Will it fit?

2014 Santa Cruz Flats Race, day 6

The conditions were forecasted to be similar to yesterday, and the task was set to a 100km, going south to Meyer and then north west to Maricopa before heading back southeast to goal at the hotel. Once in the air it looked like a good day but with stronger than forecasted winds. Again my glider was not flying straight and the lastest adjustments were not sucessful, in retrospect I should have overdone it more to get at least a right turn instead of another day with fighting a left turn. At least the gaggles were a bit smaller after the first clock and the turndirection was right so I could relax more while thermalling.

I waited for the second start time in a gaggle with Olav Opsanger, Johnny, Kraig, Chris Arai, Michael, Mitch and a few more I did not recognize. We had a good run to the first TP catching up with most of the pilots who took the first start, and I got a great line getting in front until halfway to the second TP where we flew into blue skies and headwind. We topped up in around 1800 meters and I chose a bad line and lost 200m on the lead gaggle before the next thermal so they got away in front from me.

I still had plenty of pilots under me marking the thermals, and I caught up with Olav Lien Olsen as we glided ahead into the blue. Unfortunately none of us could find useable lift and around 10 pilots landed in the same area, 6 of us on the same field around 15 km before the last TP. 30 minutes later we spotted the lead gaggle gliding over us on final glide to goal.

Olav Lien Olsen packing up, while the lead pilots are on final over us.
Olav Lien Olsen packing up, while the lead pilots are on final over us.

On the way home we got a lift with the Mexican team, as our driver had locked the carkeys inside the car while picking up Nils Aaage, Olav and me thought we might as well catch a ride home with them instead of waiting out in the sun.

They did not tell us they had to pick up one more pilot, who was in the middle of a property, 3km from the road behind locked gates. Fortunately the wire across one gate was long enough so we could get the car under it, barely…

Will it fit?

Will it fit?

Olav Opsanger did a great flight, coming in just one second behind Johnny who won the day.

Results day 6;

1. 122 Jon Durand AUS Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:57:43 02:47:44 36.1km/h 100.9km 988.42
2. 112 Olav Opsanger NOR Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:57:44 02:47:45 36.1km/h 100.9km 987.60
3. 119 Kraig Coomber USA Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:58:07 02:48:08 36.0km/h 100.9km 980.83
4. 103 Michael Bilyk USA Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:58:28 02:48:29 35.9km/h 100.9km 976.49
5. 108 Robin Hamilton USA Moyes RX 3.5 14:10:00 16:58:30 02:48:31 35.9km/h 100.9km 976.11
6. 110 Zac Majors USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:00 16:53:35 03:03:36 33.0km/h 100.9km 923.21
7. 102 Bruce Barmakian USA Wills Wing T2C 136 13:50:00 17:10:01 03:20:02 30.3km/h 100.9km 836.39
8. 127 Patrick Kruse USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:54 71.6km 553.80
9. 136 Glen Volk USA Moyes RS 3.5 13:50:45 69.3km 543.97
10. 140 maria COL Wills Wing T2C 136 12:47:18 61.1km 500.83
11. 107 Grant Emary USA Wills Wing T2C 154 13:25:48 60.1km 495.55
12. 130 Fabiano Nahoum BRA Moyes RS 4 13:50:59 59.6km 492.44
13. 111 Olav Olsen NOR Wills Wing T2C 136 13:50:52 58.8km 486.77
14. 123 Oyvind Ellefsen NOR Moyes RS 3.5 13:29:34 58.7km 486.32
15. 137 Rudy Gotés MEX Moyes RX 3.5 14:11:05 58.7km 486.27
16. 109 Greg Kendall USA Moyes RX 3.5 13:28:14 58.5km 484.41
17. 135 James Stinnett USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:38 58.5km 484.21
18. 106 Dustin Martin USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:16 58.3km 481.85
19. 105 Jay Devorak USA Moyes RX 3.5 13:36:09 58.2km 480.67
20. 138 Chris Arai USA Wills Wing T2C 154 13:50:24 58.1km 479.37
21. 116 Davis Straub USA Wills Wing T2 – 144 13:28:03 58.1km 479.35
22. 139 Mike Glennon COL Wills Wing T2C 154 13:50:26 56.9km 460.46
23. 124 Nils Henden NOR Moyes RX 3 13:50:33 56.0km 445.31
24. 114 Mitch Shipley USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:11:57 55.9km 443.59
25. 115 Kip Stone USA Wills Wing T2C 154 13:50:37 55.9km 443.54
26. 134 Bill Soderquist USA Moyes RS 3.5 13:50:44 54.1km 407.79
27. 126 Jeff Johnson USA Moyes 4.5 13:50:48 52.0km 363.77
28. 128 Thomas Lindal NOR Moyes RS 4 13:52:58 52.0km 363.69
29. 132 wayne osick USA Moyes 4S 13:50:36 51.7km 356.66
30. 131 Tommy Nilsson SWE Wills Wing T2 14:25:34 49.3km 301.42
31. 117 Rodrigo Alva MEX Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:37 49.2km 299.21
32. 121 Mark Dowsett CAN Moyes RX3 13:35:54 48.8km 290.17
33. 120 Pedro Garcia ESP Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:16 47.9km 272.55
34. 118 Joe Bostik CZE Wills Wing T2C144 14:10:58 44.7km 227.93
35. 101 Matt Barker USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:20 43.3km 211.04
36. 104 Larry Bunner USA Will Wing T2C 144 14:12:05 42.7km 203.20
37. 125 Thomas Hylander SWE Wills Wing T2 144 13:39:26 38.9km 160.92
38. 133 Steven Pearson USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:37 6.7km 28.57
DNF. 141* Terry Reynolds USA Moyes LiteSport 0

