Greetings from Rayskala;EGC has started today!

Rayskala    Monday June 29 2009

Sorry, but I was not feeling too well yesterday! Dehydrated!!!! That never ever happened in Australia and here in Finland it struck me. I am not the only one who has the problem as with this very dry air here, the hot conditions and the very strong sun more people “look a bit off”.One of the yound Dutch pilots even had to stay in bed today after vomiting all night.

The comps here are going strong. Silva is a real good leader and his young staff is enthousiastic and works terribly hard. Angelo , the chief scorer from Italy arrived yesterday with his wife Maridelle. Both on a short holiday and of course Adele, for the people here, has all her [huge] cameras with her. She is great photographer.

I met so many nice people and I receive so many nice comments on my Ritz Corner , that it makes me shy. And…from everywhere in the world.

The FAI EGC has started today in Nitra. Look for results and news at their home page. I hear the news is written by Angela Sheard. In Nitra a new finish system is starting. They do not have a finish line but a finish ring 3 km around the field.People who have experience with it, I heard , are enthusiastic about it.With a minimum height to finish it is easier and less stressful for the pilots who can just concentrate on their landing.We will see how that works!
They have had ONLY rain there in Nitra till now, also during the practise days. It looks they can fly but showers are predicted.
I read that you can spend a week in Nitra with only 20 E. Here you only pay for ONE glass of Jacob’s Creek Chardonnay 7.20 E. A pint beer is 4 E. So it is for sure cheaper in

I met a very interesting person and if you read the PROFILE in the RITZ  CORNER from today you will meet him too. Such a nice and down -to -earth -person and so famous and well known in specially Scandinavia.

 Have n’t had any time to check how pilots fly in Europe at the moment. Next when I am back home I will concentrate on that again.

Very best regards to everybody from warm Rayskala!

Greetings from Rayskala !!

Rayskala            Wednesday  June 24 2009

Though I am very busy , I try to keep my stories on Wednesday and Sunday also going. The weather here is absolutely marvelous. It seems to me that history repeats and that I am back in 2005 when the open class flew in the EGC a 1000km task. It feels to me that we have the same weather now here!!!
The atmosphere is very good and the young ones are very talented pilots. Great to see. It is also great to see their enthousiasm for all the young very hard working young people as the office babes , the field runners and a very good and young photographer who makes videos on a very high level.You should be able to see them on the site under ‘ pictures and stories”.His name is Hubertus Huverman.

Days are pretty long and full,  but it is great to be here. Silva the director here is a top leader, who combines seriousness with jokes so that the young ones keep his attention.
I saw new types of tug’s as the PIK 23 and PIK 27. Very interesting planes!
Lot’s of trees here and so much water; those lakes with this sunny weather are like mirrors.

Only 8 tugs for 82 pilots…that could be one more in my opinion. For the rest it all goes smooth. It was great to catch up with so many people who have visited Tocumwal in the past. It was really heart warming. Some of them had to tell me when they were there, but then I knew again. Also young Jurg Haas who flew last season in Toc in the glider from Christian Hostettler is flying here, but I still have to meet him.

Please look at for all the details, stories and pictures of this great competition. Will keep you informed.

The new Gliding International , issue June, should be out now.Congratulations to John Roake who celebrated a few days ago his 80thiest birthday.

Cheers Ritz

Rayskala from home and from the field!MM is back !!

Alphen aan den Rijn      Friday June 19              Rayskala Sunday June 21

Still at home and preparing for Finland. Very pleased with the results of the flying days in Rayskala where the young pilots flew up to 677 km  yesterday.The 6 German pilots have showed the others what they are worth and the Dutch team did also a great job . The Slovak pilots and of course the Finnish pilots showed as well that they are ready for a “HOT” competition.
Tonight they celebrate the MIDSUMMERNIGHT, so I will miss out on that. No worries!!!!But …the weather has changed again so no flying  today!
I saw they have my “Ritz Corner ” ready to go, so on Sunday I will write more on the Finnish site

Today I read in the paper  that a 61 year old pilot/captain died in the harnass, forcing his 2 co-pilots to bring the Boeing 777 safely back home. The pilot worked 21 years for Continental Airlines and this flight from Brussel to New York , with 247 passengers, was his last one. As far as I know this does not happen a lot, as pilots really are checked VERY well and often. Of course co-pilots should be able to fly the plane as well, but in this special case they got permission from the tower to land first at Newark [New York] airfield.

