The FLCPA kicks off the season every year for Alter Ego. Jeannie and Curt showed up 4 days early for some training but unfortunately had to sit on the ground until Friday due to weather. Curt was the league coach for the first meet, and gave everyone tips and tricks out of his seemingly endless bag of tricks as they landed. All the competitors were eager for the help and listened and applied the coaching very well. We may have even seen Curt sneak on the last load of the day to get a sunset swoop in, I guess he couldn’t let everyone else have ALL the fun. There was a huge turnout to the first comp of the season, 25 Am’s and 21 Pro’s eagerly registered to get the year into full swing. There were a few heavy hits in training and a few trips to the hospital, but nothing overly serious. Everyone was eventually released and doing are now doing well.
The winds were very tricky for the start of the competition. We kicked off with the speed event, and the winds were somewhere between a downwind and crosswind. It was extremely turbulent and gusty, which in fact kept the am’s on the ground for much of the day following their practice jump in the morning. The pro’s kept plowing through even though the most experienced felt uncomfortable with all the bumpy air. Curt came through the course with two consistent 2.3 second runs, both being the fastest of their respective rounds. Jeannie put her Valkyrie through the gates and got 2 solid scores. Jeannie had switched her turn from a 270 to a 450 in the off season and had put a lot of hard work into making a difficult, yet necessary, step in her career.
Everyone went on a wind hold in the middle of the day due to the high, turbulent winds. Later in the afternoon the am’s finally saw some action and cranked out both of their speed runs while the pro’s took a turn watching from the ground. A lot of great flying was seen from the am’s, and they got their comp started. Everyone then moved on to distance with the new 70 meter gate in the afternoon after a short wind hold. Justin Price set the farthest run in the first round, edging Curt out by less than a meter. Jeannie put a third score on the board in changing wind conditions, giving her some valuable experience with her new turn. One last jump on the first day right before sunset to round out that event for the pro’s, while the am’s had to make up the last distance round in the morning. Curt got to head home that night with another 100 point distance round and a decent lead in the overall with some breathing room. The am’s were halfway through their comp and a great fight developed as the dust settled. Pawel Piotrowski was leading in first place from Rob Harris in 2nd. An even more interesting fight saw Danny Feltner fighting it out with his dad Fraser for the podium in 3rd and 4th place.
The start of the second day started in calm winds for zone accuracy. The wind quickly picked up to a steady downwind just as the competitors started running the course. There were a lot of solid runs thrown down. Curt pulled his usual zone acc magic and stood his landing up even in the downwind, and Jeannie threw down an impressive score to keep her climbing up the scoreboard. The last round of the comp saw the winds shifting into a crosswind and changed up everyones approaches last minute. Curt finished the comp with a 91 on the zone acc course, making it his 5th 100 point run out of the 6 rounds. Jeannie made her adjustments as well and put 6 out of 6 scores on the board, smashing the goals she set out for herself. Zone acc threw the am scoreboard for a little bit of a loop. After a little bit of a shuffling, Piotrowski ended up bringing home the gold for am’s, Rob Harris secured 2nd place, and Fraser edged out his son for the last step of the podium. Alter Ego sponsored the medals and trophies for the FLCPA season, so these three am’s will be receiving medals for their efforts for the first time in the league history. Everyone at Alter Ego wanted to help support the league and help it grow, as well as help give the am’s the recognition they deserve for all the hard work and dedication they put in. Congrats to all the am’s and we are looking forward to watching them battle it out at the next comp.
For the pro’s, Gage Galle from the PDFT edged out Justin Price for the last spot on the podium, followed by Scott Harper in 2nd Place. Curt rounded out the top of the podium with 599.242 points out of 600. Jeannie made the top 10 in the pro class, edging out 5 of the “prototype” canopies on her Valkyrie. The judges did an amazing job once again, the whole swoop community would like to give them a huge THANK YOU for what you guys do. Albert ran another flawless meet and we all look forward to the next one!