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Here you will find the latest news from the "National Skydiving League". Special thanks to Kurt Gaebel, founder of the league and webmaster of its web site.
Meet the Top Teams this Year
Teams and competitors all over the country will have the chance to see and meet the top teams at the NSL events much more often this year than in the past. Airspeed Vertical's busy competition schedule has already been announced at the NSL News earlier. And the current world champion just completed their first meet of the season last weekend.
Airspeed Zulu's team captain and former Airspeed multiple world champion, Kirk Verner, recently provided the NSL headquarters with their plans for the 2002 season. The Golden Knights also came up with the complete 2002 training and competition schedule. DeLand Majik was still working on their schedule.
NSL's web site
Airspeed Zulu is planning to compete at all of the Southwest Skydiving League season meets except the very first one. Obviously, Zulu member Chad Smith was already busy replacing point John Eagle for Airspeed Vertical in Perris. Zulu will also attend the July meet of the Florida Skydiving League, which happens to be right after one of the Airspeed tunnel camps.
The Golden Knights seem to have the busiest travel agenda for 2002. Today is their first training day of the winter camp in Arizona. Their home base is in North Carolina. The first Golden Knights winter camp will conclude with the first 2002 competition for the Knights: the 2nd SSL season meet in conjunction with the Valentine's Money Meet in Eloy, Arizona.
The Knights' second winter camp will be in Florida in March. This camp will include participation at the third season meet of the Florida Skydiving League where Airspeed Vertical, the Golden Knights, DeLand Majik and Sebastian XL will create a competition of a world meet caliber.
In April, the season opener of the Carolina Skydiving League is on the agenda for both Golden Knights 4-way teams. In May, the Gold team will travel to France for the French Cup while the Black team will compete at the CaSL again. In June, Airspeed will visit the third CaSL meet and compete with the Golden Knights for the third time this year.
The Black team will travel to the United Kingdom for the British Nationals in July. In August, the Golden Knights will take on Airspeed at the CaSL Championship again. Then it will be time for the three top events of the year: U.S. Nationals in September, World Cup in October and NSL Championship in November. Now, is that enough opportunity for everybody to meet the top teams.....?
The Tom Piras Event created a busy schedule in DeLand
Skydive DeLand was a busy place January 19, 2002. Tom Piras fans, friends and buddies gethered the weekend for a memorial skydiving event. Norman Kent held his "Picture This" seminar. And in addition to all these activities, a group of local skydivers had organized the "SkyTrapez" to come to DeLand.
Norman Kent's main purpose of "Picture This" was to spark the interest in more education for skydiving videographers.
Most of the class room session Friday evening covered safety and technical issues. Host Bob Hallett, owner of Skydive DeLand, welcomed the opportunity to offer first-class technical information to the visiting videographers and other interested people.
The seminar was well attended. USPA President Don Yahrling, Director of Communications Kevin Gibson, Parachutist managing editor Nancy Koreen, Skydive University President Rob Laidlaw and NSL President Kurt Gaebel were just some of the visitors. Skydiving videography has become a crucial part of the sport in many aspects. It surely deserves increasing attention.
Saturday morning, the Tom Piras event drew a lot of retired competitors and other fans to the drop zone. Airspeed veteran Jack Jefferies, Guy Manos and Rob Laidlaw were the most prominent participants. All three of them organized the loads and larger groups of participants.
Guy Manos was team member with Tom Piras in the legendary DeLand Air Bears who won the 4-way World Championship in 1985. Jack Jefferies competed together with Tom Piras, Dan Thompson and Mark Harrington at the World Championships in 1991 and 1993. Harrington also visited DeLand to meet the old friends. Rob Laidlaw founded Skydive University together with Piras.
Manos and Jefferies first had their own groups and later joined for some 40-ways with a high-caliber group of skydivers, including many active and retired 4-way competitors. Jefferies is still one of the most popular 4-way coaches. He is recently considering an upcoming project as a player coach. Manos has become a Hollywood movie-maker. "Drop Zone" and "Cutaway" are his productions.
While parachutes were landing around all day long, the "SkyTrapez" offered everybody an additional fun activity in the middle of the action. It did not take very long until it was booked out until late night. And spectators could watch some great performances by skydivers swinging high like in a circus. With each passing hour, the show became better and more athletic with a cheering crowd.
It was almost unnoticed that there were also teams training the same day. The new FSL team "Scirocco" with two former "Shaft" members trained with coaching by Majik member Doug Park. Mr.Pink visited from Georgia for their first training camp in 2002. It was a very colorful weekend in DeLand. Photos can be found on the Skydive League's website.
More on NSL's web site...
[Check out the NSL Schedule 2002]