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May 4, 2016

Swaantje !! QSGP in ….Russia!! 50 Years Hahnweide comps!! 24th Klix with another sad accident!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 7:13 pm



We all knew it was going to happen, we knew we could do what ever we wanted to do ,  to keep her alive ……. but,…we could only loose against this form of cancer.
The way she fought it, she dealt with it and she shared it with all her mates, made her extra special.
In Benalla I knew this was our last encounter. As I said before it was a miracle to me that she WAS flying there; so fragile, not eating much and still be able to fly under hot circumstances. I guess she had to do it, as she knew as well that this would be her last competition.But still……the determination struck me.What a trooper !!
She loved competition soaring, was a member of the German female  team and nearly won the WWGC in France ,when her brakes would have not caused her problems.
She loved Australia .
One of her Aussie mates [ Baldrik Hovood] published this picture from the sculpture at Benalla. I share it too as this is just a beautiful tribute to her.
Farewell Swaantje you can lay your head to rest now, too early , …..but life is not always kind. You will be sadly missed by many!



Hahnweide 2016.

One of the comps Swaantje might have flown,  would have been  the 50 thiest edition of the HAHNWEIDE competition at Kirchheim Teck, HOME OF SCHEMPP-HIRTH.
They started last Friday with a practice day, with  117 competitors in 4 classes;  shared over standard, 15 m,. 18 m., open class and 2-seaters. Unfortunately the weather was not always kind during the first days . The first 2 days  for open and 2 seater class had to be cancelled.
Till now they flew in the other 3 classes 2 out of 5 days.BUT today seems to be  GOOD!!!!!

That Friday,as it was so close by anyhow, former world champion Bert Schmelzer jr, flew the latest “ship”  from Schempp-Hirth the Ventus 3 and straight away made the longest flight till now in it;700 km. and with a speed 126 km./h.
great practice, next day he flew for the comps his ASG 29 E again.
In his OLC comment he praised the new glider; ”

—“Thank you for the opportunity to fly this amazing glider.
During the first 10 seconds I already felt at home in the well designed cockpit.
Thermalling is easier than ever before and cruising underneath strong energy lines is a shear joy with this agile racing machine.
Congratulations with your new flagship.—“

Patrick Puskeiler started the comps in the ARCUS T with a first flight for the season and straight away an unforgettable one flying over the Jura area, over the Alps , the Vogesen, Schwarzwald and the Alb. Sightseeing at it’s best !744 km.

Flying day 1 had tasks  between 187 and 250 km.
In St Class Andreas Belz was just ahead of UK pilot Howard Jones; 627 for 622 points, both flying a Discus 2 A. Australian mate Adam Woolley finished on spot 8 in an 15 m. LS 8.
13 From 26  finished. Not all pilots at the field had finished but returned of bad incoming weather.
15 m; the 229 km. were flown by 6 of the 10 pilots in this class.A pity for the girls Katrin [Senne] and Stefanie [Muhl] , they only got  34 and 36  points, whilst the winner  Stefan Lichtmannecker “got” 784.
18 m; Reinhard Schramme is still a pilot to keep an eye on. He won day 1 in the 18 m. Ventus 2CXA. 657 points. French pilot Christophe Abadie was runner up for the day.[ASG 29E/18m.] 12 From 36 finished.

Flying day 2 on Sunday May 1; ” labor-day”. With a morning still grey and wet, but hope for better circumstances.
“NO LABOR ” for the pilots as in flying,  as the day was cancelled for all classes.

Flying day 2 on Monday May 2. AND,..the first flying day for open and 2-seaters and WHAT day; 533 km. and 394 km.
And not bad either; 390, 394 and 490 km. for st.,  15 m. and 18 m.
14 from 15 in open managed to fly the long distance. Best speed was 114 km./ a Nimbus 4 M.
23 teams started for the 349 km. and finished. GOOD! Best speed 121 km./h in the ARCUS T.

Yesterday was cancelled for all classes but the forecast was good for the next day.

For today the message after briefing was; “Good morning! Briefing is over. We are expecting a fantastic flying day with lifts between 2.5 – 3.4 m/s. Cloudbase over the Alb up to 2400m.” 



Another top competition at the same time flown from Klix, the 24th edition with a fabulous first day last Friday; cloud-streets over 500 km.
First launches straight at 12 last Friday and within an hour all pilots  in 4 classes were airborne.
433 km. on this first day for the 26 pilots in open class and a Dutch winner Hadriaan van Nes in his 18 m. JS 1.
In St class 33 competitors and a great first day for the LS 8’s; 1-5 for LS 8 !
Club with 30 pilots had a 213 km. task and Sabrina Vogt in the St Libelle won the day.
22 In the 2-seater class and best for the day; a Polish ARCUS M.

Day 2; Last April day.Saturday with booming conditions and 470 for the open class pilots. Booming turned out not too booming and only 7 from 22 finished. Among them 2 Dutch pilots Hadriaan and Tim Kuijpers former JWGC Champion.
339 for standard and again good places for Dutch pilots. Most of them don’t fly there for the first time. Sjaak Selen was the daily winner and Tims mother Frouwke was one of the finishers. Good on her, as only 17 from 33 finished!!
In club 26 from 30 finished so a good day for all of them.
415 km. for the 2 seaters was in the end TOO much. Only 6 from 24 made it home.

Sunday May 1;day 3. In 1 hour and 14 minutes all 116 gliders were up in the air.
Open class; Helge Liebertz in the ASH 25 with 2 Dutch pilots as runner up; Robert Werts on spot 2 in the Nimbus 3D and Hadriaan who had a good day again on spot 4 in the JS 1. A 2.30 AAT was set.
Standard had a 3.30 AAT and best distance combined with time was flown in an LS 8;319 km. in 3.36.
3 Hour AAT in club and Sabrina in the St Libelle had the best score ;1000 points for 268 km. in time 3.26.
2 Hour AAT for the 2 seaters and 600 points for the ARCUS M with call sign WK.

Monday May 2; Day 4….another flying day !!! Great weather there in good old Klix.
AAT’s from 2.30, 3 and 3.30 were set. The 3.30 was for the 2 seaters and nearly all finished.

Yesterday, day 5, another good soaring day.3.30 in open class, 2.30 in Standard and club and 3 for the 2 seaters.

Today is neutralized as yesterday during landing an accident happened with one of the female pilots. Sadly enough she did not survive it. TRAGIC. As I read, only 21 years old.
TOO many incidents AND EVEN WORSE accidents this season and it only just begun !!!!!




Nice to see a QSGP flown from the new airfield at Usman in Russia. Even nicer to see that all pilots fly a JANTAR.
” Just ” a Jantar or a St Jantar or St. Jantar 2 or 3.
The PR machine started straight away with the introduction of the pilots and certainly toppers like many-times-world- champion Sebastian are fabulous ” PR TOOLS.”

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Sebastian inside with Sergey Klyuev and outside with press and TV, ….and not yet the best weather.

Among the pilots who started on May 1 as did Sebastian, other names as Petr Krejcirik and Petr Panek from Czech Rep and Jakub Pulawski from Poland.
The only participating Russian  pilot I know is Dmitriy Timoshenko.
Day 1 was a day with several penalty points and Sebastian who won , but no points were given.
The next day was cancelled.
Day 2 yesterday was again for Sebastian but this time with 10 points. Petr was runner up with 8 points.


The first 10 points in the pocket for Sebastian.
As shared by the organizers.


Gauteng Regionals.


Oscar in the new ASG 32 MI with    Martin Attwell.
Shared by Jason Adriaan.

Day 4 was on and a small, just under 200 km. task was set in open class. Not many points to gain but still 420 for a nice speed by John [Coutts] of 127 km./h.
Day 5 was better . 376.76 was set . After 4 days John [ JS 1] and Oscar top the list with a marge of less than 150 points, so everything was possible.
All 8 pilots in open started and finished and best was Mike Barenbrug in the 18 m. Ventus 2CM; 607 points for a speed of 125.65 km./h.
Oscar was 2d and John 3d. He still leads the overall scores with 99 points now on Oscar.
Day 6 was for John and s the last day was cancelled the pilots knew who were the winners of this regional competition; John Coutts in open , Wayne Schmidt in 15 m., and Mark Howse in club.


OLC flights.

Pretty special the flight in Japan [Kakuda] from Takeshi Saito on the last day of April; 909 km. in a Discus BT. Have a look at his track, flying over the island with a sea to the left and right.
One day earlier a few 1000 k’s in Germany, one of them a 1000km FAI triangle; good on Alexander Mueller in the EB 29, flying from Bayreuth.
Swiss pilot Daniel Rossier flew 1.120 from Yverdon in Switzerland in the ASH 31/21 m.
May 1; great weather in Finland and 620 km. in an ASW 20 by Kristian Roine.
May 2; Great weather over Holland with 500 km. flights!
May 3; 1000 km. from Locarno by Swiss junior Davide in the St Cirrus. “763 km 3 TP flight declared for the badge
Also in Holland TOP weather with a 726 in a St Cirrus by runner up at the last JWGC Robin Smit.
Even 939 km. was possible yesterday from Holland, after WORK so a relative late styart at 12by Mark Leeuwenburg . As Mark said; ” Never had such a day in Holland” . He even claims that 1100 would have been possible.
For some pilots in Holland it was a first 300,500 and 600 km.!!!


Still not well. Sorry !

Cheers Ritz

April 27, 2016

Prievidza,…. very sad in the end! Another QSGP finished !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:56 pm


When I left you, there was only 1 more day to go, but we still have to look at Wednesday soaring day 9 with long distances. Here we go;
At the grid they changed for club into a B task from 300 km. as the 500 km task would lead them into bad weather circumstances over the High Tatra mountains, their first TP.
The other classes still got 553 and 631 km.
BUT,…..Club was cancelled.
For 15 m. it was a STRUGGLE 553 is far, 631 even further but with better gliders they were supposed to get farther.
BUT THEN …. the day was stopped/neutralized ..…..

AS there was the sad message/official report from the director:”On Slovakian – Poland border one glider fell down into the forest. Based on reported SAR it was told that the pilot is dead. We immediately announced to all participants immediate landing. There would be no mass crash,as reported by the media. All other competitors have returned to the airport in Prievidza or safely landed at other airports or on the ground.”
” Commemorative farewell to the deceased racer Martin Mężyk will be tomorrow morning at the briefing at 10:00. This is followed by the declaration of the results. Organizers express sincere condolences …”

Sad very sad…..another accident….. TOO many in a TOO short time.Some pilots only heard it when they were in radio contact again after a long flight. Sebastian flew 552 km. not knowing that his Polish mate had died during his flight in the same combi class.On flying day 6, Sebastian and Marcin were even 1 and 2!!!!!
R.I.P Marcin and condolences to the many Polish pilots flying from Prievidza and all other mates involved in this competition.Not to forget the organizer,s also for them these are tough moments, I know all about that.

The last day was cancelled.When you are interested in the final scores you can find them on ; www;





Racing the mountains around La Cerdanya.
Courtesy Philippe De Pechy.

Day 4 turned out to be a tricky day and the race was postponed to 14.30. They started at 15.20.
In the end the winner, Christophe Ruche flew the set task from 176 km.  with an average speed of 198 km./h.
Louis flew 187.2 km./h and Philippe 174.2 km./h.What do you want more?
Philippe has not only time to race the mountains , but also to make another interesting picture from 6 balloons.


