... that XL is back with the 2007 lineup at the World Challenge 2013?
3rd place for XL at the World Challenge 2007
posted Feb 4th, 2013 -
Several teams used the discounted registration fee for the World Challenge 2013 in time, and the number of teams went up significantly before the 1st of February. The 4way field is once again like an extended World Meet in the AAA Class competition, and the other categories are filling up quickly, as well.
It is an extended World Meet situation since not only the national teams are eligible for the indoor competition at Bodyflight Bedford. Other world class teams like XL, SDC Rhythm XP and Thunder can also show what they have to offer and get their scores posted on the same leaderboard.
XL has revealed their 2013 lineup earlier than usual, and it includes a smooth transition story from the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2013 to the World Challenge, as several teams and competitors who competed last weekend will also be in Bedford.
Thomas Hughes and Niklas Hemlin with Fastrax at the World Challenge 2007
Brian Johnson has been one of the American players in the XL lineups since 2007. He has missed only one event in 2008 when XL had a reunion of the complete 2003 outdoor lineup. Pete Allum and Steve Hamilton have competed for XL at each World Challenge since 2007 and will be back this year. John McIver is back in the 2013 lineup after competing for Satori between 2010 and 2012.
The 2013 lineup is identical with the one of 2007, and the NSL News found some 2007 footage in the archives. It includes a surprise visit by Team Fastrax in Bedford, with Thomas Hughes and Niklas Hemlin in the lineup, who finished one single point behind Arizona Airspeed's Odyssey lineup.
Thomas Hughes then competed for XL in 2008, 2009 and 2010 before he joined Arizona Airspeed in 2011, together with his former Fastrax team mate Niklas Hemlin.
Brian Johnson with USA CAN at the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2013
The XL 2007 lineup finished in 3rd place with a 26.1 average in Bedford, which was the beginning of the annual XL reunion at the World Challenge. All four 2003 members have always been in Bedford in April, even though the original lineup could get together only once since 2007. XL with the different lineups has always placed between 2nd and 4th place and has never left Bodyflight Bedford without any of the jackpot's prize money cash in the team pockets.
Brian Johnson had his indoor warmup opportunity last weekend at Paraclete XP where he flew the Center Inside slot for USA CAN. The 23.4 average with the pickup team was only good enough for the 4th place, even though USA CAN outscored Arizona Airspeed and posted the highscore in Round 6. His XL job will require more to get back into the money rankings in Bedford. He will again be in the rear piece together with John McIver.
His USA CAN team mate Martin Lemay will try to take away a money slot at the World Challenge 2013. Evolution has never been in one of the four top rankings in Bedford - the Canadian team has never competed there yet. However, the new lineup posted a 29.6 average in Singapore in December. NMP-PCH Hayabusa and Arizona Airspeed will not score lower, and SDC Rhythm XP and the French Gavroches lineup will have their eyes on the money slots, as well. And then there are Thunder and SportLoto. It could become the toughest year for XL to defend the Top 4 position successfully. But then it is XL...