What an amazing weekend at the Raeford Parachute Center!! Competitors began arriving to North Carolina a week before the meet. Members of the Canadian CP team ran a week long training camp leading up to the meet with Greg Windmiller and Jay Moledzki coaching the guys. Friday was jumpable in the morning with 30 knot winds at 1,000 ft. by Noon the winds had come down to the ground and were extremely turbulent.
Saturday morning had winds out of the west turning between a tail wind and head wind throughout the day. We began with the practice round and rolled straight into the speed event. A quartering head wind kept the times above 2.8 even for the fastest competitors with most above 3.0 seconds. Curt Bartholomew took the fastest time of the Pro competitors winning 15 minutes of tunnel time compliments of Paraclete XP.
By 11:00am we had rolled into the distance event. A head wind of 7-10 mph kept the North Carolina distance record safe at 128 meters. But not by much! Curt picked up another 15 minutes in the tunnel by securing the longest distance at 127 meters.
Zone Accuracy was once again the great equalizer and definately shuffeled the score board. At the end of the day Paul Rodriguez was in the top seat with 498 of 600 points. Curt Bartholomew followed with 478 points . And to round out the top 3 was Mr Gage Galle with 471 points. The top 3 took home FLCPA medals, and some nice cash.
The top 3 Amateur competitors took home 15 minutes each from Paraclete XP. Chris Howard was 1st, John Nolan was the second place winner, and 3rd amateur was Jeannie Bartholomew.
In usual Raeford style, we brought back the Pro/AM event. This is where we randomly match up a pro competitor with an amatuer to work together during the meet. They discuss strategy, conditions, and help each other through the meet. At the end of the competition we add up their scores and declare a winner. This year the Raeford Pro/AM was won by the team of Gage Galle and Jeannie Bartholomew.
On a more somber note, Canadian competitor Philippe DeBlois passed away due to injuries suffered during an accident in the beginning of the week. On one of his first jumps when he arrived at Raeford it appears he may have unknowingly lost his hand hold on his toggle when transfering from front risers to his rear risers. To open the closing ceremony Raeford Avation launched three of their aircraft and flew them over the dz in a missing man formation. Greg Windmiller of the Golden Knights said a few words about Philippe. The competitors and crowd observed a moment of silence.
Big thanks to our judges, Raeford Avation, Mirage, PD, Paraclete XP, and Sunpath for their support of the meet.
In 2015 Raeford Parachute Center will be host to the USPA CP Nationals. With this meet, they’ve once again shown they’ve got what it takes to host a top notch competition. “Thats how we roll!”