Courtesy Philippe.

Day 5 ; Rain in Spain.


Courtesy Philippe.

Day 6;Ready to go!! With the morning news:”weather clearing for a possible race today starting at 14.00 with low cloudbase and weak thermals it should be very exciting.”
So race 5 was on and……Won by “racer”  Mike Young from the UK  ;9 points for him, though he did not round the last TP correctly. He accepted a 5 min. penalty, which was 300 s.but still remained the leader for the day. [a total of 24 p after 5 races]
Christophe was runner up [33 p] and Louis 3d.[39 p]

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Courtesy Philippe de Pechy.

Race 6 never happened unfortunately:” The last day is cancelled because of Thunderstorms growing on the first track. Congratulations to Louis Bouderlique a worthy winner.”
I can only agree.


From l to r. the 3 French Musketeers; Christophe, Louis and Philippe.
Courtesy Philippe.

By the way the Qualifying GRAND PRIX from France will be in June at Rennes. As far as I know the 2 winning participants Louis and Christophe will fly there as well.

Before that the “circus ” goes to Russia, with Jantar’s only [May 1-8 at Usman] and Italy [May 14-21 at Varese] .


Courtesy Laurent Couture


The CAE OPEN BENELUX Comps 2016.

This contest will be flown between Mai 18 and 27 and till May 10 you can enter. At this stage 53 pilots have entered; 11 in 15 m./standard, 13 in club class , 12 in open and 17 in 18 m. class.


In between the Dutch pilots flew a ONE-DAY-COMPETITION in Holland from Terlet.; organized by the Gelderse for that reason called  The Gelderse-one-day-competition.
The weather , last Saturday, looked and was pretty miserable at times, cold, {minus 10 in the cockpit}hail , a bit of sun as well but also unstable and  great clouds…… the organizers ” FOUND A WINDOW” ,…..SO THEY flew. And good they did as one day later there was PURE snow in the East of Holland, not in the air but at the ground causing several incidents and accidents on the road.
4 Classes,.. 44 pilots ….so for this weather still enough die-hards. And what’s more,…they had GREAT fun!!!!


Picture courtesy Ronald Stellaard.

In club class 138.44 km. was set and 8 pilots were ready to try. They did well!!! 5 Finished and the winner was  Frank Hiemstra with 87 km./h in the St Cirrus. Runners up were Nick and Robin who participated earlier in the year in Narromine at the JWGC.
In the combi class 6 pilots started for 154 km. and 4 finished; Winner Jeroen Verkuijl in an LS 6 with a good speed; 103.59 km./h. The runner up in LS 8 had 97.48 km./h.
Open class had 16 on the list but 12 started and flew the task from 193 km.and 9 finished. Winner; Peter Millenaar in the ASG 29 with a speed of 117 km ./h. Ronald Termaat was on spot 3 in the JS 1-C/21m.
12 Teams for the 2-seater class and 8 finished their 159 km. task. Jasper Keuper and Jan Willem van Doorn in the Duo Discus flew remarkable faster than another duo Discus who was runner up;113.83 km./h. for 94.21 km./h.

All in all a nice day, one of the first of the many competitions in Holland this year. Some impressions as always great, from top photographer Willemijn.


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finally a picture of a GP glider. They were supposed to fly at the first 13.5 WGC , but everybody had to wait a bit longer. Nice result here at the picture by Sebastian from the glider at the big AERO in Friedrichshafen.


Roomy cockpit.
Courtesy Sebastian Kawa.

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In Slovakia at Martin Glider Airport,  FATRAGLIDE 16 , started last Saturday and they continue till May 4. They do have some problems with the cold and bad weather in parts of Europe. No flying till yesterday. A 2 hour AAT was set in club class and 2.30 for the combi class.
3 From 7 finished in the combi class with the SHARK on spot 1.[206.63 km. in 2.14]
In club the St Cirrus did a great job again; 141.37 km. in 1.56.


Club class NATIONALS in Italy.

The Italian Club Class Glider Pilots gathered at the airport of Alzate Brianza, to find out who will be the new 2016 National Champion. For me all new names from the 8 Italian pilots and 1 Swiss pilot with a very Italian name; junior Davide Giovanelli. I wrote about him not so long ago after he added a very nice flight on the OLC. He is a member of the Swiss Junior team.
They started last Friday with a set task of 208 km. and Davide won day 1.
A non flying day followed and on Sunday they continued with 263 km. won AGAIN by Davide.
Finally a good day of soaring with a 3 hour AAT on Monday. Italian pilot Franco Poletti won the first 1000 points during this competition in the Discus B wl; 362.24 km. in time 3.48. Other pilots flying that day from Alzate flew up to 781 km. in a Ventus 2cxa, flying up N to the mountains.
No task yesterday.



From Orient the Gauteng Regionals were flown starting last Sunday in 3 classes.
Open class has 7 pilots among them Oscar [Goudriaan] and John [Coutts]. They got on their first day a set task from 294 km. and  the weather was ” challenging”,all 7 went on track, but nobody finished .
Oscar flies the new toy the ASG 32.
In 15 m. class 8 participants among them husband and wife  Maneste and Wayne Schmidt.
Dick Bradley flies HC in an ASH 25.
They set on day 1, 203 km. for 2 ASW 27 ‘s , 1 Ventus and 5 ASW 20’s.In the end the day was cancelled also for club with 3 pilots.
Today they have a set task from 261 km. in open, 205 in 15 m. and 145 for club.


Some great OLC flights last week;
Last Sunday, one from Italy Aosta, by Alessandro Busca in an ASW 24; 1.020 km !!!!
And 2 from Switzerland, Locarno; 2x just over 1000 km by Bert Schmelzer jr [ASG 29/18m] and Rainer Cronjager.[ASH 31 MI/21m]
One later on Monday an ITALIAN WAVE- day with 5 x a 1000 plus, though Austria Lienz,  was good as well with 1.126 in the Antares.
1.211 km. for Giorgio Galetto from Trento in the Ventus 2 cxa and from Calcinate Alberto[Sironi], Davide [Schiavotto] and Peter [Hartmann] each with an over -1000 km.- flight.
Yesterday was pretty normal again with over 500 k-flights in the UK !!!COLD though….!!!!!!

Pneumonia is back in full action. Extra heavy antibiotic now! Hope it helps this time.
A month ago ,a lower dose did n’t do the job.Never had pneumonia now 2 times in 2 months.
Very tired, so not too much news!!!!!
Kingsday in Holland. I was supposed to sell “things”  at the free market with my grand children. Looking to the TV in bed now!!
Cheers Ritz

April 20, 2016

Prievidza ; today task 9 with 500 up to 631 km.! QSGP flown at LA CERDANYA. Fabulous weather over Holland !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:21 pm


With the words ” The essence of happiness, my fave photograph of you ” Vivienne Drew from Benalla supported Swaantje in her battle against cancer.
Many, many support her on FB and I guess she got strength out of that, so we keep going on with SUPPORT.

I caught up with Swaantje last in Australia. First in Narromine. When I saw her ,I was to be honest ,shocked. She was very fragile and had lost a lot of weight and spoke with a very  soft voice. Her face had some kind of “aura” , it was sweet like an angel , her blue eyes, shining as never before and then for the first time I thought this might be her  last visit to Australia. I keep hope like so many other friends.
I wondered how she coped with the 24 hours between Germany and Australia, she only smiled.
She told me she was going to participate in the Benalla pre- worlds. I was more than pleased  that she could fly with somebody in a 2-seater and told her so. NO she said I am flying the ASW20. I doubted if she was able to do that.
AND……. SHE DID. This ” fragile little bird”  flew under hot circumstances the comps. NEVER seen such a fighter. For me that was a miracle and I hope the miracle will continue in a longer life , more visits to Australia. When Kathrin another top female pilot from Germany and good friend, shared the news on FB after visiting her in hospital, that things were not good,her body did not accept the chemo anymore, I was truly sad.
This is the last picture I took from her during the closing-dinner at Benalla .Only 3 months ago.

2016-01-15 11.06.51

Only 3 months ago, after she flew the Pre Worlds !!!
With her crew to the r. Swaantje even organized a flight for her crew.

BUT THEN…..Last weekend her friends took her out from hospital straight to an airfield for a flight in a 2-seater;TEARS. It must have done her so good. She was worn out though but must have felt the power of friendship.
Latest news;   she started chemo again and fights on. Catherine Conway [to the left on the first picture] arrived from Australia and so did Kerrie Claffey, yes down-under-friends caught up with her as well.

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More sad news as our former Sportavia secretary, tuggy and glider pilot , Michelle Lappin , mother of 3 and wife from Gerard died of lymphoma after a battle of 18 months.  When I met her first, she was one of those young “dogs”, a real cool chick,  running through life with pleasure. She was already with Sportavia ,when we arrived there for the first time in the eighties. Our son Dennis joined her as a tuggy for a season “to make hours ”  in 1987/1988 [ he died on January 3 1988].
She combined a job as secretary,[she knew all the guests every year again, as did Maureen our other secretary, who died already a couple of years ago] and tow pilot and when necessary she hopped in the back of a Scout to retrieve a glider  from a paddock.The pilot then took over the back seat in the Scout and she brought the glider home.
When we were involved she stayed for a short time and did all jobs she used to do.
She left Tocumwal somewhere in 2002 and her husband Gerard and she started their own business Aereal Extras,  somewhere at Latrobe Valley. Flying was in her blood. She was still young , only 49 and her youngest son [I met him only once] is 12 years old. Daughter Chloe and son Ben are in their twenties.I know them as little children ,nicely strapped in, flying in the backseat of their power plane with mum. Even their doggy flew sometimes with her. I wish the family well!!!!!


Michelle Lappin ….RIP.



When I “left”  you the pilots started on flying day 3 and that turned out to be a good one. A 1000 points -day and more finishers than out-landers on this day with a 3 hour AAT in each class.
Day 3 in club;
Fabian Peitz from Germany won the very first 1000 points in this class. 272 km. in 3 hours a the dot in his St Libelle!!
He is not only busy with great pictures for the blog Segelflug Hoch Zwei but flies well too as we knew already from his early junior time. Also his mate Dennis shares in good flying, news and pictures.
49 From 57 finished. 2 German pilots [Fabian and Dennis] in St Libelle in the top on spot 1 and 3. In between Boris [Zors] in the St Cirrus.
Day 3 in 15 m;
1000 points for Lithuanian pilot Arturas flying an LS 6!!He flew 323 km. in 2.57. He was “followed” by 3 Czech pilots , Pavel, Miloslav and Jana. For them 999 points and 960.37 From 42 finished!!
Day 3 in the combi class;
368 km. in 3.59 was good for 1000 points in this class and the one winning them was Karol Staryszak from Poland followed by Sebastian 993 points. Sebastian “lost”  on handicap, the JS1 [ 121.1] against the ASG 29 /18 m.[120.9]
All 28 starters FINISHED, 2 did not fly!!!!

Pilots were happy with the day though for some specially the last part was difficult “it was not easy and specially on the last part of the track it was difficult to find  lift.” 

