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Sunday, August 5, 2012

Uvalde Day 1

Well this isn't exactly Cherokee II related but I'm in Uvalde, TX this week for the World Championships. Matt & I arrived yesterday evening and we both had a great time watching the first day of competition. The gliders here are amazing and on top of that I've enjoyed just one days worth of visiting with new and old friends that I've seen so far.  I did get a chance to have a good visit with George Applebay, who built one Cherokee II, with Mickey Jensen, in Wichita back in the late 50's. I believe that one was N7616B. Of course George went on to bigger and better things, notably designing the Zuni 15 meter racing glider. He also built a modified Cherokee II with a 15 meter wingspan. He told me that it is now hanging in a school south of Albuquerque.

Also saw Ritz who is doing the contest reporting for Soaring Cafe as well as Bill Elliot (WE) who is flying his 18 meter JS-1 for the US Team. He hooked me up with a Soaring Cafe bucket hat to replace my old one which was nice of him. It started off the day nice and white but with all the blowing dust here by the end of the day it was a light tan. By the end of the week I'm sure it will be completely brown.

After the launch we met up with club-mate Steve Leonard who is crewing for his brother Dave (ZL) in the 15 meter class. With him we ended up back down by the US Team trailers which was a great vantage point to watch the action once gliders started coming back. The weather on course was tough with some rain build ups in the task area and the sea breeze all influencing to shut the day down early. This did not help the US Team any as 4 of the 6 pilots were scored as landouts. Ron Tabery (SS) was able to use his motor to still make it home but everyone else ended up at airports I believe. Dick Butler (DB) was aero towed home in the Concordia and we all were happy to help his crew get it tucked in for the night. What a glider!

Finishers were Bill Elliot and Dave Leonard. Dave said he spent about an hour trying to make it the last 10 miles to the finish. But, he finished!!

More tomorrow if I get time.

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