The second day of the Parachuting Canopy Piloting and Paragliding Accuracy was in full swing yesterday in Cali, Colombia, at the World Games 2013. Three rounds took place for Canopy Piloting and two for Paragliding Accuracy.
All the athletes were clearly enjoying the effects of the warmth of the Colombian spectators who cheered, applauded and reacted very enthusiastically to Paragliding and Parachuting events, although it was the first time for many of them to witness such competitions. Media interviewed athletes, while children and grown-ups alike asked for pictures and autographs.
“I have never experienced anything like this before. To fly in front of so many people and to hear the crowd react while I am in the air is fantastic. It really motivates me to do my best,” Paragliding pilot George Cotet from Romania said.
“We felt like rock stars, this is really wonderful. I have competed in many events before, but I never performed in front of a crowd which was not only numerous but nice. I look forward to tomorrow,” German Parachuting athlete Nina Engel commented.
In the accuracy event (round 2), Martin Reynolds from Great Britain scored 84pts, followed by Curtis Bartholomew from USA (ranked 1 at the IPC Canopy Piloting World Rankings) with 84pts and Willliam Sharman (UAE) with 81pts.
In the distance event (round 2) Nicholas Batsch from USA (right), record holder in the Canopy Piloting distance, confirmed his talent by reaching 133,57m. Curtis Bartholomew came second with 127,86m and Pablo Hernandez (ESP) third with 116,59m.
It was a good day for Nicholas Batsch who also topped the round 2 of the speed event. Best female athlete Jessica Edgeington (USA) took the second place and Barton Hardie (NOR) the third.
Meet Director Alberto Paracuellos said: “Everything went well for the Canopy Piloting competition which was held in very good conditions. We managed to get a lot of jumps quickly. More generally, the Canopy Piloting event at the World Games is a success so far, thanks to the friendly and numerous public, the big pond and the set up near the grandstands. Coordinating with Paragliding is new to us but it is not a problem, and if the air base would have allowed it, we would even have run both competitions at the same time.”
In the round 3, which started on Thursday 1 August, Colombian pilot Miguel Martinez took the first place with a score of 0000. He was followed by Nanang Sunarya from Thailand with 0002 and Jurijus Jakovlevas from Lithuania with 0003.
In the round 4, experienced pilot Matjaz Feraric from Slovenia, who competed in every FAI World and European Championsip event since they began in 2000, hit the centre of the target, while Nick Simmons (GBR), Andy Shaw (GBR) and Elisa Manueke (INA) scored 0003.
The weather conditions continued to be challenging for the Paragliding pilots who had to deal with a lot of thermals, as well as strong and changing winds. “It was a good day for me, although a difficult one. The wind changes a lot all day, which made the competition not easy, but this is part of Paragliding Accuracy. Tomorrow will be better for me”, Goran Djurkovic from Serbia said. Same feeling from Kampol Samngamnim from Thailand, who found it particularly difficult to reach the centre of the target today. However for George Cotet, the difficulty was not the wind but the interruptions and waiting time before flying.
The World Games are organised and governed by the International World Games Association (IWGA), under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
The 2013 edition takes place in Cali, Colombia, over a period of 11 days from July 25 to August 4 2013. 32 official sports feature in the programme, including Parachuting Canopy Piloting and Paragliding Accuracy, while AeroMusicals (Aeromodelling) is present as a demonstration sport. The Parachuting and Paragliding competitions run concurrently on the same site, for maximum spectator interest, from 1 to 4 August 2013. Some 65 competitors (36 for parachuting and 29 for paragliding) gained entry to the Games.