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Did You Know...

... that Team Storm's happy rounds are now on NSL-TV?

CamScore by Cametrix
posted Aug 30th, 2007 - The first feedback from the new British 4-way champion, Team Storm, is now available for the NSL News audience. CamScore, the official judging and DZ-TV provider of the British Nationals 2007, also made competition videos available for viewings on NSL-TV.
Claire Scott and Kate Stephans with V-Max in 2001
Claire "Sparky" Scott, Center Outside for Team Storm, explained the situation before, at and after the competition for the NSL News. Claire Scott is one of the most experienced and successful competitors in the history of IPC's female 4-way category.

She was a member of the first British line-up that attended the first World Meet in the female category in Spain 2001. Her team V-Max ended up in 4th place, only six points behind the gold medals (USA 147 - Norway 144 - Sweden 143 - UK 141). Her current Storm teammate, Kate Stephans, was in the same 2001 line-up.

Claire Scott with V-Max in 2003
Claire Scott formed a new V-Max line-up for the next World Meet 2003 in France and won the gold medals for Great Britain with a 16.5 average. She did not try to defend the title next year in Croatia, and Synchronicity won the gold medals for the USA with a 16.9 average.

The new British 4-way team, Perris Airkix, came back with Claire Scott and was stronger than any all-female line-up ever before. Airkix won the 6-round World Meet 2006 in Germany with a 19.0 average. The rest of the Team Storm story and Claire Scott's career has been covered comprehensively by the NSL News in previous stories.

Her team is now qualified to compete at the World Meet 2008 in France, either in the Open Class or in IPC's female category. The team has not decided yet what to do, and the NSL News will follow up as soon as possible.

Airkix at the World Meet 2006
It will be a difficult decision to make for Claire Scott and Team Storm. As an individual, she could become the first female 4-way competitor in the history of this specific event with three gold medals under her belt.

On the other hand, Team Storm could also become the first all-female line-up competing in the Open Class of a World Championship of Formation Skydiving and probably beat the 20-average mark very soon. Great Britain also has Team Elan that could try to defend the British gold medals in the female category next year. It will be interesting to see how Team Storm's plans for the near future will turn out. However, Claire "Sparky" Scott first explained the details of the British Nationals 2007 for the NSL News.

Team Storm with British 2007 gold medals

Team Storm 2007

By Claire "Sparky" Scott

We made around 650 jumps since February and completed about 15 hours of tunnel time at Bodyflight Bedford, and we were feeling pretty confident about the meet. Due to the bad weather in the UK this summer we hadn’t really had the opportunity to jump the Nationals jump plane, i.e. the Dornier, and so all of our training up until the Nationals had been from the Otter.

We were therefore glad to get in 16 jumps from the Dornier in the few days leading up to the meet. The Dornier is a little different in that the door is higher but not as wide making some of the exits feel a little different. We knew that we wouldn’t be able to practice every single exit, and so were very strict about selecting which ones we wanted to see!

Team Storm's Round 3 at the British Nationals 2007 - see video
Team Storm prepares for a competition round
The meet itself went very well for us, really as it was planned. We concentrated on doing exactly what we trained, i.e. we didn’t try to go any faster or do things differently and just kept saying to ourselves that if we did our best, it would be good enough. During our preparation for each dive we were very determined about how each jump would go, which gave us confidence when we went up for the next round. We also were not afraid of making mistakes and acknowledged that we would make mistakes. This made them easier to deal with and allowed us to forget and concentrate on the next rounds.

We think it was fantastic not only having two female teams competing in AAA, but also that both teams were aiming for first place. It’s only taken nine years for this to happen since VMax first appeared on the competition scene in 1999! We are surprised that the results weren’t closer, as previous NSL results indicated that the teams would be really close and that the results could go either way.

Only Team Elan will know how they felt the meet went for them. In terms of training we probably did a few more jumps than they did, while we were playing catch up. However, I know that Elan also trained hard and kept increasing their commitment during the year as they gained support from Target Skysports, based both at Hibaldstow and Seville in Spain.

Team Storm's Round 5 at the British Nationals 2007 - see video
Team Storm gathers after a meet jump
I think we dealt really well with the pressure of having to prepare three different competition draws, with the numerous weather holds and the week-long break before being allowed to continue. We didn’t allow the things out of our control to affect us.

On paper, you would have said that out of these two female teams, we were the least experienced, i.e. two of the members have only been in the sport for four years, and this was the team's first year in the AAA Class. However, you couldn’t really tell from the way we approached the meet.

I really think a lot of this has to do with our coach Dan BC, as he really helped us to get mentally to the right place. He provided us with a very distinct plan, which was clearly defined from the start. This gave us confidence throughout our training that we would achieve our goal. I think we also benefited from our training alongside Perris Fury. We gained a huge insight as to how we should train - not just technically but also mentally. The day of 2-on-2 we did with them was extremely valuable.

Team Storm's Round 7 at the British Nationals 2007 - see video
Claire "Sparky" Scott makes eye contact
In the actual competition, I think that rounds 3, 5, 7 and 10 were really standing out for us.

Round 3: Block 22 isn’t our best but we concentrated on giving it a load of attitude and not caring too much.

Round 5: Here we went with some different engineering taking a C that we had never done before, but it allowed the jump to repeat and maintaining the attitude throughout.

Round 7: I remember smiling at Hannah (Inside Centre) all the way down to the point where we were laughing! This really helped to keep the jump calm.

Round 10: Here we really wanted to throw one final punch, and despite Block 12 being one of the slower ones, we didn’t allow it to change the way we approached the jump. I think we were also relieved to be doing our final round after having sat through so much bad weather, not to mention the fact that we had seen three different draws!

Team Storm's Round 10 at the British Nationals 2007 - see video
Storm exit
We will have a team meeting very soon. We do know that we will be taking a couple of months off before resuming the training. We all gave up our jobs once we knew how much training we would need to get the right result, bearing in mind we were starting from scratch.

We are really lucky to have a sponsor that enables us to train us much as we can. In return we are working with a number of women’s and children’s charities in partnership with the insurance company supporting us. So we are going to be busy working on a number of projects over the next couple of months, as well as in between our training camps next year.

We haven’t yet discussed whether we will go Open or Women's Class next year. The original goal when we first got the team together was to gain selection for the Women’s event. Winning the Open Class event at the Nationals has opened another door for us, and it needs to be discussed. We will keep you posted!

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