August 1, 2014

The Leszno WGC ; continued stories….day 4 and 5! And other news from last week!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:01 am

Z Poland

Before I depart for Leszno tomorrow I publish already day 4 and 5 [today], as old news is no news. More next Wednesday in the regular blog.

WEDNESDAY  July 30 2014;
I gave you the tasks already in my last blog. 2 Hour AAT’ s for all classes , direction East . First launches at 11.45!
So another de -valued day and one with concern for some, as the last launched pilots had to start when it drizzled already. Unfair,…yes but part of soaring as well. The system rotates and when you are on a bad day on the last row, it ‘s mostly not too good. The other way around with good weather works too. A bit of a lottery for sure, as this way not everybody has the same chances!
I have seen it at several comps.

Anyhow 127 pilots were launched within an hour. That’s a COOL  result!!!!!

ZZ leeg veld

After the opening of the start lines the field was empty only trailers and not too bad clouds on the skies.
As seen and shared by the SA team.

As in the past the team members help each other, nothing new . So when the 15 m. starts they give info to the 18 m. and open class pilots. That way, as Sebastian mentioned, the Polish pilots fly so well. I know ALL countries fly like this and when you are the sole pilot of a country there are always mates you can count on.

In between the towering clouds disappeared for cirrus , so the expectation of thunderstorms was more or less past,  but still expected after the finishes.
The 10 km. finish ring on difficult days like this , is a perfect way for safe landings after the finish. Also the finish height was raised to 400 m MSL.

15 m. ; The French started together just after 1 , but lost each other and arrived as number 4 and 32.
A new daily winner ; young Radek Krejcirik, from Czech Rep. who flew already so well in Uvalde  where he was 3d in the final scores AND he was 3d on the last JWGC as well; good on him!!! He started as one of the last in his class [13.13] and flew 261 km. in 2.12 [speed 118.4 km./h].
A good day for Matthew from Australia this time [spot 5]  , as well as for Francois [NL] who was runner up!!
A less good day  for Wolfgang [Janowitsch] finishing as number 39, loosing just over 200 points on winner Radek.
After 4 days Sebastian leads with 3066 points , followed by Mac who keeps a good eye on Sebastian and started together with him. Mac has 3023 points and Christophe , the number 3, 2983.
Phil and Leigh are not far behind and Belgium pilot Emmanuel Litt is now on spot 7  . He was on an overall 20 th spot after day 2, so he is ” in good lift” !!

Here is the story from Matthew on day 4.

–” Two challenging days with storms forecast on both and appearing on neither – we played the gaggle game on both days to varying results, yesterday I was in the wrong cycle of the gaggle for the climb onto glide and had to take a (much) weaker climb to get home in the rapidly dying weather, but today I worked hard to make sure I didn’t repeat the same mistake and came home fastest of our gaggle.

The team flying with Mak and Craig is going well, we’ve had many hundreds of kilometers glued together, and on two days now we’ve managed to keep a pair together the whole flight, but we’re still working on the elusive triple tip-to-tip finish. With the wet ground the thermals are very bubbly and it only takes a 300 ft separation for it to be 50/50 if the higher glider climbs faster or slower in the next thermal.

We had at least 3 world champions in our gaggle today, which makes for a very punishing environment – if you do something slightly sub-optimal, a short lapse in concentration, one circle longer to center, one missed cu diversion in the glide, they’ll gain precious meters above and in front of you that takes lots of focus and often just luck to earn back. It makes for a very short feedback loop and I can already feel the effects on my flying – a couple more weeks of this and I should be ready to fly a world comps. ” —

Matthew keeps a very interesting blog , it is great to follow him. I do so already for quite a while.

18 m. ; Unfortunately a pretty bad day for Jerzy from Canada . For violating the airspace he got only 50 points. A good day for Louis Bouderlique , who was the daily winner and “got” 654 points; 268.2 km in 2.08 [speed 125.6 km./h.] Runner up was Robert Schroeder from Germany  with 2 points less and UK pilot Russell finished on spot 3, together with Roman both had 4 points less than Louis.
Overall after 4 days; still the same Karol now with 3061 points, Lucasz with 3012 and Peter 3002.
Here is part of Tom’ s story of day 4;

 Today was again mixed for the 18M team.
The day was 2 hr AAT with early finish and storms forecast.
We struggled for start height just as the gate opened after being at cloud base for an hour! As it happened we started a few minutes after the main gaggle just behind the Germans. We caught them and later Attie Jonker and gradually the day improved, speed increased until the bottom AAT turn where we just lost contact with the gaggle. After quite a struggle I was able to catch the bottom of the gaggle but the lift reduced and the higher gliders gradually pulled away. Ben was able to almost catch up by taking a different route. At about 20km to run we stopped to make sure we had the 400M finish height at the 10km finish ring, of course we over cooked it and ended up doing 120kts to get down! We ended up a long way down the list but not too badly for points. ” 

open class ;The “long-wings”  did not perform very well in the beginning. Today that changed. Uli and Michael flew their EB 29 to a 3 and 4th place behind the UK pilots in their JS 1-C, Andy and Pete.
Another long-winger, Dick [DB] was on a good 8th spot.
Not such a good day for Laurens finishing as number 16 and as said , a lottery-day unfortunately, for Ronald who had to start in rain , fighting to gain height, whilst the rest was on track already.  He finished, but was on place 30.
Overall after 4 days ; 1.Killian [3131], 2. Andy [3120], 3. Laurent [3107] Uli and Michael slowly found their way to the top [ on 7 and 8]

As was written on the official site:  The Tasksetter says, ‘According to the forecasts, we expected thunderstorms, and for this reason, I preferred being careful, to prevent landing in the rain, or in a field.’ The assumption has been implemented to the joy of the pilots.
Can only agree with that. In the end the idea that the day was too short , was changed into the idea that ” the window was perfectly chosen.” 

With day 4 this 33d WGC in Leszno is a VALID FAI WGC. But for sure there will be more days ahead. As said it is not over yet!!

ZZ final by Aussies  ZZ finish 2 by Marta

Great pictures shared by the Aussies.

What happened more today?
—- Prof.  Loek Boermans , president of OSTIV has spoken at the briefing and the opening of their meetings  will be that night.
—- Walter Binder got honored for ALL he did for soaring during the OSTIV evening.
—- I just miss out on the International Night, which will be on Thursday night. A pity as I will only arrive on Friday evening.
—- you all heard about the Perlan Project . Today I read that the Airbus Group joins in with the Perlan Mission  2 , as a partner , to explore “ the edges of space “and soar to 90.000 feet.
By becoming a partner in the project, Airbus Group will provide funding to complete the construction of the glider and two years of flight in Argentina. ”
—- the International /Amical Bailleau 2014 started their  competition after 1 cancelled day. This competition is in a long history very much ” liked  by the Dutch and Belgian pilots. 63 Pilots in 3 classes fly in Bailleau.
—-The Russian Nationals in Standard Class have been flown from Baltasi and 12 participants [one HC] were flying there, though better said waiting there as they had ONE flyable day and 6 scrubbed days.
—- some of my Danish friends are flying for the Sun Air Cup from Arnborg . They fly in 5 classes and had pretty good weather with 9 days out of 11.

THURSDAY July 31 2014 already the last day of July!!!!!;

The day-4 winners first. Here they are.

ZZ winners day 4

As shared by the organizers.

Looking at the European weather forecast this morning, the message was 27 dgr. and local thunderstorms for Poland. BUT,…I read it was “cold” and rainy in the morning with low grey clouds laying as a blanket over the field at Leszno. A relaxed morning, they called it.

No surprise,….no task was set in the morning briefing , TC’s would meet at noon  again and the message later was , that the open class should be ready at the grid at 1. According to the TOP-German- team- meteo- man Bernd,  there could be a window after 14.30 direction West.

The 15 m. and 18 m. was scrubbed /canned/ cancelled, BUT open had to be ready at 13.45. The weather looked ” reasonable”  to bring 1 class up in the air , so a 242.3 km. racing task was set.

ZZ day 5

Open class …….”ready”  to go!
As shared by the SA team.

Stress in the German Team as Michael had to be pulled out of the first row as he had a problem with the under carriage and had to look at that first with help of many friends and what kind of friends Walter Eisele and Walter Binder,experience ALL over and in soaring since ….god knows when! They fixed it and off he went…..
8/8 of clouds, the  ”  big wings ”  between 500 and 900 m [cloud base] and a wind up to 30 km./h. Not a real good menu for a soaring day.
When they were all in the air and   the start-line was about to open at 14.37 , the day was scrubbed anyhow, so time enough to have a good look at his EB. Also lot’s of time to prepare a great International NIGHT.

ZZ Michael

Michaels’ EB  and the “bad”  skies in the back.
as shared by the German team.

And to finish this day 5 , a non flying day , BUT they TRIED HARD, is here one of those nice pictures from the organizers.

ZZ no winners

What happened more today?

—- Packed my small suitcase and I am ready for departure tomorrow.

—- We had not 150 mm of rain here in Alphen, but 180 mm. meaning 18 full buckets of water poured on a square meter.

—- the OVSE finally reached the disaster-spot from MH 17. In the end the ‘we’  lost 196 people with a Dutch passport.

—- after 3 scrubbed days , the ladies FINALLY fly from Stolln/Rhinow and got straight away racing tasks from  417 for club [ 26 pilots] and a 451 km. task in the racing class  [8 pilots] and also in standard class.[ 6 pilots]
Kathrin [Woetzel ] and Swaantje [Geyer ]both participating in club class,  did well on this day certainly Swaantje after her very recent  operation . They both departed as the last ones in their class and finished as number 6 and 7 in the scores.
All scores on ;

—- Husbos unfortunately had a mid air last Saturday during their Husbos Challenge Cup.Pictures shared on FB are impressive/spectacular/dramatic …..but  for me JUST SCARY……  I did not particular like them, also not with the knowledge that 1 pilot landed safely and the other baled out and only had minor injuries. Yes I looked at them , because  the moment  is pretty special, but I felt cold and could only be grateful that nothing happened to both pilots.
I saw and heard it happen , long time ago, but then 3 pilots were killed.

—- the young ones travel the world nowadays. Nick, from  Alex and Nick’s Gliding Adventures living in New Zealand visited Lasham and as he said: ” I got the front seat of an ASH 25 for 2 & half hours loved it.” 

ZZ nick

Lasham weather looks nice.
As shared by Nick.

—- some of the Dutch young ones fly from Bronkow in Germany. Sander flew a nice 617 k distance in the St. Cirrus.

—– this date in history was important WHY?
The SSA shows us why:
July 31, 1964. On this date in soaring history, Al Parker makes the first soaring flight to exceed 1,000 kilometers.

