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Airbus Illertissen had to work much harder to qualify for Australia 2018. The 2017 lineup, winner of the national championship, did not continue, and the Airbus team had a completely new lineup for the 2018 season. The German federation scheduled a qualification event for July 2018, where the new lineup had to finish with a 13+ average for Australia.
The new Airbus lineup mastered the task with a 13.8 average, as the NSL News reported on 29 July 2018, and followed up with 13.7 a month later at the national championship. The same lineup then finished with a 12.9 average in 6th place at the FAI World Meet 2018 in October.
This year, the qualification was set for 12.9 at the national championship, which is the average that Airbus had posted at the world meet in Australia. Last week, Airbus actually ended up one point ahead (13.9 - 13.8) of the best average in 2018, which was posted at the qualification event.
FAI World Meet 2018
The complete lineup, with Max Thiele who was sharing a slot with Olaf Biedermann, mastered the qualification with the 13.8 in July 2018. Olaf Biedermann, member of the previous lineup of 2016 and 2017, took the slot for the national championship last year and finished with the 13.7 average. It was a third different Airbus lineup that competed then for Germany in Australia. Thomas Spielvogel was injured, and Airbus 4-way member Thomas Mack filled in with 4-way and 8-way double duties.
Thomas Spielvogel was back in Airbus action at the Weembinamic 2018, six weeks after the outdoor world meet. This time, neither Olaf Biedermann nor Max Thiele were available for the shared slot, and coach Marco Arrigo stepped in.
Finally, last week's lineup at the national championship was identical with the one that won last year's national gold medals, including the video slot. Erik Lorenz was actually filming the team at all oudoor meets. However, the situation was still different compared to the German Nationals 2018.
German Nationals 2019/th>
|2||Airbus 8-way Illertissen||DE||14||18||-1||14||13||17||13||14||14||11||-2||11||-1||139||13.9|
Only Bardarbunga were back with three 2018 members (Steffen Schiedek, Uli Sehrbrock, Thomas Spielvogel). Their current 8-way team mate Carl Enders, former and original Eyjafjallajökull member, completed the lineup for Olaf Biedermann.
Eyjafjallajökull had disbanded as a 4-way team. Alex Prendinger trained and competed also with Airbus in 4-way and won gold in 8-way this year, plus silver in 4-way. He trained and competed fully in both teams and became the most successful Formation Skydiving competitor at the German Nationals 2019. His former Eyjafjallajökull and current Airbus 8-way team mate Linda Koeb helped out on a short call for Germany's 4-way Women team Skynamite. Olaf Biedermann and Stefan Knoch competed only in 8-way.
The Airbus 8-way team is now making plans for next year's world meet season and will focus on their prime event. Only Alex Prendinger plans to continue with the Airbus 4-way team at the same time. However, he is not facing double duties in Tanay 2020, where Oceanside AtomiX will compete for Germany - with a new team member...