Back in Rayskala. After an easy going flight with KLM I arrived safely in Helsinki where the head of the scoring waited for Marina [she is the steward] and me at the airport with a nice good readable sign ;guests for the JWGC Rayskala. With arrival  at the glider field, I noticed puddles of water , people with raincoats , thick pullovers and boots and I remember the same situation in 2005, when I arrived. Would history repeat itself and will we have the same  great competition here as in 2005, when on day 1 a 1000 km task was set for open class and flown by most!!!!

The welcome was warm and so friendly. Marina and I were welcomed by Silva the competition director and by his deputy Mari, who is also “the boss” of this airfield. A real nice lady. I do work together with Katja another great lady and the web guru, from Rayskala.
Our welcome [Patrick one of the jury members here and Visa-Matti the IGC member for Finland] was at 8 with a traditional meal; thick sausages with either garlic or spicy taste or traditional , with mustard and/or tomato ketchup. Patrick one of the jury members was with us as well. This you  eat with beer normally, but for this special occasion we had red wine or whisky. If you drink enough whisky or similar strong drinks the mosquito’s will leave you alone. Atleast that’s what the Finnish friends say.
Great ” rabarberi cake ” was the desert with tea or coffee.

This morning started with sunny conditions  and for the first un -official practise day I would like to ask you to read the story at Thank you. You can find the stories in the Ritz Corner.

To finish this blog I invite you to read  the story from MM. I am very pleased to tell you that he is back with some interesting views on gliding and what’s more of interest for you readers, so here you are;

The jets are coming.By MM 

There are probably very few people who have a greater dislike of engines in gliders than I. When engines  first appeared in high performance gliders many years ago it felt like cheating. Motor gliders, the ones with the fold away engines, could just venture out on a cross country without worrying about out landings and retrieves, or so it seemed. Unfortunately it turned out that these engines were so unreliable at times that failed engine starts were a regular occurrence.  At low altitude and over difficult terrain a failure to start could soon develop into a screaming emergency and quite often an accident. The drag of the extended engine turned the high performance glider into flying brick giving the pilot limited room to extricate himself out of his predicament. Apart from the dangers associated with light-hearted reliance on the engine during cross country flying the costs of the installation were not insignificant. With a lot of development the engines became more reliable over time, but this improvement came at some expense; a much higher purchase cost of the engine.

The cost of the installation was reduced by reducing the power requirement from self-launch to sustainer. Now the only thing the extendable motor had to do was start and run to keep the glider airborne. It started because the propeller was driven by the airspeed once the engine was extended, so it only needed fuel. Electricity was only needed to extend and retract the motor. The construction of these sustainers was much simpler and therefore the reliability improved; less things to go wrong! But still the drag was very high when the engine decided not to work at the crucial moment.  But with less technical complexity that didn’t happen very often. Another advantage was that sustainers, or turbo’s as they are commonly called, are a lot cheaper to buy and maintain than the engines used in self-launchers.  But you just had to find someone to give you a launch to start your flight.

Over the years we operated several self-launching high performance two seaters as well as some fitted with turbo’s. After some hair raising narrow escapes we used them as pure gliders. In the self launchers we taped up the engine bays and removed the fuel tank and the turbo’s were simply removed all together. When we were doing this the turbo of one of the Nimbuses, which had just been removed from the glider, was lying on top of a big waste bin. A well known 4-time world champion happened to pass the scene and, looking at the engine on the bin, said “that’s a very good place for these motors. They should all be thrown in the bin!”. He obviously wasn’t a great lover of engines either.

