She turns 75 tomorrow, our inspiring Queen Beatrix.In general ,people in Holland retire around their 65th birthday. For that reason speculations about the abduction of our queen went on for years. Last monday evening at 7 the historic moment was there. After 33 years Beatrix will step back on April 30, QUEENSDAY, not because she feels old or not well, but to make place for a new generation .
So after more than 100 years we are going to have a KING again. King Willem Alexander with on his site, a young [43] Argentinian girl Maxima, who will be our future queen. We could n’t have done any better, as she is a gem.
April 30 2013 will be a BIG day in Holland, certainly in Amsterdam where the Queen will sign the papers of her abduction in the Palace on the Dam and where the new king will be inaugurated in the New Church just to the right of the Palace.

Our Queen Beatrix.

Back to soaring now!

Chile Sailplane Grand Prix;

First the nice flight from Art in the tow plane, lucky him.
As he said;”On my last day here at the Club de Planeadores in Santiago, someone suggested that because I couldn’t go soaring due to the airspace restrictions in place ,that I should at least get a view of the city from a tow plane.  Two launches in the club’s L19!  Great view if a bit smoggy,  Huge thanks to the wonderful people I’ve met here.  I felt very much at home.”


Art  Art 2
Lucky Art!

Had Didier [Hauss] only one point on day 1 ,…on day 2 ,he put that straight by winning over 347 km. with 119 km./h. on a day, where you could see the rain in the mountains ; 7 points in the pocket, bringing him on spot 4 overall, behind Rene, Carlos [both 13 p.] and Patrick.[11p.]

Grand Prix day2  Grand Prix day 2 sleep

As seen by Art, with the rain over the mountains.

Day 3 was one with outlandings!Patrick was one of them, while Tilo won the day over 360 km. and got the 7 points.Rene got the 5 points and Didier the 4.
After 3 days Rene is still on top with 18 points, Carlos is on 2 with 15 and Tilo now on spot 3 with 13 points.
When we were in Uvalde I spoke with Tilo about his Grand Prix flying and he said he just loves it!

Uvalde Tilo Quintus
Tilo here in Uvalde on the tip of  the Quintus.

Another good day in Narromine, the home of the 2015 JWGC.
Congratulations to James Dutschke for completing his first 750km declared flight and extending to 820!  James flew a H 301!
Also to Ben Loxton who did 850 in his Ventus 2CT!!

Benalla night 039
Young Ben Loxton, a talented glider pilot as I heard in Benalla AND noticed on the results, being runner up in 18 m. class in the multi class Nationals over there this year.

Most gliders from Namibia have been packed in the containers for their return trip to Europe. Most of those gliders made more hours than ever before. What a seaon it was for Namibia!
Reinhard Schramme flew from Bitterwasser 15 over 1000 km. flights in the ARCUS out of
the 26 flights he flew. And one was a 1.335,51 km. with 140 km./h. Pretty spectacular !!

13 x 1000 km. out of  37 from Kiripotib by Robin May in the ASH 25 EB 28 is not bad either! And Pokweni shows some very good flights from Walter Binder ; 11x 1000 out of 19 !!!!

Off to Amsterdam now , but I will finish with a nice picture from Lindert Hanekom as seen on FB. It’s Oscar Goudriaans JS1C with a great and dark background. Home in time?

Oscar by Lindert Hanekom

WOW!!! Cheers Ritz

All kind of news!


To get back in the rhythm some short news as guests come to see me today.

Soaring in Australia is still BIG! On Friday  Narromine had great weather [again!] and Adam Woolley was one very happy chappy flying his St.Cirrus. The day before he flew a nice set 600FAI triangle. Narromine has been blessed this year with top weather, good as last year was n’t too good!Normally the weather is pretty good in Narromine.
Here is his comment:

—“What a day!  Pity this 750 took us 50% of the time in the blue, while all to the North was STONKING!  1100-1250km FAI possible with a supership 🙂
Flew this task in my dry Cirrus, had a great time.  Was awesome to team up with Dutters for the final 220km – cruised home together, even with the sharp shut off of the day.—“

Adam Woolley
Adam and his W3.

And than , a bit later in the season there is Potchefstroom with 3 1000 km. flights on Jan 24 and as Oscar said ;” More to come”.
Oscar Goudriaan and mates Uys and Attie Jonker each flew their JS 1 over 1000 km with speeds from 126 117 and 118 km. p/h.
In between Laurens Goudriaan flew 460 km from Worcester where he flies the Western Cape Regionals with p.e. Sven Olivier, with 182 km./h. Sven had a speed of 172 klm./h. Not bad either.
As Sven mentioned on FB;
—” Today Oscar Goudriaan became the first pilot to complete a 1000 km task in a 21m JS1-C.  Oscar, accompanied by Attie and Uys Jonker in their 18m JS1 gliders took off from Potchefstroom and started a declared 1000km out and return.  Unfortunately thunderstorms south of Petrusburg (near Bloemfontein), forced them to chang…e the declared task in flight.  Oscar’s 2nd turnpoint was North West of Stella, and a much needed climb well past 18h00 allowed them to add the last 100km leg required complete a 1000km free distance flight just before sunset.  It was not a great day for a 1000km, with the trio struggling through the low, blue conditions unitl 13h00. Althouhg some good climbs were found in the latter part of the day, 3m/s climbs were the standard.  It is the first time in the history of the Potch Gliding club that more than one 1000km flight was completed in a season.  Oscar completed 1042km, Attie 1004 and Uys 1001 km.—“

More news about the “to come”  1000 km flights in soaringcafe!

