The LATEST NEWS on Lake Keepit…4 continues here.

12.30 PM: on December 31. First official training day.
One way or another I could not add more news to blog 4 ,so we just create a new one and continue here. Might have been too overloaded!!!
The gliders are launched right now. At 12.30 sharp the first club class gliders went up. 4 Tuggies available now ,so it goes much faster.

Off they go….long rope…glider just in front of the last trees

1.00 PM;
No clouds to be seen. Guess club class really has to work HARD the first hour!!!
Crews or TC’s coming in here in the club house look hot and bothered. Still a few at the grid, to be launched.
Some news;
About the airspace here :
According to Mandy it’s very simple and they feel very lucky with that. So they should!!!
Not as in parts of Europe, where you have to find your way through small corridors to go on track.
Tamworth is strictly for bidden. Pretty normal, big airfield.
Several Military Fields are open/ not active at the moment, as they are on a holiday.
As long as they mention that these areas are open ,you can enter them.It will be also mentioned on the task sheet.
So today is mentioned that R559ABCDE and R639CD are not active. But I presume you are not really interested in that.
Also important,…there is a zone of 60 km close to Gunnedah and that is totally unlandable,…so NOT safe .

Elevation of the field here is 1150 ft and the QNH 1011.

Ready to go …with Kurt [born in Switzerland] as one of the ” courageous “helpers in the heat!!!
ONLY 6 weeks ,he is a member now from the club here , but he started flying in Switzerland, when he was 15 and went solo there. He found a “coupon” in a Magazine to fly for 5 Swiss fr.
He went to the club …. they did not know about the coupon but,…of course they took him for a ride.
For a while he was out of the soaring scene, but now he is full back in it, here in Lake Keepit!!!
Picture courtesy Pôle France Planeur

2 PM;
All glider pilots willing to fly seem UP in the air now, though I still hear some tuggies working hard. Clouds popped up over the mountains to the NNW. Pretty high!
The A tasks are on.

Did n’t go to the strip. Had to resolve a few issues with downloading pictures to my blog.
Back later.

5 PM;
Yesterday Diana was 1 of the pilots who flew the task. A lot gave up.
As it was a pretty long day for her, she is not flying today.
Guess today most of the girls will try to fly it.
They will land here in front of the club house at 14.
Maybe with a little bit of cross wind as they mentioned at briefing and a surface wind of 5 to 10 kts.
We are waiting.
The 4-wheel-drive to chase the kangaroos from the field just drove away,so there might some pilots on their way. I’ll have a look for you.
At 6 PM there is a TC meeting as well.
Back soon , but you can see the scores from this first official training day on

5.15 PM;
When I opened the door I clearly heard the jet engine from 1 of the gliders coming back and trying it out. LOUD like a Citation leaving!!!!
2 Czech girls are back in ZE [Jana] and ZF[Eva] in 18 m. class. Also 51 [Liz from the UK] in 18 m.passed by ,when I waited at the field.
A few had just landed when I run up. All nice long straight- in- landings, as requested.

There are people in favor of the fireworks on the Bridge in Sydney and quite a lot against.
There is enough fire here in Australia already.
BUT,….The show goes on and when a million people will visit,they each can give money for the people suffering from the fires and for the fire brigade to assist them.
That ‘s the idea I heard on TV.

I am sure I speak for EVERYBODY from here, to wish you a SAFE, HEALTHY, PROSPEROUS and HAPPY 2020.
CU next year in 2020.
Cheers Ritz

The LATEST NEWS on Lake Keepit…4 !Updated!

8 AM;
Tuesday …December 31 2019….last day from 2019…..tomorrow it will be 2020!!!!
Tough wind last night and still now!The kangaroos hide behind trees maybe to avoid sand in their eyes???
First official training day , briefing on a new location ; in the sport and recreation center, where we had dinner again yesterday.
ALSO,…the mandatory safety briefing at 9.30 AM!!!

Yesterday evening was a busy night at the club house and the “mobile” bar. Pilots and crew, as well as volunteers found their way to get together and drink and talk.

In front of the club house
in front of the bar.

