Interview with European club- class -champion Rene and runner up Tim !

Alphen aan den Rijn             Sunday     October 4     2009

Some short news before the interviews.
—The KLM celebrates this weekend “her” 90 thiest birthday and for the party they expect about 40.000 guests. ONLY people working for KLM and their families are invited for this party.
—Transavia pilot G. will be defended by the “pitbull” of the Dutch defenders Mister Spong. He is a very good criminal lawyer and announced last Friday that he is going to do this job. Argentina has asked Spain to extradite the by some loved, by others abused , just retired captain. There will be a court case om October 6  in Spain, but G . denies everything and as long as he is not found guilty , Mr Spong says “we” should see him as innocent.
—Another Argentinian pilot from the “vuelos de la muerte” , this time working in Argentina has been arrested yesterday.
—I heard the first snow has fallen in Norway and Sweden, brrr…, we have gusting autumn winds here, while Sicilie, has had landslides through heavy rain which  atleast  killed 10 people.
—From Jondaryan in Queensland, now we are in Australia , a nice 579 km flight was made by Alan Barnes in his LS 1f , same glider as Rene flew in the EGC.
—Brasil got the Olympics for 2016 and the soaring yesterday was not too bad either in Brasil with a long out and return in an ASW 25;495 km.with a speed of 115 k/h. One day earlier a pilot flew 814 km. from the airport Luis Magalhaes in an ASW 22.
—A question from Mac, if you can help him please let me know []
I am looking for Altair display/Vega, if you know of anyone who might be selling one, please let me know.
I am also thinking of selling my OzFlarm and 302/303, if you know of anyone interested please let me know.
Here is the interview with Rene [ 24 ]and Tim [21] which I am very pleased with, both from Holland and totally different , but both addicted to gliding at this stage in their lives. Rene is from a farmers family growing chicory in the N.O.P. and serves till November for the Dutch airforce. [meteo and logistics]Just before the JWGC he arrived back home after serving for his country in Afghanistan.[ meteo in Kandahar!]
Tim is from a gliding family and more or less “born” at the airfield. His mum is the TC for Holland [ she was also the TC during this EGC!Ritz] ,international steward and flies herself. She coaches together with double WGC winner Baer Selen, the national teams  through the year. Dad Ferdi  flew in WGC’s  and EGC’s in the past  and still is a good pilot. Sister Maaike flies gliders and finishes her study biology this year and brother Caspar was runner up in his first competition this year in Malden.

Here are the questions and the answers .  Enjoy!

1.  Did your participation in the JWGC in Rayskala contribute to the success to be the Club class number “one and two” ? If so, how and what have you done different?
Rene; Certainly. Over the last years we both had the JWGC as our goal to work to . The EGC was a fine ” detail”  in the end with a great result. Because the EGC was not our real objective , we were able to ease back and there was no pressure to fly. The JWGC was, of course, also an ideal preparation. Although we did not fly intensively together , we had 80 hours of talking on the radio while flying, and we have been around together there for a great deal. 
At the EGC we really did some good team -flying. Although we, unfortunately, on the first day lost each other by mis-communication , we flew the rest of the days practically always  within 500 m of each other, except for the day that I outlanded and Tim made it home. This was only possible because we trusted each other totally.
Tim; Absolutely! First of all, we have both very little experience so that a competition  where you fly for 80 hours  adds a very high proportion to the total experience. The plan was also in Finland to fly as a team, but it soon became apparent that I myself was  struggling to give it all a place. Because of that we decided to fly each for ourselves and where possible, to help each other. We had a lot of communication in Finland,  which later in Lithuania, provided for the easy cooperation. In the end I  managed to fly much better  in Rayskala and with a day-win and a wonderful JWGC experience  I then went to Lithuania. Immediately after Finland, I brought the glider [ASW 19] to Pociunai , where I had  2 days of rest , before flying  from Kaunas to home . This way I could, instead of 2 days driving,  travel in one day to Pociunai where I found a fully equipped  Team UK and Team Holland, for a drink.
Piece of teambuilding here: René had put up his tent already and because the conviviality was more important than my tent, I slept that night in the front bell of  René’s tent.
In comparison with Finland, our team was very small, but peaceful and with little diversion. As in Finland René and I eat from the same kitchen, manned by our crew members, we could evaluate there and had our wonderful moments of rest.
With regard to the flying, we have worked very close together. We never practised this before , but it grew simply fantastic.
We started at the same time, but  after the first day, I had not the good sense, how was it that René once again was so much faster then I on the end of the day, while we flew together ?
During our visit to the terrace Rene had as explanation for his 1 place something as: “… Tim was speeding me up  all the time and in the end I had a bit more luck, ..
This in order to convince me that I was a huge part of the performance, to not let me feel down.
ater I did also the same for René  when the situation was exactly the inverted and he outlanded and I just made it home .
From the beginning on, the team spirit  grow with each flight. Since that time, it all went very fast, we were getting better and better and could, if  there were setbacks in the air , help each other to recover mentally.Down to the last day, we have flown together and we have fought for the best Team. We were a team, individuals subordinate to each other.