Not every body has the same good time as I had in Australia. Some Dutch people [4] working for a Dutch business up in the NW went fishing and when the boat capseized due to a wind gust, they were chased by sweetwatercrocodiles. They saved their lives by climbing in the highest tree where they were waiting to be rescued for 22 hours. Kidney and liver might be damaged by dehydration but,…they survived!What a story is n’t it?
Read on the same page that Australia has the biggest amount of  dangerous animals in the world. From the 10 deadly animals 8 live in Australia under them the red back and funnel-web spiders,  snakes, crocodiles and several under-water-animals.
Still ,…knowing that , it is one of the most beautiful, interesting and kind countries.

And about the 17th FAI European Gliding Championships in Poland in Ostrow the next news;

Dear all,

First of all we would like to wish you all the best for the upcoming season 2013! We trust this year will bring you lots of joy as well as many successes in gliding.

We are happy to announce that the official website of the 17th FAI European Gliding Championships in Standard, Club, World and 20m Multi-seat Classes is up and running.
Please visit .

Currently an official Entry Form as well as 1st Bulletin are available in “Download” section.
Please also find these documents attached to this message.

We are also  active on facebook
In order to familiarise yourselves with our airfield as well as the
region, we encourage you to watch the welcoming spot
In case you have any questions or queries, please do not hesitate to
contact us! We will be happy to help you with your preparations for this
exciting event.

CU in Ostrów!

With best regards,
EGC2013 Ostrów, Poland

The FAI Sailplane Grand Prix in Chile [Jan.26-Febr.2] 2013 started yesterday with amongst others Chilean hero’s Carlos Rocca and Rene Vidal, several German pilots as  Thilo Holighaus, Patrick Puskeiler and Jurgen Wenzel and Thomas Gostner from Italy and Didier Hauss from France.
The first task was a prey for the Chilian pilots Carlos and Rene, winning the 10 and 8 points for the day. Patrick, Thomas and Tilo had the 7,6 and 5 points.
Task length; 433 km.

grand prix in Chile
after the openings ceremony , the pilots are ready to go!
Picture courtesy Grand Prix site;

Grand prix start
First day as seen by Art.

And last but not least , the final results from the Chaves WGC as send out by the FAI.

Final Results :

club Class – Overall
1st : Santiago Berca ARG
2nd : Tobias Geiger AUS
3rd : Roman Mracek CZE

Standard Class – Overall
1st: Sebastian Kawa POL
2nd: Mario Kiessling GER
3rd: Felipe Levin GER

World Class – Overall
1st: Sebastian Riera ARG
2nd: Jorge Tartara ARG
3rd: Jedrzej Sklodowski POL

The full results can be found at the following address :

Cu next Wednesday, cheers Ritz

Back home! Epilog with engine 4 in the main role!

Alphen aan den Rijn   Friday January 25 2013


Kangaroos at the caravan park at Sportaviation


It’s 6 in the morning and I arrived 1 hour early at Kuala Lumpur, meaning 1 hour more waiting to continue to the minus 7 Holland. Easy to get used to the cold here, as the airco makes over-hours and I am just freezing.

Had a great first part of the trip. Forgot to ask for a window or aisle seat. In the end good that I did n’t as I had 4 ,as in FOUR seats for myself, so I slept for 5 hours had a light breakfast and I am sitting bright eyed on a spot close to the gate WITHOUT airco. It’s some kind of art to find such a place.

I left Toc at 11.30, just had time to catch up with Ray Waller, who arrived in the caravan park from Sportaviation for the long weekend { Australia day on Jan. 26} and to go to Rosa in Cobram my very good travel agent for years. I tried hard to check in via internet and print out a boarding card. It did not work and even she was not able to do so. No worries as I had time enough.

Caught up with Richard V., one of our instructors in the past,  who I missed seeing, but we had time to talk in the car park of the Cobram shopping center. Weird but on this last day I visited [of course] Dennis and coming back from the cemetery there is this huge truck stopping on the site of the road. Ouch, a big bloke jumped out and nobody to see in the whole area. But,…a loud Hi Ritz at the same moment as I recognized him and big smiles and hugs; one of our former tuggies Geoff Gowty. He called straight away Charlie Tootle, yes the dad from young Charlie who was also one of our tuggies.
Young Charlie . married to Bianca , has 3 sons now, an AG business with several AG-planes/crop dusters not too far above Sydney and a small jet to pick up mum and dad. Not bad for our “a bit wild boy”  when he was young.

Via car, bus and train I arrived in Melbourne at 7, easy trip.

Nice quick flight with Malaysian and then back home. More from Holland.

It was not that easy to depart from Kuala Lumpur with our big blue bird a 747 from KLM. We were nicely checked in, in time, ready to go and waiting for the yes to depart when we turned around and the captain told us that there was a problem with engine 4 and we could not go, but went back to the terminal to check why the oil indicator did not work.

