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Did You Know...

... that Arizona Arsenal has taken back the VFS top spot in the USA?

Arizona Arsenal in 2006
image by: Omniskore
posted Sep 29th, 2013 - The VFS 4way competition world has recently been experiencing two different shifts of power. The first one happened at the World Cup 2013 where Dubai Nexus outscored the French world champions of 2012, Team4speed SD, for the first time and won the VFS gold medals.

The other one took place at the USPA Nationals 2013. The defending USPA champion and bronze medalist at the Mondial Dubai 2012, SDC Standard XP, did not try to defend the USPA gold medals on home turf. Arizona Arsenal took the 1st place of the US teams and is the new national VFS 4way team for the US Formation Skydiving delegation in Prostejov next year.

It is not the first time that Arizona Arsenal won the USPA Nationals and competed for the US delegation at international events. In fact, Amy Chmelecki, Steve Curtis, Ty Losey and Jason Peters won the USPA gold medals when the event was introduced at the USPA Nationals 2006 for the first time, with Sara Bennett on camera.

USPA Nationals 2013Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5Round 6Round 7Round 8TotalAvg
RankVFS 4wayD,I,9,7H,E,M,P,J6,F,A,GN,14,8K,2,1711,1,L10,4,12C,15,16TotalAvg
1Dubai Nexus (AE)16(-2)2320(-2)38(-1)23(-1)21(-2)192018022.5
2Team4speed SD (FR)18(-1)241932(-1)21(-1)2518(-1)16(-2)17321.6
3Arizona Arsenal (US)18(-1)2216(-1)25(-2)222415(-2)1515719.6
4Arizona Drive (US)111210201512121210413.0
5Eggum Racing (US)03133411162.0
USPA VFS 4way champion 2013: Arizona Arsenal
Team Mandrin won a year later, and Arsenal placed 2nd at the USPA Nationals 2007. However, Arsenal, now with Sara Curtis on camera, competed for the USA at the separate VFS 4way World Cup 2008 in Eloy and won the first set of international FAI gold medals.

It was also the first international VFS 4way competition for Team4speed with the original lineup (Frederic Nenet, Cyril Colin, David Maleze, Raphael Coudray, with Yannick Poletti on camera). Raphael Coudray, Frederic Nenet and Yannick Poletti would continue and eventually win FAI gold medals for France in 2010 and 2012.

Arizona Arsenal continued with the same lineup in 2009, won the USPA gold medals and went on to win the silver medals for the US delegation in Menzelinsk 2010.

VFS World Cup 2008Rd. 1Rd. 2Rd. 3Rd. 4Rd. 5Rd. 6TotalAvg
1Arizona Arsenal (US)16222313183112320.50
2Mandrin (US)14172013132910617.67
3Team4speed (FR)91416911248313.83
SDC Standard XP's 2011 lineup
Arizona Arsenal had to work for the USPA gold medals for the first time in 2009 when SDC Standard XP came up with a plan to change the VFS situation in the USA. Matt Nelson, Mickey Nuttall, Noah Bahnson, Will Pesek and Michael Wittenburg challenged Arsenal and won their first USPA silver medals in 2009.

Arsenal still competed in Menzelinsk 2010 for the USA but had to face a very strong Standard lineup at the USPA Nationals a month later. Standard won by one single point (170 - 169) on home turf at Skydive Chicago in September 2010 and increased the difference to Arsenal (155 - 128) with the new linup (Jason Peters, Rook Nelson, Mickey Nuttall, Will Pesek, Dalton Samuelson) in 2011.

The USPA Nationals 2011 were also the meet where Dubai Nexus competed as a guest team and came close enough to Arizona Arsenal (120) to present themselves as a new serious player in the international VFS competition world.

Mondial Dubai 2012Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5Round 6Round 7Round 8TotalAvg
RankVFS 4wayA,11,13J,14,165,1,717,F,96,8,DN,C,M,L,132,10,4E,B,H,I,GTotalAvg
1Team4speed XP (FR)302325192322212218523.1
2Dubai Nexus (AE)312822182318172017722.1
3SDC Standard XP (US)292322171921181916821.0
Team4speed SD at the USPA Nationals 2013
Now it was SDC Standard XP's turn to take on the French world champions of 2010 at the Mondial Dubai 2012. The same lineup first won the next set of USPA gold medals over Arsenal before it was time for the trip to Dubai. It would be a tough deal, as the French team was even stronger than in 2010, and Dubai Nexus had outscored Standard as a guest team at the USPA Nationals 2012 by a point.

It was as difficult as it was expected to be, and SDC Standard XP ended up in 3rd place at the team's first World Championship of Formation Skydiving. It was time for a break, as Rook Nelson mentioned during the USPA Nationals 2013, and Arizona Arsenal has a new opportunity to compete for the USA at the next world meet.

Brandon Atwood has taken the slot that Jason Peters had for Arsenal before he joined SDC Standard XP, and Sara Curtis has moved in front of the camera, which has been taken by Niklas Daniel. Steve Curtis and Amy Chmelecki are the same original members. Dubai Nexus and Team4speed SD showed Arizona Arsenal in Ottawa what to expect next year. It will not be any easier than it was for SDC Standard XP...

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