U.S. Pros Play in Latin America

U.S. Pros Play in Latin America

Tacoma, Wa.
by Tolena Mahlum with special help
from Clare Benavides

Crowds Gathered for the
Biggest and Best tourney
Ever in Latin America
A new focus has taken Mexican paintball in a direction that is quickly expanding its horizons. Venameca, a Mexican company, created a Sports Division that would solely focus on everything having to do with the sport of paintball.

“It’s placing special attention in the creating of new generations of players and the first Asociacion Mexicana de Paintball,” said Clare Benavides who was recently in Monterrey Mexico to attend the PGP Master Cup.

Clare Finds a Friend
Venameca signed an alliance with National Paintball Supply, turning Venameca into a NPS Global Partner for the region of Mexico, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The PGP (Planet Gotcha Paintball) had a booth at the PSP L.A. Open this past March to promote their Masters Cup. According to Benavides, the PSP and Millenium Series will be giving support to the PGP for their Acapulco Open.

Lane Wright
The PSP’s Lane Wright was recently in San Nicolas de los Garza N.L., in Monterrey, to help supervise a 5-man tourney with a Rookie and Novice category. Sponsorship from Coca Cola, Tecate Beer, CULT Energy Drink, the government of San Nicolas de los Garza and all of the TV and Radio coverage made this the biggest and best paintball event that had ever been seen in Latin America.

Lots of Entertainment
Paolo Dezi, the main organizer and president of the organization, invited several teams to play as 5-Man exhibition teams in his tournament. These teams included Dynasty (Johnny Perchak, Brian Cole, Oliver Lang, Ryan Greenspan, and Opie Loughran), New York (which was made up of different players from several teams like Joy Division, Empress, NYX, and Destiny which included Bart Blonski, Pete "Mr. U" Utschig, Clare Benavides, Max Lundqvist, and Mona Hejazi), and Texas Storm (Colt Roberts, Simon Stevens, Waylon Hancock, Adrian Cortinas, Mark Driggers, and Lucian BlackBurn. They all arrived late after having problems crossing the border).

Great Sponsors
Close Encounters, a team out of South Padre, also showed up. Not only did the teams play in the event, but members of Dynasty and New York laid out and set up the Sup Air fields and helped ref throughout the event.

A Mexican TV station came by and interviewed Oliver Lang and the promoters of the event. A local radio station also interviewed players such as Clare Benavides, who spoke in Spanish about women in paintball and offered encouraging words to women who are skeptical of the sport.

Recognize These Guys?
“The venue was quite impressive,” said Benavides. “It had 3000 and 4500 air fills, C02, covered staging areas with tables and chairs, 3 "Ultimate Airball" fields, real bathrooms (no porta potties), music, a live band, a rock climbing wall, bleachers for spectators, a small vendors area, free water and fruit and freestyle cyclists.”

She also added that the Mayor - who had never played paintball before - showed up to speak to players and spectators. He also put on a paintball mask to “see what it was like.” There are discussions right now about Mexico being a future spot for PSP events, so we’ll all stay tuned for more news there.

Derder was also filming and will be coming out with a DVD of the event. Everyone stayed at the Hampton Inn & Suites and a big player’s party was also held that Saturday night at a trendy nightclub where paintball videos were played up on the huge video screen. Lots of paintball players showed up wearing their jerseys, as well.

The PGP Master Cup Event number three will be held in Mexico DF on May 15 and 16. For more information, visit www.planetgotcha.com. Don’t worry, there’s an English version of the site in the works right now!

Ahhh... Relaxation
The results of the competition are as follows:

Rookie
1. Xero
2. Sykaryos
3. Cruces de Hierro

Novice
1. TJ all stars
2. Kidz
3. Black Rage

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