Technicians rushed to the plane and after a short while, we were sitting in a hot plane, the captain was back to share with us, what was wrong.
It could be a broken sensor, than we needed a new one and a search to find one was started, meaning we would have to get out of the plane again and wait till it was ready aprox. 2 to 3 hours. Or,….. there was something wrong with the wires , meaning we would be able to not depart before the next day , but he did not expect that.

After 2 hours , with great KLM service on board and a very open captain sharing with us what happened…. that gives you a good feeling,….the verdict was there. It was” only “a filthy sensor!!!
So we got some more fuel and had to undo the seat belts while tanking, waited a few more minutes for paperwork , engine 4 was tested for 15 minutes and,…there was the all clear to go!!!

No more excitement during the flight, no “bed ” as the plane was full , 3 movies and some music and with a bit more then 2 hour delay I arrived in cold Holland.

Another trip, lot’s of stories and pictures and in a way also happy to be home again. The sun now is shining brightly , the snow is slowly disappearing, it’s about -5 and the winter will be over after the weekend at-least for a while as fore-casted, so time to start 2013 in Holland.
Finish with the good life of Australia, kangaroos and birds sharing life with the people, what do you want more.



Dundees bird bath is used by many.

Denmark 015 Denmark 014





What a 1000 km.-flight by 21 year old Matthew in the LS 4!!!!

When looking at the OLC, you see sometimes flights from people and slowly you start to admire them. Not difficult to guess who those pilots are , as I refer often to them. They even feel like my  friends , while I do not even know them.
Matthew Scutter is one of them. Looking at his 1000 km. flight last year in the LS 4 , at his performance at Joey glide and his 1000 km.-flight 2 weeks ago from Tocumwal, I was eager to meet him and talk to him.
He was very kind and straight away said YES when I asked for a few words. Here is the interview and the pictures  Enjoy and THANK YOU MATTHEW!!!
And,….when friends in Poland close to Leszno read this blog , please read the last part very well. THANKS!!!! Would be great if we could help him.
Let me introduce you to Matthew with a picture of him.

Benalla 036

1. Matthew you are still very young, what gives you the courage to fly over unlandable areas during a 1000 k?
Do you  believe in the weather or in
your self or both?
How do you prepare your self?

No courage required, I thoroughly research the area in advance,have waypoints for all the outlanding areas as well as a completely redundant navigation system in case my primary system
fails over unhospitable terrain. I also drop a marker on the edge of the unlandable terrain so I have a rough idea of how far back to good country it is.
I must rely on the weather forecasting and myself toavoid having to make use of this preparation though!
In my most recent long flight I only once needed to consider deviating towards a landable area, as I was heading out over the Hay plains before the cumulus were forming.
I also like to have a good nights sleep prior, and everything prepared at least the day before so I can relax on the morning of the flight.

2. How did you get in to gliding and do you have somebody you admire
in our soaring world, an example?

 I wanted to fly powered aircraft as a small child, and my
parents encouraged me to join the air force cadets to experience gliding. After over a year of the air force cadets, and still no opportunities for gliding, my father and I joined the Adelaide
University Gliding Club and went out together most weekends.
I look up to the excellent coaches at my club (Adelaide Soaring Club), Graham Parker, Terry Cubley, Peter Temple who’ve generously donated their time and shared their wisdom to help my flying over the years.
As someone who finds consistent flying far more challenging than fast flying, I aspire to the incredibly consistent performances of the likes of Sebastien Kawa.

3. Flying a competition is different , then “eating” kilometers / read fly long distance, what do you like most?
Being young means also sometimes being impatient , maybe the reason for your outlandings during comps?

 I much prefer free flying, no declared tasks, just playing in the atmosphere. I fly competitions because I find I learn much quicker when I’m able to compare what I’m doing to so many other
pilots. I do find the competitive aspect great fun though – a tight competition is a whole different source of fun aside from the gliding.
I will admit I’ve outlanded quite a few times due to impatience, but I think the majority of my outlandings nowadays are misreading the next 50km and failing to ‘change down gears’ if conditions are deteriorating – something I’ve been working on this season but still haven’t quite nailed.

 4. I guess there is a bright future for you, how do you see the future in soaring your self?

 This year I’m stepping up my commitment to soaring by saving for my own glider and travelling to the site of the junior worlds months in advance and getting some practice in.
With my own glider I hope to increase the amount of flying I do, and hopefully improve my performances! I also have my eye on a few ‘low-hanging fruit’ in the record books at the moment.

5. Please tell us about your 1000 km. flight from Tocumwal on that “bloody hot “day?

It was a huge gamble to drive over from South Australia (without a crew!) on a hope the weather forecast was correct. I’d been watching it for a few days prior and it hadn’t been as forecast, but it looked to me like the stars might just align on this particular day.
I arrived at Tocumwal in the evening the night before, rigged and ballasted in the twilight and settled in for a big nights sleep in preparation. The forecast had deteriorated substantially at this stage, so now I was hoping it was not as forecast!

