31 Oktober 2014

Day 7: 70km around 2 tp, goal Rathdowney

Incredible - we already flew 7 days out of 7, and might get into the air again today! I recall one Canungra comp with as many tasks, but that is a while ago.
The forecast was for northerly winds, with sea breeze kicking in pretty early. We went to Tambo launch and hoped to get off. Turned out that about 12 pilots could not get off because at some stage, the wind kept coming over the back. The lucky other pilots enjoyed Hillview east and Palen Creek as turnpoints again. We flew mainly in the blue, only very occasionally we saw some clouds on course.

I took the 2nd start gate and went along with the lead gaggle ahead of me. Just shortly before the last turnpoint, Adam Stevens, Trent Brown and I chose another tactic and got ahead of some of them. We had a good height at Palen Creek, and the Compeo said 200m above goal, but these number changed dramatically when the northerly suddenly kicked in, and out goal was to our north! We carefully tried to punch our way ahead, hoping that we would make the 2km goal radius. A hill was in my way to dive down to the goal paddock, and I saw Adam landing and then, when I approached, jumping up and down, pointing to the ground. He just showed me where the goal radius was, and I was stoked that I cleared it by about 5 meters and then touched down! That was the closest goal Ive ever made in my whole flying history :) Adam and I are both light pilots, so in these conditions it´s not easy for us to get anywhere.
Jonny Durand, Big Jon and Blinky had smoked ahead of us, with Jonny winning by a good margin, thus taking the overall lead of the competition and Blinky falling back on 2nd place. Jonny didn´t have a good start into this competition, and it´s amazing to see that he was able to catch up in the end - I don´t know how many times he has won his "home comp" before.
At the moment, I see low clouds and quite a strong northerly wind outside, let´s see if we get another task in today.
Big thanks to Zupy for the nice photos!

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