2014 Santa Cruz Flats Race, day 5

After a few slow days without flying it was good to wake up to sunny skies and a promising day. We got a nice task that kept us close to the hotel where we take off and land, 102km in total.

Task 3
Task 3

After a nice tow and hanging around in the start gate for more than one hour, I took the first start gate at 13:50 and joined Nils Aage as we slowly made our way to the first turnpoint in very weak lift, it was extremely slow and we got caught up by the second clock starters who started 20 minutes later at the first TP. From there I found better lift and stayed with the first gaggle all the way in to goal. I had a long and shallow final glide with Zac Majors just below and in front, and coming into goal there was some traffic over the center of the 400m radius goal circle. I headed a bit right of the goal to avoid those gliders, I thought I heard the vario make the goal sound as I flew over the golf course, so I turned right to land. Unfortunately I was still 40m away from goal, so I did not get any timepoints for the task, and dropped down on the scores. I lost around 300 points compared to the time I would have got, so that was a bummer for the day, still it was a good and fun flight.

The team did well – Olav Opsanger did a good flight again with 9. place. Olav Lien Olsen came behind us into goal, and got 17. place, Nils Aage got stuck and did not quite make it into goal to 22. place, while Thomas landed near the second TP for 36. place.

Results task 3;

1. 119 Kraig Coomber USA Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:16:28 02:06:28 48.4km/h 102.0km 1000
2. 102 Bruce Barmakian USA Wills Wing T2C 136 14:10:00 16:16:59 02:06:59 48.2km/h 102.0km 983.57
3. 108 Robin Hamilton USA Moyes RX 3.5 14:10:00 16:17:13 02:07:13 48.1km/h 102.0km 978.51
4. 101 Matt Barker USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 16:21:52 02:11:52 46.4km/h 102.0km 908.30
5. 137 Rudy Gotés MEX Moyes RX 3.5 14:10:00 16:27:54 02:17:54 44.4km/h 102.0km 840.53
6. 103 Michael Bilyk USA Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:28:59 02:18:59 44.0km/h 102.0km 829.66
7. 114 Mitch Shipley USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 16:30:55 02:20:55 43.4km/h 102.0km 811
8. 122 Jon Durand AUS Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:32:54 02:22:54 42.8km/h 102.0km 792.75
9. 112 Olav Opsanger NOR Moyes RX 3.5 Technora 14:10:00 16:33:36 02:23:36 42.6km/h 102.0km 786.51
10. 110 Zac Majors USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 16:35:35 02:25:35 42.0km/h 102.0km 769.32
11. 118 Joe Bostik CZE Wills Wing T2C144 14:10:00 16:36:18 02:26:18 41.8km/h 102.0km 763.29
12. 104 Larry Bunner USA Will Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 16:36:54 02:26:54 41.7km/h 102.0km 758.30
13. 133 Steven Pearson USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 16:38:25 02:28:25 41.2km/h 102.0km 745.98
14. 135 James Stinnett USA Wills Wing T2C 144 13:50:00 16:32:28 02:42:28 37.7km/h 102.0km 696.21
15. 138 Chris Arai USA Wills Wing T2C 154 13:50:00 16:33:46 02:43:46 37.4km/h 102.0km 686.29
16. 109 Greg Kendall USA Moyes RX 3.5 13:50:00 16:36:49 02:46:49 36.7km/h 102.0km 663.83
17. 111 Olav Olsen NOR Wills Wing T2C 136 14:10:00 17:04:13 02:54:13 35.1km/h 102.0km 580.95
18. 134 Bill Soderquist USA Moyes RS 3.5 14:10:00 17:13:03 03:03:03 33.4km/h 102.0km 538.52
19. 136 Glen Volk USA Moyes RS 3.5 14:10:00 17:21:48 03:11:48 31.9km/h 102.0km 501.29
20. 123 Oyvind Ellefsen NOR Moyes RS 3.5 13:50:53 101.5km 421.24
21. 127 Patrick Kruse USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:18 101.0km 419.88
22. 124 Nils Henden NOR Moyes RX 3 13:50:59 94.8km 398.47
23. 106 Dustin Martin USA Wills Wing T2C 144 14:30:20 92.8km 390.32
24. 130 Fabiano Nahoum BRA Moyes RS 4 14:10:04 90.9km 381.03
