After weeks of waiting and endless speculation, the first meeting of all the DCI World Class corps (other than Jersey Surf) took place Saturday, July 18 at the Alamodome in San Antonio. Here's a brief glimpse of how the captions stacked up between the various corps. While reading about the scores and spreads of each judge, please note that the two General Effect scores (averaged Visual and averaged Music) are added together for the final score, while the scores of the three Visual judges (Performance, Ensemble and Color Guard) and the three Music judges (Brass, Ensemble and Percussion) are added together and then divided in half for the final Visual and Music totals. In first place with a 91.40, Blue Devils won the General Effect, Visual and Music captions to put a 1.65 spread between the corps' nearest competitor. However, the corps did not win on the sheets of all 10 judges. Splitting the General Effect Visual judges, Blue Devils tied in that caption with Holy Name Cadets with an 18.45. Only the Cavaliers, at 18.25, were really close. No other corps scored higher than 17.90. The Devils won General Effect Music by 0.10 over Carolina Crown, 0.35 over Cadets and 0.60 over Cavaliers, for a combined GE score 0.35 over Cadets and 0.80 over the Cavaliers. Notable was that one GE Music judge had the corps 0.20 under Crown and the other, while giving their sheet to BD, had the corps in 4th in the Repertoire sub-caption. In the Visual captions of Performance, Ensemble and Color Guard, it was BD all the way for a relatively small total margin of 0.25 over the Cavaliers. The next nearest corps, Holy Name Cadets, was 0.80 behind and Crown was 1.05 down. In the Music captions, BD's Brass score nudged above Cadets by 0.10, Crown by 0.30 and the Cavaliers by 0.40. The corps' Music Ensemble score was down to Crown by 0.10, but 0.30 higher than the Cadets and 0.50 higher than the Cavaliers. The Devils' percussion took the Cavaliers' line by 0.30 and Crown's by 0.50. The Cavaliers finished 1.65 down to Blue Devils with a score of 89.75, just 0.20 above Holy Name Cadets' 89.55 and 0.60 above Carolina Crown's 89.15. The corps held close to BD in GE Visual, just 0.20 down, but slipped to 0.60 behind in GE Music, finishing in 3rd, 0.25 behind Cadets and 0.60 behind Crown. In the Visual captions, the corps held close behind the Blue Devils, only 0.10 down in Performance and Ensemble, but was 0.30 down in Color Guard. That kept the corps 0.55 ahead of the Cadets. In Music, the corps was 3rd, 0.25 under Crown, taking 2nd in Percussion, but 4th in Brass and Ensemble. The Holy Name Cadets (3rd, 89.55) tied Blue Devils in GE Visual and were 3rd in GE Music, nudging ahead of the Cavaliers by 0.10 and ending 0.20 under Crown in that caption. Despite a 5th place finish in Visual Performance (0.30 under Santa Clara Vanguard and 0.40 under Crown), the corps took 3rd in both Visual Ensemble and Color Guard to end in 3rd in total Visual, 0.80 down from BD's winning score. Solid 2nd place finishes in Brass (only 0.10 under BD) and Music Ensemble (0.30 under BD) was muted by a 6th place finish in Percussion, which was a full 1.0 under BD and also under the Cadets, Crown, Phantom Regiment and Bluecoats. The corps finished 4th in Total Music, which was just 0.10 under the Cavaliers and 0.35 under Crown. Carolina Crown (4th, 89.15) was only 0.60 out of a tie for 2nd place. The corps was largely held back due to a 5th place ranking from both GE Visual judges; placing them 0.20 under Santa Clara Vanguard in the average of those two scores. The 0.55 spread under the Cavaliers and 0.75 deficit to the Cadets in Visual Effect pretty much was the story in the corps' overall spreads between those corps. Being only 0.10 under Blue Devils in averaged GE Music wasn't enough to offset those GE Visual marks, and the corps ended up 4th in total Effect. A 4th place finish in the total Visual score could also be credited for the corps not finishing in 2nd place. A 3rd place finish in Visual Performance, 5th in Visual Ensemble and 4th in Color Guard kept the corps only 0.05 above Vanguard in total Visual, but 0.25 down to the Cadets, 0.80 down to the Cavaliers and 1.05 down to Blue Devils. The corps was much more dominating in the Music captions, taking 2nd in total Music. 