Only ONE week to go and I rather unexpectedly travel to Australia !!!!Love it! High season is ON!!!!

Weird,…I was sure I was not going this year, though the rest of my family would be there. I even had peace with my staying alone here.
BUT,…… My daughter convinced me to come along. She straight away booked after my hesitating yes,….a trip to Melbourne, so I leave on December 7 and will be back home here again on January 12.
Got the ticket , got the visa, got the ticket for the shuttle from Tullamarine to Spencerstreet Station, got the first class train ticket to Shepparton and George and Dundee will be there to bring me to my second “home”. Even a temporarely mobile phone is organized.
Tocumwal here we come!!
I will NEVER forget the happy faces from my grandchildren ,when we told them I was coming as well.
This means that we, the entire family,  spend Christmas, New Year and Dennis-30 years without him- together and I can’t even recall when that happened!!!!!!!

The laptop travels with me, so I will keep ,as usual a diary,[ like the last couple of years, ] to let you share in the Toc adventures,…that is of course ,when you are interested.
Family , friends and neighbors will live in/take care of my house.So all under control.

—–Thunderstorms, heavy rain and hail were the ingredients for last weekend for the overseas pilots in the Tocumwal, Corowa, Benalla -triangle.
BUT no news,…on Monday it was “work”  again as normal. One of the Toc pilots flew to the N when the storm was in the East.
The news from Sportaviation;”Storms to the east.☂️💨🌪
KYO Flies to Moulamein-Coleambally in wonderful Cumulus conditions to the North.”615 km.!!!!
Stephan Soll was the pilot and he flew his LS 4 !! He knows Toc very good,  flying there already before us, during our time and now with Eddie.
One day later the weather was even better in the “triangle” with a lot of great flights up to up 776 in the Ventus 2 CM ’18 m. from Corowa.
George flew from Toc for the very first time in the just purchased Discus 2/18 m. from his wife Diana. A great glider he mentioned; 573 km. …no water!
Eddie from Sportaviation in Tocumwal showed some nice pictures from the clouds going with the earlier bad weather, so did Francesco from the Australian Soaring Center Corowa.
It was also pretty hot.
Today Stephan flew a 500 km triangle[ 638 km in total]  in his LS 4. Corowa and Benalla had flights up to over 700 km. in more fancy gliders as Nimbus 3DT and DG 808 B/18 m.


Clouds over COROWA
over Tocumwal.


Passing to the N. So the see Corowa more east ,got the full load!! Stephan had a good flight [picture;part of the trail] up NW and back.

——Last Monday the weather for soaring was also great in the Namibia and South Africa area. Alexander Mueller flew a nice 1000 FAI triangle from Pokweni in the BLUE with 133 km. on the clock.[EB 29]
15 x a 1000 km-plus in that area
Yesterday Alexander enjoyed another 1000 FAI triangle now as he mentioned with clouds and a few more kilometers; 1.298 km. and 145 km./h.
In total 3 over 1.250 km. in EB’s all FAI triangles and nearly a FULL OLC page with 1000 ‘s.
As said the season is HOT.
My Belgian friends , Hilde and Bert, arrived in Namibia as well and made their first flight from Veronica in the ARCUS M ;826 km. and yesterday a 1000.

——Quite a few Dutch pilots choose Douglas Backhouse in South Africa as there overseas destination and there are 3 Dutch Maxes there. Good fun. Even Laurens [Goudriaan ] was there and flew last Sunday  in his JS3 TJ…789 km. On Monday the Dutchies  flew up to just under 800 km. in an Arcus and Nimbus 4DM. Max L and Max D in the Arcus and Rob [Looisen] and Max B in the Nimbus 4DM. Evert Jan and Ronald flew 729 in the ARCUS T.
After a few technical problems Hadriaan started later, but still flew 571 km in the JS 1BTJ. A great day for my Dutch mates.

With Rob …..As shared by Max B.

From Gariep Dam our former guest at Sportavia , Uwe Thiele flew a 1000 from Gariep Dam. [DG 808 B/18 m.]
Other friends moved to Kuruman having nice flights over there. Also 2x a 1000 on Monday there in an ASW 22 BLE and Nimbus 4DM.
It’s great to see that the overseas destinations, where ever ,have good bookings now!!! It’s BUSY!!!High season!!! I know how that feels!!!!

Our new runway markings looks great from above..”
as shared by Gariep Dam Gliding.

—It’s cold already in Scotland .Look at these pictures from Roy and 2 other soaring friends from Lasham.


Freezing cold conditions ,…not for me.
“Successfully reached to Cairngorm Summit weather station in a white-out with Chris Starkey & Steve Ellis Ellis.”
As shared by Roy.

And it is not over yet. Read what Steve wrote;
Extreme Nordic Walking in the Cairngorms. Today we took our poles to the summit of Cairngorm (1245m), it was so cold with driving snow that stung exposed flesh like needles; and goggle’s that iced inside and out! Navigating at times was extremely challenging but we had a fantastic day; and are now hatching a 3-day/2-night adventure taking in remote valleys, bothies and more snow forecast. Roy  and Chris are on top form and we’re all looking forward to the next 3 days! Stay tuned folks….”