They expected a front to pass by so no flying on April 14.


Some of the pictures shared by Segelflug Hoch Zwei [Fabian and Dennis] on April 13.

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Flying day 4; a non-ballast-day.
With another 3 hour AAT for CLUB  and 208 km. in 3.15 for the Ukraine winner Darius;756 points for him.
From 57 a group of 21 managed to finish.
Fabian, with call sign FH just made it. Still 629 points for him.
So off they went and some came back. Already before the start they knew from the meteo and saw from the field a thick shield of clouds approaching from the SW. A good beginning of the day, less good end for a lot.

31    59

Pictures shared by the organizers on

In 15 m. class a 3 hour AAT was set as well and won by Maros Divok who flew 237 km. in in 2.57. ONLY 8 from 42 finished.
In the combi class Pavol Cerny [18 m. Ventus 2CX] won and Sebastian [JS 1 b/18 m.] was runner up. Both pilots were the only ones flying over 100 km./h. flying just under and over 230 km. 21 From 28 returned home.

Flying day 5;with  ….3 hour AAT’s and ……..water allowed again and 2 fabulous pictures shared by  Sebastian from his mates Karol and Adam close to Priviedza.



Pictures[ by Sebastian] with the WOW factor.

Back to flying day 5 , sorry, my attention was diverted by the awesome pictures.
Club had a 3 hour AAT as the other 2 classes and with 39 from 54 finishing it was a better though still a tough day. In the morning they heard :
There are several nice cumulus clouds over Bojnice already, but they are not very high. Exactly as was predicted by our meteorologist Mr. András Gyöngyösi. He is not expecting very high cloud bases today. Only around 1700m MSL on north and 1500m MSL south of Slovakia. So it seems that there will be another hard task for our competitors. Good luck and good lifts to everyone!”
2 St Jantar’s in the top with a Polish and a Lithuanian pilot.
In 15 m. the LS 6 was the best with Polish pilot Piotr Jarysz. 1000 points for a nice distance of 316 km. in 3.04. The runner up “only” had 304 km. in 3.02.[LS 8A] 38 from 42 finished!!
In the combi class only one out landing and 1000 points for Sebastian, what a pity about the invalid start on day 2!

Flying day 6;
Club was cancelled due to too strong wind.
211 km. for 15 m.was set and good to see,….the Duodiscus won the day with one of the pilots Radek Krejcirik from the Czech Rep. Not JUST a pilot,…… a good one!
549 points for a day better finishing than starting,….with good clouds.
In the combi class Sebastain AGAIN was the best.He flew together with Polish mate Marcin, starting together and nearly finishing together; 392 for 387 points.Only one pilot did not make it home.

After 6 days the overall scores are as follows;
club ;Tim from the UK, with 3.148, Petr from Czech Rep. with 3.101 and Kestutis from Ukraine with 3.046, they are the only ones in the 3000 marge.
15 m; Pawel, Pavel and Pjotr are over the 4000 marge with 4.091, 4.030 and 4.018. Excitement enough. 2 Polish and one Czech pilot.
combi; Polish pilot Karol[ASG 29 /18m]  is the only one in the 4000 marge with 4.140 points, Polish pilot Adam [JS 1C /21 m.] has 3.737 points and Romanian pilots Kessler and Jurca in the ARCUS T have 3.711.
After a zero points day Sebastian “fought”  himself to spot 4 Good on him; 3.671 followed by another Polish mate Marcin with 3.662 points.


As shared by the organizers.

Flying day 7; with set tasks up to 248 km. in 15 m. and the rest had a bit shorter.On a day in the morning NOBODY believed it could be a flying day, surprise, surprise. In the end the tasks were changed in each class to a 2 hour AAT AND they flew.
” Now we can see that Andráš really has the weather under control! Exactly as he told, the frontal clouds are disappearing, here comes the sun and the competition starts exactly at 13:00.”
Till now Sebastian was 4 times 1 and 2 times on spot 2.ONE unlucky day with zero points , but nobody doubts he is the best pilot . After 7 days he moved OVERALL from spot 20 on that “rotten” day to 3 now!!! AMAZING.
30 From 55  finished in Club and best was Boris in the St. Cirrus with 155 km. in 1.59.
In 15 m. some flew over 200 km. A bad day for Miloslav Cink  as he was the first out-lander from 3. One of them virtually out-landed by flying in a restricted area.
In the combi class Sebastian added his 4th win to his impressive list.4 Polish pilots in the overall top 4. They are so good those Polish pilots!!!!

Flying day 8 yesterday and now they got the weather we got here before; tasks OVER 500 km. in each class.
—“Today’s route is among other things also interesting by the fact, that it runs through three states. The first turn point is the town of Glisy in Poland. The second is Lysa Hora in the Czech Republic and then pilots returned back to Slovakia.”
Another preliminary 1000 points for Sebastian flying the set 526 km. in this class with 123 km./h. nearly 8 km. faster than the Romanian pilots in the ARCUS.[116 km./h]who were runner up.
Czech pilot Pavel in his LS 8 won in 15 m.
In club 2 Czech pilots ,Jan and Marek and Tim from the UK, all 3 flying St Cirrus in the top.
All scores from this day preliminary and not all are scored 


9 27

Pictures from flying day 8 as shared by the organizers on

TODAY FLYING DAY 9 ; 500 km. for club, 553 for 15 m. and 631 for combi !!!!! They are first at the grid. First start expected at 10. Briefing was at 9 AM.
Closing ceremony and last flying day tomorrow!!!



www.sgp.aerospain2016 for info


One by one the guests arrived and the early birds straight away started with their practice under good circumstances.Here is the news from last Thursday.
—-“Good morning from La Cerdanya valley!
We wellcome Silverio della Rosa and Jean-François Billy, who have just arrived and are ready to take off!
Expected conditions for today are:
- cloud base 2.700 msl, dry thermals to the east and scatttered cumulus to the west. There are also some cirrus, but moving away
- Westerly Wind 15 knots at 1000 msl and 25-30 knots at 2.600msl, so west wave is possible
- No rain expected.-–“

Sunday April 17th was the first race day of the second Sailplane Grand Prix 2016 in the beautiful valley of Cerdanya, nestled in the eastern Pyrenees. After a quiet sunny morning ,…..but ” by the time launching started we had a westerly wind of more than 20 knots (37kph) and broken cumulus on the mountains. The forecast was for 30kts (54kph) of wind at flying heights, cumulus clouds at around 3000 m. and possibility of over development and showers on the massif.
French Louis Bouderlique coped best with the circumstances to win the 10 points with behind him his mate Christophe Ruche, who gained 8 points . UK pilot Mike Young got the 7 points.
Day 2  showed that “pushers”  are not always winners. From the beginning Mike pushed as he did in the QSGP in France at some days as well. This time it was not good; no lift when necessary. A group went via the W , in the end the best one , another one via the E.
French pilot Philippe de Pechy was the best and “got”  the 10 points followed with-in 8 seconds by Louis.[8 points]


Winners of day 2 as shared by the organizers.
1. Philippe. 2. Louis and 3. Jon Gatfield from the UK.

Day 3 was yesterday was a prey again for Louis [7 points] followed by Swiss pilot Fridolin Hauser [5 ]  and Mike from the UK[4] .
Louis is clearly at the top with 25 points.Philippe and Christophe have both 16 points. So 3 French pilots. Mike and Jon from the UK have 15 and 13.



—-Dennis Tito with Morgan Sandercock in the DG 1000 from Inyokern;1.343 km.SUPER wave up to over 7718 MSL [ 6932 AGL].
—-a declared 500 km. triangle from Locarno [Zwitserland] by Davide Chiovanelli, a member of the Swiss junior team. Total distance 750 in a St . Cirrus.
—-870 km last Sunday [April 17] from Holland [Soesterberg]by Mark Leeuwenburgh on an extremely good but cold spring day. He flew together with his mate Alfred Paul [862 km.] both in ASG 29 E/18 m. ” dealing with ” rain, hail and snow,  but also a terrible good view. They topped the world-wide-OLC -list with their flights.
Our young ones did well too; Runner up in Narromine Robin flew 536 in the S. Cirrus from Deelen and junior Jelmer Vis [St. Cirrus] flew from Deelen as well he flew 559 km. More top junior achievements that day ; Rick Boerma from Hoogeveen ;559 in LS 4 and Narromine pilot Nick Hanenburg 532 km. also in a St. Cirrus. He called it a day to never forget flying mainly over Holland along the IJselmeer up to the Friesland . They followed an “epic convergence-line” up NE first and later direction Wadden Isles. Pretty special indeed, a flight with everything as rain, hail and snow and incredible visibility.
2 St Cirrus-gliders belong to the junior foundation; AG and AU.
Daan Spruyt from Belgium flew 589 km. in an ASW 27.
In the UK great weather too; Dave Masson flew 653 km. in the 18 m. LS 6.
—-Monday was another great day but not everybody had the day off. Jean Luc Colson from Belgium had….. and from St Hubert he flew 689 km. in the ASG 29E/18 m.
And from Malden Frouwkes son Caspar flew in an LS 4 a distance of 502 km.
Yesterday Caspars brother, former Junior World Champion Tim Kuijpers added another 548 km in the ASW 20.A few REALLY good days in Holland.

13043390_1184476854897220_3918836087623747719_n  13001241_1000866483342898_3065556012622991510_n

Holland , Terlet to be correct, as seen last Sunday by Frank Hiemstra and a “superstreet” shared by Robert Jungblut who just turned to be a granddad for the 2d time.


AZ CUP 2016 !

With in the end 131 pilots participating in Prievidza you would think that nearly all competition pilots in Eastern Europe are busy. Not true!
Another 77 flew in 2 classes the AZ CUP 2016 from Zbraslavice in the Czech Republic.Among them Tomas Rendla and Tomas Suchanek.
The first days no tasks could be set. They flew only day till now.A 2 hour AAT. They must be weather-wise just on the wrong spot.
They continue till April 23.


Till the end of this month entrees are accepted for the very first Rayskala Masters 2016 at one of my favorite airfields.
“Räyskälä Masters will be arranged from 11th to 18th of June 2016 in 15 meter Racing class and Open class, Finnish gliding nationals will be arranged at the same time in 15 meter racing class. Finnish national rules, which are very similar to FAI Annex A section 3, will be used. Handicaps will be used in both classes.”

Cheers Ritz,
not to forget that our deceased friend and former WORLD CHAMPION in Hobbs [New Mexico] Kees Musters, would have turned 70 last week. [1946-1987]

April 13, 2016

“Corowa” gliders back in Holland! Prievidza !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:26 pm

The overseas-“Corowa”  gliders are back in Holland and as always the organizers Grietje and Francesco had the lead in how to do things. They are GOOD in that and very experienced. The Dutch Juniors , flying last December in  Narromine, were eager to get their gliders out to fly in the Dutch and European skies, as all other pilots. Several not from Holland as gliders from Finland , Sweden Germany and Italy were in the containers as well. Some participated in the Benalla Pre Worlds.


Grietje and Francesco surrounded by eager pilots to get their gliders back again before the good weather really starts. Many, many gliders……. big job.
All pictures courtesy Dutch Junior Gliding Club.

As you can see on the picture below ,lot’s of gliders back “home”. Upfront ,AG and AU, belong to the Dutch Junior foundation .

