Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Aero-Expo 2010

Booker Gliding Club's presence at Aero-Expo this year was polished and profesional, due to the hard work and dedication of all those involved. Staff and members put in a lot of time and effort to help set up the stands, derigg and move gliders and promote the club during the expo. The gliders were gleaming, and the stands looked better than some of the commercial efforts. The show was quieter than previous years, but the Club attracted a lot of interest from PPL holders attracted by the value and challenge of gliding.

The outside venue

Richard going for the hard sell

Chris: Stand designer, builder and salesman exraordinaire.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Postcard from Thame

Many thanks to the Upward Bound Trust for making us so welcome and also putting up with us for the weekend! Well done Doug and crew for keeping us flying over Aero Expo.

Friday, 25 June 2010

3 X 500km at Chiltern Park

Nils Wedi, first 500km.

Booker had an away day at Chiltern park and Nils, Shack and Denis all flew 500km. Nils completed his first 500km for his Diamond, hence the big smile. Shack flew his task the opposite way round because although we gave him a task sheet we forgot to mention that we had changed direction. He turned it to his advantage and came first on the Ladder scores.
Our thanks to Denis Pearson and Chiltern Airsports for inviting us. Thanks to Phil the tuggy who braved the crowded skies over Aero-Expo to come and launch us. Many thanks to the dedicated band of Club members who stayed behind at Booker to man the Club stand at Expo. It must have been very frustrating trying to explain gliding to Joe public whilst looking at the sky and thinking I would rather be up there.

Derrigging at the end of a great day.

Booker goes to the Alps

For those of you, like me, who have not noticed, there is a link to details of adventures in the French Alps at 'Serres Trip' at the right of the screen. Fantastic pics, looks like a great trip.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Flying at Thame and Chiltern Park during AeroExpo

Every thing is set to be able to fly at Chiltern Park tomorrow (see Denis' post below) and at Thame on Saturday and Sunday. There are already 6 Booker Gliders over at Thame, tugs and instructors (where required) will be there ready to launch by 09:00 on Saturday.

The weather looks set to be good with good forecasts from our full time amateur and professional weather men - Nils and Jim.

Chiltern Park

View Larger Map

We will be launching from Chiltern Park on Friday morning. The tug is flying over from Booker, it will launch the gliders and then return to Booker. Phone me if you are likely to want a tow. Nils and I will be there from 0915. Post code OX106AS
Denis 07831667863

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

The Longest Day

The Longest day and my longest flight. 760km at 87kph. Jim said it should work and he was right. Luckily turning TUX rather than GAI reduced my exposure to the poor conditions north of Newark.

The distinctive red brick center of Newark

Running at 80 kts in to TUX with what look like good conditions ahead

TUX from the north having flown on under a Cu that doesn't work; got down to 1500 asl heading south after this (maybe 80kts was a bit too fast?)

Hands up those who remember TP photos as evidence. Andover, but maybe not in sector.

Running in to BOT at 80 Kts under a dying sky; this time down to 2500 asl southbound at Melton Mowbray before finding a climb (maybe still too fast?)

Turning BOT

Finish Line Observers?

Good Finish

The Team

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

750 Day

Denis and I set off on slightly different 750 attempts yesterday. Sorry no pictures, maybe Denis has some. I set B04 GAI AND MET BOO and started before the cu. The first 25k took 1 hr!! Denis set BO2 TUX AND BOT BOO and set off 30 mins later and soon caught me up.

Conditions improved as we went North and by Northampton were stonking. Over HUS in 6kt thermals and 4500ft cloudbase to see fifty gliders on the ground..waiting? The air turned moist at Newark and Denis made the most of his decision to turn TUX and head South. I still had 25k to go and struggled.

By Bevoir the conditions improved again and I romped down to Newbury where the air went moist again and I slowed right down around AND. I guess by now Denis was going North again. I decided to call it a day as it was now nearly 5pm and I had 250 to go.

Denis (the grinder) Campbell plugged on and returned to BOO victorious as we supped ale in The Pad. Well done Denis, you proved my forecast right!


Saturday, 19 June 2010

Competition Success at Little Gransden

Booker Cadet Will Hilton achieves success at the British Aerobatic Association Loop Beginners Day Event at Little Gransden.

Will achieved his first place against a competition field of 21 contestants flying a variety of aerobatic planes such as Pitts', Extras and Slingsby T67's. Will has been coached by Alan Cassidy who flew with him as safety pilot in the Pitts S2A as Will has still to gain his PPL having only just turned 16.
Competition Director David Jenkins commented on the standard of flying that had been very high with 9 pilots achieving over 70% in their scores.

The prizes were handed out by Mark Jefferies (multiple time British champion) who also entertained the contestants to some stunning flying in his Extra 330SC.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Gliding continues at Booker unabated despite a contingent of members flying down in the Alpes and the Marketing team promoting the clubs activities at the John Lewis Partnership Summer Fair.
The soaring day commenced with the healthy roar of a Spitfire flying off for a day of displays - its interesting how the sound of a Merlin can bring people out of the various club houses across the airfiled, long may it last.

A grid was set and Rob, Simon, Phil and Richard set off on various tasks (with a few others later in the afternoon). Phil created an interesting logistics challenge when he landed FZA out which meant waiting for HNK to come back from the JLP summer fair and be rigged so the trailer could be used to retrieve him - all done in good humor and a credit to Steve who ran the airfield faultlessly for the day.

The day went on late into the evening waiting for David Hamilton to finally land at nearly 7pm - he wasn't going to miss a moments soaring.

Richard Crockett flying his immaculate Nimbus 2 over Booker

Booker goes to the Fair

Today we went across the M40 to the John Lewis Partnership Summer Fair where Junior HNK attracted plenty of interest.

We were under the circuit for 24 so we saw plenty of gliders and tugs passing overhead on what looked like a very nice day. Our visitors were particularly interested in the weekday evening Trial Lessons at £55, and a few were interested in longer courses, so we hope to see some of them at the launch point soon. Many thanks to David, Richard and Robert for helping out.

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Booker Regionals Prizegiving

Despite everyone's best efforts we were not able to get a task out of today. The final placings were:

First place Tim Scott and Jon Gatfield in team Z3 and T6

Second place Jim White in J1M

Third place Wayne Aspland in 325

Many thanks to everyone who helped make it such a fun competition

Saturday, 5 June 2010

The Forlorn Hope

Hoping for Day5 at the Booker Regionals; the grid formed but it was a Forlorn Hope: a better day for a barbeque.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Booker Regionals Day 3

A lovely sunny day, but an absence of cloud meant a task in the blue. A tricky day!

Waiting to launch

Boris the tug

Field Marshall Julian