Before going to dinner yesterday evening, I noticed ZR. It was a glider belonging to Sportavia Soaring Center in the past, was bought by Grant, who sold it to Attila. I walked to the glider to make a picture and the gentleman walks to me and said ; “Hello Ritz.”
It was Attila . Have not seen him “for ages” certainly over 15 years, but it was good to see him and talk to him. He was and still is a hang glider pilot, who converted to gliding with us at the SSC and did that remarkable quick. All of them, as there was a “bunch” of hang glider pilots converting then.
Grant had already done so before.

Attila,..very pleased to see him. He was a bit disappointed in the weather but had a good day.

Brad is leaving again today. He “raced” , after the Nationals ,with tailwind from Toc. to Armadale, as he had to take care of his brand new glider… an ASG 32. I wish him and all who fly with him , good luck and safe flights in this glider.
We just shared some stories on the past also with John [USA] about how he became world champion in Uvalde[ Texas] in 1991 and about Mafikeng with the “thunderstorm day” on which all out landed.
We share so much great memories from gliding and this WWGC will do so too.
Cu later.

11 AM;
A long briefing and some had to get used to the new location. Quite a few were late.

Air conditioned briefing room .
Courtesy Frouwke

CD Mandy welcomed all competitors and crews and introduced her team. They wear pink hats, so easy recognizable.

Paying attention to Anita.
Courtesy Frouwke

Safety officer Anita ,spoke about ALL safety things important at this comps. It covered airspace, snakes , dehydration, important phone numbers and more. You can read it all on line; WWGC SAFETY BRIEFING
I can only agree.
Start-line is 10 km.
Finish circle 3 km.
Min. finish height TODAY 1450 ft MSL for Club Class and 1400 ft. MSL for st. and 18 m.

Anita as safety officer but she is also the Deputy CD.
Courtesy Frouwke

Meteo Dave ; said that the weather is about the same as yesterday but with a later start. Thermals up to and over 7 kts. and around 5.30 a ceiling of 15.000 ft.
NO sea-breeze today and a light wind.
Task setter Bruce shared the tasks; A and B tasks for all classes in the direction S.W.
Pre start height for all classes 6000 ft.
Launch order;Club Standard and 18 m.
First launch expected at 12.30.

Everybody has his own table and chairs and today’s gift was a water bottle from this WWGC!

18 m;
A task…332.9 km.
B task…263.7 km.

Standard class;
A task …377 km.
B task ….303.9 km

Club class ;
A task …329.7 km.
B task …247.7 km

The French team.

The LATEST NEWS on Lake Keepit…3!!Updated!!!

Breakfast in the morning with her “mates”.
Courtesy Frouwke

8.30 AM; Monday December 30.
An early morning [6.30] as several pilots and or crews left early to work on the glider, when it is not yet hot.
It’s still practice here , but French pilot Aude flew 409 km. already in her Discus.
The good weather and finally no smoke was in the South.[NSW and Victoria]
Benalla and Tocumwal both had 1000 km. flights yesterday ;Tobias in his 15 m. Ventus 2ax and Lumpy in his JS 3 [925 triangle!!]
And what about Grant in his St Jantar; a 750 FAI triangle [ stretched to 806].
New National champion in 15 m. class Bernie flew in his PIK 20 a distance of 819 km.
His comment ;” Great day…..760km @ 132km/h……Yeehaaa
Both flights from Tocumwal, where they struggled a bit during the Nationals 2 weeks ago , due to smoke and wind. Such a pity the weather is at it’s best now.
From Sunraysia David flew 903 in an LS 3.
Great flights. Look at them on the OLC.

We had a lovely meal yesterday evening in the sports center. What a “posh ” place that is …Huge too.
Katrin [Senne], the current WWGC champion in 18 m. , arrived as well, with Brad and his JS3.
The apple crumble was to die for ,as was the custard pudding, not to forget the chicken curry, mild but very tasty. Compliments!!!!

Great place for dinner.
Courtesy Frouwke.

Off to briefing now to see what the girls have to do.

