Yup, sure does. (*sigh* busted ;-) But it turns out a combination is slightly better as well. The modifier form of the for loop doesn't have the marginal overhead of scope (er I think...), although I wonder if the 3% gain is worth the obfu.
I have to admit that I was suprised to discover that the list assignment is so much faster than an array lookup (which obviously is why yours is faster). Somthing I shall keep in mind for the future.