Wednesday, November 17, 2010

PRE WORLDS Information and requests

Most know that the pre worlds are coming to Uvalde during Aug. 2011. When our US Team went to Europe this last summer, we had folks step up to help us out with cars and gliders. Also, we had folks who stepped forward to help move gliders and also crew. All the US Team members were and are extremely grateful for this help.

Just as we needed help, our European friends are coming over and are requesting our help.

Its now our time.

Please contact Linda Murray if your interested in loaning or renting your glider. It need not be current generation. