173.77 km./h. on last day of Aussie Nationals over 608 km. in open class and 15.000 ft. cloud base! Exciting final SGP !!!!

—–R.I.P. Paul and Tomas.
Before I share my latest news, still fully euphoric from the GREAT last day at Vitacura , I received the tragic news about a good friend, Paul Mander, [ a young 75]  who crashed his ASH 25 close to Bathurst flying from Pipers Airfield last Sunday afternoon. He was alone in his glider.
NSW Rural Fire Service Operational Officer Brett Taylor said the powered glider was on fire when it crashed ,which then ignited a small grass fire
“The wreckage was located in a field not far from the airstrip.”
I know Paul since the 1984 pre- worlds in Rieti! We were both TC’s/coaches from a junior team in Hus Bos in the UK during the WGC in 2005. Paul loved gliding, but also sailing. I feel for Sandy and the [grown-up] kids and their grand children.
Lost for words!!!!VERY SAD !!!!!He was one of my mates!

The official news;”
We regret to advise our GFA members and colleagues of the death of Paul Mander on Sunday 21 January 2018.  Paul was flying solo in his ASH-25M Jet glider, and crashed at Pipers Field, home of Bathurst SC.  Some witnesses reported seeing smoke was coming from the fuselage while it was descending in the circuit area in a steep nose low attitude, but all else is speculation.  The glider was destroyed in a fire at the point of ground impact.  Emergency services attended the scene.

GFA and BSC members are assisting ATSB, who have investigative lead authority, as well as NSW Police and Coroner in investigations. You will appreciate that this investigation will be difficult.  ATSB now have control of the accident scene.
Paul was a very well known competition pilot and coach, who has made great contributions to gliding in NSW and Australia.
Our sincere condolences go to Paul’s wife Sandy, sons Mike and Henry, daughter Susie, family, friends and his many gliding colleagues.
Peter Cesco
GFA President
And a THANK you from the young ones;
On Sunday afternoon the Australian Junior Gliding movement lost one of its most valuable contributors, Paul Mander. Paul was heavily involved in the running of the first few JoeyGlides, and was bullish in his fundraising efforts, ultimately enabling a handful of juniors to attend the Junior World Gliding championships.Paul was made an honorary life member of the Australian Junior Gliding club at the 4th JoeyGlide held at Gawler in 2007. It is not overstating the point to say that the Australian junior gliding movement wouldn’t be what it is today without his efforts.On behalf of every past & present JoeyGlide attendee, we offer our deepest condolences to Paul’s family.”

AND THEN,…… more sad news on the same day, it’s getting TOO much;
The official news;
“Sad news from the last race day;

Local Chile pilot Tomas Reich had an accident on the ridges south of Santiago. The Chile SAR recovered Tomas and took him by helicopter to the hospital in Santiago. Unfortunately Tomas died during the evening from the injuries he sustained during the accident. Our thoughts and prayers are for his family and friends during this tragic time.”
“During the last race day the tracker signal from GN Tomas Reich was lost whilst he was flying along the ridges south east of Santiago.
An aircraft was dispatched from the airfield and the Chile search and rescue were alerted. They found the glider on the hill side and Thomas was found to be alive but injured. Once he was stabilized by the paramedic crew he was taken aboard the helicopter to Santiago hospital.
Unfortunately Tomas died during the evening from the injuries he sustained during the accident.”

R.I.P. Paul and Tomas.

Picture shared by Bryan Hayhow on the last glorious- trough-day at Waikirie. I found this picture appropriate for my sad feelings. I asked Bryan permission first.

Back to the regular blog.

—–Last Thursday we had a scary and extreme storm here. The official meteorological termination seems to be  ‘bombogenisis’. A Bom-cyclone….pressure that drops dramatically in a short time [as a bom]
I noticed Ireland and the UK had it already before us. They not only had storm with terrible gusts but also a full pack of snow.
Also Germany was hit, as well as Belgium.
In Holland we had gusts up to 143 km./h. [bft 11] in the coastal areas and that is NO fun!! I expected/hoped it would not be too bad in Brabant where I live but in the end we were hit as well with Bft 9. Nearly the whole country had code red!!
Schiphol was “closed”, so no departing air-traffic and those on their way to Amsterdam from far away, tried several times but in the end overshoot and  did not land. No trains in the country , no trams in Amsterdam and the question to not go on the road if not necessary.
This storm created chaos…. total chaos!!!Fallen trees everywhere ,66 trucks were blown away at the highway causing severe traffic jam’s and roofs from schools and houses blew up high in the air. At least 2 casualties here, 8 in Germany where the force of the wind was less than here and 1 in Belgium.
Pffff,…. put on my FB site a video from Stuff Dutch People like,…. NOT in this case!

By the way the damage bill will be over 100 million and that’s for small business and private insured people at this stage only !!!!


EXCITING FINAL of the SGP in Vitacura.

——Race 3 even brought excitement for Sebastian Kawa, who nearly “lives” in his glider and has had/done it all. His comment on the day; “What a race“. And others even commented with words as “insane race” or “impressive final“.
I could not follow it due to other business, but you get really curious reading those words , so I sat down and looked.
Luckily on www.sgp.aero you can find everything when you miss out.
Sebastian K. said in his comment,  that lift was better than expected and noticed that some pilots stayed longer than necessary in the lift.” When we did not need any more altitude they still were climbing ” , which in his opinion was a mistake, whilst he followed the slope, to win in the end the day just before Tilo and Bostjan.
This means that we have 2 Sebastian’s with 25 points and on 3 Werner with 18.

As shared by Sebastian K.

Race 4; 339 km. to go and Mario Kiessling was this time the best. [speed 149,5 km./h.]He was already once runner -up, but got some penalty points for a too low finish.This time he got the 10 points ,and he was even 3km./h. faster than runner up Rene Vidal also in the Ventus 3T.
Sebastian K was 3d flying very precisely , but with all the high technique gathered over years of flying, he just did n’t manage to pass Rene. He leads the SGP- final now , with 2 races to go, as the “other”  Sebastian was 8th for the day with 2 points.
Mario took his own decisions going more N., found there thermals bringing him up to over 4000 m. which separated him from the group. Rene got him nearly close to the 3d TP, doing better over the ridges , but in the end it was all ridge flying with 220 km./h on the “clock”.
Sebastian K 32 points, Sebastian N 27 and Mario 21.

Mario and Rene as shared by www.sgp.aero

Race 5; one but last race. with start problems and for that reason penalties for some up to 186 seconds, because it was difficult to fly back to the start line and they started from the wrong side of it. To manage the start height and speed was difficult this day.
It ‘s all about decisions in these Grand Prix’s, going right , going left and lot’s of ridge flying.
” Fight ” was between the 2 Sebastian’s and it was VERY close!! Sebastian N won  [10] just ahead of Sebastian K [8] who still leads with 3 points now. Both had penalty points too; 2 and 6 seconds for a too low finish.
Thomas was 3d today.
In the end another very exciting race with 4 pilots fighting for the honors..2 Sebastian’s and Mario and Thomas.. , that adrenaline in those bodies must be sky high.

Friday’s heroes!!! As shared by the organizers.

And what about this picture, “white ants on a pile of sand”????


With as text:”#CHILE2018 #RACE5 Tilo Holighaus gave us this morning this amazing picture of the first thermal he was on the top with almost all the other pilots in the picture!!! And yes he took the picture from outside the cockpit!!!!! This is what we will watch live in less than 3 hours now on www.sgp.aero !!! — metFridolin HauserRene VidalJon GatfieldThomas GostnerMark TingeyRoman MračekŁukasz WójcikYankee GalettoSebastian NägelSebastian Kawa en Schempp-Hirth.

Race 6 LAST DAY; In fact it’s between the 2 Sebastian’s [40 p. and 37 p.] and Mario [27 p.] .So 2 Ventus’3 T and a JS 1c.
When Sebastian N does not start and Mario wins the day he get’s 11 points [1 bonus point for the last day] and that way he could achieve 38 points. NOT to be expected!!!
When Sebastian N wins he will have 48 points and  Sebastian K as runner up would get 8 points, so equal.
What will happen???

It turned out different than I thought.
Mario indeed was still keen to be in the top 3 so he started straight away with Tilo each on one site of the track.
May be they were helping their Sebastian.
Not the best day weatherwise but the heroes managed to deal with it.
Mario won the day and the 11 points so a well deserved 3d place for him. Sabastian N and K looked of course at each other and both made no mistakes though Sebastian K lost a point to Sebastian N. 5 for 4 daily points.
No worries the glory and honor were for him. 44 points and only 2 points more than Sebastian N.;42. Mario got 38. Great effort from all. Didier was runner up on the last day and had 19 points in the end and Werner 3d; 27 so 4th overall.