The idea of making yourself independent of out landing possibilities was of course very sound. Places like Bitterwasser and Gariep Dam, just to mention a few, wouldn’t have blossomed without this evolution. The contra’s of the current systems available remain however complexity, acquisition cost, aerodynamic drag when extended and the fact that the installation is not suited for the retrofit market. On the pro side are low direct operating costs and good propulsion efficiency with propellers optimised for the speed range gliders operate in.

It was always clear that if only jets could be made small enough that many of the problems associated with engines in gliders would melt away, and it seems that the “jet age” has arrived for gliders. The main beauty of a jet engine is that it is compact and very reliable because there are very few moving parts. The situation is no different than the transition from the extremely complex turbo compound engines of the Lockheed Constellation, using very high octane fuel, to the relatively simple but powerful jets of the Boeing 707 and DC8. The reliability of the jets was several orders of magnitude better than the big radials it replaced, but boy …. did they guzzle some kerosene!!

In Tocumwal there has been a jet glider, a Caproni Calif, operating for some years now. The modification, fitting a Microturbo, has been carried out by Mike Burns. The engine is permanently fixed inside the fuselage and is powerful enough to self launch the glider. The glider itself is a rather average contraption but the installation of the jet is beautiful. Very user friendly, quiet, almost fool proof. As  expected the fuel consumption is shocking, mainly because it is an older design engine. At 100 kg thrust it can do the job easily. Because the engine stays inside the fuselage there is no aerodynamic drag problem should the engine fail to start at an inconvenient time. So, if the price of the installation is reasonable, there could be a market. Retrofitting this installation into another glider is a big thing so it is not really a jet kit for everyone.

The thing is that you only really need about 20 kg thrust to keep a modern glider comfortably airborne, so why toy around with an engine providing 100 kg thrust? Self launching maybe…., 60 kg thrust will do that quite easily provided you can get rolling; the initial acceleration will be very marginal and thus for quite some time during the takeoff roll the glider will suffer control problems leading to wingtips dragging or ground loops.

It is the aero modellers that have provided us with the needed technical progress. Because they wanted to build and fly models of jet aircraft, a market appeared for the supply of model jet engines. For decades these engines didn’t have enough thrust for us glider pilots, but as the modellers started to fly bigger jets and the professional market started to fly smaller aerial vehicles for all sorts of, usually military, purposes, the technology became available for real high tech, extremely small but quite powerful jet engines. AMT Turbines is now producing small turbines that are powerful enough to act as jet sustainer engines for gliders ( ). Because they are so small they can be readily retrofitted in existing gliders.Almost all the drawbacks form the earlier turbo and self launch engines seem to have disappeared. The extended engine has no more drag than an extended landing gear, the weight of the whole installation is less than 10 kg excluding the fuel, and it takes so little space that you can put it in any glider. PSR Jet Systems is already very close to offering a “jet kit” to the market at prices that make economic sense. See for more details on a possible kit.High fuel consumption is still a characteristic of these engines but at 50-80 liters per hour, depending on which engine you choose, it is acceptable, especially because the engine only runs for short periods of time at high power. Another advantage of these engines is that they can be started on the ground so only a minimal winch launch or auto tow is required to get going. The “rest” of the required altitude before departure on a cross country flight can be achieved under its own jet power.

It has taken a while but the jets are “on the way” and gliding will be better because of them.

See you on Wednesday with more insite info about the JWGC and what’s interesting in the rest of the world.

Cheers Ritz

Ouarzaztee ! JWGC !UK !

Alphen aan den Rijn     Wednesday       June   17   2009           blog 205

I was intrigued with the flying in Morocco!  So I had a look at Wikipedea and found out that Ouarzazate, is the city and capital of a province in Southern Central Morocco. It is located at a height of 1.160 m. in the middle of a bare plateau, South of the High Atlas mountains. South of the town is the desert. Sandstorms are possible , as I heard.
 So ….this is the place where so many pilots at this moment fly great cross country flights.
I checked with a pilot flying there, but have not yet had an answer. Stand by!

