... that the Carolinas were the US Formation Skydiving powerhouse of 2013?
Carolina 8way power: Golden Knights
posted Dec 20th, 2013 -
The coverage of the USPA Nationals 2013 by the Sun Path Products NSL News included several NSL Talk video clips. One of the conversations took place in the Golden Knights headquarters at Skydive Chicago and was published on 17 September 2013.
It was after the recorded conversation when Golden Knights members pointed out that the Carolinas have become the powerhouse of Formation Skydiving competition in the USA. The Sun Path Products NSL News took notice of the topic without getting back to it ever since. However, it was a good point, and it is time to pay attention to the Carolina FS power.
USPA 8way competition is the easy part, as the event has been dominated by the Golden Knights since 2010. In addition, the Paraclete XP8 lineups have won USPA's 8way bronze medals for many years, and again in 2013. Vertigo's 8way lineup doubled the Carolina 8way gold collection in USPA's Intermediate Class.
Carolina 4way power: Paraclete XP4 and Golden Knights
The Carolina power was not as dominating in 4way as it was in 8way. However, the Carolina 4way teams still collected more medals than any other US regions and had their names on all three leaderboards (Open - Advanced - Intermediate).
Arizona Airspeed avoided a complete Carolina sweep in the Open Class. Paraclete XP4 (2nd), Golden Knights (3rd) and Carolina Turbo XP (4th) represented the Carolinas more than strongly in this category.
Of course, this was only the case on the USPA leaderboard where SDC Rhythm XP ended up on the bottom as a guest team. However, the three Carolina teams would still find themselves within the TOP 5, even if SDC Rhythm XP were eligible for USPA 2013 medals.
The Sun Path Products NSL News had introduced the winner of the Advanced Class, ZeBone, with stories on 14 October 2013 and on 5 November 2013. Both stories were showing that Paraclete XP was basically the center of ZeBone action, with player coaches Andy Honigbaum and Jan Lane guiding the team, both from North Carolina.
ZeBone was the only Carolina 4way team in a gold medal position at the USPA Nationals 2013 and won almost as clearly as Arizona Airspeed did in the Open Class. The Advanced Class competition had a field of 14 teams, which was also almost exactly the same number of teams as there were in the Open Class (15).
The Intermediate Class was extremely competitive with a total of 41 teams. The complete leaderboard shows how difficult it was to get to the medal positions. Vertigo 4 Black had to go through a jump-off with SDC Jetstream Tango to win the bronze medals for Carolina.
The Golden Knights have been stationed in Ft. Bragg and collected medals for the US Army and the USA as long as there has been Formation Skydiving competition. The increasing success of teams from Carolina has a lot to do with Paraclete XP building the first-class wind tunnel in Raeford.
Not only the teams and competitors from the Carolinas have taken advantage of the indoor training opportunity and improved their individual and team skills significantly. However, the results of the regular indoor training becomes most obvious with the success of the local and regional teams.
Carolina Turbo XP is one of the latest examples of Carolina 4way power, and the team is on the way to pursue the ultimate goal: 4way gold medals at a world championship. Turbo is also taking over the management of the Carolina Skydiving League, which has contributed significantly to the Carolina success, as well. It was a great year for the Carolinas, and 2014 could become even better...