Today is the 50th anniversary of Alvin H. Parker’s remarkable 1,042 kilometer (647 mile) world record flight in 1964, the first-ever in the world to break the 1,000 kilometer mark. Flying his American-built Arlington Sisu1A sailplane, Parker soared from his hometown of Odessa, Texas, to Kimball, Nebraska. That Sisu sailplane is on permanent display in the Smithsonian Air & Space Hazy Center near Dulles Airport, Virginia. A sister ship to the record breaking Sisu currently resides with Al’s son Steve Parker in Marfa, Texas.

In the July 2014 issue of SOARING magazine, the original article by E. J. Reeves was reprinted in its entirety.

You are up to date again with a lot of news.
Cheers Ritz CU on Wednesday with stories and pictures from Leszno and more on the Female Nationals in Germany with also 2 Dutch participants.

July 30, 2014

32 WGC in Leszno; looking at it day by day!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 7:38 pm

A-day-by-day retrospect on day 1 , 2 and 3 from the  Leszno WGC and other activities this week till today.

Z Poland

SUNDAY JULY 27 2014;
The first day of this wonderful big event organized under the FAI-flag by the Polish gliding community at Leszno, straight  away set the standard for great racing over the next 2 weeks.
Though they had ” only”  2.30 AAT’s in 15 and 18 m and 2.45 in open class , cause of expected showers , the pilots raced over the track as future champions.
The window was chosen VERY well, there was some rain over the Leszno field, for the crews and TC’s,  but the pilots on track had so to see, no problems .

In 15 m. the UK pilots were still in their ” flow”  and Leigh won the day with Phil just behind him.
From 46 pilots they had the best speed combined with the flown kilometers; 335.5 and 333.7 m. in 2.33.
Speed from 131 and 130 km. /h.
Points between 824 and 481 for the first and last pilot of the day.

In 18 m. the UK pilots had a less good day than during practice. They, one way or another “lost”  each other and  finished as 18th and 26 from 46.
ALL pilots in this class finished!!!!
A mixed top in this class lead by Polish pilot Karol Staryzak who won with 352.1 km in time 2.32 [138.8 km./h]
John Coutts from NZ was runner up and finished exactly in 2.30 but flew 10 km. less with Roman Mracek on spot 3.
BUT,..Roman in the end got only 72 km for an airspace violation at Poznan, where I arrive on Friday evening.
Points between 815 for the winner and 58 for number 46, Roman.
What a horrible start for such a good pilot. But they know the rules and the consequences.

In open class Ronald [Termaat]  from Holland flew himself with big speed , 139.5 km./h over 389.5 km. in time 2.47,35 and won the day. Followed by the French Killian and Laurent and Laurens from SA,  behind them.
In the top 10 ,5 x a JS 1-C and 3x a Quintus M , a Nimbus 4M and ASH 31Mi.
Points between 917 and 389.


As shared by the organizers.

What happened more on Sunday July 27:

—–Several over 800 km. flights from Fuente and a few 1000 k flights one by  Guy who  flew his 8th 1000 for the Fuente-season  in the Quintus M.
The first 17 flights on the OLC were all for Fuente pilots.
—–In Stoelln/Rhinow the German women started their Nationals with a practice day.The field they are flying from is the oldest airfield in the world. Otto Lilienthal jumped of the hill there.

MONDAY JULY 28 2014:

Tasks; 15 m….3.15 AAT, 18 m…….3 hour AAT and open class…..3.15 AAT.

ZZ tuggies day 2

 Tow planes ready to go for day 2!
As shared by the SA team.

During briefing the winners were honored with their daily prizes and they seem all happy/pleased with it.

ZZ winners day1

Leigh, Ronald and Karol
As shared by the organizers.

Day 2 turned out to be a difficult day…..  they talked about the heat, the showers , but also 2/3 m. average climbs and the tension” what will this day bring”? Some thought that the day would turn out better than predicted , so they left later.
In the end they had severe rain and a thunderstorm just after and for some during the finish.

Here is Matthew’s story, he says it all!!!;
” Disastrous second day...

Some mis-communication lead me to break from the pack around the middle of the task, and I had a low and slow point, but recovered quite nicely, expecting to be 20 minutes overtime with a lot of extra distance. Unfortunately the 20 minutes made all the difference, with a big storm directly overhead the airfield when I returned. Aussie base reported all clear on the other side of the rain with 20k to run and 2000ft over glide, so I switched to the CTAF and headed in, still without sight of the field. In the meantime the heavens opened up and the rain thickened and intensified completely covering the finish. I got to 800m of the 3k finish ring before bailing out because of zero visibility in the torrential rain, off the clock sink and uncontrollable turbulence. I turned around, still 1200ft over glide and tried to head a bit further north to come in from a different angle, but was dumped even harder and did another 180, clearing the heavy sink at 1000ft to fly as far as I could from the storm and turbulence before dropping it into a wheat field. Unfortunately lost an undercarriage door and a lot of pride to the crop (everywhere still has the crops in), but Mirek was kind enough to do the replacement before tomorrow’s flying.

Thanks to all for the retrieve in torrential rain...”

ZZ bliksem

lightning in the back ground, while gliders finished
Picture courtesy Gliding Sport.

The results were as the day…..changeable. A lot of expected TOPPERS are not yet flying at their standard, others are ” bloody good”. As those 2 Polish pilots but let’s look at it class by class.

15 m; Sebastian started at 14.15 which is looking at the times rather late. Together with him his mate Jacek went on track and Mac was with them, as well as the 2 French Jean Denis and Christophe and a few more.
They all must have stayed more or less together , as they landed about the same times, BUT in between  Sebastian flew the most kilometers; 442.9 in 3.20 so a speed of 132.5 km./h. in his Polish Diana over Polish soil. Could that go wrong???????
Sebastian in the Diana 2 had the first 1000 points for this comps. Mac had 940 and Jacek 875.
6 Outlandings, 3 real and 3 virtual by infringements.

Overall Sebastian leads with less than 100 points on Mac and about 120 on Leigh.

18 m; A great day for the Polish pilots with both Karol and Lucasz gaining the 1000 points in this class, flying 420 km. in 3.01 so a nice speed of 139.2 km./h!!!!
All pilots counted for…. so no outlandings no penalty points and no infringements.

Overall Karol is ,of course , on top of the list , winning 2 days, followed by Lucasz and Peter [Hartmann] from Austria.

Open class;a real FRENCH day as all 3 French pilots including the current world champion Laurent, flew in as the best.
485 km. for the 3 of them with a speed of  139 km./h. Laurent won in the Quintus M ,followed by Killian in the JS 1-c and Sylvain in the Quintus M.
Laurens was best of the rest followed by the 2 UK pilots Pete and Andy.
Good old Uli did well on 7 and good old Dick in the CONCORDIA was on spot 8.

Overall Killian leads after 2 days before Laurent with Laurens as great 3d. Ronald unfortunately dropped from 1 to 9 and equals that place with the , Broquevilles.
BUT IT IS NOT OVER YET, it just started!!!!!
3 Out landings, 2 real , one by infringement and 1 pilot got ZERO points as he missed the start line.

What happened more on Monday;

—–Got some lovely pictures from Anthonies mum Faye. Anthony aka, Fal, aka Tugger, is a dad now. He was one of our tuggies in the past in the Sportavia-time,  flying as as an airline pilot in Australia from Sidney now.
—–Very wet in Europe today. Guess Germany and Holland got the full load with extreme down pours up to over 150 ml. at places . The 150 ml. was here in Alphen and yes it was really wet here.
Amsterdam was like little Venice at some places.
Flooding-damage-bill ONLY in Holland and only for the houses; 10 million Euro!
—–still troubles to go to the disaster area, to find the last bodies from flight MH 17. It’s a shame they continue fighting there so nobody can do any kind of investigation.
—–it rained at the German Women Nationals.


Starting again with the winners from the day before.

ZZ day 2 winners

As shared by the organizers.Like the way they do this!!!!

Tasks for this Tuesday; 2.15 AAT for 15 m. and for both 18 m. and open a 2.00 AAT.
So another so-so-day, a look-alike from the day before with showers in the afternoon. Tricky but interesting … other day on which points can be very expensive, as there is no excuse for mistakes.
A misty morning with early low cloud which is slowly burning off. They expected again a tropical airmass with the convergence line to the north. Also Cirrus again…. expected coming from the south. Pressure had dropped and there was a chance of storms when the temperature reached 30 deg.C.
Gliders are put in the grid early again , as it is a bit cooler then.

On days like this with a short task and unpredictable  weather,  the start time/game is important and you should get as pilot ALL weather info , and on top of that you should look as  pilot EXTRA with your own eyes how this weather develops.

The first hour the clouds developed perfect and happy pilots send messages from good lift ; 2/3 m. average. In open class one of the trackers was given to Dick, so everybody could follow the CONCORDIA.
In the end,no thunderstorm in  the- end- of -day , so only 3 out-landings in total and one violation.

15 m.; The French had another good day and finished nearly at the dot with 247 km. Mac is still in winning mood and was 3d.Good to see Stefano more in the top now.
Points between 195 for the out-lander Olivier from Belgium and 708 for Christophe the daily winner.
Overall scores after 3 days; Sebastian [2429] , Mac [2389] and Leigh [2365].

18 m.; Tom Claffey flew 257 km in 2.11 [speed 117.7 km/h.] and won the day  [673 points]! Karol had 10 points less and Robert [Schroeder] from Germany was only ONE point behind Karol. 2 Out-landings in this class and overall it looks after 3 days like this;
Karol [2478] Lucasz [2430] and Peter [ 2371] The UK pilots Mike and Russell are following and then on 6 young Aku from Finland. Good on him!!!

ZZ tom

Tom Claffey as shared by the Aussies.

And HIS story.
Mixed 18M day. The forecast was for a fairly late start with strong risk of storms. Only a two hour AAT was set for 18M, 2.15hr for 15M. Once launched we went along the first leg looking at conditions, very weak and improving slowly. It seemed from the sky that the storms may not happen so we played the start game, wanting to fly with company. Anyway, our gaggle finally left 1hr-18mins after the gate opened! Good first leg with the Germans and others, then when they started a large deviation to fly around a big blue hole I went straight, risky move and Ben [Loxton] did the conservative thing and went with the group. As it happens it worked for me and I spent the next half of the flight largely alone. Ben had dropped back a bit but we were opposite direction not long after I left the last sector. I was in a great climb when a large gaggle passed by above and below me without stopping, I must have been in a bubble. I was able to almost get to the front of the gaggle with a good final glide while Ben got stuck with the weakening conditions behind. Great confidence boost to get a day win but I really would like a 1000 points some day. (In Uvalde the two days were penalized then devalued.) – Tom

open class; Andy Davis won the day with 264 km in 2.15 gaining the most points ; 703. Killian missed out on only 3 points on him and Laurent, Laurens and Uli  followed.
Killian still on top overall with 2602 points, followed by Laurent 2577 and Laurens 2528. Dick was only on spot 30, so having a tracker did n’t do the CONCORDIA much good.
The very long wings need more long distances. Hope they will come.
The first EB 29′s from Uli and Michael [Sommer] are overall on spot 7 and 8. The first 6 places are for the JS 1-C’s  and the Quintus M’s.