Other interesting news  from the Czech Nationals! I heard, that these were the first combined Nationals again from the Czech and Slovak Rep. since 17 years. The last one was in 1992 when both countries were still a Federation. The winner in 15 m class, Brano, will fly during the EGC in Nitra this year a brand new ASG 29 in the 18 m. class, as well as his mate Lubor! I wish them safe and happy flights in their new gliders!

The Young -under -25 -Ones are sitting in the rain! It is also pretty cold over there in Rayskala, where it is only one more week before the 6th JWGC starts on June 24. At this stage an open  competition is going on at the airfield, called Jannen Kisat and they are not too lucky with the weather. It looks like tomorrow [Thursday]  will be good again.

Finally some more great weather in the UK as well. It was good to see how some of my UK friends could make  last weekend nice long tasks from Dunstable, Lasham Booker and other places.Except for the very nice 704 km flight from Dave Masson on April 26, this weekend showed the longest flights in the UK.

Sad news from the UK. Talking about the UK….Very sad news  as 2 people, an air cadet and a RAF reservist collided in midair with a glider.The 2 pilots flying in a Grob  115 E, in the UK known as an RAF Tutor single-engined airplane were killed , while the glider pilot used his parachute and landed safely. The glider seems to be  registered in the name of Mark Holden , who flew in 2005 the 4th JWGC in HusBos.  I know he is a very experienced pilot. But….It is unknown to me , IF he was flying the glider that day! The accident is ofcourse under investigation.

See you “in / from ” Rayskala! Looking forward to catch up with so many friends!!!For sure  Kari is there, as he is one of the tuggies from the JWGC and Hannu, as I heard he is helping already several teams from his caravan at the camping on the airfield.
Cheers Ritz

Back home and preparing for Finland!WAG!

Alphen aan den Rijn     Sunday   June 14 2009     blog 204

Here we are again.  After a week with lots of rain on the coast , but ….at-least 2 minutes or more sun on each of our days, we are back well rested and full of impressions on great little towns as Knokke, Zeebrugge, Nieuwpoort and De Haan. If you like a natural environment on the beach,  the Belgian coast is great and “only ” 80 km long with a tram driving all the way up along the coast from the Dutch border to the French border.

With my arrival I got the news that our cat Denimpie had died  in Australia, where she lived with Sue and Nathan. Sue adopted her when I left Australia and did a great job. Denim must have been 13 years old and was a “caracter”. Most guests from Sportavia knew her, sitting on the roof of the big WW 2 hangar, when she was a tiny little one and not knowing how to get down [ atleast that was what I thought] so our tuggie , Anthony, had to climb up the stairs to save her but she was down earlier then he was. Or …when she walked around with baby brown-snakes in her mouth, trying to let them play with her and all of us scared to hell that she might be bitten .Denim was a good cat!!!!!!!!!!

In between the combined Czech and Slovak Nationals have been held in Partizanske, as I heard from  my friend Tibor . In 15 m class his best friend Brano was the winner. Indeed I missed that one. Sorry about that! There were 75 participants  flying in 3 classes and several well known pilots as Tomas Suchanek, Tomas Rendla, Milos Dedera who flies WGC’s as long as I am in gliding and Miloslav Cink , one of the top juniors.

Our Dutch juniors are on their way to Finland  travelling by car with trailer on the boat. I remember my excitement for the first time on the boat to Turku, sleeping, talking and looking amazed around how many restaurants, bars. etc there were on a ship. I was  “old ” already then, so it must be adventure for those young ones!
 In any case nowadays they have wireless  on the boat too I heard, so not too bad!!Some  of the pilots will be still  ” sailing”  some will be flying and practicing already in Rayskala. Yesterday I had a look at the dvd from the Europeans in Rayskala with that magic 1000 km on the first competitionday! I hope we will have this year such weather again! Saturday I will arrive in Helsinki.

