Seniors active at their annual championship in Florida!Christchurch and Utrecht.

—With the terrorist attack on innocent people in their mosque, New Zealand sadly found out ,that their till now relative safe country , [Christchurch had of course terrible earth quakes], lost it’s innocence as well, due to a fanatic weirdo.
50 People dead and a lot injured. TOO tragic for words. The HAKA-tribute  brought tears to many eyes.
In Utrecht , the travel hub from Holland , we had an attack as well; 3 people dead ,3 very badly injured and 2 more injured.
In a tram on their way to school, work or just having a coffee with mum. Our innocence is gone too.
Holland is part of Europe and several European countries had to deal with this  violence already earlier, whilst we “escaped”.
A Turkish weirdo born in Turkey ,but living in Holland, with a past of violence, took our Dutch innocence.
If it was a terrorist attack or a relational attack , maybe a psychopath, or a “crack-related” one, maybe even a reaction on Christchurch, [ I hope they find out in the end] , that does n’t matter for the families , their husband [49] son [29]and daughter [19] will be gone forever;  this guy ruined their lives.
Now sadly enough, it was our turn , but compliments for the police and other instances, they did a great job.

New Zealand and The Netherlands share their grief. The world shares with them.

—We were not the only ones, 2 weeks ago, with the very bad spring storm. Also Germany and Belgium SUFFERED!!!!
With this weird heavy weather, it must be , that insurances are going to raise their prices.
Only Holland had a damage bill from several millions. 2 Injured people luckily, no fatal accidents here in Holland.
It’s sometimes unbelievable to see how people crawl out of their by a tree,totally smashed car, with only a blue eye!! Great guardian angels.

—Last week I could not remember the name of the president of the jury later at the WWGC in Lake Keepit. Lilian, who flies WWGC’s for Holland straight away updated me. Thanks.
Gisela Weinreich. Of course I know her name and her input in female soaring, even met her, but a long time ago.
Lilian shared some info about her;
“She has been more often steward at WWGC’s. She is one of those champions and heroes in female gliding.
Here is a link to a documentary about the history of “women in gliding”, from the WWGC in Klix in 2005.Lot’s of history and the foundation of the WWGC. Deep respect for the ladies from the “past“.



29 th Senior championship from Seminole Lake Gliderport.

courtesy Bozena Michalowski

The oldies, with respect, are still going strong,  at their senior championship as always at Seminole Lake Gliderport.
The contest management decided to “only” have 55 entrees for safety reasons.
Those 55 started on March 9 and continued till Friday the 15th.
What happened?
On contest day 1 Karl Striedeck showed his great soaring experience in a Duo Discus X, winning the first 1000 points,after an early start . Jim Lee in a 15m version JS 3 was runner up. Ron Ridenour in an ASW 27 was 3d.
A day with nice temperatures and a few clouds as well, but conditions seem to have been not as good as expected/hoped for.

Karl Striedeck with to the r. his brother.
Courtesy Bozena Michalowski.

Contest day 2 was for Jim, starting with a bunch of his mates, using [convergence-] cloud streets as much as possible. He straight away took over the first overall spot. Karl was 15th so moved to an overall spot 3. Not bad either!!Ron was 6th and stayed on 2.
Today’s task is a 2 hr. area task. Weather forecasted similar to yesterday, but more moisture and encroaching clouds from a system along the gulf. Grid time was delayed and a slight change of task with the gate opening 14:20ish. Cu began to form in the airport area near launch time and bases rose to 4000+. All appear to be on course at this time.” by Kathy Lee.

1 of the pilots Pete Alexander with his “co”. I met Pete in Uvalde, [2012] where he mostly did the sniffer flight’s.
Courtesy Bozena Michalowski

“One special part of the Seniors Contest is the support that the competitors, crews, & friends give to help the next generation of pilots, particularly the junior team. Pete Alexander, chair of us team committee shared progress in preparing our Juniors for the upcoming contest in Hungary. The seniors stepped up with generous donations, back seat rides, etc. to help our 2019. it’s encouraging to see so much support for Juniors. Great job Seniors.”
US Soaring Teams

Contest day 3 , was the 2d daily win for Jim, so he was strongly on top with a relative late start at 3 PM. Karl was 3d and moved to spot 2 overall. Ron had a less good day, finished as 17th and dropped overall to spot 6.