ZZ Dick

The CONCORDIA with Dick.
Courtesy Studio LTV Jacek Lewinsky, what a great picture!!!!

What happened more on Tuesday?

—-really bad and wet weather in the Alps. Still pretty good in Scandinavia and nearly a miracle that they have tasks in Poland. They are about the only ones where the weather is reasonable , in the middle of Europe.
—- the morning  briefing at 10.15 was in the presence of  Susanne [Schoedel] the FAI Secretary General who visits Poland for a few days.She participated first in the Red Bull Air Races , visited the World Gliding Aerobatic Championships and was then in Leszno, to also say hello to the glider pilots. Last WGC in Uvalde she still flew herself !!! A ” good ” lady for our sport!
—-Lasham had a good day with Dave Masson flying 570 [484 k. FAI]  in the LS6 WL.
—the women in Germany “tried” , but it did not work out. Another scrubbed day!
As Natasja our Dutch participant mentioned:
” Another cancelled flying day; third in row. Thunderstorms are haunting the area for days now. On the airfield ánd campsite we are fighting of the mosquitoes which are with thousands and weaponed with little stings that even goes through textile! Bastards! So this morning I marinated myself with Autan, Bugspray, Flyswatter and all other chemical stuff I could find in the shop.”
But she still has the right spirit: Let’s kick some ass. @ German National Championships Gliding Woman.” 

WEDNESDAY July 30 2014;

Yesterday’s winners

ZZ winners day 3

Tasks for today are “small” again; 2 hour AAT’s for all classes.

CU next Wednesday with news from Poland as I will travel to Leszno on Friday. Be there 2 FULL days and go back on Monday again, hopefully with some nice stories for you ,though I go this time as a REAL visitor, no laptop just looking at a WGC as a guest.No jobs.
Only making pictures , listening, and catching up with a lot of mates.

Cheers Ritz

July 23, 2014

MH 17!Retrospect on comps, comps in progress and final results from EUROGLIDE 2014 !

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:29 pm

TODAY Wednesday July 23 is a day of NATIONAL PUBLIC MOURNING for the first MH 17 passengers who arrive this afternoon at 4 at Eindhoven Airport. One minute of silence at 4 in Holland where ever possible,[ planes will not start, busses/coaches will wait a minute, so do the trains]!!!!
Flags half-mast.
A Dutch Hercules and an Australian Boeing C-17 Globemaster will bring the first bodies to Eindhoven.
It will be a tough day!!!!A day of National Mourning has not been set in Holland since 1962.
Our Dutch royals, government officials and families of the passengers will be at the tarmac when the remains arrive. After a solemn ceremony, the bodies will be taken in more than 60 hearses, to a military facility for forensic testing in Hilversum.
The main road from Eindhoven to Hilversum will be closed at that time.The airfield at Eindhoven will be closed for all traffic between 15.45 and 18.00.
Words fail……..a nation in mourning! A world in mourning, as ALL bodies will be going back home via Holland!


All around 1200 wind mills in Holland will be in mourning-stand/state.
Picture shared by the Wind mill association.

BUT<…life continues and it is good to go away for a couple of days to clear the mind, so I managed to organize with help from Frans and my daughter Inge to get a ticket and a room for Leszno flying to POZNAN on Friday August 1 arriving in the evening at Leszno and departing again on Monday August 4 in the afternoon.
Looking forward to that!!!!!!

More comps are on , a few have finished again. A short retrospect and a look at what’s going on at the moment.

During the SUMMER COMPS at Malden in Holland, the pilots had after a no-or-nearly-no-points-day-1, a long task on their day 2.
Though to be honest the 137.1 km . from Nick Hanenburg on day 1 you can only call GOOD; he deserved more than the  54 points he got , as the runner up ” only”  flew 82.1 km.
306 km. was set for club class and the winner was,….Steven Huiskes , [St. Cirrus] who flew in the past JWGC and WGC [ Uvalde] . Patrick [LS1f ....was Dutch National Champion and flew JWGC as well ]  was now the runner up with 988 points. Mind you Steven is still a JUNIOR .
In open class 364 km. was set and Steven’s dad, Harry [ Ventus 2CX/18m.] put the 1000 points in this class in his pocket.
Next day had a 3 hour AAT won by Steven in club class with 266.5 km. and dad in open class with 341.4 km.
They tried hard to add 2 more days but though they flew 1 more with best distance 50 km. in club  and 86.9 km in open, it was over and out after 3 days.
Results; Steven wins the club class with and Harry the open class with 2000 points.
By the way the club class podium was filled with 3 JUNIORS, Steven, Sander and Nick. Good on them!
2 Of them , Steven and Sander flew the identical -twin-Cirrusses, with call sign  AU and AG. These gliders belong to the Foundation Soaring Events Holland and are fully equipped by the sponsors Glider Equipment and Glider Pilot Shop.

Our TOP juniors!!
Picture shared on their FB site.

The female Nationals in Poland were won by Joanna Biedermann. The ladies were flying on 8 days and day 6 even had a set 500 km. ; unfortunately no finishers but still 474.3 km. by the best pilot of the day.With 2 more over 300 km. days this was a good competition and Joanna had a total of  7201 points and runner up Judyta 6824.

The French club class Nationals are in full swing in Vinon. FULL is maybe too much said, as the first 2 days were cancelled. Day 1 was won by Didier Hauss [Cirrus] and runner up was Gilles Navas.[LS4]  Both fly/flew already in the top for ages.
From the 19 only 6 finished.
The 3 hour AAT yesterday was won with 278.4 km. in time 3.18, by Yvon Puyou in a Pegase and with that  45 points more were scored  on Gilles and 100 on Didier.

In the USA pilots are flying the Club and Modern Class Nationals from  Midlothian in Texas and have flown for 5 days till now, with 2 days to go.
After 5 days Francois Pin leads the club class  in the SILENT 2a, before Danny Sorenson and Boyd Willat, both flying a DISCUS.
In the Modern Class the CD from the WGC in  Uvalde, Ken Sorenson,  nearly won every day and leads with more than 600 points .He flies his Ventus 2 cxa.

Z Texas

As shared by the SSA.

Yesterday started the official training from the WGC in Leszno. They had great weather!!
The Aussies were pleased with ” their weather”.

Z Excellent weather  ZSelfie by Aussies

Great skies and an  (unintentional selfie) after installing the KANGAROO.
Pictures shared by Aussie Team

Fixed tasks from over 500 km. were set;
610 for open, 500 for 15 m and 522.4 for 18 m.That’s called GOOD PRACTICE!!!
In 15 m. it was PHIL JONES, [129 km./h. in Ventus 2cxa] ] this time not Howard or Steve but Phil got the 1000 practice-points.
In 18 m. Mike Young [140.8 km./ ASG 29] and Russell Cheetham ALSO from the UK, were the best and in open class , surprise surprise AGAIN the UK with Pete Harvey in his new JS 1 C  [138 km./h.] and Andy Davis.
Dick Butler in the CONCORDIA was 4th.
Not all pilots did fly on this first official practice/training day.
28 from 47 went up in the air in 15 m. class and 8 outlanded.
In 18 m. 21 pilots had other important things to do, 25 flew and the 2 Belgium pilots Jean Luc and Yves,  out landed [in real or virtual] after 20 km. Werner Meuser after 30 k. Better now then during the WGC.
In open class 18 pilots finished after 606 km.  ,6 ” out landed ” and 13 were otherwise busy.

Today tasks have not been set yet.It looks like 2.30 AAT’s in each class.

They all departed on Monday June 23 and arrived as a team or as sole pilot in 4 classes on different days and times.
HERE are the results of the 2014 EUROGLIDE.

The PURE gliders; 14 teams or gliders
Number 1 and arriving on June 27 at 13.36 UTC, was team Sikko Vermeer, Bart Renckens and Hans Makkee in the DUO DISCUS. The next team arrived one day later on June 28 at 8.05 UTC . They, 2 pilots from Eindhoven Thom and Jacques  flew the LS 6 /15m.

The low turbo’s; 14 teams or gliders
Dirk and Joost Wolf [father and son] and friends Eric Borgmann and Max Bloch arrived on the 26th at 13.10 UTC at Malden in the ARCUS. 2 Teams in a Duo Discus arrived one day later 7 other teams only on July 1.

The high turbo’s; 12 teams or gliders
They did well as 5 teams arrived at June 26 and 3 one day later.
Best team was from Limburg, Robert Werts, Bram Winters and Mathilde van Lieshout. They arrived at 15.34 whilst the other teams arrived at 15.55 and 16.39 and 17.04 and 17.34. That was a real race!!!

The self launchers; 24 teams or gliders
Also here a REAL RACE, as  11 gliders arrived on June 26 at different times. The best time , 12.03 was flown in the Nimbus 4DM by Max Leenders, Wolfert Voet and Marc Ruhe.
Belgium pilot Geert Van Duyse arrived in his ASH 26 E, only half an hour later. Good on him.
3 German teams arrived at 14.36.

Now it is 2 years of waiting before they can all go again. They love EUROGLIDE those pilots.

CU next week,


July 16, 2014

What’s up? Fuente; place to be for a 1000!13x yesterday!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:18 pm

Unfortunately I had no time to see my friends in Finland but I try to be in Leszno for a couple of days! Working hard to organize that. A few pilots have arrived already in Leszno, some are on their way, some are unpacking containers and others are happy and ready  to participate in their 2d 33d FAI WGC. Picture below courtesy Walter Mirasso.

Z Poland

In between several international pilots flew, better said ” visited ”  the annual open Issoudun comps ,as they had BAD weather.
Also the Females had to deal with this weather during their nationals also in Issoudun. They all had only 2 days of soaring, whilst the 18 m. Nationals in Husbos were flown with better weather, which is pretty weird as normally France has the good/better  weather.

The UK Nationals were interesting till the last day! When you have read my last blog in SoaringCafe you know all about it.
Except for the last day as THAT day was last Sunday . Another spectacular last day, with  some unpleasant results for some.
A pretty marginal day with a late start , around 4 o’ clock, to use a ” window”  to the NW. For some a real bad day with finishes up to a quarter after 7 !
Pete Harvey outlanded in this  championship flying an 18 m. class glider, a JS 1 instead of  his open class glider [ he is a real open class pilot!] and dropped from 2 to 5 in the final scores.
Andy Davis had a really good run,looking at the 7 days and finished as the new CHAMPION,  in the JS1.[5439 points]
Russell Cheetham was a good runner up, yes also in the JS 1 ,[ 5268]  but the number 3 ,Stephen Ell flew an ASG 29 . [5239]
The “oldies…. WITH respect” are still doing well.

