Sunday, 29 July 2018

Regionals round up

What a week it's been! Six contest days with two 300k tasks on consecutive days. We had a go on Day 7 but the weather went downhill and the Director scrubbed 2 minutes before the start gate opened as gliders sank towards relights and the sky darkened. Pilots were glad to derig before the rain. Saturday was very breezy so although a task was set it was scrubbed as it became clear that it wouldn't be practicable. Nils the Met Man had already spotted this and booked a holiday in Italy. The day ended with an excellent BBQ organised by the Director, plus prize giving.

Congratulations to the top three..........

Denis Campbell - the cup already has his name on it, lots of times

Jim White, who tried very hard to wrest first place from Denis
Speedy John Otty with his 3rd place prizes
.....and congratulations to all the other competitors for making it a safe and fun comp.

Many thanks to all the people who made the comp a success.......


Richard - Director, BBQ chef and occasional tug pilot
Nils the Met Man
Pete the Scorer

Bob the Grid Marshal

Maddi and her team of cadets

Jim and the other tuggies - Bob and Rob

George for flying the Duo with club members
Bob for Control, IT and lots of other stuff, including taking most of the pics

Thursday, 26 July 2018

Regionals Day 6

The forecast today was a hard one as the arrival of rain and sparky stuff was difficult to predict. Eventually a task round Calvert Jct - Oxford South and Brill was set. While we waited for cu to develop, Control's clock said it was 33.8degC so shade was at a premium.

Control, Director, assorted pilots and a couple of wilting cadets

Bob the Grid Marshal taking a break

That white stuff behind Nils is altocu, not much use for XC
Nils the Met Man finally managed to magic up some cu and the grid launched. Control barely managed to get back to its gazebo before Denis was back, with John and Jim hot on his heels.

The forecast looks uncertain for Friday but we will do our best to get a task out of it.

Wednesday, 25 July 2018

Regionals Days 3, 4 and 5

The competitors have been having a blast in these amazing conditions. Day 3 and Day 4 saw them nipping round 300k tasks , today's task was slightly shorter. George Darby flew 315 on the 300k tasks with club members who are just starting to fly cross country, giving them valuable experience on how it's done. Today he flew 318, the fixed wheel Pegasus, and did extremely well, beating a glider with much bigger wings and higher performance. It just shows how a handicapped distance task levels the field. The other benefit of the task format is that we can tell (unofficially) who the winner is from the task times on Control's log sheet, without having to wait for the Scorer to perform his arcane ritual with the traditional scoring system. Of course the Scorer has to pore over the traces but usually he agrees with Control.

Denis is still in the lead overall, with Jim White and John Otty close on his heels. There is more good weather forecast, apart from Friday when it might actually rain, so there is still all to play for.

Here are some pics of finshes

Nils and his LS4 with a Red Kite

Johns's ASG29

Nick in his Libelle

Denis in his Ventus
Control was much more comfortable today having been offered a very nice gazebo by Steve Gaze. Here are a couple of cadets exercising their engineering skills.

The Gaze Gazebo

Sunday, 22 July 2018

Booker Regionals Day 2

It was a late start today as we had to wait for a stubborn layer of cloud to go somewhere else, but the grid finally got going after lunch. The task was 162k around Hurstbourne Tarrant and Brill, with the usual sneaky diversion round Huntercombe and Rockwell End at the finish. It was a bit of a tricky start with a few relights but it was a close race. Denis won again with Nils and Geoff on his heels

Here comes Denis

Jim took a relaxed attitude to launching but his competitive spirit became apparent later in the day.

On the grid

Saturday, 21 July 2018

Booker Regionals Day 1 - off to a flying start

Nils the Met Man said today's weather was 'interesting', which is always a bit of a worry, but he managed to find a bit of the country to fly in, a task of 181k up to Buckingham, down to Oxford services and back to Stony Stratford. All the pilots got round, with Denis 370 romping home in just under 2 hours, closely follwed by Jim J1M who had to do it the old-fashioned way when his flight computer packed up part way round. Everyone seemed to have had a good time, tomorrow we do it all over again.


Day winner Denis

Denis and Jim exchanging notes just after landing


Nils the Met Man

Director Richard, 787 Captain Jan, Grid Marshal Bob, Chairman William and Tug Pilot Jim

Thursday, 19 July 2018

V66 syndicate goes to Thame and the Lunak catches fire


Nice day out with strong and tight thermals but big areas of sink in-between. V66 syndicate of Jim and Bob went to Thame and the Lunak caused a bit of a stir with the tower who thought it was on fire (but always grateful for their help/concern) when his smoke system was still going after he landed.




Sunday, 15 July 2018

Geoff's big adventure

What a fantastic day's gliding, and congratulations to Geoff Lyons on completing his first 750. People were glued to Spot the Glider as far away as Poland watching the final turn round Wisbech and the long trip back to Booker, especially the very marginal final glide from somewhere north of Milton Keynes. Those in the clubhouse rushed out in time to see him sneak in over the NE boundary and land straight in.

10 hours flying and all we could find him was a Diet Coke

Looking surprisingly cool after such a long flight

And let's not forget John Otty who completed his first 500 last weekend for Diamond Distance, we have only just caught up with him for a photo opp.

Congratulations John

Thursday, 12 July 2018

Just a few trial lessons


After a cancellation earlier in the year due to bad weather, the club has now completed a successful day of flying (on Wednesday) with The Air League. As you will see from the pics, it was a busy day of flying.  One group of 20 + in the morning, a second group of 30+ in the afternoon; have had an introduction to gliding.  These are all youngsters that have, in one way or another, expressed an interest in flying.  This makes them a very important group for the future of gliding.  We expect to see a few of them back in August to complete Gliding scholarships with the club.  
Morning Group


Afternoon group

I built this from my own garden shed you know.

I wonder if he knows i'm listening to Heathrow Approach. 

Saturday, 7 July 2018

New age crop circles

Not sure what has caused these patterns in the fields near Enstone, but they were very clear today.  I'm sure there is probably a simple answer (my favourite theories, pattern of irrigation sprays or site for local fete). I haven't seen anything quite as fancy before.


Friday evening success

After yet another excellent cross country day with temps in the high 20s, Symeon and the Friday Evening Group took over the airfield. It was a perfect evening for soaring and Paul Clarke was delighted to see his young son Stevie go solo.

Stevie looking relaxed after his first solo landing

Proud Paul congratulates his son 

Perfect sunset landing for Stevie