The European Championships 2008, Day 7

So finally we woke up to sun and blue skies, and an early task before the warmfront shut us down. We got a 101km task to the east, to try to stay out of the shade. It was also the first day with the new rule about a max height at the start gate.

I got off quite late, but went straight to cloudbase and went towards the start circle to wait around 30 minutes there. I was in a good position for the first startgate, and flew with some of the leading pilots. But it started to rain, and I had to run from the shower with a very wet and misbehaving glider. I went into the start circle where there was some sun, and started scratching on the ridge at 1500 meters. The start gate was at 2200 meters, through a mountain peak that was 2400 meters, so we had to fly out into the valley.

I spend a long time looking for a better lift on the ridge, and missed the first start gate again. Got a better thermal flying back towards takeoff, and got up to take the second start with a nice gaggle. Unfortunately for us the warmfront and cirrus had come over us by now, giving us slower and tougher conditions ahead. Racing down the ridge we hit some shitty air that I did not want to stay in, and just kept on going to the edge of the ridge where we had to get up before crossing the next walley.

I had a pretty good run from there, and stayed in a good gaggle until between the second and third turnpoint where I went on a little to aggressively under good clouds, and had a too low valley crossing. I ended up having to glide out to a landing around halfway through the task, where the gaggle stayed back watching my stupid mistake, and slowly climbing a few hundred more meters before crossing.

It really feels like I’m out of competition shape, my mind is not where it should be, I’m flying too much on instinct, and not planning enough ahead. I know this from before, and I just need a few good days to get into shape, but the few short days here did not do the trick so far.

Kjell did a pretty good run, landed 10 km from goal, Bjørn J raced too hard and landed before the first TP, Olav Lien did not get up after the start circle, and landed at the main landing.

One pilot tumbled just after the start circle, I’ve not heard anything official about it expect that there will be no task. The weather forecast is for rain and crap conditions.