The 7 th edition of the Tropheo Dello Oltrepo, we are in Italy now [Terme], was won by one of my many Italian mates, Manuele Molinari. He must have been very pleased!
The 14 pilots had 4 pretty difficult days out of 6, not one with the real Italian racing weather and on day 3 Manuele was the only pilot finishing a 2.30 AAT , flying 192 km in 2.48.
Parallel with this competition 8 pilots flew for the National Standard Class title.  Congratulations to Manuele, who won in the Discus and is the new National Champion in standard class.


Manuele in MM, as some of you know “our”  callsign at comps for years.
Pictures courtesy Manuele.

The Dutch SUMMER comps are on and flown from Malden .Normally seen as an upgrade  for the best pilots with enough points,to continue with the Dutch Nationals next year.
Always a great week of soaring over there.
Close to Malden is Nijmegen and the 4 days-of-walking, called the Nijmeegse 4Daagse, with around 43.000 national and international participants  is there this week as well.They started yesterday and the last glorious day for those who make it will be Friday. They will be cheered on by thousands of people.
They walk through Malden as well.
The first soaring-day , Sunday, was cancelled , but the rest of the week looks very promising.It’s going to be HOT!!!
Monday a short task to start with from 150 km. for club and open went for 195 km.
Though short ,…it was still TOO long. No finishers in both classes.

Yesterday was cancelled due to showers [ mixed here with great clouds] and today they are surely flying, no rain, maybe no clouds either , [ it is VERY blue here] but dry thermals can be good as well.However during the day clouds popped up and over 300 km. tasks were set for both classes.


Malden from above.

The 21st Female Nationals in Poland, flown from Ostrow, parallel with Ostrow Glide , had a very difficult day 2 for 10 of the 11 pilots , but not for Joanna [Biedermann]   who was the only pilot to finish the 308.4 km. in the BRAWO.
2 of this kind of glider in this competition , 1 LS 1 f and the rest are St. Jantars.
Ostrow Glide counts 64 participants in 3 classes.
Yesterday the ladies had a 2.30 AAT and both Brawo’s were on the daily top-spots.Joanna leads the pact after 4 days with over 300 points on Judyta who flies the other Brawo.[a Polish glider from the SZD manufacturers]

Another great flight from Mitch Polinsky from Ely in Nevada. He declared a 1257 km. TRIANGLE, but had to abort this task just 35 miles short of the second TP due to a blue hole to reach and fly back from this TP.
He then tried for a large free triangle, but as he said “ I got greedy and went too far north. Difficult return home from Elko, as the day died. Got withint 35 miles of Ely and had to start my engine to get the rest of the way home.”
He still flew 1218 km.

On th 14th of  July Fuentemilanos spoiled it’s guests with great soaring weather over the mountains. Frequent Fuente-pilot Guy Bechtold from Luxembourg flew straight away a 1000 in his Quintus M  to set the level for the Spanish summer. Other guests from the UK and Germany flew over 700 km.
Yesterday it was only Fuentemilanos in the top of the OLC. It ‘s that time of the year again for our Spanish friends and all their guests.
13 x 1000 km. NOT BAD, a good day!
Guy had his 2d Fuente flight and another 1000, this time 1.132 km.[873 FAI]
” Klasse flug”  an”  dia completo’ were some comments; a total of 24 flights from Fuente from 150 km. in an Astir via 300, 500, 600 and 937 in a St.LIBELLE by French guest Pierre Roumet. Good on him!
Pepe nearly flew a 1000 FAI triangle.[1.028 km...939 FAI triangle]
Also Ocana and Villacastin  had super flights .
Spain is hot as I heard from my grand son who is looking for snakes and foxes on a father/son wild-nature -holiday.

When you live IN Australia or are planning an overseas trip TO Australia , this might be of interest for you.
It’s only in November but it seems fun to participate as last year was a great success,:the Speed Week organized by top pilot Paul Mander [ flew the WGC in Rieti in 1985] and attended by other toppers as Ingo Renner, Brad Edwards, both former world champions and Tony Tabart [flew several WGC's]
Last year Alland Barnes and Matt Gage practiced their pair-flying at West Wyalong. They used it in Rayskala this year.


From l. to r.; With Ingo, Tony,Paul, Brad, Tom and 2 others, in front of Brad’s jet.
Courtesy Paul Mander .

-—”Only 120 sleeps until SpeedWeek, and the good news is that we will again have both our world champions, INGO RENNER and BRAD EDWARDS, as our special guests. Participants will have a week of flying in Ingo’s company, and on our Meet the Stars evening in a casual environment have the opportunity to pick their brains on matters gliding. This is a repeat of the event of last year, which was a huge success thanks to these two legends of our sport. TONY TABART will be there too.

 If you meet the criteria and have an independent operators rating then you may like to consider furthering your cross country skills by participating in Speed Week.  This is run by Paul Mander in a relaxed and friendly environment. The aim is not to win but to improve your own performance.
The venue is West Wyalong, a glider pilot’s heaven. It has a marvellous airport with almost no traffic, a welcoming community and plenty of good accommodation, well priced.
The dates are November 9th to 15th inclusive.

You are up to date with the latest day-to-day-news, CU next Wednesday here, or earlier on Sunday on
Cheers Ritz

July 9, 2014

WGC’s and Norwegian Nationals!Interesting start of 20 m. in FAI-WGC’s!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:20 pm

After the exciting 33d WGC in Finland we are looking ahead at Poland where in Leszno the “other”  33d WGC will be flown.
The official training starts on July 22 and the competition on July 27. Last day is August 9 and prize giving in the morning from August 10.
The opening ceremony is in the evening of July 26 and the farewell party at August 9.
President of the jury will be Peter Ryder and he forms the jury with Fred Gai and Angel Casado .
Robert Danewid is the chief steward and Jaroslav Vach the steward.

Only a few days to go and  Leszno is the place to keep an eye on. Preparations are mostly done and several pilots travel straight from Rayskala to Leszno to participate AGAIN.
Open class has 37 pilots, 18 m. has 45 and 15 m. a total of  48.

The contest Director of the 33rd World Gliding Championships in Leszno 2014 is Dariusz Cisek.

ZLeszno 1




Z rayskala by Tijl

Once again,…..Rayskala airport as seen bij Tijl Schmelzer.

Wrote 3 blogs on  about the last days on Rayskala and I loved doing that, as after the rain and waiting and more waiting, finally the great weather gave pilots crews and organizers a better much better feeling. Me too.
Great winners in each class ;strong teams from France, the UK and Belgium and with a bit more luck the German pilots in club class would have been in the top as well.

The prize for the best team went as expected to the UK [6494 points] .They really had a GOOD competition with high places in all classes.
The second best country was France and Sweden,Poland and Finland followed with the Dutch on spot 7 and the Germans on spot 9.

I did not write about the very last day’s winner so here we are.
The last competition day last Saturday and the best one looking at the weather, was won in 20 m. by the French team Marc and Jeremy [Arcus S]  with 6 points ahead on the ” every-day-winners”  Steve and Howard.
Overall the Jones brothers were TOO good and for the first time in history 2 pilots in one glider got a medal.
The newest 20 m. class in our FAI-WGC sport was welcomed by many and it was interesting for us to follow.

In club class the USA pilots had a great run on the last day and our Dutch glider NL1, flown by Sean won the day with Garret on his heels/tail.[12 points behind]
Aussie pilots Adam and Eric, both spending a lot of time, money ,effort and fun in this competition for them so far from home, had mixed results. Eric helped Adam after his outlandings in the beginning and he ended on spot 23, Eric on 35. It might be a bit disappointing for them those places, but I know they had the time of their lives.That’s worth a lot too and experience helps for the next WGC.

ZAdam and Eric

Team mates Adam and Eric.

Adam mentioned after arrival on day 1 from the comps;
” 4yrs ago I set the goal to be here competing for AUS in Club Class, I then did 2yrs of qualification competitions (being selected at 94%), followed by the pre-worlds last year, & preparation plus to be here on every available weekend & competition in the lead up.Feeling good, positive & ready! ” 

In standard class a great result for Bert jr. and his family. He did NOT win the last day but Mario Kiesling from Germany did. Bert was 5th, Tijl 10th and Sebastian 12th that last day.In the end the difference between spot 1 and 2 was 31 points. Sebastian knows already the feeling from winning so well, I am pleased Bert won this WGC,  not taking away any of Sebastian’s skills during this competition. He WON 3 days, whilst Bert did not win one but over the 7 days flew more consistent.
He not only flies well, but makes great pictures which you can see in his book ONE YEAR OF GLIDING , combined with interesting text.
By the way dad ,  Bert sr. , wrote some kind of encyclopedia-book over the history of Soaring in Flanders.


Schmelzers at Rayskala

Bert en Tijl during the international party

Z Tijl 1  Z Tijl 2

2 Great pictures from brother Tijl this time, from his first landing after 5 years at Rayskala and during flight.

The Final party must have been a great success. I read on Eric’s site :
” I’m wondering just how many will be in fit state to attend considering the success of last night’s end-of-comp-party“.

In a thank you message Bert jr says THANK you and I share the message with you;
” Dear friends

I would like to thank every single one of you for your massive support during, and the uncountable congratulations after the World Gliding Championships in Räyskälä.

We had an amazing time in the “country of 1.000 lakes”: beginning with snow and antifreeze in the wings during the longest day of the year, many difficult flying days with lots of rain showers and unsuccessful fishing expeditions in the middle part of the comp, and finally we were rewarded with fantastic conditions and exhilarating final glides during the decisive tasks.

Without the help of my parents, Hilde and Bert Sr., and of course my girlfriend, Barbara, all of this would not have been possible. Thank you so much.
In particular I would like to thank my brother, Tijl: “Little brother, unfortunately, there can only be one person on the highest step of the podium, but this title belongs to the both of us !”


Z Bert en Tijl and dad

Bert jr. and Tijl and dad Bert sr. a combined effort even carrying the prizes !!!!
As shared by them.