9.30 AM;
Another hot day in Keepit, from now on I leave “the Lake”.
It was the last briefing in the small office, as from tomorrow onward briefings will be in the sports center about 7 km. driving from the airport over a small road. At 9.30.
The office will now be the “operational heart” of this WWGC.

The weather with Dave; about the same as yesterday,hot with an northerly influence ,blue with later in the day’s some clouds in the SW and N.
Lift about 5.5 kts. up to 10.000 ft and later up to 11/or 12.000 depending on the influence of the smoke from some fires in the flying area.
Not much wind!

With Wolli Beyer , German coach , and part of the German team.

The tasks with Bruce; 2 tasks have been set on this last unofficial practice day.
One from 454 km. for 18 m,; a polygon with 4 points.Longest leg 173 km.
The other 302 km.for st./club class.; a polygon with 4 points. the longest leg is 96 km.
Tasks have been set in the better weather and stay away from smoke.
With fires in the area close by remember; 3000 ft AGL and 5 nm .
Gridding will be “who comes first, is on row 1” and the first should be lining up at Terminal 1, the shade-roof at 32 [ Showed you pictures yesterday. ] and the first launch is expected at 12 PM.

Borgelt Instruments has worked here at the vario meters of a few gliders. Mike explained why instruments suffer from the heat and might even overheat.
Some of the modern gliders have no opening at all in the cockpit. With the heat it is like a SOLAR OVEN, which is bad !!!!
He advised to “make a hole” in the top of the instrument panel, cover it with insect screen ,….so air can get through… and place some computer fans at the bottom under the instruments.

Yesterday Diana, who represents Luxembourg , flew around 310 km. and after arriving back here, she started the jet-engine of her new JS 3 at 300 m. to race with 200 km./h queer over the field.
It was only the 2d time she tried the “jet”. She was smiles from ear to ear, when I met her later, ” it felt just GREAT” she said .

Off to the field for the launches,

2 PM;
Great looking skies, so lot’s of gliders in a queue to start.
Adam flew as coach in the back of the Duo Discus and Ricardo decided to fly today too.

First helping his friend Agata in the air in P1, running the wing tip with his parachute on and then he started as well.

The competition doggy is adopted my many pilots. It goes from lap to lap. A cute little Mascot.

With Claudia as “take carer ” and Gisela in the back.
This is how low they pass by at the camping area. MM on tow!

AND,….strong thermals turning over gliders, from one wing to the other, so MUST be a good day.

Strong thermals racing over the ground.

And more…strong day!!!

Towering high!!!

3.30 PM;
Still some gliders are being launched NOW.
There is a lot of talking about the fires and their influence on the weather. We know for sure that it HAS an influence.
Here is the more technical info from the Bureau of Meteorology.
I share this news which I got from Anni today;

Water is a problem too, also here. as said they bought water here and use rain water as well.

In the kitchen.

In between the ladies, who started are happily flying, their crews drop in hot and bothered in search for drinks!!!
They are, looking at the tracking , at 8000 ft and some at 11.000 with lift up to 2/3 m. So nice cool up high there.
One of the ladies mentioned earlier, a not working oxygen bottle and wondered if she should come back.

5 PM;
Gliders are landing now. 2 Just arrived, but I got only one on my pictures.

good looking skies to the N and NW!!!Still at 5 PM.

6 PM;
The Team captains meeting starts in 5 minutes!
Scruteneering is over. Nearly ALL was OK.
Gliders are landing, some are still half an hour out.
One landed today wheels up,..not good ,but better now than during the comps.
The new “bar” along the club house is busy .
No worries for “mum” kangaroo, eating a bit of green grass with her baby in front of it.

SO sweet!!!!

Off to dinner soon.
CU tomorrow.Interesting day as the official training starts.

The LATEST NEWS on Lake Keepit…2! UPDATED!!

10 AM; On Sunday December 29.

“Our” friends, young and old,…there are a lot.

