PD BBP Swooper: Matt Shull

Name:Matt Shull / USAF

Country: USA

Home DZ: Mile Hi, CO

Main Canopy/Color: Black/Red/White

Approach and direction: Right 450

Exit weight: 200(including gear and without weight)

# of jumps: 2000

Competition Highlights: Placed: 12th USPA CP nationals 2009, 16th USPA nationals 2010, 1st Texas Swoop league Aug 2010, 30th at Dubai Golf Cup 2011

Sponsors: ME

Other Hobbies/Funfacts: Hobbies:  Sprint Triathlons, Biking, Snow Boarding, Martial Arts/MMA, BASE, Motorcycles.  Currently a Capt in USAF as Nuclear missile operator/Instructor


Who will win the 2011 season?

Four of the five meets are now complete and the competition for the overall standings has been tough this season.  On the pro side, Nick Batsch and Greg Windmiller are neck and neck for the top spot.  Greg has a gold and two silvers while Nick has two golds and one silver. That means it all comes down to this last meet!  Curt Bartholomew and Warren Cleary are only 3 points apart and about 10 points behind Greg and Nick.  Curt and Warren will be fighting it out for the third place trophy at the Farm. 

On the Amateur Side, Sergei Fedotov from the Ranch is leading the pack with a 10 point lead on Bart Ragowski from California.  Gage Galle, Miki Baranowski, and Brandon Coats are all nipping at their heels.  These guys are all fighting to be in the top % of the amateur class and move up to the pro class next season.  The top placing Amateur will also receive an invitation to the PD Big Boy Pants event at Mile-Hi in July.

Here’s the full score sheet

Don’t forget, the top Pro and top Amateur will have their jumps and registration paid by the FLCPA at this years USPA Nationals in Spaceland Texas

The fifth and final meet of the season will be at Skydive the Farm on June 11-12, 2011.  In usual fashion, we’ll have our end of the season BBQ and awards ceremony.  Look forward to seeing you there!

PD BBP Swooper: Pablo Hernandez

If there was a record for being the nicest, selfless competitor on the circuit, our next competitor would hold it.  Some have even call him a “teddybear”.  But watching him swoop you’d never come up with a nickname like that.  When competing, he’s aggressive, fast, and shows no mercy.  He typically lets out a roar during the end of his turn and his canopy screams through the gates faster than many thought possible.  He’s sure to set a few new records for Spain, most likely Europe, and certainly a top contender for the world records as well. 

Name: Pablo Hernandez

Team: PD Factory Team

Country:  Spain

Home DZ:  Lillo

Main Canopy/Color:  Comp Velocity 79 PDFT blue

Approach and direction:  630 right

Exit weight:  220 (including gear and without weight)

# of jumps:  10,500

Competition Highlights:  Bronze medal European championships 2005, speed event gold medal world championships 2008, bronze medal overall world cup 2009

 Sponsors:  Performance Designs, Sunpath products, Skydive Lillo, Liquid sky, Alti-2, Skysystems.

 Other Hobbies/Funfacts: Love to go low and hard!!!

Nick Batsch wins meet #4 in Raeford

This weekend wrapped up the 4th meet of the 2011 FLCPA Series.  Competitors began arriving in Raeford on Tuesday evening for practice on the pond.  The PD course markers were set up by Wednesday for practice.  15 Pro and 15 Amateurs had arrived by the 7:00am briefing on Saturday morning. 

Though the forecast was grim, Friday and Saturday turned out to be great weather for the practice day and swoop meet.  Saturday began with the speed event in 0-3mph downwind conditions.  The North Carolina State speed record was broken a few times during the meet.  The new state record went to Nick Batsch with a time of 2.371 seconds.  Chris Watkins also took a nasty spill exiting the course during the second round of speed and injured his shoulder which took him out of the meet. 

We continued with the Zone Accuracy event into a 0-4mph headwind and then onto the distance event.   The state distance record of 115 meters seemed very reachable.   Warren Cleary and Nick Batsch managed to make it to 111 meters but were just short of setting a new record so Marat’s 2009 record will stand for at least another year. 

At the end of the day Nick Batch had the Gold, Newcomer Kelsey Mizeur took the Silver, and Atlanta boy Warren Cleary was in the Bronze.  Complete results can be found here.

We managed to finish the meet by 3:00 due to the quick and efficient work by Raeford Parachute Center and our judging staff.  Eric, Laticia, Catie, AJ, Emily, Laura, Tuna, Nathan set a standard for efficiency in Judging.  John Hawke assisted by running comms with manifest and the pilot to keep the aircraft running smoothly.   I think that’s a CP record as well!

Paraclete provided 30 Minutes of Tunnel time which was awarded to the top scoring Amateur in each event.  Miguel Torres from the Ranch received 10 minutes for his speed round of 2.60 seconds.  Kelsey Mizeur from Chicagoland scored 10 minutes for his 84 point zone accuracy run.  Jeanie Anderson from AlterEgo took to minutes for her monster distance run of 91.93 Meters.

Our friends from Sunpath kept a cooler full of water and tasty beverages for the competitors throughout the competition and opened up the bar for us in the evening for a while which was very welcomed by all.

See you all at Skydive The Farm next month for the fifth and final meet of the 2011 season!!

PD BBP Swooper: Curt Bartholomew

Our next participant has risen to be one of the worlds best in a few short years.  He first made the US CP team in 2009 and earned a slot again in 2010.  Curt’s been seen training his 75 through the speed course in Deland in preparation for the upcoming record event.

Name: Curt Bartholomew

Team: Alter Ego


Home DZ: Skydive DeLand

Main Canopy/Color: Comp Velo 79/75 BLU/BLK/SLVR

Approach and direction: Left 450

Exit weight: 175(including gear and without weight)

# of jumps: 3500+

Competition Highlights: 4th Place 2011 FLCPA Palatka FL, 3rd Place 2011 FLCPA Zephyrhills FL, 5th Place 2010 World Championships of Canopy Piloting,  2nd Place Overall 2010 Florida Canopy Piloting Association Season, 1st Place 2010 FLCPA Palatka FL, 2nd Place 2010 FLCPA Sebastian FL, 2nd Place 2010 FLCPA The Farm (Atlanta, GA), Earned Swoop Pro Card in 2009, 1st Place 2009 Canopy Piloting Circuit US Nationals, 6th Place 2009 US Nationals of Canopy Piloting, 1st Place Overall 2009 Florida Canopy Piloting Association Season, 1st Place 2009 FLCPA The Farm (Atlanta, GA), 2nd Place 2009 FLCPA Reaford NC, 5th Place 2009 FLCPA Lake Wales FL

Sponsors: Mirage Systems, LiquidSky, Skysystems, Skydive DeLand, Alti-2, Globe Shoes, The FlyStyle, Bradco

Other Hobbies/Funfacts: BASE Jumping, Running, Playing Guitar, Video Editing, Photography, Writing, Longboarding, Freediving, Rock Climbing

Meet #4 in Raeford coming up next week!

Time is flying by and next weekend is the fourth meet in the 2011 series.  May 14-15 are the scheduled competition days.  A couple things you’ll want to remember: 

  • Based on input from everyone we are going to push up the start time and have the briefing at 7:00am on Saturday morning.
  • Raeford doesn’t take credit cards whatsoever.  Make plans to hit an ATM on your way to the dz. 
  • GW will have the courses up by mid-day on Wednesday May 11 so those of you want to get in some practice should get there early. 

Be there or be square!