Tag Archives: Europeans 2008

European Championships, cutting the losses

After 6 canceled days in the rain, the first task stopped because of dangerous conditions, the second task with a fatal accident, and a forecast for even more rain it was time to take stock and make some hard decisions. All in all it seemed quite pointless to waste more days in Greifenbug, and we decided to head home early. Bjørn, Speidern and I drove home, while Olav stayed because he is going on to the Pre-Worlds in Laragne

I concider this the worst flying trip in my 12 years of flying, I did not enjoy the little flying we had. I’m sorry for the organizers that had such bad luck with the weather. they deserved better than this. I hope the pilots that are left get some good days at the end so we can have a real European champion.

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.

The European Championships 2008, Day 6

Our hotel is at 1800 meters, and we woke up inside cloudbase this morning. It was not raining, but lots of high clouds stopped any sun from drying out the valley. We went down to takeoff at 10:30 expecting to see few other pilots, but the organization believed it would be taskable, and everyone was set up. We had a chat with some of the pilots, and went back and got our gliders and harnesses in the very unlikely event it would clear up, but we left the gliders on the car.

Waiting at takeoff reminded me of Bassano this year, but at least we could buy hot Goulash soup and hot chocolate at the cafe. At 14:30 I gave up and went back to the hotel for a hot shower, while the rest of the guys waited until it started raining 30 minutes later and the organizer finally canceled the day.

Forecast for tomorrow is OK for the morning, but a warmfront will move in early and shut us down around noon, and for the next days.

I’ve updated the video with some more footage I found on my PC of Sindre’s flights. Check it out!

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