Pictures shared by Steve.The TEAM in good spirit and “invisible” Roy and Chris.

To finish a nice picture shared by Narromine Gliding Club Official on the last day of their always busy Narromine week. A picture from nice warm soaring weather again.

By the way , the 750 and 1000 km. pilots were en route already, Great skies.

AND …just before I publish some news shared by Schempp-Hirth;
FES flies again

After our initial notification regarding problems that occurred with the FES batteries from our competitors, we promised to inform you about any further developments. We regret having waited so long to publish this information, but we wanted to make absolutely sure that all of our proposals were officially accepted by the aviation authorities.

Yesterday, we received the EASA change approval number 100634863 and our FES equipped aircraft will be able to fly without restrictions after performing the required changes. We would like to thank everyone involved for the wonderful teamwork in solving this issue, including the investigation authority in Great Britain, the LBA and EASA, as well as our supplier Luka Znidarsik of LZ Design and our in house engineering team.

The main changes include the installation of improved batteries as well as a redundant, independent, fire warning system, a new firmware for the FES controller unit and revised manual pages involving use of the FES system. The changes will improve protection of the batteries from external and internal damage, and the pilot will receive quicker and better information in order to be better prepared to react appropriately in the unlikely event of an over heating battery.

Aircraft that are still here in the factory will under go these changes during production and will be appropriately licensed at delivery. For aircraft that have already been delivered, we will be publishing a TM with clear instructions for performing the necessary changes.

We are very happy about this news. We, as well as our customers, are still very excited about the simplicity and sophistication of the OSTIV award winning FES-propulsion system and its ability to melt the boundaries between gliding and powered flight, allowing for a whole new level of flight experience. The comfort, flexibility, and thereby safety, that the easy use of the FES system provides will be of definite advantage to clubs and flight schools around the world.”

So you are up to date with the latest on FES as well.

CU next week for the “last”  blog from 2017 in Holland!!!
And some newsy news;
Holland counts at this stage

Cheers Ritz



Bitterwasser and Kiripotib, glider mecca’s for Flying with the Champion pilots. R.I.P David Wilson.

—–The 2 ,Flying with the Champions-weeks, are over now. Two 7-day courses  between November 4 and 17 are a pleasure/feast for champion and student. The last day was on Friday with around 500 k’s.
AND,…a very special day. Bitterwasser pilots against Kiripotib pilots.
The “champions” have their last day. And it is a special one! They compete with the other “Flying with the Champions” camp from Kiripotip!
So it is a real challenge! Normally you find these top class pilots on a World Gliding Championship – today you can find them racing the Namibian sky.”

The weather was mostly good and from less good days ,you might even learn more. On a day with 30 kts wind they do other things as looking at the specific animals in Africa.
So to see the weather was not as good as last season but still enough great flights!

Now other pilot’s take over the glider’s. From Finland Antti and Juha did some  “ 20m class crew training. Declared 755 km FAI triangle in blue. Later clouds.” They flew 1.015km.from Kiripotib.
So 1000km-flying continues in Bitterwasser, Kiripotob ,Pokweni and Veronica.

Ludwig, now had time to “work”  on his records again. He tried hard for a WORLD record on a 1000 km. FAI triangle, but,….
Today I tried it again, I missed the Speed World Record by 5 Minutes. At the last turnpoint I was at 180km/h average, 10 faster than the WR, but on the last leg the thermal was not good enough.
That was close , very close indeed but normally good for an Austrian record; 1.021 km. with a speed of 169.1 km./h.

As you can see on the picture from Antti the weather was good in Namibia;

As shared by Antti.

PR for Bitterwasser is not necessary they are BIG. But I would like however, to share this news from the Bitterwasser- site :
“Bitterwasser is a top spot! But it’s not only a place for top gun pilots. Here you can find conditions, every pilot is having fun with. If you want to fly your first ever 1000km or if you prefer a relaxed flight with some sight seeing – everyone is welcome.

If you want to step further to the next level of cross country flying, you should take a closer look on Flying with the Champions“.
Johann Posch from USA joins the camp this year. Yesterday he was flying with Wolfgang Janowitsch in an Arcus. You can see that he loved it. He is smiling all the time while talking about it. Posch has been flying for many years now but there is still something to learn. He already noticed some little things that are crucial to success. „The way Janowitsch sees the sky is very special. He is seeing things I didn’t focus on too much before. In the end of the day this is something that takes him faster, further and makes him more successful than others.

Wolfgang and Johann as shared on  

Also on you can find more news.


