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Did You Know...

... that Alena Chistova will lift the Russian Jet Bats to new levels?

R.T. Evolution Pro at the World Meet 2006
posted May 9th, 2007 - Alena Chistova has caught the attention of the skydiving world and of any observers of her training and competition activities at many different occasions. The attractive Russian Formation Skydiving competitor impresses as well with her appearance as with her very dynamic flying style.

Her international career with the Russian national 8-way team Evolution Pro began after she had won the Russian national 4-way championship title with Wild Wind in 2003. She also competed with Wild Wind for Russia at the World Meet 2003 in Gap, France, where her team finished in 9th place with a 16.9 average.

Alena Chistova
She was selected for the Russian 8-way team Evolution Pro at the end of the 2003 season and won her first world meet medal in Croatia 2004. The Russian 8-way team with Alena Chistova in the line-up won the bronze medals with an 18.8 average, only two points behind France and five points behind Airspeed.

Alena Chistova continued with Evolution Pro for two more years and represented Russia once again at the World Meet 2006 in Germany. The Russian 8-way team won another set of bronze medals, this time with a 17.3 average. The distance to the 8-way powerhouses France (20.5) and USA (19.8) had grown between 2004 and 2006.

It was the last 8-way season for the Russian female world-class competitor for now. Alena Chistova has returned to the 4-way event with the beginning of the 2007 season. She has joined the Russian team Jet Bats in the Center Outside position and will now represent her country in FAI's female 4-way category.

Original Jet Bats line-up in 2005
The Jet Bats are not new in the 4-way world. The team was formed with a female line-up in 2005. Elena Andronova, Zhanna Kazakova, Irina Kodratova, Vitaliya Kupriyanenko and Varvara Sadovnikova were the original members, and the NSL News reported the team's first appearance live at the Malevsky Cup 2005. The Jet Bats began the team's 4-way career with a 7.9 average in Stupino.

The Jet Bats continued in 2006 with the same line-up and lifted the scoring average to 10.6 at the Russian Nationals 2006 and 12.8 at a regional competition in Ukraine. The 10.6 average at the Russian Nationals was only good enough for the 2nd place since the Ladybirds were dominating the female 4-way competition in Russia by then.

FAI Anton Malevsky Memorial International Cup 2007
4 - 6 July 2007, Stupino - Russia
The NSL News coverage of the Malevsky Cup 2007 is brought to you with the help of:
Bev Suits
Vigil
Vector 3 by United Parachute Technologies
Ladybirds at the World Meet 2004
The Ladybirds had already won the bronze medals for Russia at the World Meet 2004 in Croatia with a 15.3 average and were then expected to contend for gold medals in 2006. The Ladybirds scored a 15.5 average at the Malevsky Cup 2005 and ended up only three points behind the French team.

It was no surprise that the Ladybirds easily won the Russian Nationals 2006 over the Jet Bats and qualified as the national team for the World Meet 2006. However, the performance in Germany was disappointing, and the Ladybirds barely defended the bronze medals with a 14.6 average, while France (17.8) and Great Britain (19.0) scored significantly higher.

New Jet Bats 2007 line-up
The Ladybirds discontinued at the end of the 2006 season, while the Jet Bats prepared to take over the slot as the Russian national 4-way team in the female category. Recruiting Alena Chistova for the new 2007 line-up was a big move for the Jet Bats and will probably change the performance and scoring level for the 2007 season dramatically.

Three of the original Jet Bats members are still in the 2007 line-up. Zhanna Kazakova (Center Inside) will do the center work together with Alena Chistova. Vitaliya Kupriyanenko continues as the Point and Varvara Sadovnikova as the Tail. Ekaterina Kopylova is filming the team again this year. She already joined the Jet Bats in 2006.

The Jet Bats have also put together a very strong support team for the 2007 season. Ekaterina Voronina, former Ladybirds member, will be available for the Jet Bats as the team's alternate.

Sky Panthers at the World Challenge 2007
Oleg Shalamykhin is the head coach for the team. Oleg Shalamykhin is a Russian 8-way world champion of 2001 and 2003. Then he joined the Sky Panthers in 2006, won the Russian Nationals and competed for Russia at the World Meet 2006 in Germany. The Sky Panthers continued, and Oleg Shalamykhin already competed this year at the World Challenge 2007.

Nikolay Vylegzhanin is the other coach working with the Jet Bats. He was Alena Chistova's teammate with Wild Wind at the World Meet in 2003 and competed with Extreme.RU in 2005. His team posted a 21.0 average at the Malevsky Cup 2006 and set a new official 4-way world record with the 44-pointer in Round 10 (see video).

New Jet Bats line-up in action
The plans of the Jet Bats do not stop at the end of the 2007 season. The World Meet 2008 in France is already on the agenda for the new line-up, and the perspectives seem to be promising. The Jet Bats plan to complete 300 training jumps and 15 hours of wind tunnel time this year.

The NSL News audience will be able to follow the first official appearance of the new Jet Bats line-up. The team has signed up for the Malevsky Cup 2007, and it will be very interesting to see on which scoring level the new Russian national 4-way team will begin its road to the World Meet 2008.

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