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Region 5 North - Day 1 at Perry

Day 1 at Perry is in the bag, and it was a good one.  60+ pilots gridded up and launched in little more than an hour, and four classes headed out on course, and almost all of them got back home again.

At the morning meeting weather guy Scott Fletcher (SF) was right on in forecasting 4000-5000' top of lift, 3-5kt lift values, and Q's in all quadrants.  This was good news to the 60+ competitors, and we all looked forward to a fine day of soaring.

Out on the grid we started to see Q's popping around noontime, and by the time the launch started we had nice puffy clouds in all quadrants and we could see some streeting (unfortunately the streeting lines weren't well aligned with our course lines, but oh well.

The launch went off without a hitch, except for a brief spurt of excitement when Mark Keene (7K) got a wing don on takeoff and had to abort the launch.  His glider continued around for about 270 degrees in a slow motion groundloop, but fortunately there was no damage and he was pushed back in to position and relaunched immediately.  (the excitement didn't seem to affect his flying much , as he went on to win the day in standard class).  Also, kudos to towpilot Kurt, who was back-taxiing his towplane past the launch area as Mark was launching, and quickly moved his towplane out of the way so Mark had plenty of room to get stopped.

Out on course most pilots seemed to do OK, getting around with not too much problems.  Some (me among them) never seemed to get connected properly to the clouds, and struggled around the course.  For those unfortunate few who got back late, there was also an unanticipated overcast layer to deal with on the final glide home (I wound up landing out about 10 miles from home - bummer!).

The day was topped off with Perry's famous 'Chicken on a beer' dinner, complete with free beer from the Budweiser trailer, and great coconut frosted cake for dessert - wonderful!

Tomorrow's weather is a bit iffy, with T-storms in the forecast.  Depending on how quickly the weather moves overnight, we might or might not be able to get in a task.  However, we will almost certainly assemble and  grid, as CD Ray Galloway is almost sure to tell us we haven't had enough practice in those areas yet ;-).

Stay tuned,

Frank (TA)

Posted: 4/16/2012


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