—–It’s mainly Africa and Australia I write about, but of course New Zealand belongs to the overseas destinations as well. So I copied and pasted for you from the Omarama Gazette as shared by GLIDE OMARAMA;
“Glider pilots from around the world have begun arriving in Omarama ahead of next week’s South Island Regional Glider Races.
The early arrivals are attending Jerry’s Mountain Soaring Course, named for glider pilot Jerry O’Neill, hosted by Glide Omarama, in preparation for the tasks and challenges to be set for the races next week.
South Island Regional Glider Races spokesperson Daniel McCormack said about 30 pilots using 25 gliders had registered for next week’s event and about ten of those were attending this week’s course.
Glider pilots were coming from as far afield as Europe, the United Kingdom and Alaska for the races.
The field will include last year’s winner and US champion Keith Essex, and Australian champion Tom Claffey. 
As well, members of Youth Glide, including Omarama’s Sam Patterson, will be competing, with instructors.
Renowned top level New Zealand glider pilot Justin Wills is to head up the coaching program.
Predictions were for warm, settled weather.”


As shared by GLIDE OMARAMA.

After Kerrie and Tom arrived from Australia , they ran into Keith who is there already for a while ;”discussion turned to flat land flying – the man who’s done 30+ flights over 1000k says “flat land is really hard, you don’t know where to find the next thermal!”
Poor Dutchies we ALWAYS have to cope with flat land, maybe that’s why we have such good pilots here,… ha ha.

Kerrie made a flight with Justin Wills.
Here is her report and some fabulous pictures;
“SI Regionals practice day – had the huge opportunity to fly with Justin Wills – this country still absolutely awesome and absolutely terrifying! So “fly” meant flying on the few occasions we got above the scenery & turning into a blithering passenger when we were down amongst it – the fact that I was with one of the best pilots in the world who’s lived & flown here for 30 years didn’t stop me squirming into the furthest corner of the cockpit away from the hard bits!”

Justin still going strong!!!


Thanks Kerrie for sharing.


The South Island Championships [November 19- November 25] of course from Omarama, started with a rather good day. 2 Classes with 15 pilots in open and 12 in the racing class.
Keith Essex [ASG 29]  won day 1 in open , so 1000 points for him. 11 Finished Patrick [Driessen] was one of the “out- landers”.[98 points]. Tom in the ASH 25 was on spot 6 .
8 From 13 flying, finished but still a 1000 points day.
Frank Saxton in the Discus  B won the first 1000 points in 15 m. class.
Day 2 was cancelled.
And flying day 2 was won again by Keith a 3 hour AAT ; 348 km. in time 3.16.
In racing class only 6 finishers and the winner from day 1 was unfortunately  “out” after 87 km. The daily winner Alex Boyes in the LS 8, flew 239 km in time 3.02 ; 900 points.
AND then,… mail box and mobile are full of news this early morning and normally that’s not a good sign.

The main message :
We regret to inform members of The Gliding Federation of Australia that on Tuesday 21 November 2017, we lost one of our members in an accident near Lake Hawae in the Wanaka region of NZ.  The deceased member is Mr David Wilson, an experienced and well known Victorian glider pilot. He was participating in the NZ South Island Regional Competition, operating from Omarama NZ in an 18m Discus 2.  We understand he collided with terrain on a ridge on the Hunter Range late afternoon.

The accident is being investigated by NZ Police, Coronial authorities and NZ Civil Aviation Authority.  GFA assistance is being offered as required through Gliding NZ. Members will appreciate that more investigations are required before firm conclusions can be drawn.

Our thoughts and condolences are with David’s wife Judy, his family and his many gliding friends.

Peter Cesco
GFA President

I guess EVERYBODY who has been at Benalla knows David!!! He was one of the nicest, kindest pilots from Benalla. You HAD to like him. Very experienced and in my eyes more or less the face of Benalla.I am very sad.
RIP David.

—–The Gliders for Gariep Gliding arrived as well on November 17 and the containers were emptied straight away, ready to go flying, as the season was ON already.


 As shared on their site.

and a less good windy day “Some weather moving in but our flags are flying high....”
As shared by Gariep Gliding


—–The Gliding Federation of Australia shared the next message. Still an opportunity for European friends to go to good old HORSHAM GRAND PRIX ;

“The Australian leg of the World Sailplane Grand Prix, coming to Horsham 22- 28 January 2018, promises to be a great event. With just 10 places remaining, now is your chance to take part in some truly exciting competition.

The contest will be held over seven days, allowing pilots the opportunity to compete in different conditions. The start adds to the excitement as all of the competitors stream through the 5km start together and takes place around a closed course of 200 – 400km during the strongest part of the day. The races last about two to three hours depending on the weather conditions in the race area.

The location is over a wheat-growing region near the Grampians National Park, ideal for high-speed finishes. Most paddocks in the area are suitable for safe outlandings.

All interested pilots need to register online at

So far, Horsham Flying Club has received enquiries from pilots in South Africa and Italy, and expects more in the coming weeks. Apply today!

Arnold Niewand 0429857275
Contest Chairman

AND…..The 52nd edition of the Horsham Week Gliding Competition will be held at the Horsham aerodrome from 3rd to 10th of February 2018 and will run in conjunction with the VSA State Gliding Championships.

Horsham Week registrations are now open, enter via an on-line entry form:


More information can be found on the recently  refurbished competition web page:

—– News from the next WWGC;
Following requests from competitors and Team Captains from the WWGC championships earlier this year, the dates for WWGC 2019 /2020, are being amended.The new dates are
29 – 31 December 2019  Unofficial Training
1 – 3 January  Official Training
3 January  Opening Ceremony
4 – 17 January  Competition (13 days)
17 January  Final Party
18 January  Closing Ceremony

Just to let you know!!