25. 140 maria COL Wills Wing T2C 136 13:52:27 72.3km 305.13
26. 107 Grant Emary USA Wills Wing T2C 154 14:10:49 71.4km 302.75
27. 120 Pedro Garcia ESP Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:13 67.5km 289.29
28. 126 Jeff Johnson USA Moyes 4.5 14:09:48 67.3km 288.45
29. 139 Mike Glennon COL Wills Wing T2C 154 14:10:24 56.7km 237.28
30. 121 Mark Dowsett CAN Moyes RX3 14:10:52 55.6km 231.47
31. 132 wayne osick USA Moyes 4S 13:52:15 53.6km 221.70
32. 105 Jay Devorak USA Moyes RX 3.5 14:10:12 53.4km 220.66
33. 115 Kip Stone USA Wills Wing T2C 154 15:57:47 52.9km 217.49
34. 117 Rodrigo Alva MEX Wills Wing T2C 144 14:10:00 47.8km 187.08
35. 125 Thomas Hylander SWE Wills Wing T2 144 14:23:30 45.2km 170.95
36. 128 Thomas Lindal NOR Moyes RS 4 13:51:46 44.7km 167.50
37. 131 Tommy Nilsson SWE Wills Wing T2 14:25:20 38.2km 120.58
38. 116 Davis Straub USA Wills Wing T2 – 144 14:10:12 15.6km 43.24
DNF. 141* Terry Reynolds USA Moyes LiteSport 0

 

2014 Santa Cruz Flats Race, day 1 and 2

I’ve heard about the good flying in Arizona from my teammates who went there several times in the past. The September timeframe is a good time for us Scandinavians, as the season at home is ending now. So this year I tagged along with the team hoping to have some fun flying over in the western US desert. This year we are 5 pilots from Norway, Olav Opsanger, Nils Aage Henden, Olav Lien Olsen, Thomas Lindal and me. There are also 3 Swedes here, a scattering of South Americans and an Ozzie among the US majority.

My main goal for this comp is to fly and get some more hours and practice flying after a crap season at home, so I’ve bought a used Litespeed RS 3.5 from Bruce Barmakian, and he kindly brought it to the comp for me. The glider is in good shape, but the sail is quite soft after use, and the performance is far from as good as my RX I have at home. After the first day I replaced the worn out VG rope, as I had a hard time pulling the VG, I then got a left turn on ¾ to full VG, so that made day 2 quite hard as we had good conditions for long glides.

I also fitted some Skyline wingtips to improve the performance after day 1, on the first day I was outclimbed by pretty much everyone, but day 2 with the wingtips I could climb much better and at least keep up with the newer T2C’s in the thermals. I expect the glide to improve once it’s flying straight again, I’ve adjusted the glider after day 2 so we just need another flying day now.

Glider;

The RS in the Arizona dust.

Day 1 was a short task of 82km, keeping us fairly close to the takoff/goal. I got a super smooth tow and a OK start in weak conditions. I struggled a little with getting high in the thermals all day, but got to goal about 5 minutes after the lead gaggle when they outglided me after the second TP.

Task 1 and results

Day 2 was a 121km task, and conditions were a bit better but with high clouds moving in and shading the courseline in the later part of the task. I got a terrible start after trying to move upwind and find a better position around 20 minutes before the start, we were 4 gliders heading out, but found nothing and I had to glide back to the main gaggle and did not have enough time to get high again. I took the start behind and 3-400 meters lower than the main gaggle, and suffered for that mistake the rest of the task coming in low and behind in the lift. I met up with Nils Aage scraping in very low at the last TP in the shade, taking 0.1 and 0.2m/s lift to stay up, thus taking forever to get back up to final glide attitude and loosing even more time. I attempted a 15:1 final, it was good for a few km, but then deteriorated rapidly to 18:1 so I had to stop over Casa Grande downtown where we got some residual heat from the buildings and roads generating a nice weak thermal to get us into goal.