2. The weather was difficult to say the least, did flying over the years in the Netherlands help. How did you anticipate on the thunderstorms; wait, just start ?? 
Rene; During the winter we have had with the Dutch team -selection a number of meetings in which all kinds of things have been discussed, including weather-situations. Here the experiences of other gliderpilots have been discussed as well , how they dealt with it and what they have learned from it. This is very instructive even if you do not know at that time the situation. A very good addition to the experience and theoretical knowledge!
Tim; By combining the experiences from  the past with the theoretical knowledge you make the decisions you are going to take. Nevertheless, we were not always able to time the right moment  with the right theory. Being together makes the difference, as 2 see more then one!
For me it was, above all, the experience in taking  decisions that helped me, this is because the weather in Lithuania is very much different from the Netherlands when it comes to thermal activity.
I found it very difficult to “feel”  the thermals and to center well. Also here it was great to “work” with 2 spans.Where René flew less then 100m in front of me obviously without lift, I could say “René I have 3 m, ….it keeps going…now 4 “I
“Well then I fly back “.
And, of course, vice versa, searching under a cloud: I turn in and Rene 200 m. further but finding nothing better.
, How much do you have”? ” “2.5 beautifully constant ”
In the meantime, I see that René turns again under a cloud we had been to before ;”in my opinion even better here … 4… “
In short, if we had flown each for ourselves , we would have never been so often surprised .

Start times were usually simple: early starts! There was little gaggle formation and tasks were always long and we knew that  the thermal energy-reduced dramatically at the end of the afternoon. Again, I must point out that  flying together makes you feel stronger and you dare to go first over the line.

3. It is pretty uncommon so many flighing- days, 13 in total, , is that extra tiring or extra challenging?
Rene; In Finland, I was actually more tired than I had expected. In the period immediately preceding the JWGC , I have been 4 months in Afghanistan for my work and I have done much to my condition. Immediately after the last flight in Finland I just felt tired. But because I totally got used again to competition flying over there , we had a good rhythm in Lithuania. This, in combination  with the relaxed atmosphere, made it possible that , after 13 competition days , I even could have gone on!
Tim; With the knowledge that everyone who was flying is older than yourself, you  feel much more energetic!In addition, you will see that in the world of sport, winners after the greatest effort ,still have energy to cheer.When everything goes so smooth,  it is a pleasure to be part of a team and is just great to finish it the way we did. 

 4. Could you “feel ” the difference  between a JWGC with mainly young people and an EGC with pilots of all ages?
Rene ; Yes for sure. We felt young between all of the other pilots .See also Tims’ answer.
TimYes! The competition in Finland was much heavier. The young pilots were able to fly all days in full, while the EK pilots were flying more conservative .Despite some excesses, it showed that courageous flying   paid. 
I did find, however, that a great deal of the EK pilots purely flew their own flight and not in  small groups .