Gary Carter and his lovely wife Christine, who I met in Uvalde as well. They were crewing for Bill Elliott that year and as I wrote for their Soaring Cafe, I met them a lot.
Courtesy Bozena Michalowksi

THEN …..NO flying,….but a CREW day!!!! Rick writes;
At the Seniors, it is traditional to call the Rest Day the “Crew Day.”  This is because, at this event, the day is chosen by the crews, in consultation with the Competition Manager.  The CD doesn’t get a say in it.
The Crew Day is chosen well in advance, to allow the pilots and crews a full day to enjoy the Florida attractions.
This year it was a good call; we’ve had a solid overcast all day.”

Contest day 4 on March 13. After the overcast ,some cirrus stayed and made it not an easy day for some.  Lee is still on spot 1 overall, but was 8th for the day and Karl only 20thiest, but he stayed on his spot 3 as well. In between ,  Ron in his ASW 27, who is back in the top, with a relative early start at 2.04 PM and daily winner, so he returned to spot 2 overall.  Jim started 15 minutes later.

The tuggies, “you guys are the greatest. Such an incredible & efficient routine launching so many planes in such a short time!”
Courtesy Bozena Michalowski

Contest day 5; Leigh writes about the weather;
Roughly 4000 ft. cloud bases, cu, light winds from SE.  Possible horizontal spread out, no cirrus.”
So a 2.5 hour area task was set.
The day even turned out better than expected but some kind of seabreeze interrupted some good flights.
Leigh writes about it;
About halfway thru the course- 5-6 knot thermals.  Unfortunately for some competitors, a lake wind shadow set up approx. 15 miles west of last turn and as a result those returned home for a finish short of minimum time.”
Daily winner;Billy Kerns in an LS 8 /15 m. Ron was 2d and Lee 3d. Karl 5th, so no changes to the overall top;Jim, Ron and Karl.

with Doug Jacobs and his crew.
Courtesy Bozena Michalowski.

Contest day 6 last day!with good weather up to 5000 ft and 9 knot climbs!!!
Not a great day for Jim , finishing as number 21 for the day, but he was so far ahead he could fly defensibly.
Al Simmons in the ARCUS M won the day , the best day of the contest and with that he took over spot 3 overall from Karl.
1. Jim Lee with 5.703 points.
2. Ron Ridenour with 5600 p.
3. Al Simmons with 5548 p.
4. Karl Striedeck with 5528 p.
5. Rich Owen with 5505 p. [in LS 8 /15 m.]
6. Doug Jacobs with 5477 p. [in Duo Discus X]

The older ones under my readers know of course names as Karl Striedeck and Doug Jacobs. I met them at several comps in the past. Karl was honored and here is what ,I guess looking at the style, Rick wrote about him;
“The awards ceremony opened with a special presentation. Karl Striedieck received the FAA Wright Brothers Master Pilot Diploma, in honor of his 50+ years of accident-free flying in everything from F-86s to the Duo Discus he now flies. In his remarks after the presentation, Karl, who has flown gliders all over the world, reminded us how lucky we are to have the freedom to fly in this country without the restrictions most other glider pilots endure.”

This was the 29th version of the Seniors Contest so we are looking ahead of a great 30thiest contest next year.

Booming Weather.
All pictures Bo Michalowski



Today we are announcing the launch of the first revision of our User Manual.
We have a comprehensive manual in English, and a Quickstart guide available in German and English.

Manual (EN):
Quickstart (EN):
Quickstart (DE):

Interested supporters are welcome to contribute improvements via Github –




An important update about some changes;
the Official Comp starts 8th of June and ends 16th of June. 9th of June is a non-flying day.”
Why?? “our second competition day must be cancelled due to a verdict in our court of appeal some years ago, that prevents us from performing glider towing at Withsunday.”



Some nice long flights last week;
March 14; In an ASH 25 Baptiste Innocent flew 1.065 km. from Fayance.
March 15; Kilometer eater Klaus Ohlman took his Stemme out the hangar from Serres for a long “ride” 1.612 km. with 166,95 km./h!!!!
730 in a Ventus 1 by Gerard Lherm from St Martin, is good too.
March 16 ;1.121 km. mostly ridge soaring by Dan Reagan in an ASH31/18m. from Grant County.
“Good day. A little of everything, wave, ridge, thermals, show showers, etc., etc. Lots of fun.”
March 19; 722 [600 FAI triangle] by 2 pilots flying an ARCUS from Alzate in Italy. And,…756 km. by 2 German pilots  flying from Bad Neustadt in an ASG 32 MI.


And to finish;
Enough “troubles” again with the BREXIT. Love this cartoon shared by Peter Tutuarima. To be honest I do not understand some of the British people.