12592514_704817366287616_3269415231543629228_n   12936724_704817369620949_6440360614227746946_n

2 Juniors Annemiek and Ronald helping out .


Closing a dream-year for the young ones!!!
As they say; ” The end of an epic adventure”!!!


PRIEVIDZA FCC Gliding 2016 !

Prievidza 4

131 Pilots gathered for the next East European contest. This time in Prievidza to “fight” for  the 9th  Flight Challenge Cup.They fly in 3 classes between April 10 and 21.
59 In club class, very popular class and many from Poland, 42 in 15 m. and  30 in a combi [mixed] -class. Not only East European pilots also from Germany [Fabian Peitz] , the UK  [ Tim Milner ] Austria and France.
Another well oiled competition with experienced organizers as the flight- school Košice and the Aeroklub Prievidza .
As the competition director  Ing. Jozef Horňák said;
” As the founders of one of the biggest competitions we are glad that we managed to organize races, which all participants enjoy and come back to us again.
I am delighted that even young pilots have an opportunity to compare their flying skills with experienced gliders.”

On the site you can find the news from Fabian Peitz, a young German pilot who participates in this competition. He flies the St. Libelle /WL with call sign FH.

No practice-flying on Saturday . RAIN there as well.
My goodness gracious ….rain ,rain and more rain here in Holland and in between a tiny little bit of sun…..between 10 and 12 dgr. C. Not bad though for my newly planted bay- bushes.
So they started last Sunday and  the weather improved on this part of  Europe . But unfortunately not in the East so the official opening was held, the meteo was done, but the message was short …..RAIN and no flying.

Prievidza 3   Prievidza 2

Pretty clear; TOO wet!!!
Pictures shared by the organizers in their gallery

Prievidza 1

On Monday was the first day and though the meteo was still not flash, tasks were set and pilots left , some to finish later in the day, some to find a hopefully not TOO wet field somewhere else.
Start for club class was at 12:42, for the 15 m class at 13:30 and for combined class at 14:13
Flying day 1;
Club class had a 2.30 AAT and best-of-the-day was UK pilot Tim Milner, “our”  former tuggie at Sportavia. [St Cirrus] Good on him!!!
He flew 161 km. in 2.32. From 59 pilots in this class 9 finished. Some flew around after the start and landed again.
For a hard-day-work Tim got 175 points.
In 15 m. the pilots had to fly a 2 hour AAT and Gintas [Ventus 2ax] from Lithuania was the best. He flew 167 km. in 2.02.
18 From 41 finished.
In the combi class not” what else” [George Clooney] but WHO else than Sebastian Kawa won the 2 hour-AAT-day with 190 km. in 2.07 flying a JS 1B/18m.
3 Polish toppers in the top!!!

Flying day 2 :
At 12.30 the sign was there; GO.
For CLUB they had set a 2 hour AAT and 192 km. in a St. Jantar 2 in 2.15 gave the Polish winner, Mikolaj Zdun  615 points. Tim was on spot 8. Polish female pilot Joanna Biedermann flying an LS 4 was on spot 13 and Czech female pilot Hana Treslova was the first on the list of out-landers; spot 37 was hers. 36 From 57 managed to finish.
15 m. had a 2 hour AAT as well; 229 km. was the best result in this class in 2.14. From 42 , 28 pilots finished. Gintas was 4th this time.Young Miroslav Cink, great pilot, shared spot 1 with 695 points.[LS 8A]
In the mixed or combi class a “black”  day for Sebastian as he missed the start; it was not valid. Not like Sebastian! He flies the JS1 with call sign GPS. As he mentioned on FB it was in the morning all to fast and too much so not every instrument was set correct.
The ARCUS M was the winner with 217.87 km. in 2.02 so a nice speed of 106 km./h. A tad faster was the ASG 29E from Polish top pilot  Karol Staryszak with a speed of 109.65. On handicap was he runner up. Roman Mracek was on spot 6.


Yesterday,….shared by Segelflug-Hoch-Zwei. Fabian [St Libelle] was one of the out-landers and on spot 41.

Day 3 today ; 3 hour AAT’s in all classes so better weather there now as well.


Looking at some flights on the OLC!

Australia still has nice soaring weather. Kilometer eater Terry Bellair flew in his 17 m. DG 400 a 300 triangle and a total of 493 km. last Saturday.
That’s from Raywood, his home field ,  in the SW of Australia close to Bendigo.
But the East [Kingaroy] was good as well with flights in an ASW 20 from 485 km.
Europe’ soaring get’s more awake every day and though most longer flights are over  the mountain areas , places as Burg Feuerstein had flights up to 728 km. in an 18 m.  Ventus 2 CM last Friday.
The weekend was just GOOD; 1281 flights on Saturday and 1217 on Sunday.Several nice some [first] flights on Saturday; From St Hubert 582 km.  in the 18 m. ASG 29E and 591 km.  by Jean- Luc Colson]
From Dahlemer Binz 722 in DG 800/18 m.and 935 km. in Nimbus 4 M.
From Useldange in Luxembourg a 729 by kilometer eater Guy Bechthold [Quintus M] and so slowly on all pilots we know fly again.
Also on Saturday ; great flights in Holland….567 km.  in ASG 29 /18m …..596 km. in ASW 22 BLE….496 km. in DG 500.
Sunday was even better!!!!
Sunday was a fabulous day for Klaus [Ohlmann] in the Stemme, flying from La Cerdany in wave to the West to see the Mediterranean Sea and back, passing St Gaudens where Carl Audissou started for his flight in the 18 m. DG 800, to fly to the West as well but not as far as the sea but still  close by;1263 km.
Monday was an Austria-day with  several flights up to 808 km.
Yesterday the weather in Austria was still  GOOD and hopefully that weather moves to Prievidza NOW.
1.065 km. for kilometer-eater Alexander Mueller, flying from Lienz Nicolsdorf flying in the EB 29. Great flights as well by gliders with less wingspan, as the ASH 26E flew 821 km. and the 18 m. DG 800 also over 800 km. Great racing over the ALPS.
“Best” flight , 1.133 km. however yesterday on the OLC was by Klaus Ohlmann and then you know already the Stemme did well again as well as he. From Morgal in Spain he explored this time the Cantabric Pyrenees with Stemme and Mountain-Wave-Project e.V. He flew to Cerdanya and used the engine to cross some stratos field. The full story is on the OLC comment and I copied it for you.
“A fantastic plane, great weather and some long-term dreams…A good mixture..
After a really good day in the French Pyrenees, the rest-day was welcome, but as well used to fly with Motor to Morgal, a nice airfield just south of the Airport Asturias.On the way first notices of wave-activities were made.And today was absolutely fantastic. We could even have an earlier start and fly much more to the west, but once again we had to make a “deicing” in the morning. But the…nice Rotors, beautiful mountains and very cooperating Controllers…thanks a lot to Asturias, Santander,Bilbao und Madrid..and finally Montpellier. Just a pity that there was a huge Stratos field with very low cloud base. I preferred to use the Motor to cross it.Thanks as well to my Russian friend Alexander who shared this new adventure.



Talking about Cerdanya ….they have superb weather at the moment. Hopefully it continues , as in the weekend the Qualifying Sailplane Grand Prix in Spain starts and that goes on till the 23d of April. They fly in 15 m. class and among the pilots Christophe Ruche, Louis Bouderlique, Mike Young, Fridolin Hauser and Philippe de Pechy.
At this stage 15 approved pilots flying ASG 29 [4x] in different variations, de Ventus [4x] also in different variations, ASW 27 [3x] in variations, ASW 20 and ASW 20 C with winglets , Discus CS and a LAK 17 b.
With 4 days to go and already 2 pilots there to practice the “bubbling”  starts.


The season in Europe has not yet really started, but “things”  are not good. Another incident, this time in the area of Braunschweig-Wolfsburg in Germany !!!
A  25 year old pilot was badly injured after he  crashed on a playing ground for children,……. but nobody was hurt , as there was luckily nobody there at the moment.


picture courtesy DPA.[ ]

Cheers Ritz and I wish ALL strength to our soaring mate Swaantje, who really suffers with her health NOW.

April 6, 2016

Pribina Cup with up’s and “down’s” ! Some great April flights…no joke!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 4:07 pm


After 2 non flying days they continued in Nitra with a  small task. Early Easter means that the weather is not always too good and unfortunately that week was not the best and in this year March is very cold, certainly higher up for the pilots.
The organizers wrote for March 31;”The weather outlook for today:
There is fohn creating over the Alps that might effect the weather today. Due to the fohn effect the coming air mass will be drying up and warming which will lead to stabilizing the air (not what we would wish for). Therefore there will be higher temperature needed to create thermal activity. Accoarding to the predictions the maximum temperature should be high enough to create cu clouds with 1,5 m/s clims and 1600 m cloud bases. It means RACING TASK for all classes from 150 to 230 km and first launch planned for 12:30. ”
SO,… they set tasks and they flew. 154 km. in club class and 19 from 26 finished, Francois [Pin from the USA] being the last finisher .
In 15 m. Belgium mate Dennis [Huybreckx ] won another day; 187 km with a speed of 76.74 km./h. After 4 days he tops the overall list ahead of 4 German pilots and Jana Treslova. Good on her !
The 2-seater-class had 7 ARCUS gliders in the daily-top. 15 From 19 pilots flew the set task from 192 km.
In open/18 m, another EB 28 won the day, ahead of Matthias [Sturm] in his 18 m. ASG 29. 16 From 22 finished the 224 km. set task.

And,…then it is APRIL 1.But April started with a cancelled day. There was a strong blowing wind . The day had to be cancelled, though some pilots tried some ridge soaring,

April 2 had great tasks between 250 km. and 400 km. and sunny conditions ,BUT, the weather changed a bit and B tasks were handed out.
No flying in the end, as an incident , a mid air collision between an 18 m. class glider and a club class glider, caused the cancellation of the day. They straight away said; All pilots OK which was good for followers at home.
One pilot could land at the airfield, the other , 38 year old Czech pilot, jumped out of his plane before it crashed on the roof of a house. Luckily the  family living in the house was out for lunch.The pilot had minor injuries on his nose and landed in the garden according to the Slovak News Now.
They flew 4 out of 9 days.

Normally I do not like to share pictures after incidents but as they were already on FB and nobody was hurt…… here we go . Maybe to learn from ??? Lessons in life?



As shared on FB by Mattheus Nube and Zweefportaal with the message ” A parachute is your best friend”.

TOP-Competition- Director Vladimir Voltin took his responsibility also in less easier times and informed all pilots and crews about the incident before the prize giving. Serious faces, serious listening.
As they wrote on their site;” The final speech of Vladimir was a heart talk that earned standing applause. For those who were there it was quite a memorable moment.

Nitra Vladimir by ELFO   Nitra by ELFO serious faces

Pictures shared on the NITRA site.
Courtesy ELFO.

Prize giving;

Nitra by ELFO prize giving.

To the right my Belgian friends Bert and Tijl, Dennis and USA mate Francois Pin.
Courtesy ELFO.

Winner in club class Michal Lesinger from Czech Rep. in ASW 19.

