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Saturday, July 14, 2012

13.5 Meter Super Regionals Day 4

This morning we awoke to blue skies.  Since YYY had spent the night assembled we slept in a little and enjoyed breakfast next door with Pete Vredenburg who flies 483 "Bulldog". Pete and I spent a lot of time flying Condor together this winter online and it has been really nice to meet him in person. We once again gridded at noon for an immediate launch. The task today was shortened to 2:15 with circles first east to Ennis (10 miles) then down to West (20 miles) and then Itasca (5 miles) and Maypearl (2 miles) and back to TSA. I think we all were happy to see that the wind was lighter than any of the previous days once we got going. YYY was at the back of the grid today so that was nice.

I had trouble finding any truly good lift in the start circle, doing some gaggling with several 1-26's, PW-5, and with local Tim McAllister in EY. I still wasn't able to get much above 4000 but the gate was open so I worked my way East. Right at the edge of the circle I think I finally got my first climb better than 2 knots and headed out to the north of Waxahachie.  I went to the Northwest edge of the first circle, as close as I wanted to get to the Class B and then turned downwind for the 2nd circle. The lift, and speed, was increasing although I had one real low point as I passed south of Waxahachie.  I dug out though and found a good 6 knot thermal up a little higher that helped make up for the weak lift I had to take down low.  After that I managed to generally stay above 3500 and usually 4000. Max altitudes were around 5500.

I ran into the 2nd circle until I was south of Hillsboro. The Oudie was figuring me 5 minutes over time and I had never been able to make up time into the wind all week and didn't expect to this time either. Of course as I started back I kept encountering stronger lift than expected and the time started going away.  I maxed out my distance in the Itasca circle and was back to about even. Then I managed to find a line of lift which allowed me to run for 13.6 miles straight into the wind at 69:1!!  Then a quick thermal and I had final glide and was definitely going to be under time, even with going to the back of the Maypearl circle. Oh well nothing I can do about it so I bombed away at 70-80 mph with about a 15:1 angle required to make the finish at 500 ft. I got a little worried for a few seconds on the way from Maypearl but caught a patch of lift and was back above glideslope.

I heard Jim Lamb finish in JL and could see another 1-26 out in front of me which I was pretty sure was Daniel Sazhin in 428. There was at least a K-21 in or near the pattern and perhaps another. It was difficult to hear the radio clearly with all the noise in the pattern. Anyway I heard one of the gliders on downwind comment that they had the glider on final in sight. I replied that there were 3 gliders on final as it appeared to me that the 1-26 was landing straight in and so was I. Jim was on short final. About that time the 1-26 stopped moving! Daniel had landed in the field just short of the airport! Heartbreak! I lined up to land as a 1-26 turned base and we ended up landing side by side while an ASK-21 landed behind us.  Exciting times at the airport.

Daniel had a blazing fast flight and did at least get a good finish for the 1-26 Championships, which has no minimum finish height. Later we heard Glenn in 508 call 4 miles and he coasted home for his 2nd finish of the contest. Milt Moos (578) and Len  Root (215 Team) were the only other landouts.

Our Scorer Terry was the sniffer today and he ended up landing out in his ASW-27B so he was late getting back to the clubhouse. He did get several of us finishers files but the scoresheet was still a mess when I left for supper, so we'll just have to watch the website or wait until Monday to know how our flights compare.

Tomorrow will be a rest day, our only plans at the moment are to sleep in. YYY is tucked away in its trailer and ready to get back to racing on Monday!


  1. Pete flies 483 ;) Thanks for the awesome blog, Tony

    1. Fixed! Hard to keep all these 1-26's straight!! :D