By Peter Tutuarima.


AND… finish once more this great sunset in South Africa.

after the roll out, from the 50thiest JS 3, owned by Katrin Senne, she made a few pictures.
So courtesy Katrin Senne
What a happy day. Being able to join the roll out party of the 50 JS3 of Jonker Sailplanes in Potchefstroom SA today. And having the possibility to take the first pictures of my new BK glider was even better,”

IGC meeting in Istanbul with interesting conclusions, awards and new WGC-venues!!

Had a week in Amsterdam with my grand children. Very rewarding!!!
Worst ever storm here in this part of Holland,  with lot’s of damage, several millions!!!!
I live very much in-land, in the SE of Holland, so such a storm is very weird . People had to walk their bikes and had to be careful to not go with the wind, even with the bike in their hands. Unbelievable.
SNOW in the east of Holland and hail and thunder and lightning here, PLUS those up to 124 km. wind gusts.
March brings gales!!!!

2 Horror crashes with planes in Colombia and Ethiopia last weekend, killing nearly 200 passengers . Not good!!!! VERY SAD!!! On top of that heavy turbulence in a 777 from Turkish airlines during landing in New York with several injured passengers.


IGC meeting in Istanbul.

As always in the first week of March the IGC plenary meeting was on;  this time in Istanbul on March 8 and 9.
A lot of reactions on one of the statements, both pro and contra.
—-they announced “We have voted to disallow tactical tracking… by making it technically difficult, and by declaring that workarounds (i.e. codebreaking etc.) are unsporting. We further voted to preserve delayed tracking for spectators.”
Afternoon session begins with a very interesting presentation about the Open Glider Network. For our competitions, we are committed to disallowing tactical glider tracking while preserving collision avoidance technology.”
A few reactions;
Hearing from the IGC Plenary meeting in Turkey that the that tactical use of OGN is going to be banned by agreement that looking at the OGN data would be unsporting. I hope this is not true. This is not a solution.”

Interesting to see HOW they are going to do this.Glad and important they look into this matter, as there seem to be 2 “camps” ,but how they are going to implement this ……….??????? The sport should be safe , innovation is important but it should be fair and attainable for all.

Here are a few tweets.
—“From a late proposal: we have approved a modification to the Designated Start rule, adding a 5 minute option.”
—“The Lilienthal Medal is awarded to Dick Bradley.”CONGRATULATIONS DICK!!!!
— “The Pirat Gehriger Diploma is awarded to Dr. Angel Casado.” CONGRATULATIONS ANGEL!!!!
— “We have voted to experiment with a place scoring in our WGCs. Details to be developed for next year’s meeting.”
— “We have voted to experiment with a bonus for early starters. Details to be developed for next year’s meeting.”
— “We have voted to experiment with handicapping by adjustment to turn point radius, with distance credit to the center of the circle. Details to be developed for next year’s meeting.”
— “The 37th World Gliding Championships in the Club, Standard, and 15 Metre classes will be held in Australia at the end of 2022 (or early 2023).” It seems this will be Narromine. Great spot.
— “We have introduced two new trophies this year. The first “IGC Champion Pilot of the Year” trophy was awarded to Michael Sommer. The new “Göran Ax Memorial” trophy will be given for the greatest cumulative distance in the Open Class WGC, beginning in 2020.”

AND it is official!!!!All 3 2018 world records from the Perlan Project are approved by the FAI.

GPS altitudes Aug 26 Jim Payne and Morgan Sandercock 18,503 m 60,705 ft
Aug 28 Jim Payne and Miguel Iturmendi 19,449 m 63,809 ft
Sept 2 Jim Payne and Tim Gardner 22,657 m 74,334 ft

All the tweets on



LAKE KEEPIT…….10th WWGC info

The weather is still good in Lake Keepit. Last Sunday Attila Bertok flew in his St. Cirrus 529 km. You might remember that he did his conversion from hang-gliding to gliding with us in the past. Great to see he still flies gliders.

The CD , Chief steward and president of the jury for the 2020 WWGC, have been announced at the IGC meeting in Istanbul. Here they are.

 Steward, Contest Director and Jury Chair. Frauke, Mandy and Gisela [Weinreich].

More news; As far as I know ,Luxembourg will attend a WWGC for the very first time. Diana Schuit , a Dutch citizen but living in Luxembourg already for a few years, will represent them. She practiced already a lot down under , where she lived in the past and is ready to go for it in open class in her brand-new JS 3.
Diana flew with us in the Sportavia period as tuggie and is a well respected co pilot at Cargolux nowadays.
She is married to George , who will be her crew and TC. Both live partly in Tocumwal as well.