Rayskala is back to normal and the local pilots fly from their own field again. Yesterday young Petri [tuggie and glider pilot] flew in an LS 6 500 km and another friend from Rayskala Hannu 488 in the ASG 29/18m. It looks like the weather is better now and that the real Finnish summer has started.
The day before German pilot Jan Rothhard flew a 1000 in Finland [508 FAI triangle] from Menkijarvi in the 16 m. Ventus BT.Good on him ! And a 976 km flight from Teisko was good too [Ventus 2C /18m]

The Norwegian Nationals are over and Arne Martin is the new National Champion in OPEN CLASS;

Z Norway Arne
Here is his story:

” After having tried my luck in the sports class of the Norwegian Gliding Championship, this year I was going to try my luck with the big boys in open class. Both classes allow all gliders, and uses handicaps to try to compensate for performance difference between the gliders. The difference being that sports class is more targeted at more inexperienced pilots, with shorter tasks and no water ballast allowed. Open class is where the most experienced pilots are competing, so for the first time I would go up against those. This is the elite of Norwegian Gliding! I wasn’t the only first time competitor to the class, in addition to me, Per Morten Løvsland and Kristoffer Samuelsen were participating. Not only where we less experienced than the others, we were also flying the lowest performance gliders (15 m unflapped gliders, Discus for me and Kristoffer, LS 8 for Per Morten) against mostly flapped competitors with 18 m wingspan and more. All 3 of us have been flying a lot of Condor: The Competition Soaring Simulator, which somewhat makes up for our less experience. But no doubt it was going to be a challenge to go up against the big boys in their big planes!”
He has made a great story with pictures and here are a few already.

ZZArne 3  ZZArne 4

After 3 cancelled days the pilots were preparing their glider for the first flying day and,…flying over the many trees in beautiful Norway.

ZZArne 2  ZZArne1

Not all went well, some had to out land, but others made it and finished.

The link to the full story AND 59 pictures;

More Nationals or other interesting comps are flown at the moment, and for the scores you can go to
Italy—- the Standard Class Nationals and 2 other comps from Terme
France —-the French Nationals for women
France—-the International Issoudun
Czech Rep —- 3 comps with a total of 76 participants
The UK —-with the 18 m. Nationals
Bosnie-Herzegovina—-with the LIVNO Adria Cup
And more.

The latest Gliding International, edition July-August, arrived from New Zealand on my doormat with lot’s of new news!
—Elke Fuglsang-Petersen shines her light over soaring in Germany and the USA looking at it from all angles.
—the tragic tale of Langley’s Aerodrome by veteran journalist and recreational glider pilot Rod Dew
—Aldo’s view on the ARCUS, specially on the ARCUS E over 8 pages including pictures
—the double spread picture in the middle is for another 2 seater; the ASG 32
—solving the problems for high costs in towing…the Beaufort Gliding Clubs [Australia] HORNET GLIDER TUG…
—AND  more news on tugs……the view from Bob Ward on alternatives for thirsty Pawnees

and much more as the SUNFLYER and SUNSEEKER…..the 13.5 m. Sparrow Hawk….a motor glider story about a brush with the law….and lot’s of world news and of course the quick 3-liners in  “things with wings”.

And to finish this great picture from Eddy from Sportaviation in Tocumwal.His hangars and the rainbow!

Z Sportaviation

CU next Wednesday, cheers Ritz

July 2, 2014

“A nap is recommended!”on another rainy day in Rayskala.

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 7:34 pm

Hi all,back on track after a short but good and relaxing break.No laptop and NO idea what was going on! Only soccer was updated via our TV in the house. And we did and are still doing well in that sport.

Z USA team

USA pilot Sean Franke is flying Dutch glider NL1 at the 33d WGC in Rayskala.
courtesy Wings and Wheels via FB.

With over 100 messages I needed the weekend to read it all and to be honest I was still busy on Monday. Had a quick look and analysed the first week in Rayskala  in my blog on SoaringCafe.

On Monday I followed at home the live stream on the WGC site from the briefing and could see Heikki as CD and weatherman. The last function is how I met him and he is a REAL good meteo-guy. It looks he is doing a great job as CD too.
Amazing to be sitting at home and be able to follow the briefing. CRAZY!!! BUT GOOD!!!

The weather unfortunately is this year not Heikki’s  friend but it looks better for the rest of the week and he hoped for a total of 8 days of WGC flying.So another 4!!!
Anyhow Monday was cancelled and the message was …..” TOO MUCH MOIST from a slowly passing low pressure system moving to the East.”
A nap was recommended! I guess under a blanket with only 10 dgr.


Picture courtesy South African team.

Tuesday…July 1
After the rest , the visits to cultural places as castles , fun places as the GO kart,[by the way I raced there in the past as well!!]  and a City tour,or looking at the World comps soccer, it was time for SOARING again!!! There ” could” be a small window to the W, depending if they ” could ”  launch and stay up at Rayskala. A and B tasks were handed out at the briefing but they decided already then,  that it would be task B …a 2 hour AAT for all classes.

Z castle   Z Go kart

The Hameenlina Castle and the Go Cart race court was visited by the Aussie team
Pictures shared by Mike Codling.

Z Tour   Z Soccer

City tour by Argentinian pilot Damian and his friends as shared by Marcelo Lanzinetti or looking at  SOCCER. Picture shared by the organizers.

What ever they wished and hoped for even the 2 hour AAT was not on. A pity. As they mentioned on their side this is the coldest summer since years!
” Past two weeks have been record breaking  cold in Finland – last time the end of June has been so cold is over 50 years ago.” 


Picture shared by the Aussie team.
Today We have patches of sun and the satellite picture is improved, with some generous optimism we may see some flying.”
by Adam.

Wednesday….today! Let’s see if that’s going to happen!
They set 300 km. A-tasks , for this flying day 5 , so that ‘s a good beginning;
331 km. for the dual pilots, 253.4 for club and standard pilots go for 314.4 km!!!
Unfortunately light showers postponed the first launches, but  they still have B tasks if necessary.
Whilst writing they changed to the B tasks ; AAT’s. First start should be at 1.15.
You can have a look at the scores on  or  at the WGC site.

Z Joke Finland

As you can see the Finnish spirit is still OK.

The weather however was no so bad in other parts of Europe.
P.E Holland had superb weather and pilots had placed their gliders upfront in the hangar to be the first to be launched on Tuesday morning.OVER 800 km. FAI triangle was flown in Holland in the Nimbus 4Dm and over 700 in the Duo Discus.
HOWEVER as Max the pilot from the Nimbus 4DM mentioned it was not as good as it looked and we were pretty slow , but we did it. They were in the air for under 10 hours .
6 Times 1000 was flown from Germany in different gliders from  Discus 2T/18m., to ASH 25 E/26 m. [ 1000 km FAI triangle!] and once from Luxembourg by kilometer eater Guy Bechtold in the Quintus M.
Over 800 km. [750 FAI] in a Libelle and St Cirrus are just GOOD!!!

The Norwegian Championships in open class  have started but the pilots did not fly till today.After 3 cancelled days it looks , seeing this picture shared by Arne Martin, that they are going to fly .

Z Norway

EUROGLIDE. As said in my soaring cafe blog the fastest pilots were back in 4 days and flew over 2000km.. The prize giving is in a few weeks .
The last ” heroes of the long distance”  are still flying in at the airports of Malden. Here is the team from Eindhoven , Deelen and Rotterdam as seen by Frouwke Kuijpers .What I heard they are tired but VERY happy.
Still a few flying  over France and Belgium, but the weather forecast  is GOOD!!! They are going to make it in time  as the last day is July 5.

z Euroglide Eindhoven   Z Euroglide R en D

Finish with SOCCER again.Loved the match between Belgium and the USA last night, but also between Argentina and Switzerland.It only does n’t give me enough  sleep.The quality of the games is higher and higher and it means that Friday and specially Saturday when the Dutch Orange Lions play against Costa Rica  and the Belgian Red Devils against Argentina  millions will miss out on  a decent night of sleep.But who cares,…the World-championships are only once in 4 years!

CU next Sunday in Soaring CAFE, cheers Ritz
On Wednesday July 2 2014 , the day my 10 year old granddaughter Indya is send off by all children and teachers from the school she happily spend 7 years on ,  ready to continue on grammar school [ still at age 10]  AND the day before our son/brother would have turned 45.

June 18, 2014

Crossing the Alps with the Eders! A gliders tale!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 6:45 am

TWO blogs today, my regular Wednesday blog , which you find below this remarkable story I got from Sebastian ,about  a mission he finally fulfilled AND …..together with his dad.

The links to the OLC  from the flights to and back and the pictures are going with it.
Those pictures are SPECTACULAR!!!!! And,…a short story goes with them!

As Sebastian said in the end;

” We made it.Till the last 2 hours I did n’t really believe it would be possible, but our team effort made it happen!!!
A truly wonderful moment!” 


A TEAM-effort!


There,….and back again ….a gliders tale!

—— I thought I would contribute to your blog and tell you about a mission I was looking forward to for a long time now.
As a junior I was in St.Auban for our national junior training camp with Karl Rabeder a couple of times. On two occasions I tried to fly from there to Austria at the end of the training camp instead of driving all the way.
2006 I got to Innsbruck, 2007 to Samedan.
Since then me and my dad were talking about doing a team-flight from our home-airfield at the Austrian-German-Check Republic-border (Schärding- Suben: LOLS) through the alps to the Provence and back.

10 days ago (07.06) we finally attempted this exciting adventure: Crossing the alps from Upper Austria passing Zell am See, Zernez, Ambri, Zermatt, Bardoneccia and landing in Puimoisson.
The conditions in Austria and Engadin were marvelous, but got worse all the way from there.
From Rheintal to Mattertal the air was getting more stable and warm which slowed us down and finally in the Aostavalley a thick overcast darkened the sky.
A friend of ours, Philipp Keller who started 100km west of us close to Unterwössen, sadly had to land in Aosta and we could just barely get to the last thermals above the ridges before they died down in the whole area.
After crossing into the Modane-valley we had one final thermal all the way to Lac de Serre-Pocon where we could find some lift at the ridges below Mount Morgon that got us to Puimoisson.
As my gliding-calculator finally told me that we would make it I almost couldn’t believe it after such a long time without sun, but the Provence is somewhat special. It seems to generate lift without any energy-input.
One just has to love the French Alps :)

Alfred Spindelberger, Helmar Gai and many others were extremely welcoming and helped us with everything we could possibly want.
As a bonus Swiss friends of ours (Felix Schneebeli, Stefan Sidler, Jürgen Haas, and others) came to Puimoisson that evening for a week of vacation. So the night got a little longer than we expected, but we were delighted to meet so many friends so unexpectedly.

The next day (08.06) we tried to do the exact same route back, but got delayed due to a late thermal-start in Provence and a warm airmass all the way north until Engadin.
After crossing from the Aosta-valley to the Rhonevalley , we allready heard our Austrian friends on the radio talking about the exciting conditions in Austria and Engadin.
While we were working thermals between 1,3 and 2,0m/s, which seemed to be determined not to be nice and round, we heard them talking about cloudbase above 4.500m MSL and thermals up to 6m/s.
As we finally reached the Engadin , there was a big rain shower in the area of Samedan, so we had to stay north and got the last few thermals with 3m/s. as the air was already dying and we still had quite a long way to go.