I optimistically launched first (having felt some movement in the air), with more water on board
than I’d ever flown with (525kg).
The LS4 doesn’t quite have the same pleasant handling characteristics this heavy, and it was a
long struggle to core a broken two knots over the field, which took me to a few thousand feet.
I very tentatively pushed on north, with the thought of outlanding on the morning of a 1000k day
weighing heavily on my mind. Conditions slowly improved, three knots, four knots up to 4000ft. I heard chatter on the radio of all the other clubs in the area launching and pilots struggling to stay afloat.
After about an hour I made it to Jerilderie (not very far north!) { 50km Ritz} , and I saw the very first cumulus of the day form far, far above me at well over 10,000ft.
I couldn’t find a strong core up to it, so I continued pushing north and eventually found a strong climb up to cloudbase, and the day was on!

Matthew PANO_20130105_202249
panorama view

The primary purpose of this flight was not to set a record, or even to fly 1000k+, but rather just to gain a better understanding of troughs so I can maximize my distance and speed next time around, so I started by heading far out to the west, right against the west-most edge of the trough. For reasons I still don’t understand, I didn’t find verygood climbs or air against this edge, nor in the second or third streets to the east.
I ended up tracking about 30km ‘into’ the trough, and had a good run up past Ivanhoe (about 400km from Tocumwal). It was about here that I heard pilots on the radio complaining of rain and thunderstorms back towards Temora, and I grew increasingly concerned about the prospects of returning.
After talking with a few of them, I decided it was time to head back towards Tocumwal, but via the eastern side of the trough where I thought there might be less over development.
About 100km on the way back I saw a large anvil looming out to the east, but what appeared to be a convergence setting up out on the far western edge of the trough (where it had not been good before!).

Matthew climbing_in_a_straight_line
climbing in a straight line

I had seen a convergence like this just once before,the year prior when I did another OLC 1000.
I gave it a try and was rewarded – a 224km glide losing 3000ft, at 90kts average that took me through heavy showers and sleet. The sleet was forming ice on thewings, so I found myself frequently having to move out into the sun to melt the ice and regain the glideperformance. In some places the lift was so strong I had to do 130kts+ to keep out of the cloud – andperiodically a single droplet of water would come through the vent and hit me in the face at 130kts leaving little welts! Quite painful!
I now had quite a few hours before last light, and played in the convergence trying to better understand how it worked and where to find the strongest lift while making up a bit more distance.

Matthew ice on wings
Ice on wings

In retrospect, this trough was far weaker than the one I had flown the year previously, but
my improved understanding let me achieve a better flight from it. Hopefully the next one is even better! I believe with the understanding I now have, and a strong trough like last year, 1250km out and return is possible in the LS4. I suspect it may be some years before we get a trough like that again though.
Terrain might be a problem though, with that far north of most potential sites being totally unlandable (no strips!). Big triangles are a whole art form unto themselves I haven’t even
considered yet.

Matthew leaving_the_street  Matthew long_street_with_rain

                     Leaving the street                                         A long street with rain

6. What would you like to tell us and I have not asked?

I will be packing up and heading to Leszno, Poland this year from May until September to holiday and practice for the junior worlds, and would love to meet any locals who can introduce me to the area or give me tips!
I am still looking for a car and caravan or other accomodation near Leszno, so if there is anyone reading out there who might be able to loan, lease or lend me any of the
above it would be much appreciated!


Just heard his birthday is in 4 days so HAPPY 22 d BIRTHDAY  MATTHEW!!!!!


Last WIFI job in Tocumwal!

Public library on January 22 2013

laatste dag 007

Last day in the library.

Though the skies REALLY looked beautiful yesterday the distances were not as good as hoped for , but at least all pilots were happy with the great clouds and for Terry in the ASH 26 a nice over 700 km. flight.
Look at them, at 3 in the afternoon yesterday, all around,……. CLOUDS to the N. , the S., the W. and E.
Pepe used the clouds for another 1000 km. flight from Corowa in his ASH 31, while on the other site of the world in South Africa, some friends flew from Kuruman over 1000 km. as well.
Neil Burns was so lucky to fly the brand new ARCUS M.  from Roger Druce and flew all the way up NW and back with Roger; 654 km.

laatste dag 001  laatste dag 002

Great looking skies!

Yesterday I had a great dinner with the Riley family; Bill  the founder of Sportavia, his wife Val, Bill’s daughter Chrissie who knows nearly all pilots from the time she was involved helping out, her husband Stuart and June, who knows all of the past as well.
Tonight a last dinner with the “girls” and than it is preparing for my trip back.

laatste dag 004

With Val, June, Suart, Chrissie and good old Bill.

It has been a fantastic time here in my old town Tocumwal. Those who were interested and have been here , I heard enjoyed it as well.
Back to “normal” soaring business and I will add another blog with the interview and pictures from young Matthew Scutter. What a flight that was here from Tocumwal,…enjoy both the pictures and the story.

Cu on Sunday , when my plane can “defeat” the icy conditions and when I can do the same after nearly 40 dgr. here today and tomorrow.

Last but not least a press release I received from one of my friends. Tony is the one who invited me to visit New Zealand in 2010.


Australian Domain Registrar


Melbourne Australia, January 18, 2013

As Mega prepares to launch their new cloud storage service on January 19,

2013, Instra Corporation

a global domain name registrar is primed to provide

expert product, billing and technical support services to users in

anticipation of dramatic new global demand for the Mega service.