And talking about tuggies this is the tug master in Lake Keepit in 2020.

 They have a very significant group of highly qualified staff completely ready for the Competition and its Lead-Up. This  is Val Phillips, Val will look after Tugs and Tug Operations.
10th FAI Women’s World Gliding Championships

After the early January 2020 WWGC there will be the European 11th WWGC in summer [August]  of 2021 in Husbos in the UK. Their PR started already as well.

British Gliding Association

And the next one is known now too since the IGC meeting;
“The date of the 12th Women’s World Gliding Championships in Fuentemilanos, Spain will be August 2022.”


—-Tocumwal; 8th of March, Bi Annual Hot Rods, Market and Gliding.


as shared by Sportavia Tocumwal

As seen and shared by Mary Anne.



Those who are interested in flying the Uppsala Masters in Sweden; here is the latest.

Dear Uppsala Masters competitors and Teams!
We will within days publish Local Procedures and some other relevant documents such as price list and good to know info. Final day to register your self is 31st of March. This is also final day of payment. Payment and registration after this date is possible however will cost you 750 sek extra. At this moment we have some 40 gliding ships on the list. Amongst Swedish pilots we are happy to see that our Finnish gliding friends will visit us with a big team. This year we also have visitors from Norway and Germany, and not to forget our new world champion in 18m class from Austria mr. Wolfgang Janowitsch, this time flying with his mate Andreas Lutz in an Arcus. Last but not least we are glad to see that a competitor all the way from Canada has found his way to Uppsala, very welcome Jean Yves Germain.
So, stay tuned and we will return soon with updates!

as shared by Uppsala Masters

AND,…..some additional travel news
“Dear Friends,
For those of you that will travel over water to reach the beautiful country of Sweden I would suggest to have a look at the great offer our sponsor partner Finnlines have given us.

Route: KAPELLSKÄR – NÅDENDAL and return 
Travel period: 5th June to 18th of June
Latest booking date: 30th April
Promo code: MASTERS
Discount: -50% discount on morning departures and -35% discount on evening departures (deduction from std price list)

If you are traveling from Germany on the route Travemunde to Malmö, please send us a note and we will do what we can to support you.

Book at:



And to finish another GREAT soaring family, this time from France; the de Péchy family. Very successful in 2018!!!! Well done and congratulations.

From left to right;Anton de Péchy, winner of the Coupe Jacque Gomy 2018, then the very well known French TC, Eric Napoleon, then dad Philippe de Péchy , holder of a French record and National champion, and last but not least Clément de Péchy, runner up in the race for the Coupe Jacques Gomy 2018.


Enough news, so CU next week. By the Way the Namibia containers have arrived already ‘Home’ in good condition.

Cheers Ritz

Spring !!! Autumn ..down under,with 1 over 1000 km. 2 over 800 km. and 13 over 600 km. flights last weekend!!!

Just a short and early blog due to circumstances. Next week more.

On March 1 the meteorological spring started with autumn temperatures , lot’s of rain and tough wind, spoiling a lot of carnival pleasure. After the 3 glorious days with up to 21 dgr.C.,[ a drop from 21 to 8!!!!] it felt as a “cold shower”, but for sure the spring temperatures will come back.

Time enough to read the on.line-version of Gliding International with ,as always lot’s of news.

On the cover of the March/ April issue from Gliding International is a great picture from the JS 3 with the words ;” the choice of champions!!! A success story!!!
Jonker Sailplanes started with the JS 1 in 2006. Since the maiden flight they produced 126 gliders from this type. The JS 3 was later but already this month the 50 thiest JS3 will be handed over to a happy customer.
It took them 8 years to sell 50 JS1’s and now just over 2 years to sell this JS3. That say’s enough about the interest and trust in this glider, as mind you,those gliding-toy’s are not cheap.You have to think about it first.
“Part of JS vision and mission is to release a new product or variant every three years. The JS2 SL, SelfLauncher version of the JS1 with an improved fuselage design, is now in its final stages of development and completion and first flight is scheduled for mid-2019.
From 2020 the JS2 SL will be made available to the market which will be an exciting new entry for JS into the recreational gliding market.”
For their newsletters you can go to ;…/jonker-sailplanes-newsletter-1585601

And much more news as
—the dittolog…a wireless automatic flight-sheet …more in the magazine and at a
DittoLog is an invention from Ernst Ditges who flew in the past with us in Tocumwal. He moved from Germany to Australia and still happily lives there. The Business was sold to Bob Flood recently and Bob is the one who writes about it in G.I.

