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The World Championship of Formation Skydiving is the most relevant competition in the sport, and it always allows a closer look at the history of the participating nations.
Only one team represents each country, and it is usually the currently strongest one after nationally defined qualification criteria.
The journey of the Irish team H4O to the FAI Mondial 2016 began at the World Challenge 2015 where the same lineup competed for the first time.
H4O attended four more meets before making the trip to Skydiving Chicago in September last year.
FAI Mondial 2016
|1||NMP PCH HayaBusa||BE||24||25||35||26||19||22||27||39||23||22||262||26.2|
After missing out in 1985 Ireland had the most consistent presence at world meets in the following decade (1987 - 1997). The next 12 years had Irish 4-way teams on the leaderboard only twice (2001, 2006) before Fast Air, a lineup of Ireland's Defence Forces, competed in Dubai 2012.
Fast Air became the first team from Ireland with a 2-digit meet average and still owns the national highscore at a world meet with the 12.1 average in Dubai. Fast Air also won the national championships in 2013 with a 12.6 average after seven rounds but did not come back for the 2014 world meet season.
H4O followed up even better at the UK Nationals 2016 where the Irishmen were standing at a 13.3 average after Round 4. H4O could not complete the meet across the Irish Sea; however, the road seemed to be clear to challenge Fast Air's 12.1 average at the FAI Mondial 2016.
Fast Air was eliminated in Dubai after Round 8, while H4O was allowed to complete all ten rounds in Ottawa after the latest FAI rule changes. The 11.6 average was still five points short of the 12.1 in Dubai. H4O or the next Irish national 4-way team has to take on the standing record average at the next world meet...