According to Instra CEO, Brian Clarkson,

The new Mega promises a revolution

in online privacy with one-click encryption for every user, creating a secure online

cloud data haven for Internet users across the globe.

During the launch phase, Instra will be assisting in day-to-day operations,

providing all front-line technical support for any and all related products and


According to Tony Lentino, CEO of Mega, the new cloud storage service will

bring immediate economic value to Australia and New Zealand in the form of new

jobs as it grows the Mega venture.

About Instra Corporation Pty. Ltd.

Formed in 1997, Instra Corporation is a privately-owned company based in

Melbourne, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand, Instra has expanded its initial

domain name business from New Zealand and Australia into a leading, worldwide

domain registrar.

Instra Corporation supplies over 300+ country domains worldwide and has direct

accreditations with over 100 registries. Many companies and household brand

names from around the world take advantage of Instras unique and

sophisticated Domain Management System to actively manage their online

intellectual property. Our customers come from over 160 different countries.

Cheers Ritz

Last WIFI job here at Sportaviation!

Sportaviation reception room on January 21 2013

clouds over Tocumwal 001

Last day of writing at Sportaviation and I am grateful for the use of their WIFI. A real good one as well.
Tomorrow one more day of daily news and then the diary 2012/2013  will be closed. Hope you enjoyed the trip with me!
The first pilot { J J } has left already , just after 11 and Mac , who is back from Narromine with a young Japanese friend ,who has flown in Waikiri already, but not yet from Tocumwal, is preparing his flight. So is Stefan and Jochen and Bill, who I have not seen for years. It was great to catch up again with so many old “friends”.

Sportaviation en huis 005  Sportaviation en huis 003

Sportaviation en huis 004

Stefan flew 803 km yesterday in his LS 4 . He still is such a great cross country pilot!

I still was a bit on -a -high , after a great 3 course- dinner with friends in town and,…after reading the results and news from Chaves, so I did not sleep too well.
It’s always extra interesting when things change on the last day. A non flying last day makes the toppers happy , BUT  they have to be on their best to keep the “others from their back” on a flying day as everybody close by is eager to win. Nerves can play a role and tactics are MOST IMPORTANT.
Read on the Aussie site that the pilots decided to pair flying as practised before in Benalla.It turned out great with a 2d place for Tobias in Club class and a 9th spot for Craig, while Allan was on spot 6 in World Class!
In this case certainly the Argentinean pilots who , maybe?/surely?  with some local- knowledge, did extremely well.
That they celebrated was just so much deserved.

Chaves winner Sebastian Riera.
Picture courtesy to the Argentinean wgc website.

What I feel? Happiness. I am more than just happy. I obtained more than what I
had expected and now I am trying to enjoy it. “
Young pilot Sebastian Riera.

Good news for the Dutch team as well. No podium places this time but the TEAM CUP was for The Netherlands and is here in the hands of TC Bart Renckens.

Chaves beker voor Holland!

Bart with the TEAM CUP!
source zweefportaal.

Life continues ! Still good flights from Namibia and South Africa , but slowly the season there comes to an end. The Australian season still continues for a bit, though days are getting shorter.
Yesterday Corowa had still flights over 950 km.
Swaantje is still in Benalla and had a “joy[able] -flight” flying an FAI triangle of 500 km.[636 in total]  mostly in clouds. During the comps most days were blue! She must have enjoyed the day in the LS 8!!

It’s 12 now and Terry in PC is at 8000 ft. on it’s way , hopefully for a nice long flight. Stefan left as well and the pilots flying mainly for fun are taking it easy, but have left the reception room as well. Ralf is the last to go. Mac is still in the hangar with his mate!
12.15 clouds everywhere to the N, W and E. It looks to be going a great day!

clouds over Tocumwal 002  clouds over Tocumwal 003

clouds over Tocumwal 004
Clouds to the East, North and West.

Quite a lot of my soaring friends are slowly getting older! BUT,…not as old as this 92 year old pilot , who flies from Western Australia; Mr. Dick Sasse. He flew the Western Australian state Comps from Cunderdin in club class. He did not win one of the 5 days , but flew very consistant and ended on spot 2 as runner up!.
GOOD on him!!!!!
As one of my friends Ron mentioned;
—“He has come second in an ASTIR  WQI and he is AT LEAST 92 YEARS OLD—he must be
THE oldest competing solo pilot in the world!!  He is a member of the Morowa
club in WA.—“

Just got the latest Gliding Australia in hand, with items as the Narromine Cup, the NSW State comps,an interview with G Dale who coached in Australia in Lake Keepit, Benalla and Narromine, about levels of  high risk certainly in mountains  and competitions with gaggle flying. And about Sebastian Kawa;
—” I ve seen him operate. He is just 100 % professional in his approach. He has all the bases covered, but it’s not just talent, it’s WORK.”—“
More for you to read in the latest January/February issue!

Off to town again , cu tomorrow, Ritz

It all happened on the last day in Chaves!!!!!!

Sportaviation on Sunday January 20 2013

Wow, WOW, wow,it happened all on the last day!!!!