3rd in Brass, just 0.30 under BD. The corps was first in Ensemble, 0.60 above the Cavaliers' 4th place finish, 0.40 above Cadets and 0.10 above BD. A 3rd place finish in Percussion was right in the middle between the Cadets (0.50 down) and Blue Devils (0.50 up). Santa Clara Vanguard (5th, 87.80) took 5th in total Effect by placing 4th in GE Visual, (besting Crown by 0.20 but scoring 0.35 under the Cavaliers), and taking 5th in GE Music, (0.15 under the Cavaliers and 0.40 under the Cadets). Total Visual was 5th, just 0.05 under Crown, with Performance and Ensemble placing 4th and Color Guard taking 5th. Total Music finished in 4th, with a 5th place finish in Brass, 6th in Ensemble and 7th in Percussion, 0.20 behind Bluecoats. The corps' 3.60 gap with Blue Devils was spread fairly evenly across the board; 1.30 under in GE, 1.10 under in Visual and 1.20 under in Music. With the exception of taking 5th in Percussion, Bluecoats (6th, 86.50) was 6th or 7th across the board. All four GE judges had the corps in 6th, under each of the higher scoring corps on each of their sheets. The corps placed 6th in Visual Performance and Visual Ensemble. A 7th place finish in total Music was a result of a 6th place finish in Brass, 7th in Ensemble (under Phantom Regiment) and 5th in Percussion (above SCV). The corps finished closer to 5th place SCV (1.30 above) than to 7th place Blue Stars (1.85 down). Blue Stars (7th, 84.65) placed higher in head-to-head competition with all the top corps than it had since the DCI World Championships in 1977. 8th place in GE Visual (under Boston Crusaders) and 7th in GE Music put the corps 0.15 under Boston for 8th in total GE. 7th in Visual Performance, 8th in Ensemble (under Boston) and 6th in Color Guard (above Bluecoats), put the corps in 7th in total Visual. 8th in Brass (under Phantom Regiment) and 8th in Music Ensemble (also under Regiment) couldn't pull the total Music score up from 9th place due to an 11th place finish in Percussion, just 0.10 above Troopers, who finished in 12th place overall. Phantom Regiment (8th, 84.25) just nudged 9th place Boston Crusaders by 0.05. The corps took its biggest hit by tying for 10th with Blue Knights in GE Visual, under the Boston Crusaders and Glassmen. The 9th place finish in Music GE was 0.10 under Boston. Visual Performance took 8th and both Visual Ensemble and Color Guard finished in 9th, each caption under Boston. The corps' strength was its Music scores; 7th in Brass (0.10 above Blue Stars), 5th in Music Ensemble (above SCV, Bluecoats and Blue Stars) and 4th in Percussion (above all but BD, Cavaliers and Crown). Boston Crusaders (9th, 84.20) took 7th in Visual Effect (above Blue Stars and Regiment) and 8th in Music Effect (above Regiment). The corps' lowest placement was 10th in Visual Performance, 0.7 under Regiment. (Remember to divide that score in half to determine its overall impact on the final score.) 7th place in Visual Ensemble and 8th in Color Guard gave the corps an 8th place finish in total Visual. Brass and Music Ensemble ended in 9th and Percussion was in 8th, 0.40 above Blue Stars. Glassmen (10th, 82.20) took 10th in total Effect, total Visual and total Music. The highest placement was 9th in the averaged Visual Effect caption, Visual Performance and Percussion. Music Ensemble was in 10th and all other captions were in 11th place. One Visual Effect judge had the corps in 8th place. Blue Knights (11th, 81.80), like Glassmen, (just 0.40 ahead in total score), was fairly consistent across the board. The corps tied for 10th place with Phantom Regiment in GE Visual, took 11th in GE Music, 12th in Visual Performance (under Troopers), 10th in Visual Ensemble and Color Guard (both above Glassmen), 10th in Brass and Percussion and 11th in Music Ensemble. Troopers (12th, 79.60) haven't placed as high as 12th in a show with all other World Class corps since the DCI World Championship Finals in 1986, when the corps finished 11th. The corps stayed above Colts (0.50 behind in total score) mostly due to small spreads in every caption. The corps was 0.05 under Colts in Visual Effect, 0.15 over in Music Effect, 0.25 over in total Visual (but 0.80 over in Visual Performance—remember to divide that in half), and 0.15 over in total Music. Colts (13th, 79.10) placed 12th through 14th in every caption. Brass and Visual Performance finished 14th, but Visual Effect, Visual Ensemble, Color Guard, Music Ensemble and Percussion all finished 12th. Music Effect was 13th. Madison Scouts (14th, 77.10) took 13th in Visual Performance and Brass and 14th or 15th in everything else, ending 2 points down to Colts. Crossmen (15th, 76.30) was 14th through 16th across the board. The brightest spot for the Academy (16th, 75.90) was 14th place finishes in Visual Ensemble and Color Guard, with other captions finishing between 15th and 17th. Spirit (17th, 75.15) scored 0.75 under the Academy, finishing 0.40 down in total GE and 0.90 down in the combined Visual captions and 0.55 up in total Music. Pacific Crest (18th, 73.05) was 18th in total Visual and total Music and 19th in total GE. Visual Performance took 17th and all other captions finished between 18th and 20th. Mandarins (19th, 72.75) was 16th in Visual Ensemble, 20th in Percussion, and finished 18th or 19th in all other captions. Pioneer (20th, 69.80) was 19th in Percussion and 20th or 21st in all other captions. Cascades (21st, 68.10) was 20th in Visual Performance and 21st or 22nd in all other captions. View the complete recap of scores from the DCI Southwestern Championship.