Just back from the Welsh Open Eurotour 2007. This an event I have been visiting regularly since 1999 I believe. Last year I did not attend because the Viking Race was so close.
This time I had Bjørn Tore Hagen with me. We flew in to London and Alex McMeekin picked us up and we drove straight to Wales and the Bwlch (yes, try to pronounce that if you can!)
This year it was a 3 day event and 50 competitors showed up. Lots of withdrawals but who cares, the size of 50 pilots is very good.
Friday started out with low clouds and rain and we waited for 3 hours before we managed to get in 1 round at Mickeys slope before the wind turned so much that we could fly anymore.
Next day the forecast was light winds and we could fly on "Back of the Wrecker". This is a fairly good slope and with 5-7 m/s wind we did 4 rounds. I got lucky and pulled out a 37 second flight in round 5. I did not have any bad air so I had fairly good times in all my rounds so far and was the overnight leader. BTH and Alex also did well with 7th. and 4th. place before the last day.
Long before we started the comp. we formed the TGT team and we were all agreeing that this year we should try to make the podium in the team event. This team effort made us all work for the team and trying to avoid mistakes as they would effect not only yourself but also the team. Before the last day we were doing well and was in the lead.
The last the the forecast was good but with much higher wind from the south west. So again back to Mickeys and again waiting for the clouds to lift. Finally it did and we started in 15-20m/s wind. Many people set PB's and fastest time came from Jarda (CZ) flying his Ascot to perfection with a 32,7 second round.
Unfortunately the wind increased and the organizer could nothing else than to stop the flying until the wind came down under the max allowed wind speed of 25m/s. That did not happened so we only got this single round on Sunday. I stayed in the top, Alex moved to 3rd place and BT moved down to 9th place after some bad air in the last round. But the team The Gnome Team stayed in top and won the team competition with a good margin.
Many thanks to the Welsh organizers who did another good event. I hope we all learned a few things when it comes to setting up the safety area. I also hope that the Viking Race committee soon can take a look on the current rules and perhaps make some suggestions in the future rules so organizers can have a manual on how to do it.
Look here for my pictures (not so good as there was something wrong with the camera)
For results take a look at Kevin's web page: http://www.knewt.com/ Also check out RC-Soar's http://www.rc-soar.com/gallery/2007/wo/index.php
10. september 2007
This weekend our club, Forus RC Klubb hosted the Norwegian Championship F3F 2007. 15 pilots entered and we had a pretty strong field of competitors. The weather forecast was rather poor but luckily for us it turned out almost perfect as we got good strong wind from northwest straight into our best slope for F3F. Thanks to Sigve Hodne for letting us using his fields.
We flew 14 rounds on Saturday. Windspeed was from 12-18m/s. Best time of the day was 40.16 seconds set by Bjorn Tore Hagen with Crossfire. Leader of the first day was Rolf Inge Waaga (RaceM F3F) only 19 points ahead of me (RaceM Ultimate, Aris, Ceres) with BTH in third place only 40-50 points behind.
Next day we had 7-9m/s dropping all the day so we managed only 4 rounds. Rolf Inge was still going strong and won 3 of these rounds and earning his first ever Championship! It was well a deserved victory as he made no mistakes and flew very close and short both days for 18 rounds.
I kept my 2nd place and so did Bjorn Tore. In fact the 4 rounds on Sunday did not change any positions. Results and pictures can be found here: http://www.f3x.no/
Also I must thank Jan Eric Klausen and Sigurd Torp for helping us organizing the event.
The slope on Hodne is quite difficult to master and some of the "new" pilots to this slope needs more time to adapt than the locals. The main reason for this is the stone fence on top of the slope + the narrow lift band. We prefer to use the slope mostly because it is very easy to host comps there due to very easy access, car parking and landing facilities. Also there is no doubt that this slope is one of the most equal slopes I have ever been to.