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Platinum XP visited from the Southern Skydiving League region and was one of the teams that attended both events and finished after a total of 20 rounds in three days. Team members Don Hurd and Matthias Kaminski also used the opportunity of a connected Arizona Airspeed indoor and outdoor camp to sharpen their individual skills by adding more indoor training to their weekend's agenda.
Three Platinum members (Jason Adams, Don Hurd, Matthias Kaminski) started with the indoor competition on Thursday, and Airspeed's Niklas Hemlin took the player coach's slot for the missing 4th Platinum member Eric Tudor.
Jason Adams was not available for the outdoor competition, and Ari Perelman added even more Airspeed power and experience to the Platinum lineup on Friday and Saturday.
USPA Nationals 2018
|G||SDC Rhevolution XP||13||22||11||11||15||-3||12||14||16||-1||12||11||-||137||13.7|
It was naturally no surprise that Don Hurd and Matthias Kaminski finished with the highest meet average that Platinum XP has posted since the team was founded in 2014. In fact, the 12.6 average would have been good enough to win the Intermediate Class bronze medals at the USPA Nationals 2018. Hands Free had taken the USPA bronze medal position at Chicagoland Skydiving Center with a 12.2 average and after a jump-off round against Cali4nia Kids.
Platinum XP have not decided yet whether they will add another year to the team's time in the AA/Intermediate Class competition or move up into the AAA Class world, as well.
Don Hurd launched Platinum in 2014 and competed at the meets of the Southern Skydiving League in the first two years. He had Eric Mixon, Caitlin O'Malley and Bill Prout in the first Platinum lineup, with Joe Courtney on camera.
Nicole Cronin replaced Caitlin O'Malley in 2015, and the new lineup competed for the first time at USPA Nationals. Platinum 2015 finished in 26th place on the Intermediate Class leaderboard with a 7.3 average at Skydive Arizona in Eloy. Similar Platinum lineups continued at SSL meets in 2016 and did not go back to the national championships.
NSL Indoor 2018
|Roster: Don Hurd, Matthias Kaminski, Jason Adams, Niklas Hemlin|
NSL Outdoor 2018
|Roster: Don Hurd, Matthias Kaminski, Niklas Hemlin, Ari Perelman, Patrick Fortune (Video)|
Team founder Don Hurd continued with the Platinum project after a serious personnel change at the end of the 2016 season. He was the only original member who was back next year, and he had put together the lineup that has been training and competing for Platinum XP ever since.
The same lineup came back in 2018, and Platinum XP competed for the first time at an indoor competition, the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship, to launch the 2018 season.
Platinum XP followed up with the 11.9 average a few months later, which was three points short of a medal position.
The same lineup has to make a tough decision now. USPA Intermediate Class medals are almost guaranteed next year, while it could also be time to move up into the AAA Class world and face the U.S. opponents in the Advanced Class...