Black is beautiful!

Alphen aan den Rijn        09-11-2008

 What happened last week?
First of course the 44th elections in the USA with ,as glorious winner……….Barack Obama, the first black president in history!!Great stuff!!!!!
They have been however, the most expensive US presidential elections in history ,but….with a record number of American voters, 180 million. So a BIG day for America and the world!

If you like gliding you might like Formula 1 as well.In my opinion we had last year one of the best Grand Prix series EVER. Lewis Hamilton won in the last 100 meters to be 5th in the last race and….to win the WORLD TITLE with ONE point difference from Massa. Tension till the end!

So what about a ” black James Bond ” ????His latest picture gets record visitors here in Holland at the moment and the suggestion is not mine but from James, James Bond, himself.

Flemington, [Melbourne -Australia]….now we talk horse -races another very interesting sport. I do not know how many times I wrote on that day while working at Sportavia …..The Nation stops….. And it did again with a spectecular race won by ” Viewed “,trained by the great Bart Cumming [ this was his 12th Melbourne Cup Trophee] . First win for young jockey Blake Shinn, who had the task to bring the horse in first. And….it won by a nose from pre-race favourite “Bauer”, decided by the photo- finish.
While living in OZ , I loved that day gathering at a friends place, with some 20 other friends; with the sweeps,  the tension ,the TV …loud, the shouting and excitement,the bubbles and good food, not to forget the great heads and clothes, specially for the occasion.

Yesterday we had in Holland the National Gliding Day with over 300 guests visiting the University of Utrecht for some good sessions on interesting topics.Unfortunately I work on saturdays so I missed out on meeting lots of friends and listening to subjects as;
” Gliderpilots,young and old.”When is it time to stop with a sport you loved so much and spend so much time on?
President of the Dutch Dakota Association Anne Cor Groeneveld was the discussion leader in the morning talking about aviation including gliding and vintage gliding. 
Tilo Holighaus [Schempp Hirth ]and Holger Back [ DG Flugzeugbau] were invited to talk about the fleet and specially their latest gliders.
And another good topic was; How do we get more young glider pilots to our clubs!? Will the simulator help, now those young ones live in many different virtual worlds? Next year I will be there again.[source]

Next week the opening of the vintage museum at Bacchus Marsh Airport ,not too far from Melbourne. They have currently 32 gliders , in different conditions, in their collection and the number keeps growing. All gliders have been donated. During the opening 20 gliders will be on display and some others on loan. 
About my friend Bruce;” Bruce’s gesture in giving a donation sufficient to erect the hangar was certainly a wonderful act. This hangar will be used for storage and restoration of our fleet of historic gliders and most will be stored in a derigged condition. Our ultimate aim is to have a full museum display in conjuction with other fields of aviation but the achievement of this is someway into the future”, so far Mister Graeme Barton from the museum.

All gliding mekka’s in Australia and Africa have started with their first flights of the season.I hope for all of them on great weather.
On the OLC you see them again; names as Bitterwasser, Gariep Dam, Pokweni with familiar names, gliders and nice long flights. Corowa,Tocumwal and Narromine will follow soon, as the first guests have  arrived there last week.

The Australian FAI Grand Prix will be flown in Narromine from November 30 /December 6 2008. Participants from Oz as wel as overseas. From South Africa Mannie Mc Lachlan will fly . Also pilots as Heimo Demmerer from Austria and Thomas Gostner and Ricky Brigliadori from Italy are invited.Mac Ichikawa is the Japanese pilot who is invited.
In the week before [23/29th] the famous Narromine Cup will be flown; the 12th edition!
As you surely know, Narromine won the Australian bid to have the Worldcomps in 2012. Now is it up to the GFA to win the bid on worldstage. Would love to be there as editor!!!!!
Tentative dates IF it all happens in OZ, are;December 1/December 15, so in the night of the final party I can celebrate my 66th birthday!

For sure it will be another great time for all Europeans flying overseas! I stay here and enjoy their stories.Most friends said they will only mention it on the OLC, when they have flown OVER 500 km.So let’s hope we see their names a lot, which means they enjoy theirselves to the fullest.

Enjoy your next week to the fullest too! Ritz

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