—–After some up-to-750-km. flight in Narromine the weather changed and according to William they had “a good drop”. Rain, heavy thunderstorms and hail caused flooded roads but also a great picture shared by William.
By the way the annual NARROMINE CUP has started with good weather and flights up to over 600 km.  in a Discus 2B. I counted   20 pilots who entered their flight on the OLC. One 300 km. gold goal-flight was already achieved too, by Tony Carling in the ASW 28/18m..

On the border of Narromine Airport.


—–WOW,…the future looks bright for AIRBUS.  Looking at the Financial news , the European manufacturer AIRBUS has announced his biggest order ever,  at the Dubai airshow. Investors from the USA ,Indigo Partners, has ordered 430 planes. That order means 50 milliard dollar or 42 milliard Euro.
The types A320neo en A321neo have been ordered for several price fighters, they represent. They are for short to middle distances.
One of them is Wizz Air from Hungar .they get 146 new planes. I might see them more often then,  as they fly from Eindhoven Airport and fly straight “over my head”.

Also Boeing got a big order at this Airshow; “FlyDubai from the United Arab Emirates wants 175 aircraft from the 737-series and has also taken an option on another fifty of those aircraft. This involves a total amount of 27 billion dollars. The Boeing 737 is also intended for short to medium distances.”


—-After the happiness for the YES-vote for marriage equality [ now it is up to the Parliament to make their move fast;  clearing the way for legalization will make a lot happy] , there was more happiness Down Under.
The Socceroos, talking soccer now of course ,placed their selves for the World Championship in Russia. That’s better , much better than the Dutch and Italian team ,who should have been there looking at their past , but they are just not good enough anymore. Time to work on a new generation and here in Holland that should not be a too big problem. Pretty sad though for many here in Holland and even more in Italy.

You are up to date for this week  My blog was ready to go but then this morning I had to add  the bad news.So I need a break as scores and all other interesting results are less not important anymore today.
CU next week.
Cheers Ritz

Ultimate Soaring Fun in the Silent 2 Electro ER! AND,…much more……198 km./h. over 1.885 km. in wave.

—–Lot’s of high speed flights last week!! Long,….. fast and ….furious!!What about a flight from the Perlan pilot Dennis Tito with Bill Hill in the ARCUS J last Thursday [9-11];1.825 km. with a speed of 187,68 km./h. from Inyokern in the USA. Wave soaring at it’s best!
A bit boring maybe , with 6 legs from around 300 km. up and down and up and down, but still….!!
Really good looking at the “nice area” under you is not on either ,as with 180 km. you race through the air. But ….for sure another interesting flight.
My friend Bruce “translated”  this kind of soaring this way;
“great bit of flying, good to see the “wave” is still working. For non gliding friends ,these guys flew the equivalent of London to Edinburgh and back 3 times in one day without an engine!”
So not boring as it seems ,as he made another flight one day later [10-11] with another co; 1.495 km. with a speed of 147 km./h. …and 3 day’s  [12-11-]later Dennis went again also with Aussie Morgan [ Sandercock , from Perlan Project ] in the back;1.934 km. with a speed of 135.48 km./h. this time from Nahuel Huapi in Argentina.
More great wave on November 13 when Jim [Payne] took the ASH 25 out for a nice long “ride”;1.885 km. with the unbelievable speed of /h. That’s fast!!! He flew from Minden in the USA.
Yesterday it was Dennis again now from Chos Malal in Argentina. 1.743 km. speed 122.39.
By the way ,Jim’s wife Jackie keeps a blog so when you are interested in high ,fast mountain-wave  ;

From Omarama , USA pilot Keith Essex, was in a hurry as well; 180 km./h over 1.071 km. Not only up and down……but a 300 km triangle in it as well.Less boring?????
The Namibian places produced all 4,  Veronica included, several 1000 km. flights. All with a speed around the 140 km./h mark.
And RIDGE SOARING showed great ridge soaring; 1.196 km. in an ASG 29/18m. by Dan Reagan. 169 km./h. Another 9 pilots enjoyed the top- day.
Even ASW 15’s , DG 300 , Pegases and Hornet’s flew over 500 km.

And National speed  records over 500 km.out and return in Namibia [Kiripotib]  . A Swedish record by Boerje [and another Austrian one by Ludwig[165.14 km./h.] both in the Antares 23E.

