39 British pilots were joined by 11 from France, Spain, Germany, Sweden, etc, making up 37 in the flexwing class, seven flying rigid wings and six in the sports classes. From the start Meethead Claudia Mejia proved to be efficient and effective, with a great personality and able to keep the pilots – even the vocal ones! – in check.
Day 1. After a bit of a wait to see how things panned out it was decided to set the sports class off on a task in the valley with some ridge racing. It quickly became apparent that going one way was pretty easy but going the other was not so good! No one was able to activate the task. The main class canned their day and those that wished had a free fly down to try out the bottom landing field.
Day 2 turned out to be another rest day with various pilots checking out kit and gliders and local attractions.
Day 3. With the sun out, things hotted up and a 125km task was set. Pilots flew north over the ‘Gurp’ before heading out into the Tremp valley, then a bit of ridge racing and flatland flying before heading to a very nice goal field by a lake. 11 flexies made goal, Carl Wallbank winning the day closely
followed by up-and-coming Ollie Chitty. They were joined in goal by three rigids, Andy Hollidge leading Mike Armstrong in. Those skilful enough to make goal were rewarded with the chance of a swim to cool off … some earlier than others! The sports class was set a 42km task, Walentin Teraud of Russia winning the day on 36km and with Tony Moore second on 26km.
Day 4. A good forecast saw the main task head east and across the river before again dropping back into the Tremp valley. From there they headed east again to Organya before turning west for a dog-leg into the goal field. The lead gaggle had an interesting time on the ‘ridge that you can never go down on’, some going down and some squeaking out with butt-cheeks clenched. The second wave spotted the problem and slowed up, closing the rankings at the top to make things more interesting for the days to come. Quote of the day: ‘I thought it was impossible to go down here?’ – and he’s a local! Shedsy
(Dave Shields) arrived in goal and had problems landing, resulting in a heavy impact and a helicopter trip to hospital. Carl won the day again for the flexies with eight others in goal; Andy led Mike into goal again for the rigids, with two others following them in. The sports class had a 25km task with Walentin again winning the day with 20km and Tony second on 17km.
Day 5. Another trip to the east before racing back along the ridge to a turnpoint at the west end, then over the back into the Tremp valley for a race around the flat bits under some very defined clouds, then back to the main goal field. With 23 in goal the 100km task proved very popular and just
what was needed after the previous day’s events. Grant Crossingham won the day by taking a very different route from most; Ben Philpott took an even more extreme route, getting him to goal but giving him the longest flight of the day. For the rigids Andy was first in again, this time with ‘Bomber’ Neil Atkinson on his tail. The sports class were set a 29km task around two turnpoints, and this time Walentin made goal to win the day with Brit Sam
Alum in second place.
Day 6. With a forecast for stronger winds and possible rain, a smaller task of 49km saw pilots head out to the south after a quick sprint along the main ridge to the east, then the west. The southern turnpoint was the monastery where we had had an amazing comp meal – one of the best – the previous. Gordon and Steve Blackler pulled ahead before pushing just too hard and getting stuck, allowing the gaggle to overfly pilots coming in very close together there was quite a spectacle at the field. The forecast rain approached and as lightning flashed on the main ridge the task was stopped. But enough time had passed for it to be valid, and once again Carl won the day for the flexies and Andy for the rigids. The sports class had a short 16km task, and this time Tony was able to beat Walentin into second place with three pilots making goal.
Day 7. Winds were forecast to increase. After much debate a task was set to the east with pilots keen to get going. The first them on the race into goal. With manypart was good with gliders scooting along in the breeze, but halfway to goal things got trickier. Those down low reported strong winds and turbulent air; the safety committee agreed and the day was stopped. Neil Atkinson was already in goal when he received the news, but insufficient
time had elapsed and the task ended up not valid. Quote of the day: ‘**********!’
And that was that. Overall it was a good competition; well run and with pretty good weather and some excellent flying. Oh yes and the Vultures: just superb and so friendly! Now it’s fiesta time … take your earplugs!
Class 1 (flexwing)
1st Carl Wallbank (Moyes)
2nd Malcolm Brown (Wills Wing)
3rd Grant Crossingham (Moyes)
Class 5 (rigid)
1st Andy Hollidge (AIR Atos)
2nd Mike Armstrong (AIR Atos)
3rd Neil Atkinson (AIR Atos)
1st Walentin Teraud (Aeros)
2nd Antony Moore (Wills Wing)
3rd Keith Diamond (Aeros)
|Top 10 Flexies and Top 3 rigids combined||14.33 KB|