Nitra 2016 Club by Elfo

1. Michal Lesinger,2. Stefan Delfs, 3. Zsolt Siket.
Courtesy ELFO.

In 15 m. Dennis Huybreckx .

Nitra Dennis by Elfo

1. Dennis from Belgium, 2. Thilo Scheffer,from Germany 3. Michael Buchtal from Germany.
Courtesy ELFO.

In 20 m former World champion Wolfgang Janowitsch and Mathias Wersonig from Austria.

Nitra by Elfo 2016

20 m. winners; 1.  Wolfgang and his mate from Austria, 2.  Lasse and Hannu from Finland and 3. Tilo and Sebastian “Krumel” Nagel from Germany.
Courtesy ELFO.

In open /18 m. there was only 8 points difference between the winners in the EB 28 Enrique and Simon with runner up former world champion Matthias.[ASG 29/18m.]

Nitra 2016 by ELFO

1. Enrique Levin and Simon Briel, 2. Matthias Sturm, 3. Robin Sittmann.
Courtesy ELFO.


On the last day of March , a VERY nice day, the combined class flew a 3 hour AAT.
ONLY AAT’s during this regatta, to promote self initiative. Tom  [Claffey] won the one and only day he flew with  368 km. in time 3.02.
In the Woolley family, Adam was this time the best and runner up  with with 348 km. in time 301 whilst dad Chris was on spot 3 with 350 km. in time 3.04.
April started great here in Holland, with sun and temperatures up to 13 dgr. C , in the weekend even 20 !!!
But Warwick prepares for winter and still …….they had flights from up to 446 km. during their regatta [ASH 31/18 m].
But also the St. Cirrus- pilot ,Phillip Southgate,was impressed with the weather flying 355 km.
He mentioned  ;” Another cracker day at the Warwick Easter Regatta … just gets better and better.”

Unfortunately April 1 had to be cancelled. NO joke.
April 2 , last day of the “comp”  was good again with flights up to over 300 gliders as St Cirrus, LS 1f, Speed Astir , ASW 20 and Lak 17/18m.

Everything was there again this year, time for speed/winning, coaching , learning, fun flying etc.
As they said;
” Team flying encouraged – this is a regatta to encourage XC – not a competition !”

Look for all the different scores in 7 disciplines after the 5 out of 9 days at

Great OLC flights.

ARCUS M solo, not the engine, the pilot ...” was the comment from Robert Prat on his wave-yo-yo- flight over 1.379 km. from St Gaudens.[Pyrenees]And a couple of day’s later he flew with Helen another flight from 1.252 km !!!! For a couple of hours,…. just racing at 5000 m. MSL.
SPEED:182.51 km./h. Great effort in the cold.
LA Cerdanya in Spain is settled on the same good wave line over the mountains and from there 3 x a 1000 was flown by German guests on MARCH 30, most of them on a Akaflieg Frankfurt Wave Research Camp.  Klaus Ohlmann,flying the Stemme  started 2.5 hours late due to ice on the wings and canopy but still flew 1.195 km.  and the 2 the 2 ARCUS gliders just over 1000 km.
The weather forecast was better than they found but still a great day.
On April 1 the enthusiastic Dutch “young dogs” Mark Leeuwenburgh and his mate Alfred Paul Alffers, flew 553 km over flat- as- a- pancake Holland to Oerlinghausen in Germany and back. WOW, great early spring flight for Holland, flown from Soesterberg, with not the best thermals , but with nice “streets”. Both fly the ASG 29 E/18m.
From Innsbruck in Austria a nice LS 8 flight. Out and return from 936 km. by David Richter-Trummer!!!!
Yesterday the UK had some good early spring flights as well . From Lasham 2 good flights ; 440 km. by Gary Coppin in the ASG 29 E/18m and nearly 400 [398]  by Dave Masson the LS 6/18 m..


The Australian team for the Lithuanian WGC  is announced. 5/6 Pilots are going.
Club class Tobias Geiger and Allan Barnes.
Standard class Adam Woolley and John “Butch ” Buchanan.
2 Seater class 2 TOP young pilots; JWGC Champion Matthew Scutter with his mate/co pilot a very talented young man Dylan Lampard.
All of them experienced in WGC flying only for Dylan it is a new experience though he flew the JWGC in Naromine in 2015. As Matthew said he was a great “right-hand”.
WGC is between July  30 and August 15 2016.


Quickly off to Amsterdam. CU next week.
Cheers Ritz

March 30, 2016

Pribina Cup ! Lasham Glide ! Hectic week!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:03 pm

Pribina Cup !
March 25-April 2.

With the Pribina Cup the European competition season started. 94 Pilots gathered in Nitra and with an early Easter , the weather is very important, as it can be still very unsettled . On Good Friday it was raining here cat’s and dog’s but in Nitra the news from the competition was :
—-“Good morning everybody!
Grid is open from 8.30 a.m. Runway in use 33. Grid sequence is 15m, 20m Multi-seat and Open class on 33R and Club class, 20m Multi – seat selflaunchers, Open class selflaunchers on 33L.
You can still register in the info office under the tower.
Opening briefing at 10am in the hangar.  See you all there!—”

So good news! The Pribina Cup was about to begin.And,….at 12 they started the launching and that went fast; in 45 minutes they had them all in the air. Good on the tuggies!!!
Racing tasks for all classes: Club class 153.8 km, 15 m class 189.4 km, 20 m double seat class 182.5 km and Open class 202.6 km.
Unfortunately the weather deteriorated during the afternoon, so out-landings were reported.
BUT ,…it was a valid day 1 ,for all classes with a base up to 1600 m. but only  after the starts and 2 m./s.
Winners on day 1;
CLUB; only 3 finishers from 24; Pegase pilot Marin Jurovic and 2 ST Jantar pilots all flying 153 km.with speed between 58 and 52 km./h..
The 2 pilots flying the 13.5 m Silent 2, who flew against each other in Pocuinai during the first WGC for this class, Italian Stefano and USA pilot Francois started well as number 4 and 15.
In 15 m. a good , very good first day for my young Belgian friend Dennis Huybreckx in his LS 8. [619 points]In this class 12 participants and only one out-landed. The task was a set 189.42 km.
In the 2 seater class 182.54 km. was set and flown by 12 of the 19 participants. 12 Of them finished among them more Belgium friends the Schmelzers in the ARCUS , the Tourula’s from Finland, Wolfgang and a mate and more.
11 ARCUS gliders in this class further on the good old Duo Discus and the DG 1000 and a Janus CRG.
Open/18 m.; From 22 in this class,  the set 202 km. was flown by 12 of them. Winner ; Matthias Sturm in the ASG 29 /18m. He is the Rieti 2008 WGC champion in Club class.

The next day was cancelled, weather conditions were too weak,so a happy sight seeing Easter Saturday for all.

Day 2 ; EASTER Sunday; Tuggies were ready, tasks were set and it turned out to be a 1000 points-day for 2 classes.
Club had 268 and the straight-away-starters had the best results in this class.
Michal Lesinger in the ASW 19 won the day; 950 points. The Silents [ handicap 96] had a great day and were on 2 [Francois] and 4 [Stefano].
15 m; 343 km. and 1000 points for Martin Schwab in de Discus CS. Dennis was runner up.2 From 12 out-landed.
2 seater class;352 km. and Wolfgang showed his class; 1000 points for him and his mate.
18 m./open; Simon Briel , who flew the JWGC in Narromine and Enrique Levin won together the 1000 points in the EB 28 with a speed of 117 km./h.
Matthias was fast as well in his ASG 29/18m. ;110 km./h so he was the runner up.

Francois mentioned: “The Pribina Cup in Nitra, Slovakia, is the first big contest of the year in Europe, about 75 gliders in 4 classes. Cloud base has been ABOVE the freezing level every day !!!! Everyone here arrived prepared, with electrically heated in-soles.
After nearly getting toe frost on the first day, my only resource was to get a pair of bedroom slippers from the lo
cal Tesco … With 3 pairs of socks, it almost makes the climbs to sub-zero cloudbase bearable… Plus, aren’t they cute? I had to remove the pompoms, though…
The air masses are very cold, but very convective, so we get to reach to the mountains to the North, near Poland and Czechia. Beautiful views on The Tatras, Fatras, and Carpathian Mountains that still have snow on their peaks.” 

12923171_10154047512254732_1871676605635563374_n     12472448_10154047513034732_1619344154049169203_n

Very cute, indeed but WARM that’s the most important! Shared by Francois on FB.

Day 3; Easter Monday. 2 Hour AAT’s and 2.15 for open/18m. Launches were postponed to 1 PM and with a B task the pilots went on track. In between we , here in Holland, blew away from storms gusting to 110 km./h.
In the UK it was even worse with wind up to 170 km./h. and lot’s had no power.Also Germany, Belgium and France got their “portion”.
In the end the weather in Slovakia, improved quicker than expected and it turned out a to be a rather good day.
club; 26 started, 24 finished and nearly 200 km. was flown.
15 m; 12 started and 12 finished.
20 m;18 started AND 18 finished! ARCUS 2x in the top one of them Tilo with a mate [240 km.]  on 2 , together with Hannu and Lasse [243 km.] from Finland.Good on them.
open/18 m; 21 started AND 21 finished, best “deal”  and 714 points for Simon and Enrique flying 2.99 km. in 2.17, so for B task- weather a great 131 km./h. But then,…of course the EB 28 is a fabulous ship.
Thomas Suchanek did well as runner up with 280 km. in 2.20 in a 17.5 m. Ventus c.

Tuesday, yesterday….cancelled !
BUT TODAY, same grid order but runway 15, so they might fly.
More next week.


Warwick Easter Regatta 2016.
March 25-April 2.

On the other side of the world in Australia, the last competition of the season started in Queensland at Warwick with 39 competitors in one combined handicapped class.
On day 1 there was no task.
On the first flying-day a 2.30 AAT was set. Among the pilots husband and wife Tom and Kerrie Claffey, father and son Chris and Adam Woolley , the Ichikawa’s Mac and Akemi and one of the very early Sportavia season instructors in the 87/88 season Alain Potier.
It turned out to be a very marginal day , due to heavy overcast in the Western part of the task.
NOBODY finished.
The day was  won by Kris Kaufmann [When I remember well Anita’s brother] flying 158 km. in the ASW 24 E.
Brett Buchanan , yes son of Butch was runner up.[ASG 29/18m.]

Day 2; Here is Peter Summerfeldt:
“A few out landings yesterday, but, overall, a good day of Regatta Style Competition.
The task was suitable and I think we all pretty much had an enjoyable day.
Today is quite different, overcast at about 9000feet, continuous light rain.  There is a low-level cloud bank to the south so we won’t be flying for quite a while, today might be good for resting.

“Late Mail”,   the weather is a little questionable so we meet again for a new briefing at 11:00am, day decision will be made and ready for that 11:00am briefing.  The rain has stopped but there is still quite a bit of low cloud around.—”
A 1.30 AAT was set for this Easter Sunday and FLOWN by 18 and 10 finished. Speed from number 10 , John Tucker in that great bird, the St. Libelle, 36 km./h BUT he finished. Good on him.
Daily winner, Mal Williams,  in the ASH 31 MI/18 m. with a speed of 79 km./h over 131 km.

