by Frank Matrone
Diamond Quest and Flight Concepts shared the fun and knowledge again at a CReW camp in Western PA. Skydive PA is a new DZ started by brothers Jeff and Roger Reckard, both of whom have been active jumpers in the Pittsburgh area for several years. The Reckards requested a Diamond Quest Camp at their DZ because several of the local jumpers were interested in learning more about CReW.
Joe O'Leary, the head of training for Diamond Quest, traveled from Atlanta to Pittsburgh International early Friday then did the two hour drive north to Grove City. He brought along many demo Prodigy canopies supplied by Flight Concepts.
Class started that evening after some fun jumps. About a dozen eager participants watched and listened as Joe explained and demonstrated the techniques that have been refined over his years of experience. Anyone who has attended a DQ camp will agree that the Friday night lecture is highly informative. Late comers who miss the lecture are at an obvious disadvantage when they try to perform on the dives.
Saturday morning started out slow with clouds but picked up quickly when the sky opened around noon. The first formation was a planed 9-way diamond with a stinger which built to eight. For some, it was their first offset formation and for Mike who docked 8th it was his CCR and CCS (can we spell beer?).
Cindy is a 50 jump wonder and until this weekend a CReW virgin. The second load on Saturday she did a two way with Joe including turning stair steps 360 both ways. She is the only person I know where a 175 sf Prodigy was smaller than what she was used to. Sunday she earned her four stack award by docking fourth after rotating!
In all there were six CReW dives made on Saturday and six Sunday. There were at least two completed 10 or 11 way kites and many Starbursts. All the formations built well and there were no wraps or cutaways. Well Jamie had a little whirligig that he wants to call a wrap.
A near by airport had hired Skydive PA to do a demo into their air show. Jeff used his keen diplomacy skills to clear things with the local FAA. This allowed the participants to load up the Twin Beech and build a diamond for the crowd. It was the hit of the air show!
As Sunday came to a close, it was obvious that everyone was happy and eager to do more CReW! Hopefully they will show more people the light and convince them to throw the pilot chute into the prop blast.
TURN TURN DOCK!