—–“a stonker of a day! ” That really say’s something about the quality of the flying day. In the Hornet John Welsh flew a 500 FAI triangle !” West Coast Trough turned it on! 500k @110kph dry.” was his comment on his flight from Beverley in W Australia.
The 11th of the 11th was a good sign of what hopefully the season has to offer.
Also in Africa,… as more and more 1000 km tasks have been flown again on this day with speed up to 156 km./h..
A new bunch of enthusiastic students is flying week 2 from FLYING with the CHAMPIONS.
In Narromine Adam flew already 2 over 770 tasks [700 and 500 FIA triangle]  last weekend in his Ventus 2AX/15 m.” Yesterday I abandoned my declared 750km at the top turn due to heavy spread out – was averaging 116kph for ~500km to that point in the climb & drive flight (big gaps with minimal streeting, 5kt climbs between 4-8000′). From there, I took the pressure off & just enjoyed the remaining weather for the day & the holiday.”
And yesterday the message from Tocumwal’s Sportaviation was ;”Splendid day high big Cumulus @ 10,000ft+  Everyone home safe.” Between 330 and 680 km. in the Tocumwal-Corowa-Benalla triangle.

—–Received a mail via Alisport with a link to a wonderful safari with the Silent 2. Loved every minute!!!
“Dear Friend,

We’ve finally released the video of the flying tour to Sardegna and Corse, France.
An amazing trip this summer flying the Silent 2 Electro ER (Extedend Range) and the Yuma, both produced by Alisport.
Unbelievable experience and outstanding landscapes for what we believe to be…the trip of a lifetime!”

Click here for the youtube video
or on our FaceBook Page

—–GLIDE OMARAMA is doing a good job;
Its the first day of Glide Omarama’s 1000 km Challenge. The prize is $1000 to the pilot with the fastest average speed over 1000 km. 
It looks like we already have two contenders.”
Good luck to all who try.

——in the end 6 from the 12 days were good to fly in El Pampero in Argentina. The NATIONAL champion in club class has a well-known name; Javier Gaude with 4740 points. He won day 1.
ONLY just ahead of the man who won a few days, Sebastian Luengo with 4.723 points.
Martin Bossart was a good 3d place -winner with 4.702 points. He won the last day.
Another well known name, Lucas Goldenzweig was on spot 4  with 4.471 points.He lost over 200 points on day 1. Over the next day’s he had 5 top-5-places.

——“More Australians voted YES than drive to work each day “!Very pleased for a few of my mates in Australia that the government can start now to legalize same-sex-marriage. They hope a new law should be in place  before Christmas, that would be great!!!
61 % said yes to equality !!! In my eyes it’s nearly unbelievable that more than 30 % said no. The voting was by mail only!!!

With Tom [l] and Brooke [r] and more happy chappies!!!
As shared by Tom.

——ZWEEFPORTAAL, THE Dutch information site for glider pilots shared the statistics from the last Dutch OLC year’s. Very interesting!!!!!

682 Dutch participants flew 907.157 kilometers.
The goal for 2018,……..over 1.00,000 kilometers!!!!

——Great to see Grietje from Corowa, in “our” Family Scout!!! Years ago , when she worked with and for us at Sportavia, she sat in the back, as retrieve glider pilot to several paddock’s,  now as tuggie GOOD ON HER!!
I love her enthusiasm:” Who would have thought, the season started with a tow!” As I mentioned already they sold both their tugs.
The Discus from Diana, which came in their container was flown to Tocumwal by tuggie Bruce [Wilson] and husband George [Schuit].
En passant Bruce checked Grietje out in the Scout!
Their first flying guest Hans Juergen Lange flew on his first day from his 15th year in Corowa a nice 600 FAI triangle.

Bruce and Grietje….it looks like Bruce and Inge ….and……… that might happen soon as well.
As shared by Grietje

——AND knowing who are your concurrent’s at the next WGC here are , officially, the participating French pilots;
For Ostrow in Poland;
Club class:Eric BERNARD . Killian WALBROU
standard class; Louis BOUDERLIQUE. Guillaume GIRARD . Aude GRANGERAY
15 m. class;Christophe RUCH . Maximilien SEIS

For the Czech Rep in Pribam;
18M: Christophe COUSSEAU . Jean-Denis BARROIS
20M: Laurent ABOULIN et Aude UNTERSEE

——Don’t know what’s happening in our soaring world!!Did we just have the sad message of stolen gliders, now the Magazin Segelfliegen warns us for another bad mob!! They want to buy gliders but their BANKCHEQUES via an intermediary.
Sellers of gliders have alerted us to brazen trick-cheating and advise caution when selling your glider: If the prospective buyer offers you a bank check, you should be alert. There have been cases of check fraud lately. The buyer inserts this cleverly by pretending to pay by bank check, but can not pick up the plane himself because he lives abroad. Therefore, he hired a forwarding company, the additional costs, of course, he takes and calculates them equal to the purchase price of the aircraft on it. Then he asks the seller to transfer these additional costs to the shipping company. If the seller then cashes in the check, it will burst after a few days. The amount transferred to the forwarding company is lost, because this forwarding company does not exist.”
So be warned!! And great from the MAGAZIN to share it!!!! 

And last but not least the news from  Gliding International , the last issue from this year with lot’s of news!!
—the TWIN SHARK and the head says,” Talking to one of the pilots who have just flown the Twin Shark, he boldly stated that “here
was a two seater sailplane – the epitome of innovation!”
The waiting list is already over 12 months, be aware of that when you or the club are interested.
In the next GI you can find the test flight info.
—Gliding in ALASKA started already 34 years ago, interested??…. all the new is in this issue.Bob Adams talks about flying there and the effect of global warming over the last 10 years.
—electric sustainer battery fire ….but also news about “big advances in battery technology”
—the EUROglider as new training glider…
—the “decline issue” by Aldo…since 1993 “we”  lost 20.000 members from 127.000 to 107.000
—history ; with the first aero-tow launch of a glider....
and more MUCH more 62 pages of good and interesting reading.