As shared by the organizers.

Great races, superb pilots and absolutely GOOD fun to follow it. Well done to all !!!!!Congratulations!!!!

Time to go home for pilots and gliders as you can see on this picture shared by Sebastian K.
The tragic death on this last day of Tomas Reich overshadowed in the end all euphoric.

——On Monday started the first SGP for the 2018 season in Australia at Horsham; Jan.22-28. Quite a bunch of Aussie toppers so again fun to follow it.
Graham [Parker] got the first 10 points ahead of Brad Edwards and Pete Temple.
More next week, when I try to be in a better  read more enthusiastic mood again.



——-The Nationals at Waikirie have finished;
The one but last  day showed a 4 hour AAT for open class and Andrew Georgeson won the day with 580 km. with 143 km./h. Scott was “only”  on spot 6 with 115 km./h. loosing nearly 500 points,…BUT, he had such a big lead, it did n’t hurt him.
18 m; also had a 4 hour AAT and the JS 3 from Norm was “on the go”!!! He won the day with 583 km with a speed of 144 km./h and that was “much” better than the runner up for this last day; Adam had 561 km and a speed of 139 km./h.
15 m.; 345 km for the “boy’s” and an Adelaide pilot Leigh Stokes in the ASW 20 won the day;125 km./h.
Standard; Tobias Geiger from Benalla won in his LS 4 the  day with 476 km. and a speed of 127 km./h. He jumped from spot 5 to 3 overall. Great job!!

Adam about this one but last day :“Great day racing around outback Australia, check out the terrain I was flying over! Didn’t really make any mistakes today, nice glides in good air, looking for 6kt climbs, tactically well around all the turns, nice final glide – all felt easy & good.
The JS3 that won flew a great flight too of course. However at 59kg-sq.m on my final glide with him (first sighting all comp), the glider was clearly better than the G29 – I was using him & a JS1c to improve my glide & still he was getting away, both in normal glide & in the dynamic pull ups.
Tomorrow maybe we’ll have 15,000′ CU – so our first good look at how it really hums under the energy lines against the G29. Still wish I had the new Ventus though – it would’ve been the top performer over the whole comp here I’m sure;

Still very happy with my performance today though, bring on tomorrow!

The last day was on Friday Jan.19 and a real classic Waikirie day.
AGAIN good tasks were set and HUGE speed was flown and what about 15.000 ft cloud base;
open; 3.30 AAT…Andrew won again with 608 km so a speed of 173.77km /h.
18 m; Terry [Cubley] showed he “masters” his Ventus 2cx, as good as his LS 3 in the past. He won the last day flying 609 km. with a speed of 170,78 km./h. “Slowest ” speed for the day 150 km./h.
Peter and Adam followed with just 1 km. over and one under 600 km.
15 m; O’ Connell-time….with Joseph in the LS 3 winning the last day before Stephen.
What about this LS 3 flying 447 km with a speed of 147.92 km./h.!!!!!
Standard class; 3 hour AAT and flights over 500 km.!!! Speed for  winner Don over 509 km. ;166.63 km./h. and Allan [Barnes] 493 km. with 164.51 km./h. in the LS 8.

The O’ Donnell’s!!! 4 Brother’s and Stephens son Joe. And good music taste as well !!!
As shared by the Waikirie Gliding Club.

Looking at the final results and the new CHAMPIONS after 8 out of 11 day’s ;
open;1.Scott Percival – ASH 25[7.168 ] 2. Andrew Georgeson- JS 1 C/21 m. [6.809] 3. Benno Beesten- ASH 25 E [6.697]
18 m; 1. Peter Temple – ASG 29E[7.466] 2. Norm Bloch-JS 3 /18 m. [7.366] 3. Adam Woolley-ASG 29 e [7.043]
15 m ; 1. Stephen O’ Donnell -Ventus 2A[7.715] 2. Joseph O’ Donnell -LS 3[6.989] 3. Tom O’ Donnell -LS 7 [6.739]
Standard; 1. Don Woodward-ASW 24 [7.610] 2. James Nugent-Discus A [7.052] 3. Tobias Geiger -LS 4 A[7.007]

Straight after it was a big rush to get the gliders in the trailers as a sand storm was approaching.And indeed a micro burst arrived and NOT all gliders were in their trailers yet.

