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Joey Jones was her team mate (Doug Park, Christopher Irwin, Fin Malloy on camera), who she saw as her freefall mentor: "I've had great mentors too - I've been really blessed. On the ground my mentor has been my business partner of nearly fifteen years, Dan Thompson. I wouldn't be where I am today without him. In the air I'd have to say my piece partner, Joey Jones, has had the largest influence on my skydiving. I can't imagine having flown with someone else."
Lise Aune-Nansen won bronze medals with the DeLand Norgies at the same event. She almost joined the latest NSL Live Talk conversation that was recorded on Monday and had the 4-way Women event as the main topic. Joey Jones discussed the event and its history with his wife Lena Jones (Bostrom), who competed at the same event with the Swedish team 4 Pleasure.
Eliana Rodriguez completed the NSL Live Talk with her presence and memories. She was not in a 4-way team yet when Lena and Joey Jones competed in Portugal and posted their scores on the same 4-way Open Class leaderboard.
FAI World Cup 1998
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A total of four all-female teams competed at the first event where FAI/ISC paid special attention to the potential for a new event in Formation Skydiving competition. All four teams appeared on the 4-way Open Class leaderboard, while they still had a special privilege.
The four 4-way Women teams were allowed to complete all ten rounds, even though all other teams completed only eight rounds and then had to qualify for semifinals (Round 9) and finals (Round 10).
The meet was over for half of the total number of teams after Round 8, and two 4-way Women teams actually made the first cut (4 Pleasure, Southern Aurora). The next half of all semifinalists then performed Round 10 after the second cut, together with three of the four 4-way Women teams.
Joey Jones said that this was the event where he met his future wife for the first time. It was obviously a very successful and memorable meet for him.
Women Cup 1999
Eliana Rodriguez had entered the 4-way world at that time, while working as one of the first wind-tunnel instructors at SkyVenture Orlando. Future Arizona Airspeed 4-way world champion Thomas Hughes, King of the Tuunel, was her fellow instructor, and they launched their world-champion careers together with DeLand Tunnel Rage.
It took another year and another world cup before the 4-way Women event eventually became a fully integrated part of the FAI World Championship of Formation Skydiving. Eliana Rodriguez had joined the U.S. team in 4-way Women, Synchronicity, in the meantime, which did not help Sweden's team at all to climb higher in the rankings. Synchronicity won the world cup gold medals in 2000 and were back a year later for the first official world meet in 4-way Women.
Joey Jones was now coaching the U.S. team, and his wife Lena was still the alternate for Sweden. Both recalled the exciting battle during the NSL Live Talk. Eliana Rodriguez won her first FAI gold medal in Spain before she became the first female 4-way competitor with FAI world meet gold medals in 8-way Open (2004) and 4-way Open (2008). She is still the only competitor in the history of the sport with gold medals in three different events.
FAI World Meet 2001