The WAG finished yesterday and not Sebastian , not Ronald or Giorgio , but a for me unknown Italian pilot was number 1  before the last day. On this last day the best 6 finalists , out of the 11 invited glider pilots, flew together to decide who would be the winner of this WAG.
Sebastian [Poland] won in the end  the final race and with that the WAG  and Giorgio [Italy] was second and “our” Dutch pilot Roland ended up as number 3.
 4 rounds of flying during this WAG to decide the best 6 and each day had atleast one out-landing.
The last day round 5 was the final and a distance of 141.50 had to be covered in a good speed. Sebastian flew it in 1.42 with a speed of 83km/h., so he was a good and tactical winner.
One of my friends followed it on lifestreaming. He is not a real fan of this way of flying neither of the Grand Prix, but I still share with you his opinion.
It is as he says, a way of presenting the sport but with respect to the content read gliding-competition, it is nothing!
The presentation and comments , in this case specially the comments from Stefano Ghiorzo, get better and better, the race can be followed very well at home, but he calls it more the Final Glide Games as each individual action is punished by the more powerful, read faster flying gaggle.
Ronald flew the WAG, so I will ask his opinion as well.

The USA Nationals are about to begin for open and 15 m. class  in Montague California. If you are interested you can follow it on weblink: 

And then Morocco!! Still the place to be it seems, when you love flying long and fast over the Ridges.Ouarzaztee had wonderful flights again last week, with more 1000 km.tasks, all in open class however.
I noticed that the journalist from the Aerokurier Gerd Marzinzik flies there as well.
But yesterday was a good day for Europe too as most countries had good flights on the OLC. In Holland a pilot even flew his 750 km. task, unexpected as he says. He flew some kind of double out and return to Germany in a Ventus 2CT.[761 km.] Not bad and that for Holland!!! But…I could see from my home the fantastic clouds.

Well, NOW we have rain here!  So not much flying today here in Holland! A pity as the meteo promised a great weekend,[yesterday was super!] though…they said some showers maybe thunderstorms for sunday, but also 25 dgr. and lots of sun. But the day is not over yet.
Did you know that they have calculated that the energy released on February 7 2009[ the day of the huge firestorm in Australia] was the equivalent of 1500 Hiroshima bombs or the total power consumption of the state Victoria for 12 months. I received a mail from a friend down under with this info. Interesting!

That’s it for now. See you next Wednesday and after that I ” invite you to follow me to Rayskala ” on
I look forward to meet new young pilots and all my “old” friends in Finland.
Cheers Ritz

World Air Games! ” Stereo Brothers!”CIM” in Rieti!Belgian Nationals !

Alphen aan den Rijn     Wednesday June 3    blog 203

The World Air Games are about to begin in Torino.  These kind of Olympics for air-sports are a big event for 10 different disciplines!
Over 500 athletes representing the hundred federations member of FAI (Fédération Aéronautique Internationale), 1.500 including officials, technicians and competition judges, 300.000 spectators forecasted over the three competition sites and more than 200 million worldwide television contacts. Here they are the numbers of the Torino 2009 World Air Games. (The main event venues will be Torino-Aeritalia airport of Collegno, Avigliana and Mondovì).”
The comps are between June 6 and 14 2009. Holland has 3 pilots in 3 disciplines , ballooning, modelling and gliding,  where European Champion Ronald Termaat, with the assistance of his crew Remy, will try to have the red white and blue flag in the middle!
I will be back home on Saturday so next Sunday the 14th , I will look back with you on what happened.
In between you can look at all the news , the schedules, participants and results to the WAG site.

On June 13 former tuggie at Sportavia  for many, many years Simon will marry is big love Jess. From here I want to wish them well and hope they will be tremendously happy!!! Have a great day Jess and Simon!

