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Did You Know...

... that the jumpoff at the World Challenge 2014 was a nerve-wracker?

   
    The road to the 2nd place at the World Challenge 2014
posted Apr 8th, 2014 - The most exciting part of the World Challenge 2014 has only been shown in numbers on the leaderboard so far, the jumpoff between XL and Volt'R.

The Sun Path Products NSL News now provides a comprehensive review of the 11-round competition between the two teams, which was actually a 3-team battle for a while. Gavroches from France was in 2nd place behind NMP-PCH Hayabusa through Round 6 and then fell behind. The graphic shows the intensity of the battle for the 2nd place and XL's and Volt'R's road to the jumpoff.

The battle for the 2nd place between Volt'R, the new French national 4way Open Class team until at least 2016, and XL began in Round 1 and lasted throughout the fastest sequence of the meet, which was drawn for Round 11, the jumpoff. Both teams exchanged blows round by round until the first tie in Round 5, which was the beginning of a 4-round run for Volt'R. However, the XL veterans knew what to do and needed only two strong rounds to catch up with the French team from a 4-point deficit.
World Challenge 2014Rd. 1Rd. 2Rd. 3Rd. 4Rd. 5Rd. 6Rd. 7Rd. 8Rd. 9Rd. 10Rd. 11T.Avg
R.AAA/Open Class17,18,195,16,64,N,13P,F,12,MJ,D,10,KG,3,O,CH,22,1420,2,81,21,1115,7,LA,B,E,Q,9T.Avg
2XL25252134 28 30232123334630928.1
3VoltR (FR)26242333 28 32232221314530828.0

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Volt'R preparations for the jumpoff round    
Volt'R and XL pushed each other so hard that it eventually resulted in getting even closer to NMP-PCH Hayabusa. XL tied the Belgians in Round 8 and Round 10, while Volt'R even outscored Hayabusa in Round 8. XL's 33-pointer in Round 10 eventually forced the French national team into the jumpoff round.

All top teams and 4way experts had agreed after the competition draw that it was one of the slowest that they had seen before, at least the slowest in the World Challenge history. Four of the five rounds on the first competition day included slot switchers, and the remaining two memory blocks also appeared in two separate sequences. This made it a total of six slot switchers in ten rounds, the maximum possible number.

It was no surprise that Round 11 was a very fast sequence. In fact, another random formation was not drawn for the 11-round meet. XL and Volt'R were the only fortunate teams who could finally get a realistic meet average after adding the scores of Round 11 to the total.
World Challenge 2014Rd. 1Rd. 2Rd. 3Rd. 4Rd. 5Rd. 6Rd. 7Rd. 8Rd. 9Rd. 10TotalAvg
RankAAA/Open Class17,18,195,16,64,N,13P,F,12,MJ,D,10,KG,3,O,CH,22,1420,2,81,21,1115,7,LTotalAvg
2XL25252134 28 302321233326326.3
3VoltR (FR)26242333 28 322322213126326.3
4Gavroches (FR)23252433 31 312018212825425.4


   
    After the nerve-wracker: Volt'R and XL
The jumpoff situation had the better outlook for XL. The momentum was surely on the XL side after winning Round 9 and Round 10 each by two points. In addition, the experience level of the four XL members was much higher after many years of 4way competition on the world's top level, and with reigning 4way world champion Thomas Hughes in this year's lineup.

Volt'R has two 4way world champions of 2010 in the lineup (Mathieu Bernier - Julien Degen), however, the team is still in the building phase, especially for the two new members (Pierre Emmanuel Balages - Damien Gouriou). It was actually impressive how close the whole competition and the jumpoff were from the French view.

The jumpoff was a nerve-wrecking situation, as the video shows. The French team had to wait for a long time in the chamber before the air speed was ready. It was a very different timing compared to the previous ten rounds. XL was luckier as the second team and followed their usual procedure. They still had their own obstacle though, when the green light did not turn on after setting up the entry formation in the door. XL climbed back out and set up again a minute later for the winning performance...

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