The United States won both the 10-man and four-man star events at the second World Cup Parachuting Championships which ended in Pretoria, South Africa, on Saturday (24 August).
The United States won both the 10-man and four-man star events at the second World Cup Parachuting Championships which ended in Pretoria, South Africa, on Saturday (24 August). Second in both events were the French team.
The best time in the 10-man event was 15.52 seconds, clocked by the American Wings of Orange team. The French team scored the best four-man time - 5.02 seconds.
The competition - the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere - attracted a field of 180 parachutists from 14 countries. During practice and actual competition events more than 20,000 individual jumps were made.
The competition were disrupted several times by unfavourable weather conditions. And a scheduled mass international jump by 120 parachutists was cancelled.
And on Friday, Austrian parachutist Helmut Helfrich was injured after a mid-air collision with teammate, Pete Ebner. The accident happened at 2500 feet (800 metres). Both chutes became entangled and the jumpers were enable to free themselves. They fell together, Helfrich suffering concussion and Ebner, a minor foot injury.
Earlier, the Captain of the American team, Jerry Bird, broke a bone in his foot, but was able to continue jumping.
SYNOPSIS: Competitors in the second World Cup Parachuting Championships in Pretoria, South Africa, on Saturday were busy with those vital last-minute checks.
One hundred and eight parachutists from fourteen countries were in pretoria for the championships and during practice and actual competition events, more than twenty thousand individual jumps were made.
The judge's task was difficult, but they eventually awarded the ten and four-man championships to the Wings of Orange team from the United States.
The French parachutists were second in both events. The fastest time in the ten-man event went to the American - fifteen point three-two seconds.
The French team clocked five point oh-three seconds - the best time in the four-man event.
However, not all the landings were happy ones. On Friday Austrian parachutist Helmet Helfrich suffered a concussion after a mid-air collision with teammate Peter Ebner. The accident happened at two thousand five hundred feet, when the two chuts became entangled.
The two jumpers were unable to free themselves and fell together. Ebner suffered a minor foot injury.
The American Captain, appropriately named Jerry Bird, had his problems too. He broke a bone in his foot early in the competition, but was able to continue.
The championship programme was delayed several times by poor weather, and a planned mass international jump by one hundred and twenty parachutists was cancelled.