All hail the new canopy piloting world champions!
Almost 70 of the best canopy piloting skydivers in the world descended on Wroclaw in Poland last week for the 1st FAI World Canopy Piloting Freestyle Championships & 7th FAI World Canopy Piloting Championships.
The US’s Nick Batsch pipped Cedric Viega Rios of France to the post to become the new FAI World Canopy Piloting Champion Overall, while his team mate Curt Bartholomew came in third.
In the Freestyle competition, it was Abdulbari Qubaisi of the United Arab Emirates who claimed the title, with Spain’s Pablo Hernandez Moll in second place and Justin Prize of the US taking third.
More than 5,000 spectators each day gathered to watch the athletes hurtle towards the ground at speeds of up to 150km/hour before touching down beyond the swoop pond - having performed tricks dragging through the water - that gives canopy piloting its other name: swooping.
They were treated to a fantastic show as the competitors battled it out to be the fastest, go the furthest, or make the most accurate or impressive landing.
Thanks to all the skydivers, organisers and officials who made this spectacular event possible.
And huge congratulations to the winners!
Photo credit: AeroKlub Wroclawski