 Task 2 and results

Yesterday, and today is gray and windy with some rain, we are under the tropical rainstorm Odlie, which is predicted to bring catastrophic flooding in our area today and tomorrow, so it looks like no flying the next days…

Cyclone Odlie giving us a nice sunset before the storm
Gliders packed up and out of the rain

Leaving Bassano

It was too windy to fly on Saturday, but we got a window of good conditions Sunday morning and I had time for a short flight in Bassano before packing up and driving to MUC for my flight home to Oslo.

The moment of truth
The moment of truth
Looking back at takeoff
Looking back at takeoff
Looking for traffic
Looking for traffic
Brakechute ready
Brakechute ready
Time to flare
Time to flare
Packup time
Packup time

 

Images from Bassano easter flying

Oz, Lake Keepit

After the plenary I flew down under to Sydney, met up with Attila Bertok and got “the keys” to his sailplane that he keeps at Lake Keepit, where there’s a competition going on this week. I arrived late on Monday night, got the glider rigged on Tuesday morning, and after a couple of check-flights in a two-seater with instructor I was good to go (Emergency procedures and such). I have not flow sailplanes for a year so I felt a bit rusty the first hours, but I got a nice day of local soaring around the airfield and managed to land nicely.

Big rabbits come to have dinner with us
Big rabbits come to have dinner with us

Today I had signed up for a coaching flight with legend G. Dale, we flew in the Grob103 as the Duo Discus was booked for other pilots, but we still did a fairly good speed of 93km/h average in our 250km AAT task. It was very interesting to fly with a very good competition pilot, I still have a lot to  learn about the mechanics of flying the glider efficiently, while we chose almost exactly the same lines to fly in the sky.

In the office at 6K
In the office at 6K
G in the backseat
G in the backseat
Rockin' tha Condor!

Time is relative. Travels, nationals, beginner course, work, and life in general.

Seems like it was yesterday I looked at the snow outside, now it’s late summer, what happened?

Well.. Flyingwise it’s been a bleak season at home so far. We had our Nationals in Vågå as usual one week in July, I think these pictures tell the tale of the weather we had;

Mountain waves, indication way to much wind for safe flying
Mountain waves, indicating way to much wind for safe flying in the area
Lenticularis w/rotor cloud and a Swallow bird enjoying the unstable air
Lenticularis w/rotor cloud and a Swallow bird enjoying the unstable air

We did not fly a single task in the nationals, weatherdemons vs hanggliding – 8:0 The nationals ended on Saturday, and on Sunday it was flyable and taskable again… I took some pictures from flying in Bøverdalen that Sunday;

Thomas
Thomas
Audun and Espen
Audun and Espen
Speideren
Speideren
Erik Bergseter
Erik Bergseter
Matching colours!
Matching colours!

The week after our nationals was my XC flying week this summer, but even though we got some good flying, the conditions were too stable for any real XC attempts. I did get to try out my new GoPro camera boom from Instinct Windsports, works great! A few examples from a late evening flight over Vågå (We took off at 19:00). So not a single good XC flight at home this summer so far, and it’s getting late into the season now.

DCIM100GOPRO DCIM100GOPRO DCIM100GOPRO DCIM100GOPRO DCIM100GOPRO

After that week I headed back south to Elverum and Starmoen airport to run a beginner course in Hanggliding. The course went really well with 8 students, we had really nice weather most days, and flew 8 out of 9 days with really good progress and great students. It was a scootertowing course, and we did around 250 tows that week with great results. Some pictures; (Some images by Morten Heller and Frederic Bakken)

Workwise it’s been quite busy spring and summer, I did the next big Cisco certification – CCDE in April and May. (Which involved 3 trips to London in 3 weeks), then flew to Miami, had a week vacation on South Beach in Miami, and Long Island in the Bahamas, before heading up to Orlando for the yearly Cisco Live conference.

At Cape Santa Maria, Long Beach, Bahamas.
Relaxing at Cape Santa Maria, Long Beach, Bahamas, one of the nicest beaches I’ve seen!

I also did a quick trip to the North of Norway, to meet family and also meet classmates from highschool 25 years ago, which was great fun! Weather was “interesting”;

Northern summer weather
Northern summer weather

 

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