December 17, 2018
“This will be bigger than the Woodlands” is what was declared by iFLY Houston Memorial’s (iFLY HM) CSR, return flyer event coordinator, and passionate freestyle flyer Jennifer Brush when asked about what she wanted out the competition. She delivered on her promise and helped create an event that was HUGE for a single-day competition. The H-Town Throwdown rocked iFLY HM on December 7th, 2018 and showed many that even with a single weekday event, that Texas can bring it.
The Throwdown successfully challenged the notion that competitions within the U.S. are made up mostly just tunnel instructors. With the immense help of iFLY HM’s own Jennifer Brush, who was able to rally the flyer community, there were well over 100 registered competitors, comprising of 42 teams, across five disciplines. This made for an event that saw a good majority of the competitors being skydivers, and tunnel flying enthusiasts. With the numbers seen for this single day event, one can only imagine the numbers a two-day event could have produced. Regardless of the event being held on a Friday, the competition was packed full and saw many great competitors throwing down. Everyone lasted the 12 hour day and greeted the ceremony that followed, with smiles and great spirits. Instructor and tunnel maitenance Rory Corrigan helped make sure the tunnel was ready the night before for the competitors, and then compted the next day bright end early, talk about above and beyond! Tunnel GM Christian Phosarath created a fun playful atmosphere for the event with balloon sculptures and a cowboy on stilts (yes, really!). HM sales manager Shaun Grey made sure everyone was well fed, had a place to sleep, and helped with final details throughout the day. Lastly, Sasha Greene AGM of HM (the backstage hero), helped make sure the tunnel ran well and that any last minute details were handled with grace. The entire team at Houston Memorial, along with the judges, were the biggest reasons that the competition ran well and ended early.
Social media coverage was hosted by Waz Choudry and BaVani Selvarajah, as they interviewed competitors, gave updates on events, and kept the social media viewers engaged as the day unfolded. Nick Lott provided great camera work for the event as well, adding his great artistic skill and craft to the footage. Once that video is available, look for it here at tunnelflight.com.
The ceremony was held on the flight deck due to the rain that came pouring in, but it couldn’t dampen the mood, as numerous medals were awarded to flyers beaming with smiles, shining brighter than the medals placed around their necks. The night ended for some shortly after, while others continued to fly on after the competition. A great reminder that the event was bigger than expected, and that Texas can bring the crowd, as long as the party is worthwhile.