Sunday, April 22, 2007

Flytec day 6

Last night Bobby caught me before I went to sleep and told me that we needed to do some in air footage in the morning. So I woke up set up my glider and before I knew it I was being towed up by Lisa with Bobby about 5 feet behind me filming. I got towed up high and did some aerobatics with Bobby filming everything. The day was not so clear so the filming did not turn out so great and by the time I had landed I was already stuffed. The forecast was for cloud base and top of lift at 7,500'. The lift would be 500-600 fpm. And the wind would be out of the north at 11 mph. The forecast earlier had been for stronger winds late in the afternoon but the later forecast called those off, predicting 15 knots. Still we didn't want to come back into an area that might have high winds late in the day. (The winds did indeed pick up later at Quest. I missed out on setting the task today as I was in the air but as soon as I landed Kraig came up to me and said that they had just set a 205kms task to Florida Ridge. I was not feeling like fly that far today after a early wake up and a exhausting aerobatic flight. It was to late to change it so I tried to rest for awhile before the window opened.. Once we got airborne there was plenty of lift and we climbed to 7,000' before the start window opened at 1:30. Almost everyone was at the edge of the start circle and high so it was a mass start. I opted to start a little to the east of the main gaggle and when the clocked ticked over I was out in front and a few hundred feet higher. The Brazilians and Gerolf came in just below on the first climb but they kept going more to the east hoping for a better climb. I stayed back and watched them heading of course and finding no lift. I decided to go straight through the blue toward Wallaby ranch and I was rewarded with a strong climb to base. I had about 40 gliders following me with gerolf and crew off to my east and lower. I pushed on trying not to stop for anything to light and managed to nail every climb. I held my lead for over 100kms before I had a slow climb and the gaggle caught back up to me 90kms out from goal. I decided to stop taking chances at this point and just fly with the gaggle so that I did not finish to far behind them. We kept getting good climbs to around 7,500ft and our average speed was around 70kph. We had a very interesting final glide from bout 30kms out from goal. Gerolf, Nene, Maskara and Andreas went a little to the left and Andre, Bruno, Robin, Kraig and I went more to the right and we instantly pulled about 2,000ft on the others in the first 10kms. They were looking quite low and I saw the 3 talons stop and start circling but Gerolf kept going. We all ended up hitting lots of lift and basically whoever was in front was not going to be beaten. Gerolf will win the day a few seconds in front of Bruno then Robin and the rest of us will be within the minute behind them. This would have to be the best day I have flown In Florida making the task in 2hrs 49mins nearly 70kmph. 93 percent of the field I think 72 from 80 pilots made goal breaking all the Florida task records. I will maintain my lead with gerolf now in 2nd place 140 points behind and robin will move into 3rd 330 points behind me.