That’s it for now.
Cheers Ritz

Gliders arrived,…..the season started on a high….though…..!

—–BUT FIRST,…….NOT the very best news to start with, but important to share and who can help,…. should help.
So I share it straight away. How is this possible? They must know about gliders!!!As Arne wrote;”Sad but true – please help us locating these aircraft!
It all happened between 31. October and 2. November.


Hope they will find them quickly!!!Taking gliders out of the trailers shows that they knew about “our” sport. Hope they CANNOT sell them or use them there, where we can’t find them.Bad mob!!! I am angry!!!!

—–November started with good soaring conditions in both Africa and Australia, as well as NZ.
Kingaroy had some “ripper/ cracking-day’s” up to 700 km. and Narromine had a declared 750 km [500FAI triangle] today by Adam in his Ventus 2ax/15m. Benalla showed 500 km. in an LS 4 by Tobias yesterday.
started with “Flying with the Champions” with over 400 km’s to get in the mood.And then,…with those champion- heroes and the weather in both Kiripotib and Bitterwasser, the 1000 km-flights “fly around your ears”.
Mainly ARCUS M gliders in Bitterwasser and Kiripotib and kilometer-eater Reinhard Schramme flew with his student already 1.218 km. with a speed of 150 km./h.
One of the Flying- with- the -Champions- organizers Ludwig took his glider , an Antares 23 E , out for a “ride ” from Kiripotib and it looks he flew a new Austrian record with his declared 1000 km. FAI triangle ;1.036 km. with a speed of 164,89 km./h, Good on you Ludwig!!!!
Several over 1000 km. flights were declared FAI triangles!!!!

Keith Essex flew already over 600 km. from Omarama on the first of November.
And what about yesterday!!!!Soaring New Zealand shared this news and these pictures…


Visiting French instructor Hugo Corbille flies 1000km with World record distance pilot Terry Delore. Great flight guys.” by SNZ
As shared by the Canterbury Gliding Club.

Containers in Corowa arrived as well.Their season can start now too.


As shared by ASCC.

—–On October 30 the Argentinian club class pilots gathered at El Pampero to see who is the best in this class during their nationals.
They straight away got 302 km. task and Javier Gaude was the only one who flew with a speed of just over 100 km./h. and gathered 996 points. From 20 pilots, including an HC pilot from Germany , 12 finished.
Then, 3 non flying days and on November 3 they all got up again and the 3-hour AAT turned out to be a 1000 points -day  for Sebastian Luengo. Lot’s of ASW 20’s at this comps and this glider was a winner on the 2 day’s.
Sebastian, liked his win and won again on the 3d flying day, with a 4 hour AAT with 408 km. in 3.57.
Task 5 on day 8 was a short one; 2 hour AAT and another ASW 20 won the day on which not all pilots managed to finish.
They did not fly yesterday.

—–Achievements on HIGH level at Potsch;
The 2017 Aero Club Awards dinner was held at AFB Zwartkop. The assembled guests, prior to taking their seats, were treated to a display by Colonel Glen Warden in the SAAF’s Museums de Havilland Vampire. ”

“Senior Protea Colours for the 34th FAI World Gliding Championships Open 18m and 15m Class held in Benalla, Australia from the 1st to the 22nd of January 2017 to Attie Jonker, Laurens Goudriaan, Oscar Goudriaan, Pieter Nouwens and Uys Jonker, Carol Clifford as the team Manager and Junior Colours to Marcus Nouwens.”



Congratulations to Oscar and Laurens Goudriaan for receiving Aeroclub Gold Wings for continued high performance in Gliding.
pictures shared by AKAFLIEG

An of course achievements for the topdesigners duo;

Picture shared by Jonker Sailplanes.

Uys and Attie with happy smiles and nice trophies:”The PGS Trophy Award for the most significant achievement by a South African manufacturer or designer of recreational aviation aircraft or products went to Jonker Sailplanes. Attie Jonker, Uys Jonker & Johan Bosman excepted the award on behalf of the company.”

—–The British Gliding Team had the next news, for those who missed it. Always good to know your opponents…..

World Gliding Championships 2018.
In case you missed the publication elsewhere, the British Team selection for the WGC 2018 is;

Club Class – Tim Fletcher, G Dale
Standard Class – Howard Jones, Dave Bromley
20m Multi-Seat Class – Steve Jones/Gary Coppin
15m Class – Tim Scott, Derren Francis
18m Class – Mike Young, Russell Cheetham
Open Class – Andy Davis, Peter Harvey

——And interesting news from Schempp-Hirth:”
Congratulations to Helmut Treiber.
It makes us very proud that last Sunday, former Schempp-Hirth chief engineer Helmut Treiber (76, ) has been honored with the “Klaus Holighaus Medal in Gold”, awarded by the Air Sport Association of Baden-Württemberg, Southern Germany (BWLV).