I get a lot of mail and this week the interesting news  came from Ian , better called as “Nimbus” who flew Australian Nationals [open class] about 17 years ago, but now moved to power-flying building himself a Falco. He has nearly finished his training and it will be fun to see him show up in his nice coloured  new “toy” at the different private strips visiting his friends and on the airports.
The ” stereo brothers” Richard and Henry  are still going strong. As in the past in Tocumwal where they were frequent flyers, they still fly their PIK 20, but Richard is a tuggie now too .Over the last 7 years he has launched gliders for the Grampians Gliding Club not too far from Melbourne. Richard and Henry are twins and look exactly the same. The difference was noticed in the past by the hairline.[parting]

Still great soaring weather in a lot of parts in Europe. Also the Scandinavians have good weather with up to 25 dgr. Though the pilots in Rayskala flew only under 200 km.yesterday, but over 300 a day earlier. Hopefully in 2 weeks they have “Hammer-wetter”   again for the JWGC, as during  the Europeans in 2005.
The next couple of days however will give us here rain and temperatures drop from 26 to 16,…just as I go to the beach!!!!!

The 2009 Belgium Nationals count 27 participants in 2 classes  and are flown in St Hubert. They continue till June 6 and have at this stage 5 days out of 5, as they have in both classes just over 200km tasks. Also in this competition like in Holland several young pilots are flying very well. Tijl Schmelzer [discus 2] who is flying the under 25 JWG in Rayskala is 2d at this stage in 15 m class, behind “old hand” Manu Litt [Ventus 2] . 3d at this stage another JWGC competitor Dennis Huybreckx.[LS 8 15 m.]
 In open class  2 “old hands” in the top 3, on 1 Yves Jeanmotte [Ventus 2 CX] and on 3 at this stage Patrick Stouffs.[LS 10 18m T]

 I was very pleased to hear that the CIM in Rieti  will have an open airspace as ALWAYS. No NOTAM in that period for the Coppa pilots and the pilots attending the other 2 comps in August. Great news. Straight after the G8 conference the airspace will be as in the past during the JWGC and WGC. Here is the good news on the Italian site!

The NOTAM will be removed – Rieti competitions will have the full area available

Only one week after our previous worried message, we are in condition to reassure all competitors that after the G8 (ending 11th of July) the NOTAM which doesn’t allow flying over a large area of 25 NM radius, due to the earthquake, WILL BE TOTALLY CANCELLED.

We can now look to our August competitions with the feeling to enjoy as usually long and very fast tasks.

This successful result is due to the personal care of the Italian Aero Club’s President sen. Leoni who was applied by the Italian Gliding Federation together with all the other Air Sport Federations.

Well, I should start packing now . CU next week .

cheers Ritz

Dutch Nationals grew to sensational climax!Morocco!Notams cancelled for CIM in Italy!!!

Alphen aan den Rijn      June 1  2009     blog 202

 The meteorological summer starts  and in most parts of Europe with a  real summer day. We enjoy 25 dgr. today  in Holland and a NNE wind [4/5] . Spring 2009 here was good the second best ever, with an average temperature of 10.8 dgr.Only one minus point in spring the very severe wind- hail -and thunderstorm one week ago, a once-in-5/ 10-years-phenomena.But that was 2 days, so who cares! The insurances, …maybe???!!!

Those 2 days were also the non flying days at Terlet, during the Nationals. Out of 11 days, with day one counting only in one class [combi] due to the fact that in the other classes nobody flew the amount of kilometers to make it a competition-day, the comps counted 8/9 days.
And what competition this was!!!! Wow!!! I told you already that Dutch nationals are European level and with such great weather even world level.
I take you through the last and very exiting, even thrilling day!