Briefing is over . We could see some smoke already to the N. but the S. should be OK.
They started with “ the less rules, the better.
That’s in a nutshell the feeling you get , when you are here. It’s all very easy -going at this stage during the practice.
We have to be very careful with water as they have to buy it.
The weather looks good according to Al, who shares the maps from Sky Sight with the ladies.
An average of 7/8 kts. thermals, up to 7000 ft in the early afternoon and later in the day, when clouds might show up in the blue , up to 10.000 ft in the ranges even to 15.000.
Wind is light and variable, both at the surface and a bit higher, the ranges will have some more wind.
BUT,….from 6.30 onward, “it falls all apart“.

They use 3 tug’s today for the launches and in the end of the day you should, when you are later, announce your arrival at 20 and 10 km. so they can chase the kangaroos from the field. No worries this is “normal” here.
Mac got a real beautiful CUP, for the longest flight last year flown in NSW, from Tocumwal; 1.193 km.

Mac and the CUP, as handed over by Kerrie[ to the r.] . With in the back to the left the tug master Val Phillips.

About the fires; There are a few around. As said not direction S.
Pilots are asked to report a starting fire which they might see from above to Brisbane Emergency on 127.1.
The instructor for the day Nick,also mentioned that you are NOT allowed to fly closer than 5 n.m. from a fire.
And …look out….There might be water bombers as well.

Task; 320 to 350 km.

Yesterday evening we had quite an “International table ” for dinner, here at the club house. Chris was so kind to “cook” our steaks on the BBQ and for sure he has done this before, they were PERFECT!!!

great “tucker” as they say here.

You are up to date ,…more later,

12 PM;
I walked to the strip to make some pictures from the pilots in their glider .I stopped at the hangar for scruteneering.
It happened that it was the turn for the brand new JS 3, with call sign MM from Diana. She is the first female pilot competing for Luxembourg.
I was allowed to make pictures, so I did.
May I tell you,…this was the most advanced system I have ever seen since 1981!!!
Somebody told me it was the idea from the president here, Tim Carr, just genius!!!Compliments!
SO,….You have a big hangar…. You open the door at one side and roll the wheel of the glider on a trolley. So far nothing new. But,..then in the hangar at the floor are rails.You bring the glider to the scales and roll it off.

Rolling the glider over the rails to the scale!
On the scale
From the trolley to the scales.

Then they do the “normal” checks look at the weight and measure the wing span, check the paperwork etc and then the glider is moved back- wards to and other trolley on another set of rails. One door opens for the next glider, MM rolls out and the other door opens to push the glider out.

Allan, checks everything REAL good.
Doors open for the Czech team and rolling out for MM.
Rolling out till pretty far from the hangar to be hooked on the car again.


2 PM:
Back from the field. 38.7 dgr. C in the shade under a roof where you can have water and a rest before flying.

Cold water in fridges, less cold water from the rain,all available!!!

Strong thermals at the ground.It looks like a real good day. The 3 tuggies go up and down.Here are some of the girls ready to go.Still struggle a bit with the names as the call signs are different or not available in my book.So I hope I have it right.

Eva from Czech Rep. in her JS 1
French pilot Amelie Audier with her team.Happy chappies.
Ready to go.
A last minute check when necessary.
Harry left with his ARCUS M for Narromine and later he will fly to Tocumwal. Wendy has to drive! They are gone for a few weeks. Mind you Harry is 87!!!!

3 PM;
Visited the Lake,….can’t say it’s a lake anymore just a bit of water. It’s SO sad to see this terrible drought here. All trees are dead, no grass to be seen and only just a drop of water. I heard 0.4 % water of what it should be.

This was once ALL lake!!!
A tiny bit of water left,..the Lake I saw in the past,…just gone!

4 PM;
With an average of 6 meter lift for some, pilots must come down with big smiles.HAPPY PILOTS I guess!!!
A few are landing at the moment. The wind has changed now as some come in at 14.
Dave Shorter has arrived. He is the meteo- man for this competition.
Nearly all championship officials have arrived here now.
Jacques is here already for a few day’s , in fact Lake Keepit is his home base. He has 4 important jobs; IT, Trackers, Maps and Air Space.
Still miss Bruce and Anita [ they seem to be here] and Sean will be here on Jan 2.
I had the names correct from the girls, we only found some mistakes in the call-sign-list. For that reason there was some confusion. No worries!!!