It is a splendid Sunday here in Tocumwal, sunny , clouds up but far East , a nice breeze , not too hot not too cold.
It cost me some effort to not rush out to a WIFI spot to see what happened in Chaves! Time difference, you know!
When I saw the final results I could not believe my eyes. YES , I knew and felt Sebastian was going to win, but that Roman dropped to 3 , Toby climbed to 2 and 3 Argentinians on TOP POSITIONS is specially for the home country a GREAT moment in history.
Well done too for the German pilots with 2 in the top 3 and of course the Polish pilots with Sebastian winning 2 WGC’s in one season and with 2 pilots in the top 3 !!!

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL best pilots/winners and to all other pilots for flying well under not too easy circumstances.

On day 4 the top 1 and 2 Argentinean pilots  Sebastian Riera and Jorge Tartara in World class were still on spot 3 and 4. The next 3 days they raced to the 2 best spots to keep their top- places overall till the end!
Mind you the winner won not one single day!
A pity Allan dropped to spot 6 but looking at the points there is not much difference. Number 4 had 3388 points , number 5 3385 and number 6, 3382. WOW, again!
Sebastian Riera is the winner and last World champion in World class during a combined WGC with 2 other classes. They are on their selves now.

In Club class I had hope as a good Dutch citizen and knowing how good he is , that Tim would be in the top 3 , but unfortunately on the last day [8] he had only 773 points from the 1000 available on this 3 hour AAT day. Over the last days Tim had to deal with flu as well and that’s not .
The last day was won by Santiago Berca with 311 km in 3 hours 12. He was 2d overall on the last but one day and won with this very last flight of the comps  the TITLE. He seems to be the local hero , so that’s extra good for the Argentineans. On this last day he needed 125 points to beat Roman,…it turned out all different.
Great news for Toby Geiger, I know my Aussie friends are happy for him. His name sounds German , he has German roots and as I heard he even has joined in the past the German team. What about that. Tobias flies from Benalla and I have seen they kept a good eye on him.
Toby was 16 points better than Roman who dropped from 1 to 3 on the last day. You don’t want that , but it can happen, as we all know. He was 25th on the last day a pity for him.

In standard class the last title was by Sebastian Kawa. This years title is for SEBASTIAN KAWA.
His book goes “as a train” , he wins Uvalde in 15 m. class  and now he wins the standard class in Argentina. Who will be ever better then Sebastian?
What a HERO!
They had 9 days in this class. On the last day the pilots had a 2.45 AAT, won by Czech pilot Jan Louda [951 points] .Sebastian was 4th with 903 points. Felipe and Mario “hung”in  coming back in the top 6, but that was not enough to pass Sebastian.
With the total of 6102 points  he was the deserved winner  but can’t say anything else then TOP JOB for Mario [ 6038] and Filipe [ 5955].

A competition without accidents , ….PERFECT and as I heard with a lot of  atmosphere also created as I hear by the lovely local people, …..very good,…. and with top organizers ,….TOP!
And, as the TC from the USA team mentioned about this last day; “a day with 100 % completions and the best overall speeds of the contest”. The trouble was the weather, but I guess so what I read that this will be quickly forgotten the rest also the interesting retrieves will stay in the minds.
Another WGC over. With 7 Argentinean participants and all of them within the best 7 spots, they did VERY WELL. Congratulations!

Cheers Ritz

Nearly forgot; The hanggliding World Comps are over too ; here are the results.
Great result for Tocumwal “girl” Tove Heany being 3d in the womens!!!

Sport: Hang Gliding class 1
Title: 19th FAI World Hang Gliding Class 1
Type : World
Date:  05.01 – 18.01.2013
Location: Forbes

Final Results :

1st : Manfred Ruhmer
2nd : Alessandro Ploner ITA
3rd : Filippo Oppici

1st: Corinna Schwiegershausen GER
2nd: Kathleen Rigg
3rd: Tove Heaney AUS

1st : Italy
2nd : USA
3rd :
United Kingdom

The full results can be found at the following address :

Back home in Toc. after a jolly good day and night!

Sportaviation Reception Area on Saturday January 19 2013.

Welcome to the Benalla prize-giving and party.

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This morning at 7 AM, I was ready to leave the Glider City Motel in Benalla again , as Lisa and Peter Trotter were so kind to take me with them to Tocumwal, where they had to be on their way to the Sunshine Coast,  for a “pick-up” .
I was a bit worried, as the terrible smell of the bushfires in Gippsland in Victoria , had reached Benalla as well. This deadly fire storm hit several small places in the South of Victoria killing one man [80] , who tried to escape in his car, but sadly enough was too late and destroying homes and land [50.000 hectares at this stage and the blaze continues!] with wild life.

No fire smells in Tocumwal, where we arrived nicely at 8 AM. I felt very privileged to drive with the Trotters , both in their class the new Australian champions. Peter drove upfront with his glider on tow , I drove with Lisa behind him, with her glider on tow. When I jumped out they still had 10 to 12 hours to go before reaching Anita and Bruces place at Kentucky and then one more day of driving to make it home. That says enough about distances in Australia.

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the Trotters with all their prizes.