The gold medal is in memorial of the great glider pilot, gifted glider designer and successful entrepreneur Klaus Holighaus who was killed in a glider crash in 1994. It is awarded to personalities with outstanding achievements for the air sports.

This year’s laureate Helmut Treiber has been a leading engineer in the introducing of carbon fibre technology into the design of gliders and was a major contributor to the design and test flying of Akaflieg Braunschweig’s SB8, SB9 and SB10.

After finishing his studies, he joined Schempp-Hirth as a member of the engineer team under Klaus Holighaus and, after Klaus’ accident, took over as the company’s head engineer, which he lead with great success until he retired. We are very glad that we can still benefit from his expertise as consultant to the present day.

Besides designing and testing gliders, Helmut Treiber has also been an enthusiastic gilder pilot, a successful competition pilot and achieved several national and world records.”

—–NARROMINE GLIDING CLUB OFFICIAL:We are now a full time 7 day per week operation! We have a full time resident Level 3 instructor, full time tow pilots and G Dale is in residence running advanced Cross Country Coaching courses. The soaring season is starting to crank up and there has never been a better time to come fly at Narromine!”
For bookings or membership inquiries got to Contact Us on the club website at 

—–My daughter turned 45 yesterday!! Great age, fabulous girl and beautiful in and outside. PROUD mum.

Captain Inge to the left and Kassandra Stultiens-Zandstra,who shared the picture as a memory,  on a flight , several years, with only “ladies” so an all female crew .

—–Some of my Aussie mates are very inspiring. Lesley is one of them.
“Day 3 of WorldFlight 2017 raising much needed funds for the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Western Australia. Today Bob and I flew the fantastic 747-400 simulator from AUSTIN, TEXAS to CANCUN, MEXICO and then on to KINGSTON, JAMAICA. We are getting so close to our fundraising target of $7000. Only $426.78 to go to reach that target but we are not stopping there. To see more about what we are doing and also if you can help us reach our target go here:”
So is Tom, he is a very inspiring “fighter” for marriage equality. On the 17th, this month,  all votes from the survey campaign will be counted and we will see if our Aussie mates can finally marry .
In The Netherlands you can do so since 2001 !!!!

—–This week I got an invitation to like the NATIONAL SOARING MUSEUM on FB; and of course I like them!!! For all who would love to like them too 

Certainly one of the most beautiful sailplanes built, the museum’s Kirby Gull certainly displays what has been called Slingsby’s most graceful glider.
Our Kirby Gull I N41829, was built from plans supplied by Slingsby, by Herman Kursawe of Long Island, New York, during World War II and was completed in August, 1946.
The year I was born, must [have been ] be a good one.

You are up to date, CU next week!
Cheers Ritz

Not a lot happening right now. Though there is always news!

—–No not a lot happening at the moment in “our” world, but skies can look already GREAT. Look at the pictures from Chilhowee in the USA , Tocumwal in Australia and Gariep Dam in South Africa.


                                     “Look at those streets.”                                        A birthday joy-flight with Ingo is always the best gift!!
By the Chilhowee Soaring Association in the USA.                                               shared by the SRGC in Australia.


Not too bad either.
As shared by Gariep Gliding in South Africa on October 25.

Did I say not a lot happening???? No not looking at comps BUT….??????
What about this?
On October 27, Oscar raced in his JS 3 from Potsch to Lesotho and back enjoying the VERY BEST convergence;” Epic convergence day. Lesotho out and return”. 549 km. with a speed of 161.4 km./h.!!!
And he was not alone up in this fabulous air. At least 4 soaring mates got up that day too.
YES,….The season is on!!!
On the same day good old Klaus [Ohlmann] flew from Serres in France a long long flight from 1.280 km. with a nice speed of 127.7 km./h. in the Stemme S10 / S10-VT.
Even Klaus , used to long flights, was happy with this one according to his OLC comment;
What a day…slowly at the beginning, scary South of Aosta with downdraft of 12m/s. Thanks for Marseille and Milano Control. And thanks to Marcel for the good job. New ARC and the checkflight has shown, everything okay….”

On the last days of October the weather was good on both sites of the world.
Potsch with 514 km. by Uwe Thiele [DG 800/18m.] who loves his long distance flying!!Later 748 km.[600 FAI triangle] in a DG 808B/18m.
Lake Keepit with 515 by Allan Barnes in the Duo Discus. His OLC comment ;”Training task – 500km arrowhead task along the front/troughline. 13000ft base, some tricky route selection and lots of broken thermals. Best thermal peaked about 12kt
McCaffery Field [East Australia] showed a flight by Mart Bosman who converted long ago from hanggliding to gliding [and I presume he still does both] had a great flight , 514 km. in his LS 6 ; ” Some very strong 10knots every now and then. Quite a bit of shading in the end. Still lots of fun.”
And even Europe had a great soaring weather both in the Alps [foehn] with 666 km. in DG 400 /17m. from Ambri in Switzerland and 583 in the Discus BT from Kinross in the UK.
Holland showed an exciting  100 km. flight by Sikko Vermeer,  who “braved” the weather elements flying with a headwind of 40/50 km./h., till a shower line stopped him. He reached a height of 1100 m. after the start .His last flight in the ASG 29E /18 m.for the season.
Omarama; Kilometer eater Keith Essex has settled in Omarama again and started with a 609 km. flight in his ASG 29E/18m.



