that prepared instructors.[4] Wingsuit manufacturers Squirrel Wingsuits, TonySuits Wingsuits, Phoenix-Fly, Fly Your Body, and Nitro Rigging have also instituted coach training programs.
    The Host
    Skydive Fyrosity
    Located at Overton- Perkins field Airport about 55-minute drive from the Las Vegas Strip, North-East of Las Vegas in one of the most beautiful locations in Nevada, Skydive Fyrosity℠ offers the most incredible views of Valley of Fire, Lake Mead, Grand Canyon, Moapa Valley Indian Reservation, Mormon Mesa, Mormon Peak, Virgin & Colorado Rivers, Zion National Park, City of Las Vegas, City of Mesquite, City of St. George, UT and 3 US states, Arizona, Utah & Nevada. The most breathtaking view of your Las Vegas tandem skydiving experience are at Skydive Fyrosity™.
    Skydive Fyrosity℠ is the only full-service Drop Zone in Southern Nevada and the Las Vegas area. Offering the best skydiving facility and state of the art tandem skydiving equipment in Las Vegas. Skydive Fyrosity℠ specializes in 1st time tandem skydive students and complete skydive training to all looking to learn to and become skydivers. Skydive Fyrosity℠ is the only certified Skydive Training Center (TC) by USPA in Nevada. We provide the most exclusive, personal and exhilarating tandem skydiving experience to first time tandem students, licensed and experienced skydivers, athletes, skydiving competitors, students, life lovers, adventurers, thrill seekers looking to live their lives to the fullest.
    Skydive Fyrosity℠ offers the most advanced and complete skydive training via the exclusive AFP Training program, (Accelerated Freefall Progression Program) and skydiving education for the active and extreme sports adventurers looking to become licensed skydivers.

    Skydive Fyrosity℠ welcomes all licensed skydivers, pro skydiving teams and athletes from around the world to enjoy our beautiful year-round Las Vegas Drop Zone.
    More: www.SkydiveFyrosityLasVegas.com

    By admin, in Events,

    Eloy World Cup 2019 Results & Gallery

    The FAI World Cup of Formation Skydiving and Artistic Events was held at Skydive Arizona during early October 2019. Teams representing 16 different countries spent the week competing in Formation skydiving (4-way, 4-way Female, 8-way and VFS) and Artistic Skydiving (Freestyle and Freefly).
    The event opened with a memorable ceremony featuring RedBull pilot Kirby Chambliss and the Women’s Skydiving Network debuted their first all-female demo team who jumped into the event with 20’ x 30’ flags and smoke.
    After the opening ceremony and official draw, it was down to business as all the competitors prepared for the week ahead. The next few days were full of action as each team demonstrated their skill and sportsmanship through each round of competition. Luckily, good weather meant for a speedy competition and all events were finished by October 11th. With a full day to play before the closing ceremonies, competitors and local skydivers got together in a 10-way speed scramble competition. One round incorporated a jump from Skydive Arizona’s venerable DC-3!
    The awards ceremony the night of October 12th was one to remember. With over 400 guests, the hangar was vibrating with excitement and enthusiasm. Gold medals went out to the French Freestyle team as well as their 4-Way Female team. USA took gold home for 4-Way open and VFS. Norway received a gold medal for their Freefly team and Russia for 8-way FS.
    All disciplines will have their chance to compete again at the next FAI World Cup which will be held in Norway during the month of August 2021.
    All photographs were taken by Bruce Griffith, while scores listed below have been gathered from results.worldskydiving.org






     




























    By Meso, in Events,

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