The high cloudbase helped us jumping easily over the ötztaler and zillertaler mountains to the Ennstal.
There we caught the last thermals of the day to prolong our glide east.
Together with an eagle I worked the last 0,3m/s thermal to get a final glide to an airfield in the Eastern part of the Alps to start my engine and also have an easy way out of the Alps heading north.

At 20:15 local I got to the airfield of Niederöblarn 130km South-East of my airfield,  where I started my engine to get home before ECET at 21:30 LOC.
After 9:30 hours of flight I got to Schärding-Suben (LOLS) where my dad already was having a cold beer while waiting for me, as he had to use his engine a little earlier in the Area of Dachstein.

The conditions were far from the great forecasts, but allowed us to do these two wonderful flights which I will look back to for a long time. Maybe even more so because of the unexpected difficulties and surely because of the wonderful sceneries we got to witness (Dom, Matterhorn, Ecrins, etc.). 
Most of all I value, that me and my dad, who will be my teampartner at the WGC in Leszno later this year as well, could experience this adventure together.

At I made an album with photos of the flight to Puimoisson ->
On the way back to Austria we didn’t make any pictures as we simply had no time to do so :))

OLC-Link Suben-Puimoisson:
OLC-Link Puimoisson-Suben:

Greetings from Austria,

Thank you SO much Sebastian and good luck together with dad in Leszno at the World Comps. They both fly in open class,  father Josef in the EB 29 [FJ]  and Sebastian in the ASW 22 BLE.[BY]

The Wednesday blog follows now. Enough to read when I am on a holiday.

Cheers Ritz

“1000 km…Thank you dad for the glider today”!! Rayskala pilots are ready for WGC! Varese QGP!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 5:27 am

Last weekend the Amstel Glide Grand Prix 2014 was flown from Soesterberg in 3 classes. The weather was reasonable , the pilots ready for a nice day of competition soaring!

z Amstel glide 3

    the ASW 22 BLE /27 m. XXL
Courtesy Frans Guise!

The regatta start in the combi class was at 2.48 PM and 13 pilots went for a 244 km. long task in planes as Duo Discus, Discus, LS 8 and ASW 24 .
The Duo Discus T from Philippe and Neander was back after 3 hours and  9 minutes and 57 seconds and they were the best and got the 6 points.The rest needed at least 14 minutes more. Only 6 pilots finished.

In club class 10 pilots and the regatta start was at 2.58 PM. Glider AG , a St Cirrus, won with Nick Hanenburg in it . He is a member of our Junior squad.
186 .5 km for them and he flew the distance in 2.54.56. Some other pilots flew 1 hour longer and a few out landed.

By the way the St Cirrus with call sign AG, AND  the AU also a St. Cirrus are owned by the GLIDING Netherlands Foundation Event ….I will come back on this foundation closer to the JWGC in Narromine, but when you are interested , you can read all about it already on the junior site under ” airplanes ”  at
It’s available in English!!!
This foundation takes care of the young squad-pilots , depending on club gliders for comps [National and International] and when nothing is available this foundation can  help!!!


Both St .Cirrus’ are owned by a foundation for special use by the juniors.

In open class 268.2 km. and a start at 15.08 for 6 pilots and from them 2 finished gaining 2 and 1 point[s]
Sikko in the ASG 29 won the day in 2.58,38 and the runner up Matthijs [Ventus CT] needed 15 minutes more!
Some great pictures from the finishes at Amstel Glide by FRANS GUISE!!!!


  z Amstelglide 2   Z Amstel glide 1

ASG 29  M2 from Sikko ………..and …………..the Discus CS MP from Erwin.

A 500 km. O&R  record attempt was tried by Arne Boye Moeller from Denmark.
Here is the story he shared on FB, for those who ” hate”  FB.
Conditions looked favorable Saturday June 14th for an out-and-return 500 km. record attempt form my home club in Herning to Hamburg in Germany.
Crossing from the southern Jutland peninsula into Germany’s Schleswig ditto is always an interesting adventure with the often wet lowlands, channels and erratic thermal energy distribution.
This day the wind was from the NNE with thermals yielding 1-2.5m/s and luckily more convergence than hoped for.
After having run to the south with 144 kph I had to divert all the way to the west coast in Germany and run the wet seabreeze until the prevailing winds won over the sea-breeze well into Denmark again. With 117kph average I believe I have broken the old 98 kph record.”
He added some great pictures with a story ;

Z Arne 1

The evening before, a huge cloudstreet told us something about the instable airmass passing Denmark

Z Arne 2  Z Arne 3

                      Oh…clear nights heralds clear airmass!
                                              Having just turned Itzehoe, suburb to Hamburg.                                  

Z Arne 4   

A view of the river Elbe emptying into the North Sea with Kieler Channel from the Baltic Sea joining in the confluence.

Z Arne 5  Z Arne 6

Looks doable…just before the seabreeze roared in                                  The Kieler channel 

Z Arne 7  Z Arne 8

Here comes the seabreeze.                                                                              Oh what joy!                        


Z Varese opening  Z Varese opening 2

The opening in Varese with CD Giorgio Ballarati to the r. And great food to share!
As shared by the organizers

I left you with the 2 practice days of the Varese Qualifying Grand Prix last Sunday in ” THE CAFE”.
At Sunday they started with their Italian week of qualifying for the FINAL in their own VARESE in 2015!

At the briefing they got a task from 197.4 km. and the announcement for the first start at 2 PM. Thomas [Gostner] was ready for it though the weather predictions said ” heavy thunderstorms”. Anyhow the sun was shining and there was hope!

In vain!!! They did not fly!

Z Varese briefing  z Varese thomas

Briefing and Giorgio [Galetto] and his mates pay full attention and Thomas and crew are ready to go.
Pictures shared by the organizers.

On Monday they had a briefing but at the same announcement was said that the weather was so-so. Anyhow 172 km. was set for the first flyable day.
AND,…the skies looked great according to the CD Giorgio . The regatta- start opened at 2.15 PM.
The weather turned out even better then expected!!! So before they knew the pilots were back again!!
Peter Hartmann, who has had such great flights lately, was the first to return already at 3.45 with  a speed of 1.08 km./h. !!! The first 10 Points in Varese!!!

His Austrian Mate Werner Amann arrived, not much later and got the 8 points. Italian pilot Ricardo Brigliadori got the 7 points.

Z Varese skies

Indeed good looking skies.BUT,…later we heard not all clouds worked properly!
As shared by the Varese Organizers.

On Tuesday the briefing was reset for 2 PM. and after Giorgio had a sniffer-flight the day was cancelled.
For more short news from the CD Giorgio and the scores; 

And at

RAYSKALA….. 33d FAI WGC in Finland

In between,  most pilots have arrived in Rayskala for the WGC  one of the 2 FAI TOP EVENTS in our soaring world this year and the weather welcomed them in a better way ,after the early- birds had seen more than enough ENOUGH rain!!
Cold nights though [ 4 plus C.]  , but finally the by Finland-connaisseurs,  expected better conditions.

One of our Dutch pilots , Alfred Paul, shared some great pictures from his very first flight in Finland on the day BEFORE!!!
The day AFTER,  his 2d flight ,  he flew 628 km. AND ….saw the East and West Coast of Finland.

z Rayskala1  zRayskala 2 bu AP

As shared by Alfred Paul on day 1


on day 2

Z AP 2  Z AP1

It was,…as I said to my Aussie friends already, ” just ”  waiting for the days to come.
Sunday one of those days  was  there; 646 in a Discus, 780 in an ASG 29/18 m.
Guilherme  Purnhagen from Brasil [Bahia Gliding!] had his first practice- flight in the Discus 2T and was just HAPPY; 504 km.
Mannie from South Africa is in Rayskala to fly the ARCUS with German pilot Martin Lesle who spends his winters in South Africa and they had a good day to start with ;266 km.
Still not the super weather as some pilots had to deal with sea-breeze, parts of dead -air  with 8/8 of cu’s, but at least they practiced and some flew for 8 hours.

Z rayskala by Tijl   Z rayskala by Tijl 2

First impressions from the airport and the area, shared by Tijl Schmelzer from Belgium

On Monday they started with an unofficial training day WITH a briefing at 10 AM,  scrutineering started at 12 and you could register in the competition office from 9 AM onwards. Good day for jobs as the weather was not as good as the day before, as you can see on the pictures.

Z Adam  Z Rayskala at 12

In the morning and at noon. Fast changing circumstances, as shared by Adam and the organizers.

On Tuesday they woke up with sleet!!!! Snow yes in summer, and during all the years I have been there I did not see any snow!!!!You nearly needed glasses to see the white powder but it was there.But ,..after the snow there was sun again and a 3 hour AAT was set.

IT”S ABOUT TO BEGIN this 33d WGC !!!!!!!!! I will miss the first week, but there will be MORE than enough news.
Official news on ;
All teams have their own site or FB site. Enjoy, you don’t have to miss anything!!!!!
And when you are on the WGC site have a look at the ” head ”  WINGLET, great stories one about the history of the PIK 20  THE FINNISH STAR of the 1976 worlds by Jiri Raivio. Good reading!

z Raysk briefing

first briefing on unofficial practice day.


I am also going to miss the start and finish of the 2014 EUROGLIDE!!!! Already the 12th edition!!!
A pity, but for sure you keep an eye on it yourself. Here is the link; 

70 Gliders with teams existing out of 2 till 6 pilots per glider leave on Monday May 23 and have the time to fly the over 2000 km distance till July 5.

Contrary to a standard gliding competition, when each day a task is flown from the same airfield, Euroglide has only one task of approximately 2000 km:”Departure, round the turn-points and return  as soon as possible, but at latest on the last competition day.”
They have changed the start location this year due to the huge amount of competitors …
Now there are three start airfields instead of one: Eindhoven (Selflaunchers and Low Turbos), Malden (Gliders) and Venlo (High Turbos).
The “equal opportunity for all“, has changed to “equal opportunity per class” now.
The finish will be in Malden.

There are participants from several countries as Belgium, France, Germany, Denmark, the UK, Canada [ my friend Jos specially arrives from Canada to be part of this edition in a Dutch glider a Duo Discus,  with his former EAC mates] , Slovakia and Holland.
And these pilots fly a numerous type of gliders.


Last Sunday was a good soaring-day with several 1000 km. flights [ 7 in Germany] and a nearly 900 in a Discus from Munsingen [NE from Klipeneck in Germany] A total of 2260- plus on the Sunday-Fathers-day-OLC list.
One of the nice flights was the 1.131.5 km. FAI triangle from Michael Sommer from Oberhinkhofen in the EB 29, passing  en route Hahnweide, Klippeneck and Bayreuth .

