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Two years have gone by, and a similar battle might be on the horizon again, as both teams will represent their countries at the FAI World Meet 2018, as well.
MicroClim8's lineup changed in 2017 when Ane Brentford and Ruth Morrison joined the team, replacing Andy Pook and Chris Cook. Andy Pook then came back for the 2018 season to take Audrey Rowe's slot, and Kate Lindsley replaced Jonny Flowers. Finally, this year's lineup travels to Australia with six members who competed at the FAI Mondial 2016, including videographer Phil Hartree.
Germany's Airbus lineup had more significant personnel changes. The NSL News reported earlier this year that four 2016 members (Uli Sehrbrock, Thomas Spielvogel, Steffen Schiedek, Olaf Biedermann) joined forces with the younger 4-way team Paranodon Eyjafjallajökull for a complete makeover and with the main focus on the 8-way event. The new lineup started with training at the beginning of the 2018 season.
UK Nationals August 27th, 2016
German Nationals September 1st, 2016
FAI Mondial - September 2016
Great Britain and Germany had scheduled their national championships shortly before the trip to the United States in 2016, and both teams improved their meet averages slightly in the meantime. MicroClim8 was six points ahead (135 - 129) with the scoring numbers at both countries' nationals and won by four points (140 - 136) over Airbus in the race for the 5th place.
MicroClim8 is a little bit further ahead this year, as the results of both national championships are showing. However, both teams completed different numbers of rounds at their events (UK 10 - DE 9) and the competition draws were neither identical at last year's national championships nor at this year's events.
UK Nationals 2018
|Roster: Rosalind Ayling, Ane Brentford, Martin Cressey, Phil Hartree (Video), Kate Lindsley, Ruth Morrison, Dennis Parker, Andy Pook, Martin Soulsby, Mark Whitehead|
German Nationals 2018
|1||Airbus 8-way Illertissen||DE||14||14||20||12||13||12||14||10||14||-||123||13.7|
|Roster: Olaf Biedermann, Carl Enders, Stefan Knoch, Linda Koeb, Erik Lorenz (Video), Alex Prendinger, Steffen Schiedek, Uli Sehrbrock, Thomas Spielvogel|
On the other hand, MicroClim8 finished with a new team record average, and the 19-pointer in Round 6 (G-K-F-15) finally erased the previous British 8-way highscore that was posted in 2003. The 15.0 average is also the highest British 8-way result in the history of Formation Skydiving competition.
Germany managed to move a little bit closer between the nationals and the world meet in 2016, and they will be hoping to copy this and put even more pressure on MicroClim8, while the British team wants to improve the scoring numbers of the UK Nationals 2018 and at least keep the distance.
Fact is that the four returning Airbus and six MicroClim8 members will enjoy a new showdown, this time in Australia. It seems like the 4th place will be on stake this time, as France, silver medalist of 2016, does not have an 8-way team in Australia.