Yesterday they continued with a 3 hour AAT and dad Woolley was the best in this combined class. Chris flew 381 km in time 3.13 in his 18 m. Ventus 2CM; 1000 points. Son Adam was 4th.  They both started and finished in about the same time , but dad flew 25 km. more!!His speed was 118 km./h.,  Adam’s 110 km./h.
Kris was runner up, so after 3 days of soaring the overall scores are; Chris with 1439, Kris with 1434 and Brett with 1379. All 3 are members at Kingaroy.
One dad from Adam and 2 sons, one from Hank Kauffmann and one from John “Butch”  Buchanan.Nice to see the different generations.
By the way 21 pilots finished and 3 out-landings.

More next week.


Lasham Glide 2016.


To keep you informed:Here is news from Andy Davis, shared by Graham Garnett:
—-LashamGlide Entries Accepted, 21st March 2016

At the deadline for entries prioritised according to IGC ranking we have received 70 entries for LashamGlide: 31 in the 15 metre class, 13 in the 18 metre class and 24 in the Open Class. We are pleased to confirm acceptance of entry for all Overseas pilots who applied for entry before the deadline.

Late Entries: We now invite further entries up to our agreed class limits which will be accepted in order of date of entry (late entries from British pilots entering the 15 metre and Open Class Nationals will be handled in accordance with BGA Competition Rules late entry procedures).

British and Overseas pilots wishing to enter any LashamGlide class should apply for entry using the on-line entry form on the LashamGlide website or by contacting the Lasham office.

18 Metre Class: British pilots considering late entry for the LashamGlide 18 metre class should note that whilst this will be rated as a Regional competition, it will be run to the Nationals requirements of BGA Competition Rules including task setting, scoring and launch priority. With a very high standard of international entries, including many experienced and highly ranked overseas pilots this is expected to be a very exciting and competitive class.

Andy Davis, Competition Director” —


Lasham Airfield,..I was there,…it’s big and beautiful!!
Shared by Lasham Glide 2016.



The 13th edition of Euroglide will be flown between Monday June 20 and Saturday July 2. It’s not possible to register anymore. As every year it was booked out straight away.
83 Teams from Belgium , Germany , the UK and Holland will try to be the “first one”  back after 2000 km . Mind you some teams exist out of 8 pilots, some gliders have only one pilot and a crew driving behind him/her with the car and trailer. More and more pilots have interest in this kind of adventurous flying. Good to see. They start from Venlo in the S of Holland and fly this time direction EAST to discover Poland and back. Here is the route concept.
They always started from Eindhoven but the airport is after more than 70- years- soaring -pride now ONLY for military planes and airlines. All soaring is banned and glider-pilots moved to Venlo, Malden , Terlet and Soesterberg.



OLC flights last week.

A few impressive flights one by Davide Giovanelli from Switzerland who flew in the St. Cirrus  from Locarno a flight from 607 km.
By the way MILVUS has sponsored the Swiss juniors with Delta jackets.
Also still good weather in Lake Keepit with a nice over 500 km. flight in DG 800/18m.
On March 28 a nice long wave- flight from 752 km. in France from Issoire Broc  in the Auvergne.[Discus 2T]
Same day other field ;USA ….Inyokern…Perlan Project pilots Dennis [Tito] and Morgan [Sandercock] ….SPEED 170 km./h. over 480 km.
Yesterday the first flight [ the last one was on 4-12-2015] added to the OLC list from ridge soaringparadise Ridge Soaring was straight away a 1000 km. flown in an ASG 29/ Dan Reagan with a speed of nearly 150 km./h..
A bit of wave helped as well.
From Tocumwal Swiss Chris topped the OLC list on March 25 with a 502 [400FAI triangle] in his ASW 27. He was pleased with that. Chris lives in Melbourne but flies as long as I know him from Tocumwal, first Sportavia , now Sportaviation.


Very dedicated to his soaring; Swiss Chris.
Picture shared by him.


The aftermath from Brussels.

A lot happened after Brussels. 2 Dutch families lived for 3 days between hope and fear about their loved ones. Even FB was used to get info about their whereabouts.
Finally after they were identified a Maastricht [Lanaken] family heard on Good Friday morning that their son and daughter both in their early twenties and on their way to New York, were among the death. Bizarre is that the young ones were talking on the phone with their parents to tell them they had arrived safely at the airport when the bombs exploded and the poor parents could here the impact and the falling glass. After that,….. only silence till Friday morning.
Also a 41 year old lady from Deventer was on her way to New York and did nor survive this disaster , leaving a 13 year old daughter behind. SO sad.
Heard  that among the casualties and injured people at least 40 different nationalities were, making the already VERY difficult identification even more difficult.
At this stage 3 people have not been identified and the total loss of lives is tragically enough 32 now.

On March 24 it was an other  turbulent day. After all the extra breaking news about Belgium we had a day full of extra news about our SOCCER HERO Johan Cruijff, who died of lung cancer age 68.He was the face from Holland, everybody knows about Amsterdam, Ajax and Cruijff. Sad he died so young. He was and will remain a LEGEND an ICON,UNIQUE and for EVER number 14, the best soccer player ever.

In the Hague , at the Yugoslavia Tribunal Radovan Karadzic heard that day the verdict ; 40 years of prison due to the war crimes he was responsible for and for the murder on many men in Srebrenica.
He was the former president of the Bosnia Serbian Republic Srpska. Being 70 he will never be free again, though he  appealed straight away.

At the airport of Schiphol the coach from our prof tennis player Robin Haase was arrested for possible murder on a well know Dutch guy.Terrible week !!!

It was also a year ago that the German Wings plane with 150 people crashed in the mountains of France, CRASHED because the co pilot deliberately directed the plane against the rocks of these mountains. 150 Innocent people died among them several gymnasium students coming back from a study week in Spain.

Yesterday a hijack from an Egypt Air plane was scary for all involved but ended with no harm done by a “weird professor” .


Slowly getting better.
Cheers Ritz

March 23, 2016

Brussel ! Seminole’s “oldies” are YOUNG! News from DG !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:21 pm

All I wrote already under here about soaring,  seems unimportant as you see what happened in Brussels yesterday. With the euphoria of 4 days ago, when they finally caught the top terrorist Salah Abdeslam, involved in the terrible attacks in Paris, the happiness about that changed in to a very BLACK mood, when , most probably his mates created a nightmare scenario with multiple attacks in Brussels.
The airport Zaventem was attacked at 8.04 AM with 2 bombs and 11 people were killed and the metro station under the EU buildings  Maalbeek  at 9.11 YES 9.11 AM. A bomb exploded in one of the compartments of the metro- train, killing 20 people.
IS announced already that this was going to happen. German, French and Dutch intelligence services warned already too, but nobody knew were exactly the deadly attacks would be.It happened NOW in Brussels !!!
Suicide attacks and bombs , killing at this stage, more than 31 innocent people and injured over 260, some very badly, hit by glass and nails from the bomb!!!!
The European heart with the EU institutions was HIT HARD.
Brussels had a “lock-down” and everybody had to stay where he or she was. Noway to get into Brussels either, all traffic,all transport with  trains, planes, metro’s etc was cancelled.
Several Belgium soaring friends live in Brussels and around, so I feel in thought and friendship united with them.
As said to Patrick [Stouffs] ;” We are united in friendship”.
I heard that Pierre de Broqueville was AT the airport during the disaster. He arrived, went out of the car,  to find himself a luggage trolley to put his heavy luggage on and heard a big bang. He rushed back to his car ……..but  he was thrown to the ground by the blast of the second bomb and found himself between parts of the totally destroyed glass windows.He had a guardian angel with him that morning. Pfffff,……

Of course my sincere condolences go to all who lost their loved ones world wide, as Brussels is, like Amsterdam ,a very international town.
A black day, but life continues and as all politicians call out loud : “They are NOT going to win, we have to continue our lives”,….I have to do so too. It won’t be easy certainly not for those involved in both attacks in Brussels and have to live with what they saw/heard.
TERRIBLE. Having followed it on TV already “hurts”.



Seminole’s “young from heart ” pilots. Picture courtesy  Bozena Michalowski.

Last Friday was the last day. Not a real flash day , one with solid overcast.So ….cancellation was the only option and it seemed, nobody was sad about that.
During the 4 days of competition, Karl [Striedeck] did extremely well in the Duo Discus, but just missed out on 71 points. The winner was Ken Sorenson, the CD from Uvalde 2012 in the Ventus 2cxa.
Quite some mates were there. Yes I turn 70 this year , so I belong to the “young-from-heart-oldies” too !!!!
Last words by good old John Good [deputy CD in Uvalde in 2012] who I met again in Benalla and Narromine this year;

“So the 26th Senior Contest is over.  Ken Sorenson is the winner, thanks to a couple of excellent flights.  Karl Striedieck takes silver, and Ron Ridenour bronze. [Duo discus]  We had a safe contest with 4 decent flying days (many pilots enjoyed 4 more very good days in the week before the contest).  And Seminole Lake Gliderport has enhanced its already formidable reputation as a soaring destination.


Next year they all will be back!!!
Picture courtesy Bozena Michalowski.


DG Flugzeugbau GmbH.


News from DG where one of my friends Jelmer works:
” LS8 – New Winglets Maidenflight
Today, Jelmer Wassenaar, chief engineer and test pilot at DG Flugzeugbau, successfully performed multiple flights with our brand new 15m winglets for LS8! After the flights he was completely satisfied. Our impression is, that we were able to achieve our goals in all areas!
Now we can start to perform flights to test performance and complete certification.”



Pictures shared by DG Flugzeugbau GmbH.


When I looked at the News on Dutch TV last week, I saw in a shock reaction, that in Japan , a 2- seater had crashed in a suburb from Tokyo between houses. Sadly enough the pilots both did not survive. On the ground nobody was injured.
Several people will be VERY sad again. I do have many good friends in Japan from my Sportavia -period. I wish them all well.


You remember FOKKER? Our Dutch manufacturer from many types of Fokker planes , as the Fokker 11, the very first one  in 1920 [in one Fokker of this  type we had a share  in the past] , but also for airlines as KLM with Fokker 50 and 70.
An era is over, as the last Fokker 70 ‘s will be replaced for the Brazilian Embraer 175+. In total KLM City Hopper will have 17 of them. Till now they had already 30 from the 190-type.
Fokker went broke 20 years ago which was very sad. City Hopper [KLM Europe] will be the biggest “user”  from the Brazilian Embraer in Europe now.
“Our” old  Fokkers will continue flying from Curacao and also people in Suriname will see them in the air.

Talking about Holland,…..last Monday , at 11.40 AM, we welcomed resident/inhabitant number 17.000.000. It seems to difficult to find out who it is. For sure is that “we”  grow faster through refugees/immigrants  than through new born babies.
Mind you , Holland is just a “stamp”  compared to my 2d home- country Australia. MANY people on a relative small spot, but it does n’t feel worse or so for me,  than the last 10 years.
In the year 2000 we had 16.000.000 people.


Italian Squad.

