8-way Block 5
The secrets of 8-way Block 5, by World Champion Martial Ferré
Returning from the fantastic vertical world record experience in Chicago in 2015, I and my brother Leo decided to get involved and organize the new Italian head down record.
With Gigi and the other members of the “Aerodisaster Team”, we started this project in November 2015, starting to train the new talents of the Italian free-fly scene. We tried to transmit our best and all the skills necessary to achieve success. It has been a long journey, very pleasant, that taught us so much and made us proud to have undertaken this mission.
I won’t hide that at the beginning we were a bit apprehensive but we were also always very determined and the progression of the participants in each camp motivated us so much up to the big day, with zero fear and a lot of desire to bring home a great achievement by all.
We found ourselves in the airport Thursday and started to climb with two planes for a couple of jumps. After making some small adjustments we put in the third plane, starting to try the official formation. The first day ended with 5 decent jumps without any record.
On Friday morning we made a couple of changes in the formation and on the second jump of the day we established the new Italian head down record, a nice 27 way!
We were all very excited, but we looked around; the day was still long and the group had all the qualities to try a larger formation, so we added other people and gave ourselves a new goal: GO BIGGER!
Friday ended with an official 27 way record and a couple of tries very close to closing the 30. Again a light dinner and early sleep, ready to rock the next day!
Saturday morning, rested and fresh, we did the briefing and boarded the planes to meet up again in the sky by closing a 30 way formation and flying it for 5 seconds!
A nice round number and another new Italian record set, I’ll be honest, that with all those cries of joy from my fellow teammates was very exciting – a unique experience, definitely one of the best cappuccino jumps of my life! ;-)
I would like to say that this event is definitely a great goal achieved by the italian free-fly scene. It is the first time that a record is totally homemade without any help of external load organizers, and the first time that three planes flew in formation over Skydive The Zoo to give life to this great result. All these things show that the sport is evolving and it is just FREAKING AWESOME!!!
I would like to thank Leonard Elia and Luigi Di Lernia, the other two organizers of the event; my teammates of the “Aerodisaster VFS “, Ivan, Marco and Cristian for their support during the try-outs; all the senior flyers for believing in our project and the new band for having trusted us; our man behind the camera, Luca Giovanni, aka The Guapo, official videoman of the record; the pilots and all the ground supporters.
Thanks to all partners: Airspace, Tonfly, Cypres, Cookie, Bertrand Adrenaline, Intrudair, L & B, UPT Vector, Turbolenza, Parasport, Mad House, NZ Aerosports, ASD CityFly, Eclepta.
The biggest thanks goes to Skydive The Zoo and the boss, Roberto Romboli. Without his support all this would never have been possible – really thank you from the whole group, you are a real “Rambo”!