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The Sun Path Products NSL News will be at the competition site for the usual live coverage of the event. It is much easier to be up-to-date with the daily news stories at SKYLEAGUE.COM compared to a monthly magazine. Blue Skies Mag recently published the next TURNING POINTS column, which was the last opportunity for an update before the event. The next story can only be aftermath of the world meet.
This year's event will be very special, as there is realistic potential for serious trouble. USA and France, the world's 4-way and 8-way powerhouses, are facing more opposition than ever before. It has been unthinkable in the past, and it is possible now: USA or France could end up without a medal. Really...?
As the editor of the daily Sun Path Products NSL News articles, I am always trying to be as neutral and matter-of-fact as possible. This column offers me one of the very few chances to take off the journalistic hat and express my personal views. Other than that, it usually happens only after the jumping days or flying hours at the DZ bars or near the flying chambers...
So, here I am, less than two months away from the biggest event in my life, which occurs every other year. The futbol teams are in the middle of their World Cup in Brazil right now, and I am watching every single game with my German futbol roots.
Believe it or not, I am sitting at the TV screen watching the futbol games in Brazil, and I am thinking of 4-way competition at the world meet in the Czech Republic. I am either addicted to Formation Skydiving competition, especially to 4-way, or I am really odd. Maybe it's both...
This year is special, and once again I have to go back to the futbol tournament to explain myself. This year's World Cup in Brazil seems to be as open as never before. Imagine: Costa Rica made it to the quarterfinals, while the U.S. was eliminated. Costa Rica ...!!!
This year's world meet is just as special as the futbol tournament, because it offers the potential for results that we may have never seen before. Depending on the competition draw, the winning average could break all previous records.
Beating the 10-average benchmark was a very special deal in 1985, while the 20-average scoring level seemed to be impossible for a very long time. Who doubts now that there will be a 30-point average on the top of the leaderboard one day?
However, it is a fact that no other country in the world has ever won 4-way or 8-way gold medals at a World Championship of Formation Skydiving in the modern history of the sport (since 1985) but France and the U.S. In fact, the national teams of those two countries haven't left a world meet without a set of 4-way medals since 1985. They have won all gold and silver medals in the same time period, except in 1989 (Russia second) and 2012 (Belgium second).
Not winning the gold or silver medals would already be a disaster in 4-way Formation Skydiving Competition for USA or France, even though France recently had to settle for bronze medals at the Mondial Dubai 2012, as the USA had to in Spain 1989, after a jump-off for bronze medals with China.
It still feels very strange to consider this wild situation — that NMP-PCH Hayabusa and Evolution from Canada could receive their 4-way medals while Airspeed or Volt'R go back home empty-handed. Now you know why this year's world meet is unique and very special, and why I am thinking of Prostejov while Belgium and France play for Futbol medals in Brazil.
It could also be business as usual in both events. Brazil, Germany or Argentina may win in Futbol, as they have done before, and Arizona Airspeed or Volt'R could take the top spots in 4-way Formation Skydiving competition this year. However, at least there is the possibility that Costa Rica wins in Brazil — and Canada or Belgium in Prostejov...