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The NSL News introduced the Space Force and followed up with additional information already with several stories before and after the event in DeLand. Thomas Hughes and Gary Beyer are still in DeLand, as they also train and compete in 8-way this year. They are both members of the new Paraclete XP lineup, which scheduled a training camp in DeLand for the week following the Shamrock Showdown.
The NSL News invited the two 4-way and 8-way teammates for a live interview in the NSL office, which took place yesterday afternoon. Paraclete XP was done with the 8-way training early enough to allow the time for the interview.
The NSL News questions in the interview covered the very beginning of the team project and obviously the plans for the future. Gary Beyer had already spent some time at Skydive Spaceland when he trained and competed with his former team Directe, which was originally founded in Arizona and then moved to Texas. He said that owner Steve Boyd wanted to have a world-class home team for a long-term project.
Gary Beyer contacted Thomas Hughes who agreed to be a part of the project, and both went on together with the recruiting process. Finally, the three 4-way world champions of 2006 with DeLand Fire (Shannon Pilcher, Ian Bobo, alternate Thomas Hughes) re-joined for the Spaceland Force XP project.
Thomas Hughes and Gary Beyer left no doubt that they want their Space Force to be the first team to beat Airspeed Odyssey and stop the 16 - 0 run. In fact, Thomas Hughes wants to do this already with XL at the World Challenge 2009, as he mentioned in the interview.
The Space Force members have good reasons to feel confident. They beat the world champions already in three of the ten rounds (6, 7 and 10) in DeLand and tied Airspeed's 23-pointer in Round 8. It is easy to imagine that Spaceland Force XP will give Airspeed Odyssey a much harder time after the scheduled 300 training jumps this year.
NSL-TV uploaded Space Force's video of the winning jump in Round 6. The 30-pointer was the highest score for the round on the leaderboard, and it was also the fastest performance in Round 6. Airspeed completed 30 points in time and lost a point, while the Space Force had 31 points in time and 30 on the scoreboard.
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The 2010 season would be even tougher if Gary Beyer and Thomas Hughes win both events this year. France Maubeuge has already focused only on 4-way and dropped the 8-way efforts until the World Meet in 2010. France also has a new 8-way lineup and will work hard to defend the gold medals.
That all doesn't matter at the moment. The two Space Force members enjoy the great new team project in 4-way and 8-way, and Thomas Hughes looks forward to competing with the original XL lineup at Bodyflight Bedford next week. The interview with Gary Beyer and Thomas Hughes can be viewed by clicking here.