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Region 4 South - Contest Day 1 Report

Day 3 Contest Report


At last we got in a contest day. This morning did not look so good with low clouds and a light mist but by pilots meeting at 10:00am the sky was becoming broken and the pilots spirits were really high. The Pilot’s meeting was rather short since everyone was anxious to assemble their planes but we did take the time to ask John Seymour to describe yesterdays attempt at the task under marginal soaring conditions. As expected John was able to use weak ridge lift to almost fly the task lacking only one mile from touching the 2nd cylinder at Riverwood. John reported SE wind at ridge height to be 5-7kts, certainly not a day for the faint of heart. We also allowed time for Linda Murray to report on preparation for the 2012 Internationals at Uvalde, TX. Linda has done an outstanding job in upfront organizing but she may be calling on each of us in future months to do our part in downstream preparation to make this contest something really special for our international guests as well as a success for both for the SSA and USA.


Back to the contest day, by 12:15 pm everyone was on the grid and the shy looked good enough to launch our sniffer AH (Jim Smiley). After about 20min AH was able to report consistent lift under a 50% cumulus sky to about 3000agl. The standard class was launched first followed by the 15m and 18m. By the time the last class was launched the bases had risen enough that the advisors felt that the task was doable and safe. By 2:00pm all gates were open and the race was on. All classes had the same task, a two hour TAT with min. distance of 51mi and max. distance of 121mi which kept the pilots over good landing terrain and hopefully allowed pilots of all skill levels to complete the task. As it turned out and as seen from the score sheet the day was much better than expected and many pilots flew the maximum distance and finished under the 2hr minimum. In the 15m class Karl Striedieck had an outstanding flight with a speed of 67mph and finished 8min early. Karl reported a ylimb of 9kts to 6000ft on the 1st  leg to the Maggie TP. Unfortunately these outstanding soaring conditions did not exist for the 2nd leg to Riverwood and and 3rd leg home. All pilots reported good first legs with a real struggle in the Riverwood area which one might guess since the TP got its name because of a river running through the town and valley. The good news is the all pilots made it home. In the Standard Class Baude Litt won the day with an outstanding flight of 63mph, Baude was one of the last pilots to go through the start gate but timed it just right landing just as the day was ending. In the 18m class Al Tyler showed the guys how to do it with another outstanding flight of 63mph also going the maximum distance and still under time. Hopefully Al will be representing the USA in Hungary as a 15m pilot, so this weather will be good practice for Hungary. Another outstanding flight was made by a first time contest pilot Scott Alexander flying an ASW15 in the standard class. It would be interesting to see how Scott’s score stacks up against the other pilots if one applied a handicap to his 1970 glider, good job Scott.


As you can now guess the task was under called but everyone is really happy that we got in a contest day. The CD will have to get better calibrated to the skill level of these guys and hopefully will be improving on task calling. Everyone is hoping that tomorrow will again bring good soaring weather. dick  

Posted: 9/23/2009


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