CU tomorrow we are going to the sports center for dinner.
More about that tomorrow.

The latest news on the WWGC in Lake Keepit… number 1. Updated!!!

10 AM:
After a pretty good night sleep, I had a shower at 7 and some talks with the locals and then off to briefing in the office.
Later the briefings will be in a sports center about 7 km. from here.
Now they are very close by for me.

Already pretty busy with “girls” and as far as I could see, TC.s from France ,Germany, Czech Rep and Italy.

Briefing was at 9 and all was very easy-going.
Lay out of the field was shown again , for he new arrivals and the SKYSIGHT -weather was analysed.
Not a bad day, with 6 to 7 kts., nearly no wind till around 6 PM when a change comes trough from the mountains and no storms.
More important to know,…a very blue day!!!
Runway 32 in use and for the landing they will advise depending on the incoming wind.

The Italian team with Elena, TC Ricardo and Margot.

A task was set as well by Liz from Team UK ;302 km FAI triangle and if you wanted to do “more” you could make an AAT by widening the TP’s from the A task.
One of the 3 tuggies for today is Nina.
She is an Aussie, does n’t want to be an airline pilot later, which surprised me and a very friendly young lady.

Nina,…ready for some tows today.

More later!

12 PM;
So the president of the jury ,Gisela is already here since yesterday.
Just an hour ago Frauke the chief steward arrived and settled in, in her cabin. All are here at the field!!!
So the “show” can start now with, as I guess , ALL girls here too now.
We have a car for the 3 of us, as I am allowed to drive with them.
Necessary,… as we need to buy some food in Gunnedah for lunch and morning. Gunnedah is about 35 minutes from here.
Saw Ailsa today, she arrived as well.
Found myself a new little ,at this stage empty room in the club house, to work in for the time being ,till Sean the editor will be here.
Then a media-room will be created. No worries.

Little corner to work in.

It’s great to be at the field. Tugs pass by with gliders on tow, just in front of you. All very close by!!!
The kangaroos have disappeared at this stage, but I know from the past, they will be back around 4 PM.
Around midday the first gliders will be launched for today’s task.
Back later !!!

4.30 PM.
3 European ladies in an Australian SUV,….that MUST be great fun.
It was !!!!
We were off to Woolworth in Gunnedah ,….found it,…. shopped till we dropped and drove home again.
But before we had to ask a young man, if he maybe knew how to open the boot of the car. He knew so all shopping could go with us.
Never saw so many times the bug wipers going up and down without rain.
We needed the GPS as well.
In between I made some pictures from the strip here,…NO GRASS at all, dry as a bone.

Dryer as dry,,,and BLUE skies, more sun ..more heat.

I had contact with Casey, who organized my room but who is in Hong Kong now, about the press-location He send me 2 pictures from how Keepit normally looks.

The strip is to the Right. GREEN!!!!!
Courtesey Casey.

And one more

Green,…not now!
Courtesy Casey.

Though I am here for the WWGC in Lake Keepit, I know, you are used from me to see other important items pass by as well.
My eye “fell” on the great flight from Klaus Ohlmann on Christmas Eve in the Antares 23 E:
2.714 km in 14 hours and 18 minutes. So a nice speed of 189.7 km./h!!!!!!!
Great achievement!!!
” A great day and a great forecast from skysight. And the Antares is really a race horse. “
So good PR for Antares from Lange Aviation and Sky Sight from Matthew Scutter.

The girls here are having fun too. Not all are flying ,but before I left I saw some gliders go up.
I’ ll go outside again to see if I can make some nice pictures.It’s bloody hot though!!!
By the way I liked the news from the British Gliding Association:
“Some top tips and a top pic from the 10th FAI Women’s World Gliding Championships..
#WWGC19 #gliding

Pro tip: The Kaputar Ranges offer remarkable climbs (15kts anyone?) and often sit in a line of convergence but watch for thermal suppression in the leeward side
as shared by 10th FAI Women’s World Gliding Championships

And another PRO TIP: for those who are not on FB;
When outlanding, locals favour cultivated fields over grazing paddocks as like a glider, farming machinery objects to rocks! Livestock will step over them so they’re often left place if the field is for grazing only.
Just watch for SWER (single wire earth return) power lines as the single wire makes them very hard to see

6 PM:
Bumped into some old friends and have not been able to go to the field.
Will make some more pictures tomorrow. Here is one from Wendy and Harry,….. they just DO NOT AGE!!!