The flight from Ouarzazate [Morocco] by Robert Pratt [from France] in the ARCUS with the ” belle Helene”   in the back , was a good one too;1.248 km. And Bernd Dolba flew with a Polish pilot a 1.165 km. in the ASH 25 EB. A 3d 1000 from Ouarzazate was flown by UK pilot John Bally.

It was fathers day as well and what’s nicer then to have a thank you-daddy-for-having-the-glider-today on the OLC; a 1000 in the ARCUS M for the son and his mate!
Some fathers spoiled their selves after having been spoiled already by the family in the early morning, with a nice day of flying; 500 km [566] triangle from Terlet in Holland and many great flights in Germany.
You even dropped from page 1 from the OLC flying 853 km. in an ASH 25/26m.
A 500 k triangle in a KA 6 is worth mentioning!!! The only 500 on page 1 on a well deserved spot 47 !!!!!
And a 733 km.[ 675 FAI km]  in an LS 4 WL,…great stuff. Not to forget the LS 1d flight from 662 km.TOP!!!!!!!

Also on Monday some great flights in Germany and Switzerland.
A lot of superlative were used by pilots.
When Michael Sommer with his experience says ” Wahnsinn tag”  , it must be a SUPER DAY.He had a super glider as well [ EB 29] and flew this time;1.356 km!!!!!!!!
In his comment he said thank you to  Walter and Oliver and he mentioned he flies for a new club; LSV Regensburg flying from Oberhinkhofen.
The last flights from Michael  on the OLC from this airfield show since April 17 a total of  10 flights, 5 out of this 10 were a 1000 km. PLUS!!!! You can fly, or you can’t!

A 1000 km. in a St. Cirrus is another piece of cake but it happened on Monday as well. Robert Schymala was the pilot who flew a yo-yo from Stillberghof  along places as Hahnweide and Klippeneck over 1.016 km. and was most amazed himself that you can fly one with such a light , pretty basic glider. Good on him.
Stillberghof had another 1000 in an 18 m. LAK 17 and in a Discus. I think a few nice beers have been spend after, on such a great day .

Former WGC host -field Eskilstuna in Sweden had a flight from 888 km in the Ventus BT by Jan Rotthhardt from Germany. I remember from when I was there that German pilots have an annual camp there.

And ….very pleased to see Michael Schumacher return to the world. He is out of his long time coma. Hope his re-validation will bring him back to normal.

Off on my annual -1-week- holiday with my high-school friends, without a laptop!!!
Sorry, but….Cu on July 2!!!

Cheers Ritz

On June 17/18 2014.

June 11, 2014

Danish and Swedish Nationals ..and ..Gliders, pilots , crews and early organizers on their way to 2 WGC’s!

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 4:41 pm

With 37 dgr. C. it was the warmest Pentecost in history in Germany. But the heat did not only bring joy, as at least 6 people were killed by falling trees in the state Nord-Rhein Westfalen . Trees , surviving 2 World Wars dropped like matches under the up to 150 km.h wind.
Here in Holland we had 30 dgr. C which was more then enough and code red for the Southern part of Holland !! So thunderstorms here as well , but not as violent as in Germany, where hurricane wind was measured in some towns specially Dusseldorf  . Also France and Belgium got their bit of heavy weather.

MALDEN ….. Open Military Championships….the last day!

 Z Aukje

Great picture shared by Aukje.
They left the cable at 250 m. but did not find connection, so they “had to do it”  again.

The pilots from the Open Military Comps in Holland, flown from the beautiful  and always friendly / inviting airfield of Malden had only 5 days to show their skills. And from those 5 days, they had 3 pretty good days to do so and 2 to have fun, socialize and TALK about soaring. With 380 km. on Monday , 314 on Tuesday and 335 on Friday the open/18m.  class pilots  had enough kilometers to show their soaring-skills. The other classes , club and combi had a just a tad shorter tasks. Friday looked fabulous here with nice blue skies and 3/8 of high big CU’s, so I had high expectations.

Z Last OMK day

Last day skies! Shared by Ben Hiemstra

Club left , on this last day, with fresh Dutch Champion in club class Frank,  on spot 1 with 59 points on a not Frysian pilot but still from the N.[Hoogeveen..Drenthe] ]  and on his dad Ben [ 67] and 2 other Frysian pilots. That FAC is a really fun group of lovely people ,supporting each other and all very close. For sure they would  try to have 3 Frysians on the podium on this last day. AND…that happened between the ” bond” of the Frysian pilots , Hoogeveen pilot Ide, might have felt too eager or overpowered, I don’t know, but he out-landed and sadly enough, dropped from 2 to 7. Frank and his dad , what do you want  more for such a close soaring-family ….stood on spot 1 [ 2839 points] and 2. [ 2601] And a 3d member of the Frysian club, Sander Terpstra was on a third spot[ 2558]. Congratulations!!!

Z Frysians

All Frysians fitted on the picture on the BBQ evening at Malden courtesy Sander Terpstra

In combi the last day showed 3 DUO Discus types up front an XL, XLT and XT. They topped the overall scores as well with Tjeerd and Francis on spot 1, Evert Jan on 2 and Jeppe and Wolfert on 3. From the 5 pilots , 4 fly for KLM and 1 works for Transavia.

In open class Erik Wijers in an LS 6 C 17.5 m. topped the overall list on each of the 3 days, on the last day with less than 100 points on 2 and 3. He won the last day over 263 km.  got 1000 points and the overall-number-2 from the morning Ben from Eindhoven out-landed. So with more than 400 points on the runner up,  Erik  won the OMK.
Congratulations to all!


Some pilots and crews are already in Rayskala and participated in  the Finnish Nationals in Standard and Club class. They acclimatize and prepare for the WGC starting on June 22 with the opening ceremony the day before on June 21. Poland is only in July/ August, so there is some time but countries far away have send or are sending their gliders now. Not too much flying, due to rainy weather ,but those who participated claimed they had learned a LOT!

The S.A team has send their gliders to Poland. In the 2 South African containers are SEVEN JS1 gliders. Here is their news and their pictures. I  only hope the container is not on the highest spot on the ship as with scary, read VERY turbulent  weather,  they dump those containers in the sea first!!!
And away they go!!! Two containers full of JS1s left Durban harbour on the MSC Rita to Bremenhaven. Final destination: Leszno Poland for the 33th World Gliding championships. This is a historic moment with 7 JS1s on the the same ship….talking about all your eggs in one basket..” 

Z Jonkers naar Polen 2  Z jonkers naar P{olen 5

Z jonkers naar Polen 1  Z jonkers naar Polen 4

Z Jonkers naar Polen 6

As shared by Jonker Sailplanes.



Z Take off day 4

Before start  1 PM on Tuesday. Shared by organizers

In France  in Rennes Saint Sulpice, the first training day for the  Qualifying Grand Prix was on Thursday. 5 Pilots in total from the entree list are not from France but  from Germany [3] , the UK [ 1] and Slovenia [1] .
On Thursday they started with their first practice day.
On Saturday with the first day , won by German pilot Kai Lindenberg. A short task from 103 km. exciting enough , with wave but also outlandings.
On Sunday was day 2 and pilots were send on a B task , 207 km. this time at 13.45. Christophe Abadie was the daily winner with 8 points.Only 7 finishers , Jutta among them.
Monday was a 122 km. day and Alain Mazalerat won the 10 points. Alain, a retired airline pilot,  arrived  before the Grand Prix started,  by glider from Paris !!!!!
We got to know Alain in Angers at the Huit Jours d’Angers, a long ,LONG time ago. Great to see he is still so enthusiastic for soaring.

Yesterday was a day with great clouds and a task of  255 km. and the line opened at 2.15 PM. Christophe Abadie  in his ASG 29E,  “got”  the 10 points AGAIN and the 2 German pilots Thomas and Michael [Eisele, son of the Bayreuth competition director Walter] got the 8 and 7 points.
So today at day 5 ,they start with Christophe Ruche on 1 with 10 points on number 2 the other Christophe [Abadie], from Buno and Alain and Thomas both on spot 3 with 16 points . More in my Sunday blog from SoaringCafe.

Lot’s of lovely  pictures from Jean- Pierre Henry at:

ARNBORG ….Danish Nationals.

Z Arne by Joergen Eriksen

AB ; Arne on final as seen by Joergen Eriksen.

The Danish Nationals were flown between May 29 and June 8 in 5 classes. They had more flying-days as cancelled days; 6 for 5!! Several over 300 km. tasks, so good days to see who would be the National Champion in each class.
In Club class one of my mates Ole Arndt won day 1, whilst , through all those years,one of my favorite pilots Henrik Breidahl unfortunately outlanded and one of the pilots I got to know when he was still very young and talented , Rasmus Orskov flying the LS 1 f , flew the 319 km. with 68 km./h.
Rasmus had a few outlandings but won the last day and a 3d spot overall in the end.
Champion was  Ulrik Soerensen in the St Libelle  with 2704 points, whilst  good old Ole was runner up with 2562 points ! 18 Pilots in this class.

Ole and Jörgen 001

Ole [to the l.] here with Joergen visiting at Uvalde.

In standard class the only pilot I knew [out of 11] from several comps was Jan Andersen . He was on spot 1 overall EVERY day. So the new Danish Champion.

In 15 m. class,2 from 11 I know from comps or visits to Sportavia [Ole by the way flew there as well] Ib Wienberg and good olg Stig Oye from long ago. Ib finished as 4th and Stig 7th. Quite some out landings in this class , costing points. On day 3 only 3 pilots finished and Ib was one of them. On day 4 Ib was 1 of 2 finishers again. But on day 5 [ a 2 hour AAT] with no finishers Ib only flew 12.4 km. good for 31 points, whilst daily winner Stig had 398 points for 160.2 km.
The new 15 m. champion is Johnny Jensen.

Denmark 005

Ib ready to uncork the champagne bottle

In the 18 m. class 10 pilots and the ones I know are well known by all ; Arne Boye Moeller and Peter Eriksen. How did they go? Peter won day 1 but he lost some points on day 5 when Arne managed to finish. Arne won the last day over 395.2 km. and Peter was 3d. Arne was crowned as the new Danish champion in this class. He won 2 days and was on 3 days runner up, a good enough reason to be called CHAMPION.Peter finished overall on spot 3.

Z Arne on spot 1

Arne as the new National Champion. As shared by Arne.