——-Tocumwal, had on the same Friday [Jan.19] glorious weather as well ; Eddie from Sportaviation wrote;
“Big flag, Big tasks 1000km (2 X 500) for team Japan🇯🇵 
Mamoru Shinohara & Shinji Asakura . A first for both
Congratulations to both with their first 500 km. .
Ingo flew in his Discus 700 km. and Bernie [Sizer] in his PIK 20 719 km.

More good news from Tocumwal that day ,as the Danish “girls” Brigitte and Christina flew 7 Danish records;
“Happy girls  Birgitte Ørskov and Christina Solberg Hansen . 7 new Danish records on this flight 

As shared by Joergen.

Birgitte’s comment;
We did it!!

Yesterday Christina and I declared a 421 km task with 3 turnpoints. First leg was 161 km to the west. 2nd leg was back to Tocumwal. 3rd leg was 50 km to Jerilderie and then back to Toc

First leg gave us 2 Danish Female record in Two seater glider. The longest free distance straight out and the longest declared distance straight out

When we returned to Tocumwal, we got further 3 records:
Longest out and return, free distance and the longest declared out and return distance
AND the fastest 300 km out and return task with 103 km/h

Continuing to and returning from Jerilderie gave us 2 more records:
The longest free distance, 3 waypoints and the longest declared distance, 3 waypoints

Yes, it WAS good weather for soaring yesterday but you also have to be prepared. This task I made in the Danish summer so I was ready when we got the conditions.

It was 40 degrees on the ground before takeoff and we were struggling in the heat for almost one hour before coming up in cooler conditions. It was hard work but it was worth it  We are so happy


With “icon”  Ingo Renner and Birgitte’s partner Joergen Thomsen, both very proud on the girls!!
as shared by Birgitte Orskov.

  • D2F A: Free distance, straight line, 161 km
  • D2F B: Free distance, out and home, 322 km
  • D2F D: Free distance, 3 turning points, 421 km
  • D2F E: Target flight, straight line, 161 km
  • D2F F: Target flight, out and home, 322 km
  • D2F H: Target flight, 3 turning points, 421 km
  • D2F Q: Speed, 300km out and home. 103 km / h


—–The Nationals in Argentina flown at Chaves;
36 Pilots in the combined standard class and 32 in the combined 15m./open class. In both classes one “Goldenzweig”.
The weather was not really flash as most tasks were 2, 2.30 or 3 hour AAT’s in both classes. Still day’s with sometimes ONE finisher. In the end [ last day at the 26 th, ] they will have enough days to see who is the best pilot in each class.
At this stage after 8 days they flew 5/6 days and it is still to close to call future winners as the differences in st class are small. Between 3.532 and 3.693 points for the first 6 pilots.
In 15m/open it looks pretty good for Sebastian [ Riera ] with 4.016 points and runner up Damian [Goldenzweig] with 3.831 .

—-On January 20 the fabulous flying  season in Namibia was over .Time for packing containers. Namibia had out standing weather!!
On the OLC the difference is visible;
160 pilots made from Bitterwasser  1056 flights, making a total of 883.255,82 !!!!! In 2016/17 that was 118 pilots with 781 flights and a total of 625.356,35 .

81 pilots made from Kiripotib 458 flights and a total of 318.853,00 km. In the last season it was 78 pilots, with 395 flights and 275.423,88 flights.

53 pilots made from Pokweni 466 flights and still 377.274,59 km. During the last season 58 pilots made 448 flights and 344.633,04 km.

58 Pilots visited Veronica  with 328 flights and 255.538,89 km. Last time; 45 pilots with 231 flights and 184.608,56 km.
A few flights still might be added!!

Great picture;” In January rain season sets in. Farmers in Namibia are looking forward to it. So they can feed their animals. 
For glider pilots it means you have more difficult tasks. Often you have to fly a detour to avoid that rain in your way. But still it is fun. And it just looks great
As shared by Bitterwasser Lodge and Flying Centre.

Cu next week.

Cheers Ritz,…very sad week, but life goes on and sometimes the weather helps; already at 8 AM 12.2 dgr. C the warmest January 24 ever and we expect 14!!!!!!!!!!!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.