——I like the adventurous soaring-mind from Tony [Condon]. Sometimes he just goes with the flow/wind and sees where it will end. He loves his “ big downwind dashes“.
This time the adventure was more in the start;an auto tow launch to begin the day with. He flew 204 km. in a straight line:
Past Wellington started noticing the ground was still very wet from rain 4(?) days ago. Lift suffered proportionately. Save at Ponca City made me think the day was starting over. Fields were looking dryer and I thought we were starting to get back in business.
Then I just couldn’t find a thing as I approached Pawnee. Approach was pretty cool over the lake and then ducking behind the wind shadow from the trees was a bit exciting on short final. Nice runway and super friendly people.”

Auto towing the cirrus is a step towards autonomy to be able to start these flights from anywhere and not be tied to the glider club. It will take practice to perfect the method and today was a great first step towards that.”

Another exciting trip in his St. Cirrus.”Good to start proving out using auto tow to start. Need to work on my technique for sure, but I’m hoping to do more of this in the future.”

With greetings from Pawnee.”


——On August 5 the town of Stölln [Germany] celebrated the Lilienthal festival on and around the Gollenberg,in honor of the world’s first flight pioneer .
Ever heard of Lady Agnes? I did n’t ,but before Dundee traveled to Australia he send me a brochure about the Lilienthal Center. He was impressed and took the English version with him for Ingo.
“She ” is the Iljuschin 62 flown in on this glider-airport with an ONLY 860 m. short runway. That happened on October 23 1989 and this landing got a place in the International Guiness Book of records.
Now the front of this plane is since 2012 some kind of museum;
” We are very pleased to present the first and only permanent exhibition on the civil aviation company, which once started as Deutsche Lufthansa of the GDR, in the front part of the passenger cabin. Discover old and new, as well as interesting and curiosities in our exhibition. For example, an original utility vehicle, used for board service by the flight attendants on the flights with the IL-62, and also lifejackets from those who were on board as rescue means, one of which can even be tested.”
For renovations they would be pleased with donations.

—–Tocumwal’s Southern Riverina Gliding Club welcomed their member Dieter Dundee [Germany] and as you see he arrived sound and safe  last week.  He could start his duties straight away.As every year he stays there for 5 months.
Delio arrived for the weekend as well. With Ingo he prepared for a great day “out”.


Dieter busy with his annual job. He likes that and this is all voluntary. And Ingo and Delio.
Pictures shared by the SRGC.

—–The Dutch potential new members of the  juniors arrived at Terlet for their first meeting last weekend. Preparing in time for the new season in 2018.

As shared by the Dutch Junior Gliding Team.

—-Australian Soaring Center Corowa has been busy for this upcoming season too. Ready to go. Alexander Schleicher (Joschka Schmeisl) spent 3 days on 3W for conformity inspection and improvements.
Now we can apply for a normal CofA and get rid of “experimental”.” Good on them !
One day later on  the last day of October he made a check flight in their ASG 32MI.
In about a week the 2 containers arrive,… so busy again.



——Bitterwasser; All gliders have arrived in good condition. Customs checked without problems the containers, so everybody is ready for the season. Some gliders have been rigged already.


As shared on


——News from the 35th WGC in Poland from OSTROW;
We would like to invite all glider pilots to participate in Ostrow Glide Competition in May 2018. It’s a great opportunity to train before the 35th FAI World Gliding Championships, which will also take place at our airfield in the summer. The on-line registrations will start soon. CU in Ostrow!”

Schedule for 2018 OSTRÓW GLIDE – International Gliding Competition in club class and Polish Nationals in 15 m class:
• 24.05 – 3.06.2018

35th FAI World Gliding Championships Ostrow, Poland in standard, 15m and club classes:
• 4.07 – 6.07.2018 training days
• 7.07.2018 – opening ceremony
• 8.07 – 21.07.2018 – contest flying

Picture from the Ostrow site.

——-Another one sold; This JS 3 is from Laurens Goudriaan. Good luck in it and lot’s of pleasure!!!!

With the Jonkers message:
A very happy Laurens Goudriaan took delivery of his new JS3 today. It must be quite a feeling to do close to 500km on your maiden flight at 150km/h! Well done Laurens.”

—–And to finish this special picture shared by the National Soaring Museum in the USA

Helmut and George who I both met in Angers. Lovely people both gentlemen!!!
The photo that graced the cover of Soaring Magazine following George Moffat’s Open Class win in the 1970, 12th World Gliding Championship, the first held in the US.
Helmut Reichmann of Germany won the Standard class flying an LS-1, while Moffat piloted the one and only Nimbus HS-3.”

CU next week
Cheers Ritz