Despite on and off again rain showers throughout the entire event, 12 of Drum Corps International's World Class competed without a delay during the second day of the DCI Eastern Classic on Saturday, Aug. 6 in Allentown, Pa. Holding onto a win by a mere half a tenth of a point were the Blue Devils, scoring 95.25 to the Cadets' 95.20. After finishing in third at the DCI Minnesota event on July 16 and second on July 23 in San Antonio, the Blue Devils have been on a tear since last Saturday in Atlanta, with a string of first place finishes. "It started raining on us halfway through the show, and obviously we're worried about the electronics, but more importantly I was worried about the field getting slippery because we move a lot out there," said Blue Devils Percussion Caption Head Scott Johnson. Possibly reserved due to the rain, Johnson said that he thought the corps' performance was a little flat at times from his vantage point, but that it was a solid performance overall.
The Cadets continue to be poised to make a move on the Blue Devils, grabbing first place finishes in the General Effect caption and in Total Music. "We've had another great couple of weeks of rehearsal and it's coming down to the wire here," said Cadets Drum Major Ben Pouncey. Pouncey says that for his corps to accomplish its goal at the World Championships next week in Indianapolis, corps members need to continue to step up and perform as consistently close to perfect as possible. Carolina Crown (3rd, 93.70), who was one of several corps to be on the field with a steady rain coming down, debuted a new ending to its "Rach Star" production. Drum Major Preston Cheek says that a musical quote from the Lynrd Skynrd rock anthem "Free Bird" and an untamed on-stage guitar smashing are among the new additions adding authenticity to the program's rock concert theme.
"Our performance tonight was unbelievable," said Cheek. "I think the rain contributed to our high energy. Everybody was hyping off of it." After finishing 4.35 points down to Carolina Crown a week ago in Atlanta, Santa Clara Vanguard (4th, 90.60) cut that gap to 3.10 in Allentown, eclipsing 90 points for just the second time this season. Boston Crusaders (5th, 88.25) held a lead on the Blue Knights who finished in sixth place with a score of 86.70. "We were unified on the field tonight. Everyone came together and was fighting for [a solid performance]," said Blue Knights color guard member Christopher Tyer. Spirit of Atlanta (84.00), the Academy (81.80) and Colts (80.65) finished in seventh eighth and ninth respectively. Like Carolina Crown, the Colts also added a new ending to their production "Deception: The Jagged Edge" that was performed for the first time in Allentown.
"There is some new drill and a deceptive ending that goes along with our show title," said Colts Drum Major Sam McGinthy about the revised closing number. "The corps forms a giant concert arc, and you think the show is over. I turn around and bow to the audience, but the corps keeps going." Crossmen finished in 10th place scoring 79.85, and Pacific Crest took 11th with a 76.95. Jersey Surf (12th, 73.55) kicked off Saturday's event as corps members performed without their plumes in their shakos as some of the first steady rain drops of the evening began to fall. Just a few regular events are left on the 2011 DCI Tour schedule to serve as waypoints on the way to the World Championship in Indianapolis. World Class corps will perform for the first time this coming week at Lucas Oil Stadium on Thursday, Aug. 11 for the World Championship Prelims. View a recap of scores from day two of the DCI Eastern Classic. View a complete schedule of World Championship events.