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There are still many open questions at the beginning of the 2011 season, and many of those are related to the third expected top contender in the 4-way competition world, the Belgian national 4-way team NMP-PCH Hayabusa.
Airspeed made a very strong statement directed at the US top teams at the Paraclete XP Indoor Skydiving Championships 2011 and followed up with a hardly challenged victory over Aerodyne Maubeuge in Eloy last weekend. However, it doesn't mean that Airspeed has the world's current #1 position - not yet.
|Valentine's Meet 2011||Round1||Round2||Round3||Round4||Round5||Round6||Round7||Round8||Round9||Round10||Total||Avg|
Hayabusa defeated the reigning 4-way world champions from France at the Dubai Championship 2011, as Airspeed did at the Valentine's Meet. However, Hayabusa and Airspeed have not crossed their swords yet at the same place and at the same time. In fact, neither Airspeed nor Hayabusa currently have a sword in their possession, both Excaliburs are still in France.
Coach Marin Ferre and his Open Class 4-way competitors say that they have not shown yet what they can really do, due to lack of training. Especially the exits and the sub-terminal moves were still suffering in Eloy, as the videos of both top teams show.
France performed stronger in Dubai, and Hayabusa also had the former Airspeed lineup as an opponent doing very well. The new Airspeed lineup competed on home turf and also benefitted from a few critical judgement calls to their advantage.
Airspeed has had a very strong showing so far and opened up the 2-year race with a 2-0 winning record and a new scoring level of only 21-pointers and higher. It is actually quite amazing that Airspeed's lowest score for a round was the 20-pointer in Round 6 of the indoor competition. That's unusual, as the indoor scores are always significantly higher than the outdoor results.
Hayabusa is taking it easy after following the Valentine's Meet action on the NSL News, as team speaker Roy Janssen explained: "Airspeed did what you may have expected from them after training several months. The French, just like us, just started training this month for the season. I am sure they will soon be performing much better than they have shown now."
The Belgian team is still in the beginnings, as well, and has not even decided yet which technique to use for Block 13. However, they are looking forward to competing at the Shamrock Showdown: "I guess its now time to keep up with the Airspeed guys. We are still not working directly toward this meet, we have a long-term plan, and the Shamrock is just a step on our way to the World Meet 2012. Of course, we will try to win or keep the distance as close as possible. But it's a bit early in the season to be well prepared for it."