posted Feb 28th, 2006 -
The NSL News story on January 25 provided the last update on activities in the United Kingdom. The story included a training project of former XL members and the plans of the current UK national 4-way team, the British Army.
The same story mentioned that the British Army team members were recently interviewed by the Armed Forces TV channel, BFBF, and that the NSL News would try to capture the interview. The NSL News was not able to capture the TV program directly. However, team captain Dave Tyler provided a link to the video file that shows the well done show, which can be viewed by clicking here.
The United Kingdom is also once again a major player of the European Skydiving League (ESL) this year. Andy Scott has been the manager of the UK part of the ESL and continues with his great work in the United Kingdom for the 2006 season. He recently provided the NSL with an update.
NSL and ESL have now completed the last step to fully synchronize the rules and classes for the 4-way competitions. The ESL added the AA Class to the system for the 2006 season, while the NSL adopted the ESL rules for the Rookie Class exits. Only the terminology is still a little bit different between the United Kingdom and the NSL rules.
The Rookie Class of the NSL began with 50 seconds of working time, which was already changed to 35 seconds two years ago. There used to be a limited number of exit formations (B, E, M, O) for the NSL Rookie Class, as well. Requests for a change to use all 16 Random Formations came from within the NSL and also from the ESL management.
The main reason for accepting this change is the fact that any team always has the option to use a standard exit (like B, E, M, O) at any time without any rule requirements. This counts for all competition classes. The judges only want to see the first formation of the sequence, no matter what the teams do to present it after the exit.
ESL Championship 2005
The teams that feel confident enough to exit any complete first formation of the sequence now have the option to do so, while other Rookie Class teams might use a standard exit to get to the required formation.
Andy Scott updated the website of the British Parachute Association (BPA) for the 2006 season on his end: "Whilst 2006 rules are finalised at council, a general update to note is that 4-way will see the 4th tier introduced as a trial across all meets in 2006, so the dive pools are as follows: Senior Class - all Random Formations/all Blocks, AA Class - all Random Formations/Blocks 1,2,4,6,7,8,9,11,13,14,15,18,19,20,21,22, A Class - all Random Formations/Blocks 2,4,6,7,8,9,19,21, Junior Class - All Random Formations only - including all Random Formations for exit point."
The British Senior Class is obviously identical with the AAA/Open Class, and the Junior Class is identical with the NSL Rookie Class. Andy Scott confirmed the same synchronization between ESL and NSL rules for the 2006 season in his notes for an update in the British skydiving magazine:
ESL Champion 2005: Spa Hayabusa
"New for 2006: 4-way sees a trial as requested by our teams to give the same categories a go as ESL/NSL. So 2006 sees the following categories and pools at all 4-way events: Senior Class - all Random Formations/all Blocks, AA Class - all Random Formations/Blocks 1,2,4,6,7,8,9,11,13,14,15,18,19,20,21,22, A Class - all Random Formations/Blocks 2,4,6,7,8,9,19,21, Junior Class - All Random Formations only - including all Random Formations for exit point.
The NSL has converted the Junior Class (called Rookie Class in the USA ) to have all Random Formations as exits to help align our national competitions, which will then be able to fully utilise the same draws. With more alignment, the international meets should really hot up this year. Some of last years successes were obvious with the ability to compete against fellow brits on training in the USA and also the outstanding performance at the ESL Championship 2005. I hope this interest and growth can continue and maybe we will see some more foreign teams at the UK Nationals this August."
The NSL looks forward to the next synchronized season between ESL and NSL, this time for all competition classes. The NSL Schedule of Events already shows several international meet weekends, and the event calendar is far from being complete at this point. Andy Scott made the point: "With more alignment, the international meets should really hot up this year."