The Italian squad got a tad better weather  on the last days. So …they flew for 3 days in a row on the 17th,18th and 19th. But,…the weather was still soso and none of the days was a 1000 points day.
Austrian pilot, but mostly flying in Italy, Peter Hartman won 2 of these 3 days, Alberto Sironi 1.
Alberto flew the ARCUS and on the winning day a 3 hour AAT was set. That it was a struggle but a character-building struggle showed the distance and time; 253 km. with a speed of 84.58 km./h. Only 16 from 24 started and 3 finished.
Peter flew the H 301 .
This handicapped competition was  good practice for the upcoming summer.


Nitra….Pribina CUP.


Courtesy Aero Bistro via FB.

As you can see it’s still quiet at Nitra Airport, but not long and it will be ” buzzing ” there.Over Easter the Pribina Cup will start and around 100 pilots will participate.More later.
Tracking at;,18.14494&z=13&o=1&p=3

The Czech container with JWGC gliders is back home from Australia , back from 40 dgr. C PLUS to SNOW. If the gliders will be ready for the CUP , I don’t know, maybe for those who really want it. First they will be checked and prepared for the new European season.

   12832357_1691296791088493_1980580789572537846_n     12799395_1691296801088492_6160512728034927126_n

Pictures shared by the Czech Rep. Gliding Team.


Back on track, but still not totally fit and with very low energy, so back to the doctor this afternoon. Have a bacterial infection in my right lung.
cheers Ritz

March 16, 2016

USA Soaring. Mountain flying for the German young ones in France and in Varese flies the Italian squad.

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:35 pm

With the Senior Soaring Championship at Seminole Lake from March 12 till 18,  the USA started it’s soaring season as well. Straight after,  between March 20 and 26 , Seminole  also organizes  the Seminole Lake OLC Camp.
So the seniors , always very active and glad to see each other again after winter arrived with 63 confirmed pilots , one of them Karl Striedeck and on the waiting list still 10 pilots.A VERY popular event !!! On the practice day 68 participated


Pictures shared by Seminole-Lake Glider Airport and courtesy to Bozena Michalowkski.
Practice by the seniors.

1916677_10207467206350781_5824192831244607646_n   12801359_10207467208590837_9049982614045935530_n

Day 1 with a 1.5 TAT ,was won by nobody else than KARL STRIEDECK in the Duo Discus. He still knows how to fly, so 1000 points for him.
Dennis Linnekin [ASG 29] was 3d and Sam Zimmerman 5th [ASH 31 MI]. I know both mainly from Uvalde. Gary [Carter]was on spot 46, he was Bill Elliott’s crew in Uvalde 2012.

Day 2 had ” few well defined cumulus under a diffuse overcast.  The forecast is for storms in the late afternoon.” Due to the quickly incoming thunderstorm, they cancelled the day during the launches.

Day 3  yesterday, was better with clouds and later going blue. 3 TAT’s [Turn area task] were set so with A [minimum time 2.15] or B [2 hours] or C [1.45] they surely would be able to fly. The unofficial scores show that Ken Sorenson won the day in the Ventus cxa in time 2.27.
Karl was 6th with 911 points still good enough for spot 1 overall.


The Air Expo in Abu Dhabi.

Kathrin , as I wrote in my last blog is there and after we saw great pictures from the Ritz, a beautiful stand in the Expo building but last Wednesday her news was less good:
—“ Today we had a very bad thunderstorm @ about 12 a.m. on the AIR EXPO in Abu Dhabi. Some aircrafts are damaged and the airport around the buildings looks in some places totally destroyed. All people have been evacuated quickly, because the tents wasn’t anymore safe. What a chaos!!! So fare we was very lucky with the Stemme aircraft, because it is protected between two large helicopter. Still raining in Abu Dhabi. Many trees crashed, the roads are floated.—“

This is how it should be; selling art at the exhibition.


Kathrin and Peggy at work.
Picture shared by Peggy.


Keith Essex was flying in NZ in February and flew a nice 1000 there and many more good flights. Back in good old Minden he flew , maybe with the overseas experiences, on March 10 1.609 km. with a speed of 251.58 km./h in a SW wave , high and fast in the ARCUS M!!!!!! WOW!!!Flying N of Minden, passing Minden going to the S.  , he mentioned in his OLC report;” Lots of moisture north, blue and soft to the south, good in the middle.”
A flight from Air Sailing, NE of Minden , by Robert Spielman in an ASW 20 finished with a speed of 192.71 km./h.over 712 km. When the weather is good, the weather is good!!!

THEN,……on March 13, Minden explodes resulting in awesome flights one of them  2.053 km. by Jim [Payne] in the ARCUS M; 178. km./h.
This time his mate Dennis []Tito] flew the DG 1010 M and for him 1.651 km.: speed 150 km. /h.
Fabulous MINDEN-WAVE!!!
Jackie , Jim’s wife added:
—-“Yesterday Dennis and Roger Tanner soared over 1600 kilometers in the DG 1001 landing at Inyokern. Third best flight in the world thus far this year. Jim and Miguel Iturmendi soared just over 2050 kilometers in the Arcus landing at Rosamond. Four Perlan pilots wave soared almost 12 hours each for excellent wave experience.“—-

The next day Jim tried a fast 300 declared km. out and return from Rosamond flying the 300 between Inyokern and Big Pine, during their legs on a  1.223 km. flight . Here is Jim’s OLC comment on the flight.
—-“” The forecast said the wave would be weak early with winds and lift increasing in the late afternoon.
During the first lap, the wave was not good between Cindercone and Manzanar…the turn was covered in cloud.
During the second lap, the lift was better…the speed was 278 kph.
By the third lap, the lift was ripping and the clouds much better…the speed was 305.12 kph (189.62 mph)…”—
As Jackie said in her report;
300 km O&R is not a world category only a national record category. The fastest world record is 306 kph set in Argentina.”
Dennis started from Inyokern and flew another 1.135 km. flight.
They both LOVE their long-distance-wave-flying and are on a mission!!!


21 Pilots from the Italian National team registered to fly this week from Varese for their first 2016 meeting.Unfortunately day 1 on March 14 was cancelled and in the end 3 pilots in the 2 seater class [ 2 x ARCUS and 1Duo Discus] and 7 in 15 m. class  and the rest in 15 m. , 18 m. and open were ready for the “fight” .
Day 2 was cancelled as well. So early in the season  March behaves sometimes not as you wish.


Lot’s of young German pilots have their mountain camp in France. It’s that time of the year again.
Some fly from Serres as Benjamin , who shares so now and then a great picture, others fly from Puimoisson , Vinon, or La Motte . Also Fayence and St Auban are active with mountain [wave ] flights. Around up to 500 km. flights…not too bad.


Benjamin [Bachmeier] shared this great picture, flying from Serres La Batie over the area there!


The Bailleau competition is NOW on line.

This is what I got from France and be aware, this competition is very popular, so when you want to participate there, you should be quick.
—“Hello ! From the 2nd to 12th of August, this summer, will be held the 42nd Bailleau International Gliding Contest, a classic flat-land gliding contest.
And like every year for 19 years now, Bailleau International will be accompanied by the now famous “Amical” Contest, one of the best ways for a pilot to take his first steps in competition …
The website has just opened, you will find there all useful information and the online registration form …—” 


Still NOT fit, off to the doctor tomorrow. He has no time due to all flu cases. I am one too but it’s over ONE month now!!!!!!!
Cheers Ritz

March 9, 2016

Lake Keepit ; NSW State Comps finished.Video from AustraGlide 1984 and Landing from Albatross on Lake Boga in 1998.

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:58 pm


WOW !!!!!!What about this??? I never knew this could happen in Holland and when I got a message/question from France  from Juliette , if I had seen it , I could only say ” NO, are you sure it was in Holland “?
MORNING GLORY over our Northerly Provence Friesland on February 26 2016. And yesterday again !!!!!
Picture Photo: Annemiek de Boers via Reiner van den Berg / Severe Weather in Belgium
By the way the North of Holland [Friesland, Groningen and the Wadden Islands] had the pleasure last weekend of seeing the Northern Lights as well.

Lake Keepit !

The NSW State Comps are over and what great comps they were!!!
On Thursday they continued with day 5, with a 3.30 AAT in club and 15 m. whilst open and 18 m. went for 3 hours.
So still good weather. Though it was a tricky day with thunderstorms and large shadows over the TP’s 1 and 2, according to Paul [Dickson from the Hunter Valley] in his LS 3, who won another day with 368 km; “Didn’t go far enough into these TP’s so maxed out the last one & came in 5 min under.” .

Good to see local hero Jenny [Ganderton ] is flying so well in her Mosquito. With the WWGC in Lake Keepit in 2019 this is already great practice for her. She won 2 days and finished overall as runner up!!

Brad [Edwards] arrived in Lake Keepit,….. he is a very busy guy but loves his soaring, so when possible he flies …..and he straight away  won 1000 points for his first flight . His JS 1 flew 422 km. in time 3.03.59.
Tom was runner up with 419 km. in time 3.12. Of course you remember Brad was world champion in Uvalde in 1991.

Flying day 6 was last Friday on the 4th of March, another good day with great clouds and light winds, but again TP’s with over-development and rain .
In club the 4th “win”  for Paul, who has a real good lead overall. He flew 454 km in his LS 3 during a 4 hour AAT with a speed of 112.62 km./h.
Unfortunately for Jenny, she lost 300 points on Paul.
In 18 m./open it was Tom again , this time he flew over the set 520 km with a speed of 142.57 km./h.
The 2 HC pilots Bruce and Andrew[who did not fly the day before at some comps in Australia they  “work” with lay-days, meaning you can skip one day] ] followed and on spot 2 was Brad with 134 km./h.

Last flying day!March 5 yes the beginning of autumn,…and what week they had in Lake Keepit!
On the last day Paul was more than 200 points ahead on Jenny in club class , so more or less a “won race” for him, but,…nothing is assured till after the last scores are in .
The 3 hour AAT could spoil it,….. but no it did n’t. 5th Win in a row for Paul so clearly the NSW State champion with 6698 points. Runner up Jenny with 6518 points. Good on her!!!

In 15 m. a 3.30 AAT kept the 7 pilots in this class busy enough. Mick Webster achieved his 4th win in a row and with that he was the new 15 m. NSW State Champion; 6485 points.Good to see Kerry Claffey [ASW 28] on spot 3 with 5992 points.

In 18 m./open class Tom leads Bruce on the last but one day, with more than 200 points, but as Bruce flies HC it is Matthew Atkinson in the Ventus 2cxa/18 m.who is runner up with 600 points less, so no worries here either for Tom who won till now 4 days!!!!

AND Tom won the last day as well; 480 km. during a 3.30 AAT and a total of 6763 points . Matthew lost 275 points on the last day but it did not harm him too much,  he remained runner up with 5859 points. In between Bruce had ,as HC pilot, 6475 points.
So Tom is the well deserved 2016 NSW State CHAMPION .


Flying an ASG 29 /18 m. , Schleicher of course shared Tom’s happiness and this picture.

More news from Australia.

Not competing in Keepit, but having a day-time-to-fly from not- that- far- away Kingaroy, David Jansen showed a great autumn flight with 783 km. [500 FAI triangle[] in his ASG 29 e/18m.

