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Region 9 South - Day 3 Report


Racing Fans,


The fun at El Tiro continues. We have been blessed with cooler than normal temperatures that have made things here unbelievably comfortable on the field. High temperatures have been in the mid to upper 80's with mild SW winds instead of the usual +100 degrees we usually see by this time of year.


The weather forecast for today was similar to yesterday's with 2000ft. higher cloud bases to 10,000 ft. and thermal strengths in the 4-6kt. range with light winds out of the SW. Our weatherman, Mike “The Strike” Stringfellow, has been right on the mark every day with his forecasts. We're fortunate to have him.


The day begged for an assigned speed task for the FAI classes and I gladly obliged with a 227.75 mile run to Nogales X,The Gas Station, Rancho Loas and return. The weather proved a little bit better than the forecast with scattered thermals as strong as 12kts. One pilot reported a sustained climb in 10kt. lift for 5500ft! Top of the lift was reported at 12,500ft.


Combined with the light winds, these conditions resulted in an 88.23MPH flight by Tom Kelley in the 18m. Class. This moved Tom into a strong second place position overall, but still 331 points behind our leader Gary Itner whose consistency is unrivaled. Winning speed in the 15m. Class was 80.53MPH by RX, Jim Cumiford. This was Jim's second daily win which is only spoiled by a land out yesterday. N7, Ralph Bergh, leads the pack in Standard Class by 89 points over Biff Huss in H7 who took the day at 81.46MPH.


The Sports Class flew a 3hr. TAT in the same areas as the FAI task except the southern most turn point was Amado instead of Nogales X to put them over safer terrain. The winner was World team member Sean Franke with a 210 mile flight at 67.6MPH. Sean holds the overall lead by a wide margin over Garret Willat, another U.S. Team member. Sean is flying a beautiful LS1-F and Garret is armed with a Stemme S-10VT.


The Tucson Soaring Club provided the evening's meal of hamburgers, pizza, and potato salad. There was much fun had by all. We also had a visit from another soaring competition pilot, who is new to the addiction of racing, Bruno Vassel from Cedar Valley, Utah. Bruno's first contest was Logan 2009, and he will be flying with Garret in the Stemme tomorrow. The hospitality shown by the members of TUSC has made us all feel very welcome in the desert. (As we sit on the porch and feel the cool desert breezes, drinking beverages and re-telling the day.


See you at the airport,

Charlie “Lite” Minner

Competition Director


Posted: 5/13/2010


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