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Did You Know...

... that Airspeed Odyssey and Mass Defiance were on the same leaderboard in 2006?

Defiance at the USPA Nationals 2018
image by: USPA/Omniskore
posted Sep 17th, 2018 - Arizona Airspeed's current signature lineup, the U.S. national team in 4-way Open, did not have any serious opposition and won the USPA Nationals 2018 with a record margin, as the NSL News explained yesterday.

Airspeed Odyssey moved up from 4th place in 2017 to the bronze medal position last week, which created Airspeed's next USPA double-medal success after the same finish in 1st and 3rd place in 2001. However, Airspeed Odyssey had to work hard to win the bronze medals. Defiance was only three points behind after a very strong finish.

The duel between the two teams consisted of two very different halves. Odyssey won the first four rounds by a total of seven points before Defiance tied a scoring number for the first time at this year's nationals and then won Round 6. Odyssey came back with a 2-point advantage in Round 7, the team's last highscore in this battle.

Defiance won the second half of the meet by three points and with a very strong finish, and Odyssey carried a 3-point lead over the finish line.

USPA Nationals 2018
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total Avg
Rank 4-way Open J,19,K,22 P,13,A,E H,G,Q,B,21 9,2,L C,14,4 O,16,3 1,15,10 M,20,11 F,D,18,6 5,12,17 Total Avg
1 Arizona Airspeed 23 29 34 28 23 24 19 24 26 25 255 25.5
2 SDC Rhythm XP 20 25 33 26 20 18 17 21 23 20 223 22.3
3 Airspeed Odyssey 20 25 28 22 18 20 17 19 20 17 206 20.6
4 Defiance 19 23 25 21 18 21 15 21 21 19 203 20.3
Defiance at the USPA Nationals 2017
image by: USPA/Omniskore
The same duel had taken place at last year's USPA Nationals, and both teams were back with almost exactly the same lineups. Only Airspeed Odyssey had one personnel change, with former SDC Furies videographer Charles Lane on camera this time.

Defiance, with two original Mass Defiance members Brian Stephens and Ben Liston, had indicated in 2017 that they had moved up into a position where they might be able to challenge the former world and U.S. champions. Defiance has been known as one of the best amateur 4-way teams in the world for several years.

It was still an 8-point difference between the two teams at the end of the USPA Nationals 2017, where Defiance posted a new team record average. However, the Defiance statement was made, and both teams knew that this year's competition could create an even closer battle at Chicagoland. The 3-point finish eventually turned out as the closest finish between any teams on the Open Class leaderboard, disregarding Dallas 350's zero for Round 2.

USPA Nationals 2017
12345678910TotalAvg
Rank4-way OpenO,4,9G,21,A,HN,D,J,14L,16,12K,19,6E,2,10P,11,1517,3,22F,7,1Q,5,M,20TotalAvg
1NMP PCH HayaBusaBE3133282325232322313127027.0
2Arizona AirspeedUS2732292224222123292925825.8
3SDC Rhythm XPUS2931282322202319282925225.2
4Golden KnightsUS2426282218192019242322322.3
5Airspeed OdysseyUS2523271922191917232321721.7
6DefianceUS2424261819171916242220920.9
Mass Defiance lineup in 2005 - 2007
The original Mass Defiance lineup (Ben Liston, Jim Rees, John Silva, Brian Stephens, Steve Feldman on camera) attended the team's first national championships in 2005 and won the Advanced Class competition with a 15.4 average. It was the same event where the original Airspeed Odyssey lineup competed for the first time and finished in 3rd place in 4-way Open.

A year later, Mass Defiance joined Airspeed Odyssey for the first time on the Open Class leaderboard, and both teams competed with the same lineups.

Another year later, Airspeed Odyssey won the USPA Nationals 2007 with a 25.3 average, and Mass Defiance placed 5th with a 19.3 average, right behind the U.S. pro teams. Odyssey then won gold medals at the FAI World Meet 2008 and silver in 2010, while Mass Defiance continued in the USPA Open Class with different lineups.

This year, Odyssey (Eliana Rodriguez, Craig Girard, Andy Delk) and Defiance (Ben Liston, Nick Grillet) members also joined forces in Arizona Airspeed's 8-way lineup for the first time and finished in 2nd place.

USPA Nationals 2006
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total Avg
Rank 4-way Open 13,19,17 N,21,14 7,M,8 9,K,10 B,22,H,3 4,20,16 G,6,1 12,F,2 J,L,Q,P,18 E,O,5,D Total Avg
1 DeLand Groove  US  21 19 22 22 22 19 20 19 25 33 222 22.2
2 Black Cat  RU  17 19 24 23 20 17 19 19 29 31 218 21.8
3 Fastrax  US  20 18 24 22 22 17 20 19 25 29 216 21.6
4 Airspeed Odyssey  US  15 17 21 20 21 17 18 19 27 31 206 20.6
5 Perris Fury  US  16 17 21 20 20 16 19 17 24 29 199 19.9
6 Golden Knights Black  US  19 16 23 21 20 15 19 19 24 20 196 19.6
7 Airspeed Velocity  US  17 17 21 20 17 15 19 17 25 25 193 19.3
8 FiaZco  US  15 14 19 18 17 14 17 16 23 23 176 17.6
9 Mass Defiance  US  15 14 19 16 14 15 14 15 22 23 167 16.7
10 Elsinore Gravity  US  15 16 21 10 13 14 17 16 19 25 166 16.6
11 Synchronicity  US  13 14 16 16 14 13 15 15 19 24 159 15.9
12 Dallas Thunder  US  13 14 19 16 13 12 14 16 17 23 157 15.7
13 Arizona Razor  US  12 12 16 15 14 13 14 12 14 18 140 14.0
14 Elsinore Select  US  11 12 16 13 14 8 12 14 16 20 136 13.6
15 Kaktus Hunter  RU  13 12 14 12 13 11 11 10 15 12 123 12.3
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