Mondial - Opening Day

Judges lead the paradeSunday, 11 September 2016

16.00   The opening ceremony took place at the local high school's stadium - it was wonderful to watch each nation's athletes walking behind their country's flag to applause from the local townsfolk who came to watch, and their fellow athletes.

We then had a wonderful rendition of the National Anthem by Betsy Hopes (who works with Paragear), followed by a silent moment in memory of 9/11, 15 years ago.  Then the flags of the FAI, Skydive Chicago and the Stars and Stripes were jumped into the arena - spectacularly - followed by a flypass of the 2 Caravans and 3 Twin Otters.

Next there was an excellent short speach of welcome from the Mayor of Ottawa, welcoming everyone to his home town and hoping the competitors, in their down time, have the chance to sample the local hospitality, in bars, restaurants and shops - to great applause from the athletes and a comment from the Master of Ceremonies, Beau of Skydive-TV, that he may regret that invitation.   He was followed by Ed Scott, Executive Director of the USPA - who said how proud the USA was to be hosting the Mondial, and how pleased they were that Rook Nelson and Skydive Chicago were prepared to host it.  He welcomed all the competitors from 38 countries who were here to take part in the competitions, and wished everyone a successful Championships and hoped for some new World Records.  'Skydive Hard' was his closing message.

Gillian Rayner, FAI Controller and FAI Executive Board member, welcomed everyone on behalf of Dr. John Grubbstrom, FAI President who apologised for not being able to attend in person.  She was followed by the IPC President, Dr. Rainer 'Exi' Hoenle who added his thanks to everyone present and mainly to the competitors and wished them a successful Championships and declared the 2016 Mondial open.

Before the Mondial could be declared Open however, the Jury has to give their approval having consulted with the FIA Controller and the Chief Judges.  The Jury has issued three reports (2, 3, 4) detailing various items brought to their attention by the FAI Controller.

The whole ceremony was broadcast live by Skydive-TV.

We start in the morning at 6.30 (wheels off) with VHS and a test for accuracy. 

Earlier in the afternoon the competitors meeting was held in the dining tent, where the various officials working here at the mondial were introduced and then the various draws were made.

Bob the driver

7.20 this morning, our bus and driver awaits the judges for their drive to the airfield.  As we arrived the first accuracy team were in the air for their practice jump.    The line at manifest is l......ong!  The sun is shining.

Today jumping will cease at 12.00 (last wheels off) and the Competitors Briefing will be at mid-day.    This will be a general briefing in the main hanger, followed by individual discipline briefings (draws, etc.) in seperate groups.   The Opening Ceremony will start at 16.00 hrs.

At the last IPC meeting in Frankfurt the Plenary agreed to the request from Finland to award a permanent trophy for the AE Freestyle Skydiving champions in memory of Raija Kosonen.   Pekka Salmela, the Finish judge brought it with him and presented it to the Artistics judging panel.  He drove 800 km the day before he came to Chicago - after work, to collect the trophy, take it to show to the family of Raija before driving back to his home and preparing for the trip.

AE judges  trophy Raija Trophy
Artistic Judges Panel with trophy Raija Kosonen Trophy


 The Skydive-TV crew are making their final preparations for their live, twice daily broadcasts.