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Seniors Championship - March 8 Report

2010 Senior Contest – Seminole Lake Gliderport, Clermont Florida

Report for March 8

Florida actually seems to have warmed up a bit.  With only a small shove, today could have passed for a pleasant winter day here.  To be sure, several blankets were needed last night – but there was no frost, and bright sun raised afternoon temperatures above 70 degrees.  It was again entirely blue in our task area, but thermals – and speeds - were generally good.

A significant feature today was fires.  In addition to temperatures well below normal, Florida has had plenty of rain (and even some traces of snow) this winter, so it’s a bit of a mystery why brush fires should be happening.  But pillars of smoke have been seen every day here, and today they affected areas south of home, where a Turn-Area task was set.  Those who used them (most of the fleet) reported restricted visibility, considerable turbulence, and often impressive lift – 10 knots was commonplace, and one pilot briefly saw 18 knots on his averager.

Yet the task also had some tricky areas, and spreading cirrus clouds caused problems late in the day.  A few pilots landed at Winter Haven airport, 25 miles south of home, and a couple of motor glider pilots invoked their “iron thermals”.

Familiar names were again at the top of the scoresheet.  Tom Kelley did 66 mph for first place, closely followed by Ken Sorenson.  Dave Nadler is a guest here (not yet of eligible Senior age) but he had the best speed of the day at 68 mph.

John Good


Posted: 3/8/2010


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