In club class young under 25 Patrick  was number 1 over all, on the beginning of the last day and on every other day! Bas Krebbers was 2 and Bas Brouwer 3. Patrick had a good lead ,so only in the case of an unexpected out-landing he would not be the Dutch Champion. I had just arrived when I heard that Bas B. had landed out after 85 km. Poor Bas , he was so happy with his good ranking. Tension was growing. Bart Berendsen , one of my Hus Bos juniors, was back early after a good race ,but Bas K. came low and really had to struggle and fight to come back home. But….he made it , arriving home as the last pilot of these wonderful comps in Holland. He lost his 2d place to Bart but was 3d. and very pleased with that.[look at the picture on]
I expect a lot from Patrick in Finland during the JWGC!!!!!!He won with 6800 points before runner up Bart [6255] and Bas [6097].

In the combi class the beginning of the comps was ruled by Steven Raimond, the former European Champion. He also won the last day with a speed of 115 km/h over 315 km, but on day 5 , he had a bad day ,loosing more then 600 points. This can happen also to the best! Before the last flying day , 5 from the 6 pilots in the top 1-6 were young ones. Mark Leeuwenburg was 1, Peter Millenaar 2 , Jeroen Verkuijl 3d , [he is a tiny little bit older, flies WGC and EGC] then Robbie, Alfred-Paul and Jelmer, all top junior or former junior pilots for the Dutch team. In the end Peter Millenaar , who flies the JWGC in Finland was the proud Dutch National Champion, Mark , I think he won last year, became runner up only 18 points short and Alfred Paul, who once won the junior comps in Holland and as a present received cross country training with Ingo Renner in Australia during the Outback Shootout at Tocumwal was a  good 3d!
So 2 young under 25 , Dutch National Champions will fly in Rayskala!

In the 18 m. class current European champion Ronald Termaat  was number ONE over all, from the beginning of the comps till the end, winning the last day in style ,finishing together with runner up Sicco Vermeer with a nice speed finish. In this class Hadriaan van Nes was 3d. It was great to see Sicco back in the Nationals. After 1991 when he flew the WGC in Uvalde he kept flying but also concentrated on his job and family. When the Amsterdamsche Club for Gliding bought recently a new ASG 29 sx, Sicco mentioned he would like to fly the Nationals once again with that glider, so he did and received a 2d prize cup .
Ronald has to pack his suitcase straight away again ,as he will fly the World Air Games in Torino[Italy] next week , with in my eyes Sebastian Kawa as his biggest concurrent.

Last but not least the open class!!  Even in this class a lot was possible on the last day! Peter Batenburg won the last day with a speed of 117.9 km/h over 354 km. and with that he won the Nationals, passing Francois Jeremiasse who became 2d, Mark Weering was 3d. Mark flies at Lasham as he lives in the UK, but is a real “clockie”!
 The father-son combination Frits and Bas tried hard to win , to make Frits a proud winner again after 50 years , but unfortunately that did not happen. They ended up as number 4.

So far the Dutch Nationals, the French finished  their comps for 15 m. open and dual seater class too, with Didier Hauss as winner in the 15 m class and Sylvain Gerbaud in open class. They had 6 out of 8 days with in 15 m class only once a task over 400 km, in open class only once over  500 km.[519] and in the two-seater class a distance of 414 as longest task.
Yesterday was world wide a great soaring day not only in Holland where Baer Selen flew over 500 km but also in Morocco,where several European pilots as Alvaro, from Spain and Pierre from Belgium flew a 1000 km task.from Quarzaztee. To be honest a place I had not yet heard from, so I do some investigations. Another top pilot from Belgium Baudouin Litt flew in the USA a 1000 km task.

Breaking news; The NOTAM for the CIM in Rieti is cancelled!!!!So after the G8 meeting the CIM can fly in all areas!!Look for the latest at
Also breaking but maybe sad news ; an Airbus 330 from Air France with 220 passengers including 12 crew has disappeared from the radar this morning . The airliner flew from Rio de Janeiro [Brasil] to Paris[France], where it was expected at 11.00 AM this morning local time.  No news yet! A huge worry!!!!

That’s it for today. Sorry a bit much about the Dutch Nationals but it is always great to follow a comps AT the spot and in this case , it was a real to a climax growing competition, so nice to share with all of you!

cheers Ritz