I heard that Tocumwal this week enjoys a full week of 39 and 40 dgr. !!!!!It remains hot down under. My non- flying- friends over there are “sick of the heat”.
Great weather to fly though and several did on Monday with flights over 500 km. as 528 [ DG 600/17 m.] , 576 [JS 1] and 643 km. [600 FAI triangle in ASH 26] and as always Ingo , flying his Discus, landed last for the day, with 734 km.  , [700 FAI triangle] under his belt. And yesterday another top-of-the-OLC-list -spot with 678 km.[600FAI traingle]
Don’t forget the days are getting shorter and shorter over there! Great job also for Terry in his ASH 26 with this time 704 km.

As Francesco from Corowa said;” it’s autumn and every day is a bonus.”
Now the season is over he can finally fly by himself and he took the ASG 32 MI yesterday for “a ride” ;512 km.
His OLC-comment ; “Not as good as I expected. The first 2 hours the thermals did not break trough the strong inversion. It was hot in the cockpit.To the west it was perfect with climbs up to 5.5 m/s. but I lost too much speed in the first 2 hrs.”
The WEST was “used” by Terry [ASH 26] flying from Tocumwal;704 km.[664 FAI triangle]
Also for fun- flights there was time in the weekend.
Swiss Chris flew on the 5th in his ASW 27  586 km. And from Benalla German pilot Fabian Gaida flew in a Speed Astir 562 km.

And,…This year ,….. and  I was there at that moment,……., tuggy Bruce got back into gliding and solo in a Blanik and this weekend he tested his skills with Ingo in the IS 28 and later SOLO again.


Tuggy Bruce with Ingo smiling as always at an airfield. He never ever is bored  he told me this year, even not after so many years of flying.
Picture shared by SRGC.


Not only Australia enjoys great early autumn weather also South Africa showed just over and under 500 km. flights from Orient.One pilot Hanno Du Toit even flew his first 500 km. Good on him !!!!
Cloud base was 4000 m. not bad !!!


News from Mount Beauty from the ALPINE FLYER:
The Alpine Coaching and Regatta Week from 21st to 27th February was an enormous success this year, thanks to the excellent organisation by VSA President Ian Grant and his team of helpers. Of course the excellent soaring conditions most days also helped”.
Several pilots I know, visited there. Always a good week.


News for ” lovers of the St Libelle” .
—–” Yes, it is true! A Libelle Gathering will be held in Australia in late 2016 at the Bendigo Gliding Club, in central Victoria.See the link below for details.

Spread the word, it will be awesome ! If you can let any of your Libelle members and friends know it would be much appreciated.”—-


Benalla 1984.

AustraGlide ’84 was a ABC documentary on very high level, featuring Ingo [Renner], Kees [Musters], George [Schuit] , Eric ” Herbie”  Moser , Peter [Griffiths] and others. Have seen it so many times, still love it!!

austraglide 84

—” This is an ABC documentary about the 1984 gliding competition in Benalla, Australia. It was the largest gathering of gliders in Australia ever, and a precursor to the world championships in 1987.”

When the link does n’t work you can find it on  AustraGlide 84. Enjoy, it’s worth while looking at. It’s really the past with interesting weather forecast, camera’s for the TP’s and pilots as Ingo, who still are icons.
Also featuring Erik Moser, Kees Musters and George Schuit.
With Benalla 2017 around the corner it’s nostalgia on a high level.

Talking about this  I got info about the landing and start of the Albatross on Lake Boga in 1998, featuring Peter ” Griffo” Griffiths and George Schuit. Great video as well. Enjoy!!!


Girl POWER!!!!!


Introducing Kathrin’s new sales manager in a special way!
Picture from Mai 2013,  shared now by Pilotessa Design-com

Dear friends, it’s a big honor for me to introduce my new INTERNATIONAL SALES MANAGER: Mss Peggy Walentin!

Peggy is in the aviation business since 1994. Shortly after she became a pilot, obtained the aerobatic license and got the flight instructor licence for power planes! But she is not only a pilot.

From 1999 to 2015 Peggy Walentin has flown more than 600 displays as a wing-walker! She was the only one in Germany. The Boeing Stearman of “Peggy’s Wingwalkers Team” with the beautiful design of Mirco Pecorari is her own.

Peggy is also collecting extraordinary aviation presents, decorative goods and trendy fashion for aviators and aviation enthusiasts. Just have a look on her

 For sure you will love those things.Peggy is not only an outstanding person and beautiful woman; she is also a very good friend! I’m so glad she will support me on the AIR EXPO in Abu Dhabi.


Wishing Kathrin and Peggy lot’s of success in Abu Dhabi.GO GIRLS !!!!


And when I am sharing video links here is another one from my friends Karin [Wiesenthal] and Markus [Geisen] about their 1370 km. flight from Kuruman in South Africa on January 2 and shared by Schempp Hirth.
Dad Hans flew that day in his DG 800/18 m.  a great 1.246 km. flight.


In the March/April issue of Gliding International I read a lot of news again.
The Magazine opened with a few pages on the
—–SHARK. About the 304 S [Shark], the 304 TS [Twin Shark] , 304 C [WASP] and the 304 CZ a single seat flapped 15 m. glider.
—–The official accident report involving the the New Zealanders in Namibia in 2014 is very informative and finishes with safety recommendations.
—-Ramy Yanetz explored in 2015 the Western USA [400 hours of flying in one year !] and Elke Fuglsang-Petersen writes about it with great pictures from Ramy.
—-IGC Global membership Survey.
—-About the wave -heaven  Argentina, by Aussie glider pilot dr Rick Agnew.
And much more as,….lot’s of World Aviation news for glider pilots and 18 quick three-liners;  one of them with interesting results on the question did your gliding in 2015 increase, decrease or stay the same compared to 2014?


And to finish an interesting picture shared by Boerje and a lesson -in-life for those who are going to fly in Scandinavia.


With the message : ” Gliding in North part of Sweden. Learn how to canoeing“.


 Not long ,….March 25 till April 2 ….and we will follow the at this stage 95 pilots in Nitra “fighting ” for the Pribina Cup in 4 classes and MAYBE 5 ;when there are enough participants in the 13.5 m class there will be 5.
The season is about to begin.

Cheers Ritz

March 2, 2016

IGC Plenary 2016! Meteorological spring/autumn started !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 7:25 pm

When I was sick in bed , the delegates of the IGC had a busy 2 days….on the 26th and 27th…. in Luxembourg, where the 2016 IGC PLENARY brought a lot of them [from 34 countries]  to the Sofitel Luxembourg Europe Hotel.
How they can manage an agenda with SO many items in 2 days is a miracle to me, but with the very experienced Erik Moser as their leading guide and each group GOOD in their own business-department , it works out every year and then there is still time for fun as well.


At work ,….and after work there is fun, with a dinner in a brewery, a city trip and nice “talks”.

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Pictures shared by “our”  Dutch delegate Frouwke.

This year the Pelagia Majewska Medal went to Italian pilot  Margot Acquaderni from Italy.
The Pirat Gehriger Diploma to Roland Stuck and the Lilienthal Gliding Medal to Rainer Wienzek.
All so very much deserved!!! Congratulations !!!!!

From 2019 the 13.5 m. class will be open to motor gliders ONLY!!! The 2019 one will be in Italy.[Pavullo]
The 2019 JWGC will be in Hungary [Szeged ], the 2019 WWGC goes to Lake Keepit in Australia and the 2019 EGC for small ships is awarded to Slovakia [Prievidza] and the big ships go to Poland [Stalowa Wola].
The Pan America Gliding Championships 2017 will be in Argentina; Santa Rosa de Conlara .

The 20 m class gliders are allowed a maximum take off mass of 800 kilo instead of 750 , effective immediately and a ” race horse” start-option[ regatta start like in GP]  in contests,  will be effective in the future but not yet in Benalla.

Next plenary will be in Hungary on March 3-4.
Thank you so much to Rick for the info and “twitter-feed” .


The last weekend of the month of February and with that the end of the  overseas-2015/16  summer, was a good one.
Down under the weather is still perfect for soaring and flights from 875 by Allan Barnes in the LS 8 from Lake Keepit , the 2019 WWGC venue, are still possible. He flew 736 yesterday on March 1 the first day of the meteorological autumn down under.
The New South Wales State Comps were moved from early in the season to late  and started on the 27th also from Lake Keepit with 41 competitors in 4 classes and WHAT competitors.They continue till March 5.

Lake Keepit finish over Lake

Once again that great picture; finish over Lake Keepit.
I believe it was from Alex from NZ, correct me when I am wrong.

Yesterday they had a 3.30 AAT in Club class on day 3 and with 409 km. [time 3.34] Paul Dickson  the LS 3 won the day just ahead of Jenny [Ganderton] in the Mosquito with 392 km in time 3.27.
Some pilots called it a “cracker-day” others “another brilliant day with a too short task”!!
Open /18 m. had a set 418 km. flown by 8 from the 9 pilots with a best speed of 150.92 km./h by Tom Claffey. [ASG 29 /18m]
Bruce Taylor had a bit of an” off-day ” with 131 km./h.
Tom won every day ; day 1… 462 km.with 141 km./h.——Day 2….420 km with 146 km./h.  and then —–day 3.
Today , another ” pretty good day”  by some called a booming -day, with a 4 hour AAT in 18 m. and open and,….it was NOT Tom but Bruce and also Andrew, both flying HC who won the day;633 km for Bruce [speed 142.82 km./h] and 602 km [speed 139,70 km./h ] for Andrew.
The “regular”  pilots as Tom flew 571 km.
Club had a 3 hour AAT with Paul winning his second day in a row with the comment ;
Another fantastic day with 10+ kt thermals”  ;364 km. with 119 km./h. and in 15 m. Mick Webster in the SZD 55 won the 3.30 AAT;408 km with 114 km./h.

Benalla 759 km in a 16.6 m Ventus with a UK pilot , Tocumwal with 623 in the ASW 27 with Swiss Chris and yesterday with 610 by Terry,  but also Temora with 756 k. in the St Cirrus with Nathan and Grant flew in his LS 3a 655km. and there were several flights up to 839 km. from Pipers Field.
What an awesome AFTER-SUMMER!!!!!

AS,….on March 1 the meteorological spring/autumn started!!!
The first flights in Holland have been flown last Saturday , still in “our ”  winter and already over 100 km.[129 in DG 800/18m.] In Germany they even flew over 200 km. And at the Keiheuvel in Belgium some very -first- flights- for- the- season as well !!!

Looking at the combined Dutch and Belgian Nationals, the BeNeLux comps between May 18 and 27; 45 pilots at this stage in 5 classes!!!!!! GOOD!!
Still more to come and ,….by the way the local rules/procedures are on the net now !!


As she said : “Tocumwal! Those were the good old days! Please give my best regards to everyone in the gliderport.”
That was Kaoru,from Japan,  she flew with us in the past  and I remember she got a baby and then finished travelling to Australia. The baby is now a young man from 18 years old. Time flies.
She found me on FB, LIKE!
Via FB I also got in contact again with Dirk, a young German guy who flew years ago with us ; with Christophe and Daniel with Antje.
He and his wife Steffi got a baby too, now 16 year old Saskia and she is a beauty. Dirk still flies and has in his hangar an ASH 25 MI and ASH 31 MI.
Somewhere soon I will visit them…. nice to be their friend AGAIN now.


Still sick, terrible cough, full lungs and just miserable. Hopefully next week back to normal.

Cheers Ritz

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