.5. Is it difficult to be concurrents  in the same class . How do you both stay happy?  Did the TC have any influence on it? How do you deal with this pressure.
Rene ; We were certainly not concurrents, we have provided this performance together.
It was in the beginning a bit of a difficult situation as , having equal performance I would always win  from Tim ,because I flew with a 1% lower handicap with my LS1f. For me it was also easy to say that I would like to fly together. Fortunately for us both we trusted each other totally and  it did  not matter who from us would be on  top .
Tim ; We were no concurrents. I, as a number 2  found it “interesting” to see that there were people who did not understand that we had as goal one result. You can, of course as  the European champion say this with all decency.
I , however, can not  say that I, in fact,  was first as well.
“There is no” I “in team” ;when you put your  individual interests above those of the team you can no longer act as a team. There is only one thing that I regret  and that is that I can not say that I am European champion . All the more reason to try again!

6. To win on this young age, what does it do to you? Are there still enough challenges?
Rene ;It was a great experience. I have enjoyed it very much to be able to fly with Tim. But, as Tim also indicates it will be difficult enough to equal this performance or even ever to be world champion. Challenges enough! The road from last year was good and it gives great satisfaction   to complete it like this,then!

Tim ; It will be difficult enough to repeat  this performance and we are not [yet] world champion.There are plenty of things to be achieved in competition flying. But regardless of the objectives which you set up, the way forward is often a lot more fun than achieving it.Happy to see yourself improve is the key to success. Afterwards you can see whether it was enough.
Do not try to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors, but try to be better than yourself. —William Faulkner

7. Do you live for your sport or is it great added fun ?
Rene; The l
ast 10 years I lived for gliding. After my  first Junior competition in Venlo 2004  my purpose was clear: the JWGC  in Finland in 2009.
The years after that, I flew a variety of competitions and got  first in the National Dutch Junior Team and  last year also in the senior National team. In addition to this flying in the summer, we have also as previously reported ,a beautiful winterprogramma with a variety of activities. This all means that a lot of  things had to be abandoned !
Tim ; I have so far in my whole career , lived to the objective of a world title and could not do a lot of other things . Unfortunately, it remains an amateur sport and will, in future, also have to give way for a beautiful job .

8. What are the next competitions in which you want to participate?
Rene ; Perhaps we are going to the World Cup in Priviedza. In addition, of course, the national Championships, but that will probably be than individually. It remains nice to fly other competitions in other areas as well.

TimPerhaps we are allowed to go to the 2006 FAI WGC in Priviedza, but chances are very small. In addition, I find it very difficult to  choose . Of course, I would like to fly the EGC , JWGC [Musbach] and WGC’s, but there are so many other fun competitions.I would like to go back to Klix and Hahnweide, [ I flew there the German junior-championships ] as they were unforgettable. It is unfortunate that many of the friends you meet on such contests you never meet again. 

9. Rene, you go to Australia, a great experience, what do you expect and what are you going to do Tim this winter?
Rene ; I hope it will be a fun time! I will get  to know other people while doing my hobby. Of course, I also hope to fly some nice long distance flights!

Tim ;
I try to fullfill my dream to be an  F16 pilot in the airforce. I have to get through  the medical check first… exciting.In the winter we start the preparations for the new season with our coaches.In addition, I am also committed to my club Malden , where the people are that have helped me  to achieve what I have achieved till now.

10. What did I not ask  and you would like to tell the world.
Tim; This is one for you Rene, ” Ehm …can you solve this one”.!
Rene ; …………….[Silence!]

Thank you guy’s GREAT interviews!!!
See you on Wednesday ,less then a week before I leave for OZ, more specific TOCUMWAL. Hope to show Rene around there as he should know that part of gliding history as well.

Cheers Ritz

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