Not a lot of sleep after a real nice party where old times revived with friends as Griffo [with Monica], Brockie [with Christine and daughter Brooke] , Terry [with Vicky] and so many others. The prizes were ready to be handed over and the food smelled delicious. After the beef/chicken the fun teams were mentioned first by Competition Director Peter Gray, who in the end got a huge applause for “a job well-done”. Tim Shearly was the well respected task setter this year, so not the CD as mentioned yesterday , sorry about that.

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Bruce , Griffo and Tony and with Vicky

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Bruce, Terry and a friend from Griffo and Peters wife Monica

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Griffo [Peter] and Bruce! Nothing changed!

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The table full of prizes!

As said the fun teams were announced first and the winners were; “ Gun’s & liquor” formed by Tom Claffey and Lisa and Peter Trotter with 956 points.
The winning STATE team was Queensland with Andrew Maddocks and again ,…Lisa and Peter Trotter. They took the beautiful GFA shield home.[picture below]

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Then there was the record presentation for a new Australian 300 km. triangle record flown on November 26 by Jenny Thomson in her ASW 27 from Narromine 144.34 km./h. a record in 15m., 18m., and open class.

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Jenny surrounded by task setter Tim to the l. and CD Peter Gray to the r.

German pilot Swaantje was the highest international ranked pilot with her 5th place and TEAM NEW ZEALAND won the Tasman Trophy. This prize goes to an upcoming pilot from Australia or New Zealand flying the nationals in alternate countries and not having flown world comps before. For Australia it was Ian Mc Callum  for NZ Tim Bromhead ,who won 2 days and he takes the trophy back home to NZ. Nice young lad and like Australia, they have a few young and upcoming pilots!

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Swaantje and Tim

Lothar Arndt , flying in Tocumwal was the highest novice pilot . He flew his glider back to Tocumwal after the cancellation and was nicely back in time for the party.
The highest- raw -speed –prize the Taylor &Kauffmann Speed Trophy was for Tom Claffey.

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Lothar and the SPEED TROPHY.

It was good to see Norm Bloch back in competition soaring after more than 25 years and even better,…he ended on a 3d place in his first Nationals, after the break.

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The winners in each class were cheered on; Peter, Lisa, Lars and Tom. They all said a word as well and I was pleased to hear that Lisa mentioned “young blood” in the comps with a lot of young ones and SEVEN Lady pilots, one of them the very young Ailsa Mc Millan , being 2d on the last day in standard class. In her opinion,  it “enriches” the comps and I totally agree.

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Brian surrounded by ” new blood” as Andrew and Nick Maddocks and Ben Loxton who as I heard flew VERY well.

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Specially for Tim Kuijpers in Chaves!

And kilometer -eater Matthew Scutter with 2x 1000 km. under his belt in an LS 4.Story about him will follow soon!

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Australian [ competition] Soaring is doing well  and that is great to see.
The next Nationals will be in Kingaroy in Queensland from October 14-24.

This years winners;

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Lisa [standard class]  and Peter Trotter [15 m. class]

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Tom [18 m.]and Lars [open class].

A scoop as well; There was NO bid for the 2016 flapped class,… so Australia said they wanted to go for it. Out of Lake Keepit , Corowa and Benalla , the final choice was Benalla! [ as you know the WGC was in 1987 in Benalla as well.]
They have however to compete with the UK , where Lasham will send their bid and it seems also Austria has showed interest now.
In the end of February the IGC will decide where it will be. That IGC meeting will be in Holland, and I play a very small role in the organization as well. All credit goes to Frauke.

It was great to be back in Benalla.

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The Peters [Trotter and Temple] and Shinzo with crew.
and to finish the gorgeous wife from Bruce Christine and their daughter Brooke.

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See you hopefully tomorrow, library will be closed, so we will see.

cheers Ritz

Last day at Benalla Multi class NATIONALS! Updated all the time!!


With updates, I will go through this last day at the 51 nationals here in Benalla. We left Tocumwal with a tough westerly and arrived here with nearly no wind, but it picked up later as well.
It looks like they are going to fly.
It really feels good to be back in Benalla.However we drove to the wrong direction and after asking a friendly , I guess Irish guy, who told us we had to go back over 3 round- abouts and go at the 4th to the right . Absolutely spot on we stopped at the airfield.

2.30 AAT’s have been set for all classes and as 15m. and standard have one day less they are upfront on the grid.
Just caught up with Miles and Paul, with Vickey and Terry, with Swaantje,  Shinzo , David, Wombat and the rest is at the grid.

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Miles and Paul [Matthews] and Wombat.

 First launch at 13.00. Will not go there as I have to bring my “gear ” to the hotel as Dundee wants to leave again. Very kind of him to bring me.
Found myself a good place [with permission] , so I will be with you with as much news as I can from BENALLA AIRPORT.

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12.45; Just had an interesting trip in the generic  simulator based on the IS 28 and formerly as wreck bought from David Riley and used by the Gliding Club of Victoria where instructor Graham Garlick , is the BIG engine , behind it.
Goal; to have more of these simulators in Australia,  to raise the standard and mitigating the risks. He hopes more clubs will do so and they are free to have a look at this one, even fly it. You can contact the Gliding Club of Victoria for details.
My flying was very poor. We started at Tocumwal but one way or an other ended up in Norway. The 3 flat screen projectors are projecting on an 180 dgr. screen. Instruments have to be still put in the glider itself, but show on the screen, so no worries!It depends all on money, to have this new project going.  Great experience!

