A New Year from Earth

Pisces 3, 2078, m249

There are still 18 month before the New Martian Year, but one of the benefits of life on Mars is the milestones of two planets.   As we come out of celebrating the holidays of Earth and closing out another year on the Gregorian calendar, we are suddenly reminded of the void left behind when our first professional sport season has also come to an end. Season 2 of the MAFL won't be coming around  until the month of Mesha, that's an unbearable 4 months away.

 Tryouts in Wendland - This European-rooted colony has made a bid for team expansion.  They don't want to rely on sister-colony Europa for a championship.

Tryouts in Wendland - This European-rooted colony has made a bid for team expansion.  They don't want to rely on sister-colony Europa for a championship.

In fact, we won't have to wait long.  The MAFL has been quiet, but that doesn't mean nothing is happening.  Aside from all the post-mortem meetings happening at the Europa headquarters, we already know that there are at least three colonies bidding to get into the league.  The industrial-town of Wendland is a strong contender with a rapidly growing population expected to exceed 4000 in population this year; the affluent Columbia Hills also come as no surprise, especially after the incredible athletic performance of Alan Sawyer who took stage 5 of Pathfinder Marathon; but perhaps Korolev may come as surprise.  The small settlement near Cassini is best remembered for temporarily hosting the Dynamos during the Chubarov outbreak at Noviymir.  After getting an adhoc stadium built, it clearly stirred their ambitions to play in it themselves.

Though it is unlikely to to see the MAFL expand too quickly, it does indicate that there will be exciting additions for Season 2.  There are no shortage of trade rumours and reports of clubs actively courting marathon racers.  Europa United has not confirmed signing Gunvir Pachehra, the Overall Men's Winner.  Should Pachehra give up his career as a physicist to join United, he would become the oldest player in the league.

Rather than crying a bowl of salty tears in wait of season 2, this is, in fact, likely the most exciting time for any fan.  Not only is the MAFL actively evolving, but it is very likely that m249 will be remembered as the year that the face of Martian culture changes because of games.  A plethora of new sports are approaching the starting gate and unlike the rocky beginnings of the MAFL, there are no shortage of investors willing to play, and two inhabited planets in the solar system ready to watch.