28 April 2019

Last task: 101km assigned area task!

I was happy to see that we finally got to do a task that the sailplane pilots have done for a while - assigned area tasks! This is a type of task with a huge radius that leaves possibilities into all directions open, so the flight course is not a given, and the pilots have to be more creative.
With a turnpoint of 400m at "center", we were sent out to a 15km radius around "center" as exit, then back again for a 400m radius.
Conditions were blue today, and top of lift at 1300m most of the day, only later it got us higher a few times. We had about 20km/h ESE wind, so for me, it was quite a challenge to fight a headwind on the last two legs. Thankfully my timing today was good and I managed to stay with top guys like Jonny and Zippy for most of the course. Ok, Jonny beat me by 4 minutes into goal, but he totally deserves the day win, going out and finding thermals for the rest of us all day! I managed to outclimb the whole pack in most thermals on my little RX 3Pro today (my wing load is way smaller than theirs), but on glide, I usually have no chance and fall back. It was great to see that I could arrive quite high at the next climb that the guys found. It hurts that I can´t help them finding it and just "pimp" off them, but at least I can help them to find the best climb in the lift that they found!
On the last 8km to goal, we must have hit a convergence. I simply could not pull the height gain away and arrived an embarrassing 500m over goal, which I didn´t manage to loose for another 40 minutes. Thankfully our goal radius time counts, not our landing time!
Jonny Durand won the day ahead of Zac Majors and Pedro Garcia. I came in 8th and got a personal record of 945 points in an open international competition! So happy! Nene Rotor won the overall competition, with Pedro in 2nd and Zac in 3rd. I was stoked to finish 12th overall despite having had one complete zero day because I had to go to a clinic to look after that spider bite on my back that totally wiped me out. I still didn´t feel like 100% up to the very end of the comp, but I can´t complain about the result!
Quest and Wilotree park showed how prepared they are for next years World Championships in Class 1 female, Class 2, Class 5 and Sports Class. Big big thanks to Patrick for having brought me over to these amazing, exhausting, but most of all fun competitions - best training for the women´s worlds ever! Also big big hail to all the amazing tug pilots who dropped us in perfect thermals, specially to Bobby and Rhett, to our volunteers who worked in the stinking hot field the whole day, pulling trolleys around and us up to launch, making sure that everything works right, thanks to the launch and safety directors, as well as to our nurse on site. Great thanks to the new owners of Wilotree Park - you are doing a great job renovating the whole place to cater for us pilots, we really appreciate all your hard work! And last, but not least, to the organizers/directors Belinda and Davis - you guys are amazing, you really rock the hang gliding world!

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