7 Gliders in the 2 -seater class , all a variation of a Duo Discus and 1 Taurus. Henrik Gormsen in the variation XT won the comps. For all scores ;

LANGTORA ….Swedish Nationals

Hopefully 7 days [between June 7 and 14] of flying for the Swedish Nationals in 18 m and club class. Till today they had already 4 days ! 21 Pilots in club class and day 1 over 110 km. was won by Per Carlin ,who I remember as a good photographer at Eskilstuna during the WGC. He did not fly there for this WGC, but made some great air-shots when he flew when all were gone for the day and before start making those great pictures of the gaggles. With the crash of my last laptop I unfortunately lost all the Eskilstuna pictures.
On day 2 only 2 finishers who flew the 192 km. Day 3 over 186 km. was a prey for Per [LS1f] again and on day 4 they had a 2.30 hour AAT.
The 3d victory for Per, who flies as good as he makes pictures!!! He flew 250.6 km in time 2.46.

13 Pilots in 18 m. class and the most well known are Borje Eriksson and Ake Pettersson. Boerje won day 1 [ 119.5 km.] and 3 [254.5 km.] and was 3d on day 2 [263 km.]
Yesterday they had 248.8 km. and all 13 pilots finished!! Borje was 2d behind Tonny Olsson, who is 3d now overall after 4 days. Borje is still in the lead.
No task as yet for today! They continue till the 14th. All scores on soaringspot!


Z Minden

great picture ; Minden from above as seen by Pete Alexander  with to the left  Rick Walters Shared by the SSA on FB.

Next weekend the 18m. Nationals in the USA will be flown from Minden in Nevada. Can follow it a bit for you , but I depart on a 1-week-holiday with my high school friends on June 20, WITHOUT my laptop so I will miss a few crucial comps, but so be it.

Talking about Minden, Jim Payne flew another 1000 from there on Monday. The day before Konigsdorf was the place to be as 4 pilots flew a 1000 over there in Arcus , Quintus [2] and ASG 29 . It was the 5th 1000 for Mathias Schunk since April 24. Good on him!
Also a great race from Bolzano by Giorgio Galetto, in his Ventus 2cxa; 1.051,39 km.
And,…919 km. from Insbruck in an LS1f is GOOOOD!!!!
Also the Ouarzazate visitors have good 1000 km. weather . Since May 30 they flew 20 x a 1000 plus from there.

Some interesting planes arrived in Holland, certainly for “spotters”.  One arrived last week in Maastricht with a big red mouth on it; no doubt…. the Rolling Stones,  who performed last weekend at Pinkpop.
And the 787 DREAMLINER , arrived from Seattle  with the name ARKE on it.  They own the first Dutch 787 and to show how happy they were with it , they flew low over some airfields in Holland as Eindhoven and Rotterdam as well as over the 4 head quarters from TUI [ARKE is part of them]  to show it for those on the ground as well. They bought the plane mainly for their trips to Curacao, Bonaire and Aruba and can take 307 guests with them.

You are up to date, cu next week.

Cheers Ritz

June 4, 2014

Finnish Nationals as practice for WGC @ Rayskala Airport.

Filed under: Uncategorized — ritz @ 7:11 pm

  Z Finland from above
Finland from above.
courtesy Eric Stauss

The last preparations in Finland for the WGC for ” small”  ships are in progress . They test all what’s necessary for a smooth show during their Nationals in standard and club class and pilots practice from the field to see how the area looks.

Day 1 was straight away a difficult one. In club class NOBODY flew the 3 hour AAT  though 12 pilots tried hard. They all found a landing spot somewhere else and the best pilot flew 216 km. Tim, from the UK flew 184 km. and “our”  Dutch glider NL1 with USA pilot Garret 130 km.

Z Garret in Finland

An American pilot in a Dutch glider in a nice big green paddock  in Finland!!!
Picture by Adam.

It is not easy to find good landing spots in Finland with all those beautiful trees and lakes and that’s why the organizers always put a lot of effort in showing on the map WHERE you can land.So they all practiced straight away.

As Adam from Australia mentioned in his blog;
” Day 1 weather didn’t match the forecast ! Maximum height I saw was 2700 agl. Early on some good streets and 5 knot climbs, but then we headed west and the cloud base dropped and the lift decreased.

This was right in the area that was totally unlandable. Always had a glide to somewhere, but only just. ” 
More news at  Adam Woolleys gliding adventures.

Another very nice blog with great pictures from Aussie pilot Eric and his crew  ;

20 Pilots in 15 m. class and INDEED Mac had traveled straight away to Rayskala and flew on this day 1 a distance of 223 km during a 3.30 AAT. He was 7th.
Nice to see father Martti [ASG 29] and son Petri [ LS 6 ] competing both in this class.
Nobody finished but the day 2 forecast was GOOD!!! The weather can change very quickly in Finland. We had once 4 days of rain and after only perfect weather.


Z Finland day 2

Day 2 as seen by the crew from Eric, with the remark:
” Nice skies but also a band of alto cirrus coming in which is definitely getting closer”

Day 2 looked much better and had a 3 hour AAT for 15 m. and 261.7 km. for club.
But it turned out different as a warm front was moving faster than expected.

” After watching club class sent to an almost inevitable out landing as the warm front was moving in faster that expected, the rest of us were re-tasked with a 3 hour AAT”

2 Pilots finished in club class,  one flew 153,4 km. and the best of the rest flew ” only” 88km. and less.

 A new airmass moved in, was quite windy – just couldn’t get high again after falling low. ” was Adams comment, after his first REAL out landing.[The day before he landed at Forssa  Airport ]


Z Buitenlanding Adam  Zbuitenlanding2

Z warm welcome

And a warm welcome from the farmer and his wife!
Courtesy Adam


In 15 m. Juha Sorri flew 292.5 km in 3.03,32. The area they flew in had much better weather hence only one out landing … Mac  He unfortunately outlanded after 96.5 km. He was the only one!!
Young Petri did not start [exams] and I don’t know what happened with Martti Koivula as he was not scored  , I know though , as he flew with us in Australia in the past, that he is a very good pilot!

Yesterday was scrubbed! And they got MORE GOOD info on out landing fields from one of the Finnish competitors.

For today the Aussie team is not very enthusiastic:
” Day 3 take 2. We have either a 2.5 or 2 hour AAT for racing class. Forecast is either for a storm, many storms or the whole country covered in storms. In all cases, Rayskala will have storms !1st launch in an hour for club class. “



Z Aukje Malden

As shared by Aukje who flies the comps at the moment.

The open military comps in Holland started on Monday from Malden with 42 pilots in 3 classes . A 310 km. task was set for club, 331,4 km. for combi and 379 for open class.
Except for 1, all 14 pilots in club FINISHED!!!Good on them!
In combi class Jeppe and Wolfert won in the DUO DISCUS XL  from 17 other pilots.
Jeppe was 4 years ago the CD during the Nationals , so before Natasja, as he did it only one year.
Great to see Stephanie and her husband Patrick as competitors flying the DG 1000/20 m. . Stephanie worked for us in Tocumwal years ago.
In open class 2 outlandings and an LS 6/17.5 m. won on handicap on a Nimbus 3DT.

No flying in Finland but another day yesterday in Malden.
263 km. in club class and the new Dutch Champion won the day. His dad was on spot 4. Frank left early and dad more than half an hour later.All  pilots finished. GOOD!!!

Z Ben

Dad Ben as seen by Frans Guise.

By the way 5 from the 15 in this class are members from the Frysian Aero Club, be assured they will have a great time/holiday.
AND,..they fly well too, occupying after 2 days spot 1-3-4-5.
3 Outlandings in the combi class and reserve-tuggy from the Nationals,  Evert Jan won the day over 303 km.
And Ben Zwaga from Eindhoven won the open class -day over 314 km. in the Ventus 2CT/18m.

No tasks set as yet for today! It’s raining here but Malden is about 125 km. to the SE.


On the Schleicher Site  you can find wonderful pictures about the new ASG 32Mi.

ASG 32 Mi

As they wrote on their site:
Under optimal summer conditions Schleicher’s new 20m two-seater passed the first tests with flying colors.
Michael Greiner and CEO Peter Kremer made the first flight.
This glider contains a lot of technical innovations.
After the landing it was clear: the 
ASG 32 Mi fulfills the high expectations in all points. ” 

ASG 32  ASG32Fuselage

The above pictures from Australia Mount Beauty pilot Ian Cohn are not that old. He visited Schleicher and got a nice tour there and was even allowed to make pictures from the ASG 32. Now the glider made it’s maiden flight. Congratulations to all working on this new model .

Ash 32 first launch  ASH 32 maiden flight

The first launch and first landing.
in full flight.

Asg 32 mooi

Pictures courtesy Schleicher site via Rene.

Got some nice pictures from the HAHNWEIDE comps and some extra news from my friends who have been there. As always appreciated!!!
All had a real good time . Other than on WGC’s or EGC’ s there was less stress and a lot of time to socialize, certainly on rainy days. They compared gliders and changed news.

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Line up ,having fun, the Schmelzers and Joost and Max.
As shared by Bert sr.

On the last day they luckily had a big task, [to the satisfaction of all pilots],  to finish this competition and to find out who were the really winners.
It’s always nice to hear the inside stories. In the 18 m. class the race was on to to drive Bert jr. from the throne he was sitting on , on this last day. Toppers as Werner Meuser [champion at EGC and WGC ] and Reinhard Schramme [winner from an ECG and as we all know kilometer-eater in Bitterwasser last year] and Bernd Weber [from Schempp-Hirth and flying with us in Australia in the past] , they all had the intention to be the number 1 and…. that was still possible. But as you could read in my last blog they were not successful and Bert maintained his top position.


Young Bert surrounded by toppers as Werner and Reinhard.
As shared by Bert sr.

And to finish for those who could not log in or don’t want to log in on SoaringCafe, here is when you have not seen it yet, the EXTRA blog below , about the Dutch Nationals.
Talking about the Nationals; Natasja who was 3 years the CD and a very good and relaxed one ,wrote on the site a nice thank you to ALL pilots , crews and the members from her team.
It looks like the Dutch Nationals will be different , in the future, maybe even with our Belgium friends and once in Belgium [St Hubert?] and once in Holland [Terlet?]
Anyhow now she is preparing for the Womens in Germany, as preparation for the WWGC  next year in Denmark. Last time she participated for the first time in France , but unfortunately got sick.

I have seen many CD’s here at the Nationals , all good to very good,but never such a relaxed one as Natasja and her easygoing but correct way was shared by pilots, crews and team members. Good on her!
As she said :
It was a competition with VERY good weather and very bad, too much rain.
11 Pilots declared a 500 km. during these comps and the biggest task ever in Dutch National Soaring-competition, was set 701 km. and …..524 and 604 were not bad either.
Till the last day the contest was exciting.”
A competition with gutsy tasks , a bit ” out of the box” ,  but all were flyable except for day 1 when everybody was “out”.

Enough reading-stuff so time ” to go” .

Cheers Ritz

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