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Did You Know...

... that the Golden Knights begin to put pressure on Airspeed XP8?

4-way indoor gold medals in 2016: Golden Knights Gold
posted Mar 8th, 2021 - It is not new that the Golden Knights Gold team win either outdoor or indoor bronze medals at U.S. national championships. In fact, this year's 3rd place at the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2021 was the 4th consecutive time for the Gold team in this finishing position.

The last USPA outdoor bronze medals were taken by Jennifer and Matt Davidson, Kurt Isenbarger, Sean Sweeney, with Scott Janise on camera in 2016 and 2017, the same lineup who won the indoor championship at Paraclete XP in 2016.

The indoor bronze medal lineup was the same in 2018 and 2019 (Jennifer and Matt Davidson, Drew Starr, Sean Sweeney). Matt Davidson then left the U.S. Army and joined Arizona Airspeed for a few months in 2019 before going through his hip replacement surgery and coming back with Airspeed XP8.

Jennifer Davidson and Drew Starr continued with the U.S. Army's Gold team and welcomed back Jesse Stahler in 2020, who was in the gold-medal 4-way lineup of 2016. They won the next set of bronze medals with Nik Grimm, who was recruited for the Golden Knights 8-way team after the FAI Outdoor World Meet 2018 in Australia.


Paraclete XP Indoor 2021
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total Avg
Rank 4-way Open 19,13,O 21,12,16 A,B,D,11 4,15,C 17,3,E Q,G,18,22 6,7,14 9,10,2 1,P,20 L,K,H,5 Total Avg
1 Arizona Airspeed 28    27    42 -2 29    34    29    28    26 -1 29    43 -2  315 31.5
2 SDC Rhythm XP 25 -2 25    37 -2 27    32    29    26 -1 27    25 -1 41 -1  294 29.4
3 Golden Knights Gold 27    23    40    26 -4 28    19    25    23    26    35    272 27.2
4 XP4 25    19    34    23    28    20 -3 21 -1 21    23    32     246 24.6
5 XPG4 22    20    29    21    23    20 -1 23    19    20 -1 30     227 22.7
6 Skydive Midwest NEXT 21 -3 16 -2 30 -2 22    23    20 -1 20 -1 19 -1 21    28 -1  220 22.0
7 Lightspeed 20    18    28    21    23    19    20    16    19    28    212 21.2
8 Air Force OBYC 18    17    27    17    21    17    19    15    18    19    188 18.8
9 Aviatrixx 18    17    23    15    19    17    16    17    16    25    183 18.3
10 Vega XP 15    17    24    14    18    17    17    16    18    22    178 17.8
11 Golden Knights Black 17 -1 16 -1 22 -2 16    17    16    18 -1 16    16 -1 20 -1 174 17.4

Golden Knights Gold and Golden Knights Black at the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2021
8-way outdoor world champions of 2018: Golden Knights
Jennifer Davidson, Drew Starr and Jesse Stahler then recruited a new team mate from the 8-way lineup, as the NSL News reported in the preview of the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship on February 25th.

David Flynn now launched his own Golden Knights Gold career with the next set of 4-way bronze medals for the U.S. Army team.

The new lineup was well trained in 4-way and had worked several times with coach Niklas Hemlin. Team captain Drew Starr had pointed out at previous interviews that 4-way skills training was a significant part of his plan to prepare the 8-way team for top-level 8-way performance.

The 4-way training for the Gold lineup turned out to show impressive results. The 27.2 average is the second-highest one in the Golden Knights records and two average-points better than last year. Only the 2016 lineup scored higher when they won the Paraclete XP event with a 28.2 average.

The Gold team actually kept up with SDC Rhythm XP throughout the first three rounds this year, and before they were thrown back after four point deductions in Round 4.


Paraclete XP Indoor 2021
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Total Avg
Rank 8-way Open D,B,22,E K,17,11 C,3,P,5 4,Q,18 16,9,A 2,7,8 G,15,1 F,21,N,H 6,J,12 19,M,13 Total Avg
1 Airspeed XP8 36    30    35    37    33    22    39    30    29    24    315 31.5
2 Golden Knights 28    26    33    33    27 -1 21    33 -1 27    28 -1 24     280 28.0
3 Rhythm 8 19 -2 18    22 -1 26    18    14    23 -2 19    17    14     190 19.0
4 QRF 1 18    16    23    24    17    14    23    18    17    12    182 18.2
5 Token Male 14    17    19    18    16    13    21    18    16    14    166 16.6
6 Jhabberlution 13    14    16    18    15    11    16    10    15    11    139 13.9

Golden Knights at the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2021
21.3 at the Paraclete XP Indoor 2019: Golden Knights
The Golden Knights progression in 8-way was just as impressive as for the 4-way Gold team. The new lineup, with Andy Sippl replacing Jon Clavenger, finished more than two average-points higher (28.0 - 25.9) than last year. The new lineup, following the 8-way world champions of 2018, had started from a 21.3 average level at the Paraclete XP Indoor Championship 2019.

The U.s Army's 8-way team, who are still the reigning outdoor world champions, had finished 83 points behind XP8 at the restart with the new lineup in February 2019. The difference was now down to 35 points two years later, behind XP8's still reigning indoor world champions of 2019.

It is no secret that the Golden Knights are aiming at taking back the 8-way top spot in the United States and defending the U.S. 8-way gold medal positions in the future. Airspeed XP8 now have a domestic team that begins to put serious pressure on them.

The first outdoor duel this year is coming up very soon. Golden Knights and Airspeed XP8 both compete at the 8-way competition of the Shamrock Showdown 2021. Registration for 4-way and 8-way teams is still open...

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