Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Horsham Week 2014

Horsham week Part 1.

The three pilots and trusty crew set off for Waikerie in the afternoon of Thursday 30th January 2014. We derigged the gliders and secured the Discus in the open trailer, not much fun in 40 degree heat. We were looking forward to the heat continuing over the next week so that we would have some good flying. Setting off early for the 5+ hour drive to Horsham we stopped off at bordertown for the worst cup of coffee, what a disappointment. Rigging went well having to help out a couple of pilots from Ballarat – so we rigged 5 gliders and still made the pool at our accommodation around 4pm EDT.

Day 1. Early start around 7am and out to the aerodrome to clean, tape up and set up the  gliders. Briefing was set for 11am and first launch was to be at 2pm so the task was reasonably short. 2:30 AAT with start gate opening for Standard Class at 15:30. Pushed through the start gate 5 minutes later and headed for the Q we could see up North. Good day with nice round up to 10 Knot thermals and climbs under the clouds above 10,000 ft. Scoring on OLC (it now appears to be the norm)

Day 2. Briefing was set for 10am then changed to 10:30, what did this mean? Comp organisers needed to be sure the Trough line would not come through and the temps remained in the above 40 degree mark. At launch and for the first hour thermals were only going to about 6,000 ft. Just before the start I managed 7500 ft and had an LX8000 computer failure. The screen went blank but the audio on the vario continued to work. I needed to reboot the logger and then lost some of my trace and did not get a good start. But fortunately as it turns out should a logger shut down in flight (say when changing over to a second set of batteries the rules allow 5 minutes to re-establish logging and this meant I at least had a legal start, even though I had gone back to start again this second start was missing. The LX now showed that I was at 653ft so had no accurate final glide or altitude information. Half way along the first leg the Oudie (my back up logger) came up with a fatal error message and after reboot. I had no final glide info or times on this instrument so I guess I need a third logger for each flight.   The day was impressive have a look at Craigs results winning the day at 150.4 kph.

Day 3 Cancelled prior 10:30am briefing; so after the presentations it was a day at rest and a few more dips in the pool. It is possible that the next attempt at day 3 will not come to much as a front moving through today will dampen thermal activity for the next day at least.

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