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1999 World Cup NPPL

October 18 - 24
Orlando, Florida

Lockout wins Professional 5 Man!!
Naughty Dogs wins Amateur A 5 Man!!
Energy II wins Amateur B 5 Man!!
American Paintball wins Novice 5 Man!!

Aftershock wins Professional 10 Man!!
Outta Control wins Amateur A 10 Man!!
SOB's wins Amateur B 10 Man!!

Avalanche wins Professional Series Championship

A rear Hyperball bunker with a Florida twistThe World Cup has a new location in Orlando this year.  Not far from the original Paintball World fields of Kissimmee, the new area means more space, while it is still close to the hotels and entertainment of Old Town. It certainly has a carnival like atmosphere with tents being set up around the  hundred acres of land, brightly colored Sup Air Ball fields, and all of the various sponsor semi-trucks.  The site is well laid out with 5 Sup Air fields, 3 woods fields, and an Hyperball field surrounding the vendor tent and individual vendor pavilions.  In addition to the main staging tents, JT and PMI both provided tented areas for their sponsored teams to stage.  Next to the main vendor's tent, WDP created "Angel Heaven", a courtyard garden complete with a bar, DJ, and hot-tub.

Monday started with delays in play that threw off games for hours on the first day of 5 Man Preliminaries.  Hurricane Irene delayed the setup of the fields on Friday & Saturday, then more difficulties arose when the tent trucks got stuck again and again in the mud on Sunday. With the fields not set up and running until nearly noon on Monday, the tournament started out with about a 4 hour delay.  This unfortunately cascaded further as schedule changes trying to catch things up over the next games placed teams on two fields at once.  Playing one meant delaying the other fields.  Reshuffling games to play for teams who were ready and waiting proved difficult.  There were 147 5 man teams so finding where one team was at a given time to see if they could re-schedule was not an easy task.

Wednesday, games scheduled for the wooded fields were moved out to the concept fields, and a new Sup'Air field was added with extra referees.  With the extra refs, a game could be played while the next teams were checking in and chronoing on.  This helped catch up valuable time.  While the weather held bright, sunny, and a little hot for some, the refs pulled long hours with few breaks, often catching flak from the players for the scheduling problems.  A handful of teams ran into problems with the schedule delays having to choose between college or high school exams and sticking it out to the end of the games.

By Wednesday evening the 5 player preliminary games had been completed, and the first games of the semifinals began.

Thursday morning the semifinals were finished, and a light rain fell on the teams that made the cut to the finals.  The rain didn't slow anyone down though.  Lockout took the first place pro trophy with a 55 point lead over the French team Camp Tigers.  The Amateur A top two were a reverse of last year.  Last year's second place team, the Naughty Dogs edged out last year's first place team, the Jacksonville Warriors.  In the Amateur B division Energy II took home top honors, as did American Paintball in the novice.

The players for the 10 man competition soon swarmed in on the game site, walking the fields in preparation.  Fortunately enough time had been planned between the 5 and 10 man games that the over-runs in the 5 man schedule were caught up in the slack, and did not delay the start of the 10.
Tucking into a SupAir Bunker by the National Paintball NJ semi
During the 5 man a rule change was implemented in the way the games were started.  Instead of a 30 second warning, teams were given a 10 second warning, just a time saving step to help things move faster.  This was continued in the 10 man games.  Additionally, the 10 man format was changed from a 20 minute game to a 15 minute game.  While some teams balked that this was not what they had practiced for, the majority of games out on the concept fields did not  run the clock to its limit.  For the spectators (this World Cup definitely had more spectators than any previous) the shorter time format meant games with more movement and less sitting. 

This year's cup had as much to see off field as on.  National Paintball Supply, New Jersey's semi was located next to the 32 degrees Sup'Air ball field, and displayed new products, including new gear bags with rollers, internal frames and extending luggage handles.  JT's 5th wheel trailer was augmented by a matching freight truck and formed the front of the JT hospitality area.  A small village of tents provided shade and work area for JT sponsored teams.  In front of the trailer, a white picket fence and potted plants created a comfortable "down home" porch on which to sip lemonade.  Across the road, DYE's tent had the full DYE clothing line, and some huge discounts on Boomstick barrels. 

Pete "Robbo" Robinson leaned over and said "Write something about me." just as this was being written, so here it is.  While Pete has retired from playing for Aftershock, World Cup is not an event to miss, so he is on hand covering it for Paintball Games International and dispensing his snappy British wit to anyone within ear-shot.

Heading further South, PMI's paint bearing semis were parked next to the PMI Sup'Air field, and PMI team staging tent.  These were next to the Scott USA bus and booth which abutted the Tippmann Challenge shooting range where players were invited to test fire the new Flatline. 

Bordering yet another Sup'Air field was a pair of semi trailers from National Paintball Supply, South Carolina.  These included a pair of tents and two of the cars from the sponsored Genesis racing team. 

The remaining concept fields were a Hyperball field next to Brass Eagle's trailer and ViewLoader tech support station, and the Diablo Sup'Air field, which was bordered by an encampment of 3 decorated Diablo semi-trailers. 

The main vendor's tent was packed to overflowing with paintball dealers and product manufacturers.  WDP overflowed into a side tent with their "Angel Heaven" and tech theatre.  Smart Parts took the north end with products from Renegade clothing, Shockers, and even custom laser engraving on-site. 

About 30 meters from the main tent was the Paintball Junkies tent.  This company, while new on the scene is making quite an impression with their jerseys and casual wear.  They turned things up a notch, teaming with Unique Sporting, and NuLine (manufacturer's of the Bruizer line of paintguns) to bring in the Southern California band "4 O'clock Friday".  The band cranked out the tunes Friday and Saturday putting the players into pure party mode that spilled over to the Blue Max and Sun On the Beach, the two "Old Town Kissimme" bars that became the tournament hot-spot at night.

Tommy from Image, Gary, Spud & Renick from Aftershock, and Dan from Avalanche - you will be sorely missed guys!  Happy Retirement!

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