Wendy and Harry..lovely couple.

CU tomorrow.

Australian Diary …part 22! and the last ONE!THEN WWGC.

After 10 hours of driving we arrived in Lake Keepit where it was just HOT!!!
Found my room quickly , small but with air co and AT the field ,what I really like and you only need a bed!!!
I even can hang my clothes in a cupboard!!!

Some have a BBQ here tonight but without a car that was difficult for me. But I had 2 HEINEKEN and one of the guests said:” Be a bit more adventurous Ritz!”
Caught up with the UK team and with Gisela the juror. Found out that she and I knew about Margot from Italy already and I , all 3 have been awarded for our contribution to soaring with The Pelagia Majewska Medal.So a good bunch of hard working ladies here in Lake Keepit!!!

Great atmosphere here …not met too many pilots yet, but tomorrow is another day.
The weather was pretty good so it was yesterday, up to 10.000 ft.
All the way up from Tocumwal to past Gunnedah it was hazy.
The mountains here are in some kind of dust as well.Normally when we drive from Toc to let’s say Narromine, it ‘s blue skies very purple blue and SUN.
Not now.But around Keepit we noticed great thermals making high and strong sand “towers”.

So it’s all happening soon now here in Lake Keepit. Many pilots at the field here in cabin’s and we are surrounded by kangaroos!!! Big small, really tiny ones it all “hops ” around here.

Hope the Czech team from JO, will be here tomorrow. Everybody showed and told Thomas that there was only ONE way to connect the plug from the trailer to the new “found”car. They did not follow the instructions.So more delay!!!
A pity. It could have been all so easy!!!

Off to bed now, CU tomorrow. Have to find Mandy and Sean, but working here on my bed works too,with the Tocumwal WIFI, brought by George. TOP action.
Cheers Ritz

Perfect bed
Still have to unpack!

Australian Diary part 21!

4 PM;
At 7.30 AM George drove to Albury to pick up Thomas, crew from Petra from the Czech team, whose English will surely improve ,when he is here a little bit longer.
One of those hectic day’s, on which nothing seems normal. Running around like mad and not really achieving something!!!
Problem after problem!!!!
The Range Rover which was looked after in the garage so it would be good for the WWGC, with 4 brand new tires , refused to drive!!!!!
It was free in the package but still…..
Poor young Thomas and George had to deal with it…. they did!
Problems solved NOW!!! Other car rented.
Diana flew the glider , the LS 1f, for a last check and, was happily flying around with 5 m. lift, but had to come down as Thomas was waiting.
They put JO in the trailer,… but now ….only ready to leave tomorrow morning…AND for Thomas from Benalla, as that ‘s where they found a car with a tow-hook, for the Czech team. So off again for George, now to Benalla, to bring Thomas and the trailer.
He found him a sleeping spot there as well.
Cost G and D a full day to help him out,…no worries…can’t let a young guy be alone with problems he not created. Just all very unfortunate.
Finally time to pack our own things after 7 PM.
For Thomas,….. first a trip to Sydney tomorrow…with the trailer…[.we warned him]….to pick up Petra, and her family arriving there tonight and then to Lake Keepit.
More and more complicated.

A hot day and indeed some nice soaring. Still problems with smoke as I heard from one of the pilots.
Worn out, but ready for an early start at 6!!!From then the Diary will be changed in the “The Lake Keepit WWGC news 1.” !!!

Christmas was a happy time with too much, but delicious food. Had drinks at 11 , but my friends wanted me to stay for Christmas lunch. Great chefs so perfect lunch.
At 5 it was drinks again, but when I was there they expected me to join the Christmas-dinner table as well.
Another top chef, so more turkey, great vegies and another excellent Christmas pudding.
I was really spoiled.
Will not forget Christmas 2019 quickly.

