DYE Travel Blog: Pete “Mr.U” Utschig CSP Equador 2011
Often I hear how lucky I am to be a pro player and get to travel the world go to cool places and meet all kinds of people. I do realize how lucky I am but there is always a place or an event that really emphasizes it. Last month I was able to live out one of my life long dreams and travel to the Galapagos Islands, the best sponsor any paintball player could ask for, DYE and my South American teammates Zurikatas made all possible. Since the islands are located in Ecuador the country where the CSP was being held. I called up my buddy Tony Perez, who was playing in the event with the team Wild Dogs Columbia, we set up a 3-day man venture.
First stop was Quinto the biggest city in Ecuador and then we were headed off to a real life version of Jurassic park. We were greeted at the airport by Andres a friend and paintball dealer of the Zurikatas guys. We were treated like kings and got to see the Island through the eyes of a local. The Island was alive from the moment we stepped on the ferry. Sea Loins lounged around the docks as if they were part of the population, giants sea turtles swam up next to our boats to just check us out what we were up too.
All kinds of birds, giant swimming lizards and big sharks, yes sharks were just an arms length away, and sometimes closer. Since swimming with sharks is something I would never ever do at home in NYC (because I am scared) Tony decided it was on top priority to do in Galapagos, and boy did we find the sharks. We rented a boat and hired a captain for a snorkeling tour, added in some breath taking Tortuga Bay beach hiking, and even some underwater cave diving to round up the three days of adventure.
But as all good things eventually have to come to an end it was back to business as we flew up to Quinto where we held a clinic for 30 players at the site of the event. The clinic ran great with Tony taking time to talk at the press conferences setup by the organizer Isreal Hildalgo. All the players were eager to learn, as I have found from last trip to South America they picked up all the drills and skills extremely quick. At the end of the clinic all the participants were recognized for their hard work with a certificate and autograph session with the pros.
The venue for the event was a paintball players dream; it was 2 minutes walk from Ecuador’s most prestigous mall. The Organizers of the event went out of their way to make sure paintball was being brought to the media. Multiple TV and radio stations covered the event. It had more outside sponsors then I have ever seen at a paintball event. Vendors were they’re promoting everything from cell phones to Rum drinks. Representing the US was an all star crew of paint ballers, Ryan Greenspan played with Mercenaries from Brazil, Ironmen Scott kempt and Kyle Spica added to the already strong Evolution squad, Tony Perez led the super aggressive Wild dogs from Columbia, Justin Swartz and myself played with the home town boys Zurikatas.
The event ran smooth and due to the location attracted a ton of outside interest and foot traffic that filled up the grand stands. The hometown Boys Zurkatas amateur played great all weekend and took home the Gold in the amateur division. We were not able to put it totally together this event and walked away with third in the pro divisons. All our games came down to one point but in the end we couldn’t find a ways past the Wild Dogs into the finals. Evolution played strong all event and were able to tame the wild dogs with a very technical couple of points in the finals.
Make sure you check out the video for some through the x bunkering action and video clips from the Galapagos Islands.
See you next time in Peru, or you can try and see me in my DYE Cam in Berlin, but good luck on that.