Worlds Big Spring, day 4

Finally we got better conditions with some clouds, and higher inversion. The task was 149 km straight to goal with a exit start around Big Spring. I towed up quite late, but the conditions were good and I was originally planning on taking the second start time. I hung out with the main gaggle at the start circle, and I did the classical mistake and got low just before the start. I was not too worried until I saw everyone taking the fist start, so it would be few pilots at the second start. I turned aorund and went after the main gaggle, hoping to catch up enough to get contact.

After two thermals I was in contact with the main gaggle, but we had to cross over a big blue hole, and I had to top up as much altitude as possible. At 250o meters we started our glide, aiming for the gaggle that had a strong core on the horizon. I got a bad line and came in the lowest of all, and had to struggle a little to find the  core. By the time I got up the gaggle had left for the next thermal. Not much to do than slow down a little, and take shorter glides. I met up with two Italians Elio and Tulli and we took the last few thermals together and went on final glide.

We were warned that it was not landable around the goal, as it was on the other side of a small town and had lots of oil pumps around it. We took lots of extra altitude, and came in way too high. It was too thermic to fly faster than 100 km/h. The goal area was ugly, with wires, barbed wire fences, and almost no grass. I landed Ok on the asphalt runway. Others were not so lucky, and Olav Lien’s glider blew onto a fence and got a small rift in the sail.

Today we might get a very long task. Weather looks ok.