Hand made by Diana’s aunt.
A real beauty ,…and with money in it!!!

Early start as said, everybody here worn out, so let’s meet again in Keepit!!!!

Cheers for now

Australian Diary…part 20!


—When you put a young Formula 1 driver in a good car you know you can expect a good result.
Same in gliders this young German guy Simon Briel [ runer up in Szged at the JWGC last year] combined with an EB 28 and in the back a name as Bernd Fischer and flying from Bitterwasser ….TOP result/a winning combination ; 1.406 km. speed 159 km./h!!!
Simon is one of the young pilots flying in the 1000 km. camp., this time on special invitation, as he was there already last year too.
AND,..1000’s he flew …he has 5 now.
BUT,…also worth mentioning….Maximilian Schaefer also from Germany flying an ASH 26E over 1.325 km. with 148 km./h!!!
He might be in the camp too!!!
For sure in the camp this season;Mike Bauer who was the best junior in the Club class Nationals in Zwickau with 44 participants. This was a ticket to Namibia.

Simon , with Markus Uhlig another 1000km-camp pilot
As shared by

Great job also from 2 Dutch friends,Alfred Paul and Mark, flying a lot together each in their ASG 29 E in the Netherlands , chasing long distances and records and this time they have a nice one flown in Douglas on December 23; 1.324 km. in 9 hours and 15 minutes ;speed 143 km./h.
Finally African weather, what a day !! We launched early with the first Cu already at the plateau around 9 AM. We directly launched after briefing at 9.40 and had a very good energy line towards the North. Coming back South we could maintain good energy lines as well with some good climbs, and we already had 400km at 12.30. Afterwards we went South of the Aar, but the weather became more difficult there and we really had to search for good lift. Afterwards we went to Uppington with Cu base up to 4000m. In the last 2 hours we could fly again South of Prieska and afterwards back to Douglas along some nice thunderstorms towards the North. At Douglas we were 15 min in the holding for a shower over the field and we have landed at 19.30. Literally everything worked today – just awesome!!
Well done guy’s!!!!

Douglas Backhouse airfield
As shared by

—-The French girls 8 “men” strong, are in Lake Keepit and here they are . Like the UK and German team some very strong pilots.

A nice “bunch” of ladies.
As shared by

Off for Christmas drinks at 11, started yesterday at 5 PM with the first one.

Australian Diary …part 19!

9.30 AM on Tuesday December 24 :
A fine clear morning here in Tocumwal.
Yesterday I spoke briefly with Anton and he and Andrea had a good day doing their side check with Ingo.
Nearly all back to the past, when they were in the same hangar and doing their check with either Ingo or Eddie or Don.
So they started with SSC, [Sportavia Soaring Center] long ago, when that disappeared with Eddie at Sportaviation Tocumwal and now back flying with the Southern Riverina Gliding Club at Sportavia Tocumwal from Sharon and Lumpy.
As I, they were impressed how great the garden looks and with all the improvements at the hangar and around.

Looking GOOD!!!!

It’s Christmas Eve tonight and with all preparations for Lake Keepit it does n’t feel like Christmas.
Diana, Colin and George are still busy to transform the Discus trailer into a JS 3 trailer…they seem to win.
They thought maybe one day work, it turned out a week.

Hammering away…with JO,..the LS 1f in the back.

The car’s are in good condition for the 10 hour drive.Both have been checked in the garage.
Car’s the Czech team will collect on Boxingday the LS 1 f and the Range Rover, now with brand new tires.

Looking good for the Czech team.

Off to Cobram for some final shopping.

12 PM:
My goodness me, NEVER saw so many car’s and people in Cobram. AND,…I have been there earlier also with Christmas.
I was glad to avoid the busy shops in Holland this year, now I was in the middle of it in Cobram.
Like Trafalgar Squire at the street and no trolley’s in the Woolworth.
Lot’s of vegies were just “gone’, meaning the shop did n’t expect so many buyers either.
We survived and will have a nice Christmas meal here over the festive day’s.