—-ASG 32 got the problem under control; they released an A.D.(Airworthiness Directive) for its two-seater ASG 32.

—all you need to know about flying in the 4 soaring mecca’s in Namibia.

—Gariep Dam, never really gone but more prominent back on the map again…due to many German pilots.

—LS 4, LS 3,LS 10, …all gliders from Lempke Schneider… and now the “L” is not more. Wolf Lemke died on December 1.

—Germany and Australia join forces to increase research on global warming.

62 Pages of great , informing and interesting reading.

I also looked at the pilot ranking on February 28 2019 and the first 6 pilots are between 990 and 1000 points;
6. with 990.2 Sjaak Selen from Holland
5. with 990.7 Mac Ichikawa from Japan
4. with 990.8 Felipe Levin from Germany.
3. with 996.0 Wolfgang Janowitsch from Austria.
2. with 999.6 Michael Sommer from Germany.
1. with 1000 points Sebastian Kawa from Poland.





9 pilots will participate for Australia.
Club Class: Jenny Ganderton, Jo Davis, Kerrie Claffey.
Standard Class: Cathy Conway,Clair Scutter, Lisa Trotter.
18M Class: Ailsa McMillan, Jenny Thompson,Lisa Turner.

As I heard lately there will be, at this stage,  no participating pilots from Holland, which would be very sad. Hope this will chance.

At this late time in the season, the weather is still glorious in Lake Keepit. The Regatta is on and they enjoy the good weather to the fullest.

The gliders go soaring one by one, hurrah! Hurrah! – Keepit Regatta ‘19


Tocumwal still has great ,now- already-autumn-weather- conditions and guests.
March 2; Chris Davison, flew 848 km. [832 triangle] in his 21 m. JS 1.
Grant who I see more and more back in soaring,[he is /was? a great hang-glider pilot ] flew 677 [558 triangle] in his St. Jantar and Kari is  back in Toc from Finland and flew in the ASW 27 456 k.This was his last flight for the season and with 12 flights in the pocket [ since January 24] he travels back home.
Conditions were superb; 10.000 ft and cu’s here there and everywhere.
Bruce Kerl flew a declared 500 !!! Mind you it’s AUTUMN!!!

Bernard Eckey flew in his ASH 30 819 km. from Balaklava.
A total of 8 flights over 600 km. also from Temora, Benalla and Lake Keepit.
What about Lake Keepit?? Doing something else/different in autumn??
Allan Barnes and Harry Medlicott flew a goal flight from Lake Keepit to Horsham;1.004 km!!!

March 3; the good weathercontinued.
What about a 750 FAI triangle in a PIK 20 by Bernie Sizer with 102 km./h.!?  A total of 769 km. this late in the season…chapeau!!!!Tough to come back but he made it and said “well worth it”!!! TOP!!!!
Lumpy with 822 [766 triangle] in the JS 3 also from Toc.
Bob from Benalla in Ventus 2CT/18m  with 635 km [600 triangle]
770 in the ARCUS M with Allan and Harry from Horsham this time; a long goal flight back from Horsham to Narromine. Only less than 250 to go now!!!
“We originally planned on stopping overnight in Tocumwal, then Temora, then finally Narromine as conditions continued to improve from the hot, sweaty, weak, windy, overcast conditions at Horsham. “. BUT,….they passed by all those places to nearly do it all in one day!! Good on them.
16 over 500 km. flights down under. And,….2 over 800 that weekend from Toc. Not bad.

Of course I lived for quite a few years in Tocumwal, hence a “bit” more news than about other fields.
Last Saturday the SRGC said farewell to their life Member, Dieter “Dundee” Albrecht. He is 82 now , has some problems with a knee, but I guess that after an operation he might be back next season.
However, when  Ingo spoke at the lunch for Dundee at the Golf Club, he mentioned;
When the club first formed, Dieter made his single seat glider , the ASW15, VH-GES, available t o the club free of charge.  For a long time this was the only single seater the club could offer to our members.
Dieter donated this glider to the club last year and would also like to donate his other assets to the club before he leaves

That does n’t sound like coming back. Don’t know which assets, but I hope not “his/my” house, as I have the first option on it. But for sure that’s taken care of. He will be home in Germany today, time to see/hear what’s up.


Dundee in his car which brought him EVERYWHERE and with his best mate Ingo; “bier um vier.”

Cu next week.
Cheers Ritz