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With Graham and something went terribly wrong with me flying.

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And finishing in Norway,……
Very good visibility!

Just great to catch up with a long-time-frequent-flyer at Tocumwal, now bringing his glider to Benalla from the UK; Richard Kalin.

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With Richard.

14.00; They have not started yet. Some hope they do not have to go, as they are on top spots. 2 Sniffers went up , but came down as well.
Great to see the Fergussons. Older now but still going strong and looking young. Ian is not flying any more , Juliet is still practising a day or so a week, as GP in Cobram.
Finally met Matthew Scutter. He looks even younger then I expected. Will talk more with him. Heard this Ben Loxton is still very young too.

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The Fergusons  and with Lisa[Trotter]

 Norm Bloch won yesterday in standard class and is on spot 3 overall after 7 days of flying.Lisa is on top [6501 points] and Andrew Maddocks on spot 2 ,[6495 only 6 points!!!!], SO when there is no soaring today , they will be the top 3 in standard class.
German pilot Swaantje had a less good day yesterday and “dropped ” from 3 to 5, flying a good glider [LS8]  but not one she is used to in “her” club class. As she said her LS1f fits her as a glove and she will fly that glider in Issoudun during the WWGC. But,….Australia feels like coming home, where ever she flies!

In 15 m. KIWI pilot Tim Bromhead had his 2d win yesterday during this nationals . When nothing happens, it’s 2.30 now and no noise of the engines of the 5 Pawenees, he will finish on a good spot 9. Best place will be then for Peter Trotter, than Peter Temple, Terry Cubley will be on spot 3 , with Miles on spot 4.
Peter Trotter won 3 of the 7 days.

In 18 m. 8 days of soaring with as winner yesterday Tom Claffey again.He is in the overall scores nearly 300 points ahead of young, only 30 I just heard, Ben Loxton,flying the Ventus 2CT. Brian DuRieu is on spot 3 and,…when nothing happens today,…. it will stay like this.
My friend Tony was bothered by cramps in his legs , so he was not really in top condition, but liked the flying here at Benalla as always.

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Tony and Jo.

In open class also 8 days . Yesterday was won again by Catherine Conway in the Nimbus 4DM. I guess Shinzo would like to fly today as he is only 30 points behind Lars, who at this stage tops the overall list with Andrew Georgeson on spot 3.

It’s 2.45 now and still no sign of launching , but it still might all happen , when the front passes quickly.
It’s 3 now ; The change is TOO SLOW, it will happen , but TOO late, is what task setter Tim just told me, so the winners are known now.

CONGRATULATIONS, to Lars, Tom, Peter,[Trotter] and Lisa [Trotter] the New Australian Champions!

To finish 2 pictures from Matthew Scutter as said more about him later. Also pictures from the prize giving and dinner.

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With and without sun glasses!

Scorcher again today with over 40 dgr.!


Maybe it was not the smartest idea to tell readers in this area I am writing from the library. Was I the only one in the beginning,  it is “fighting” for a good spot now, as a report appeared about me being here in the local paper. This time I sit in the kid’s corner, but no worries.

We had a lovely evening yesterday after a pretty good day at the airport, with flights over 600 km in JJ and PC.
Margie and I were allowed by Cheryl ,of course is what Cheryl said on our request, to have some kind of reunion-reception with guests from Sportavia, happily flying with Sportaviation now.Even Jochen’s wife , who loves playing golf in Toc. joined in. Great to see Stefan as well, who is ready for a big one today if the day turns as good as we expect. Very blue still but already hot at 9AM.

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A lot of memories passed by as both Margie and I have been actively involved in Sportavia in the past and guests as Jochen, Wayne, Ralf and Stefan were flying then as well.
Jochen is, like me , here for the 25th time!!!!It’s great to see how busy Sportaviation now is again, VERY pleased to see that!!!!
Also good soaring-weather for my friends flying from Corowa and Narromine. Looking forward what this day will bring.

Talking about that , the Benalla multi class comps are starting the last but one day. Yesterday the 1000 points were in open for Lars Zehnder, in 18 for Ben Loxton in standard for Lisa Trotter and in 15 m. for her husband Peter.
With a not really good to predict last day tomorrow[Friday] this might be an important day. I hope they have WIFI , so I can straight away inform you AT the spot tomorrow about this last day and the final results.

Tocumwal Nationals Bruce de Trotters


Chaves is looking ahead at the last days as well and it was very interesting to hear that Sportaviations tuggie from last year Petr Svoboda[Czech.Rep.]  is flying in the world class and is on a good 10th place [from 23].
For today , that is over there in Argentina on Wedneday,  there is NO flying. The day is scrubbed due to bad weather. “The cold front did not banish , so it is not possible to fly”, ewas the message.

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“Hard working” good looking girls and chief steward Brian.
Courtesy Frans Guise.

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Argentinian night as seen by Frans.

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On the OLC I noticed still top flights from Namibia but also from Douglas, Gariep Dam and Kuruman. The overseas 2012/2013 season is a fantastic one!!!

See you tomorrow from Benalla. Take care and all the best and  good luck for the pilots in Chaves.Ritz