Drinks at 5 tonight with friends and tomorrow at 11 and 5 PM again.

Rest me to wish you the best ever CHRISTMAS DAY’S!
I toast on all of you and thanks for reading the blogs!!!
Looking a bit more global, I hope the fires will stop, the fighting and bullying between people and countries as well.
I wish you PEACE and HAPPINESS with CHRISTMAS 2019 !!!!


PROOST!!!!!! An old picture still looking young.

Australian Diary …part 18!

—Today is a social day of visits , food and drinks.
Slowly the smoke came in again at 9.30. The East runway 36/18 was not visible.
Now at 11 it is still hazy to the East but a bit better.
William [in Narromine] just shared a picture from the current fires.

As shared by William Stalenburg.

—My accommodation is organized in Lake Keepit, so I don’t have to worry about that and it seems even better now, as I stay AT the field, so no car needed!!
WHY, I will be there is a bit of a story.
My plan was to NOT go to Australia this year. After a concussion which took longer than I thought, I had decided to stay in Holland.
My daughter Inge however found me a real good deal on a ticket.
I had 24 hours to decide.
I decided YES I GO and that meant leaving Holland within one week AND only travelling back on January 22.
One way or another George had a conversation with Mandy.
He told her about my longer stay which fitted in the WWGC period.
When they needed me I could be there he said. I did n’t even know, only later!
We all thought about it and here in Tocumwal the decision was made that I was added to the media team doing my own thing in to spread the word about the WWGC world wide.
I feel very honored….and pleased.

So now I am going to be part of the race for 3 new WWGC champions in Lake Keepit. Out of 47 pilots from 10 countries in 3 classes there will be 3 new ones.
At this stage 14 pilots entered in 18 m. class, 16 in standard class and 17 in club class .
NOW the current champions are still German pilot Katrin Senne in 18 m. class , Sabrina Vogt also from Germany in Club Class and French pilot Aude Grangeray in Standard class.

Between December 28 -30 is the pilot and team registration and technical inspection.
First TC meeting on December 30 at 7 PM.
Mandatory safety briefing at December 31 at 9.30 AM.
Official training Tuesday December 31 to Thursday January 2 in 2020.
Opening Ceremony on Friday January 3.
Contest flying; January 3-January 17 2020
Farewell Party January 17 in the evening.
Closing ceremony and prize-giving at January 18 at 10 AM.
So now you are up to date to the schedule.

All news at
live tracking;
twitter; @10thWWGC

—-Arne shared some pictures from his competition in Welkom and I share a few nice ones as well.

Arne with John [Coutts]
As shared by Arne J. Boye-Møller
As shared by Arne J. Boye-Møller
And, …the CHAMPION,..Oscar with Carol to the left.
As shared by Arne J. Boye-Møller


More later.
2.30 PM:
Had a great lunch with Chrissie and Stuart and their grand children. Chrissie runs a great AIR B & B in the alley behind her shop ;
the 44 Alley Way. Had a look at it …just beautiful.In the middle of town!!![entire house with 3 beds]
Also Libby runs a very beautiful AIR B & B a bit closer to the airfield:
The SILVER PORCH RETREAT.[entire house with 4 beds]
Both are high quality!!!Both were booked during the Nationals and a great deal of the summer.
Look at AIR B and B’s in Tocumwal when you are interested.–Australia
Motels are great and well prized too there are enough of them.

Found a picture from the fires here in Tocumwal around the airfield. Believe maybe 1991.
One of the most scary things in my life.

Fires surrounded the Tocumwal Airport. VERY scary!!!!
And some Christmas festivities and other parties , here at the in that time, Sportavia Soaring Center.
More Christmas and my birthday in Tocumwal, with the Snow family.
With owners Bill and Val, Bruce Brockhoff and when I remember well Woody from Aspen in the USA.
Christmas in Tocumwal LONG ago….early 90thies.
With the Wiesenthals, the Kellers and Ian.

Those were very busy but very good times.
GREAT memories!!!

3 PM;
By the way the smoke mostly disappeared and the club is flying in the afternoon.Not booming weather but “just nice”.