Friday 26 October

Two days left -- 10-way today, and tomorrow the Nationals premiere of Sport Accuracy (sorry, I left that one off the links list, my oversight). What exactly is "Sport Accuracy"? I'm not really sure, but I'll tell you all about it tomorrow.

Meanwhile we will see if we can get through another 10-way Speed Formation contest without any exit rules controversy. Ever since the event was overhauled a few years ago, at least one team pushes the letter of the rules. Last year it was Carl Daugherty's team that got busted for illegal door contact on almost all their jumps. But it was Airspeed that won with pure skydiving skills, and if they win here, it will be there second consecutive sweep of the FS events. Hey, I say we make Airspeed stand a foot farther back from the line than everyone else. Heck, they'd still probably win... up loose ends this morning, I finally got the 8-way CF Speed team photos/pages up, sorry guys I slipped on that one. Soul Purpose ends up with two gold medals and one silver, great show guys!

First call for 10-way is at 8:00. The Page of Champions is updated (except for 10-way). 

Above: Deguello before round one yesterday.
Below: A door jam and Dan BC coaching a 10-way team.

Well, 10-way is off to a typical start: Teams are getting maximum scores and protests are flying. The Golden Knights got a 40.00. Roger Nelson's team got a 40.00. I'll post some updates to this just as soon as I hear...this event is getting ridiculous, we go through this mess every year...and after round one, SIX teams have maximum scores of 40 seconds, and Airspeed is in THIRD place. My oh my...

...coming up, some more magic from the lens of Michael McGowan, some photos from 16-way yesterday...but first, breaking news, the webmaster has just learned he's going to be a daddy! YIPPEE! Okay folks, now I need ALL of you to ORDER YOUR NATIONALS VIDEO because T2 needs to buy some diapers!

1200 Noon
We've finished 2 rounds of 10-way, and it's a mess. They've stopped jumping and the heads are in the conference room. Details later.

Meanwhile, a reader writes -

Hi Guys:

I thought since you were soliciting comment on various issues important to competitors, you might want to ask for comment on the site for future nationals. What are the thoughts out there on next year's event at SDC? Hasn't USPA realized that the only truly successful nationals over the last several years have been those at Eloy. Florida is a bust, the Ranch was a bust and the last 2 at Perris, although finished and very well run, were also hampered by weather issues (although personally I would love to see Perris and Elsinore Co-host the event since I live out that way). I think it might be time for the competitors to unite a bit and let USPA know that we are not interested in sitting around watching weather, freezing or standing around in 100% humidity. Eloy is an outstanding facility that continues to improve. Is there any other DZ that can safely get up 190 loads in a day? What is everybody thinking about this down there?

Also, can we get 10 way team pics?

T2 Responds:

Just about any competitor you ask will tell you the same thing: We want the nationals at Eloy every year, and if not every year, then maybe alternated between Perris and Eloy. However, I am fairly certain that if we gathered signatures from every single competitor who has competed the last five years asking for the nationals to be always at Eloy, the USPA competition committee would still not do it. It's all politics, and the voice of the competitor (at least in terms of nationals site selection) matters little within the walls of USPA.  But for what it's worth, I say we all pound USPA with feedback. Send it to

And the 10-way team pics are now posted.

- Tim

And we are still waiting for 10-way to resume...they are jokingly referring to this as the "10-way hostage crisis"...what happened, anyway, is that Roger's team and the Golden Knights were both assessed maximum scores for "exit violations." The judges' determined that they were not lined up and/or exiting in "single file" lineup as specified in the rules. Deguello got popped for a bad grip (a sidebody is a sidebody; you can't have an alternate grip like in a zircon).

Another reader is asking for more Freefly photos. Hey, haven't you figured out this is a FS oriented site? Like I need more blue-haired lawn darts taking up my bandwidth? ;-) smiling

After another hour, 10-way is jumping again, with a lot of grumpy faces. If they'd have just kept the rules nice and simple: behind the line, no grips allowed. But no; someone had to put all kinds of "single file, trail formation" and "no continuous exit contact" crap in there. Look, it's really very simple stuff. Everyone behind the line, no grips allowed. Just set up a ground-to-air telemeter shooting the exit to verify the lack of grips out the door. Everything else is anything goes. Dual-file parallel whatever. Why make it complicated? It's only made a another mess and a lot of unhappy competitors and judges.

No rest for the weary webmaster. No sooner had I retreated to T1's RV to lie down for a few minutes than Deguello needs their alternate again. We are starting round five, and while Airspeed is in first place now, it is Roger's squad that has the two fastest jumps of the meet so far. And off I go do do round five with Deguello...

10-Way! What fun! What pain! I got ALL the door on that exit.

Great suggestion in the mail: Ditch 10-way and make 4-way 20 rounds. But after jumping in the event, I can tell that the competitors LOVE the event and get a real kick out of it. If they just fix the rules once and for all, I think this event will grow in popularity, and even the judges will learn to like it ;-)

They are judging the final 10-way jumps, and as soon as they are done I will post them. I'm signing off these tidbits to hit the road and see my Amy as soon as I can. More tomorrow, we're not done yet, and I'll try to get back to each of you on your e-mails. Thanks for visiting!

Wait - closing bit - Skydive Chicago STL has finished 10-way with FOUR of the fastest rounds of the meet, and they still didn't win the gold! I tell you what, it's a great idea to show the judges your practice jumps before round one hits! Shazam.

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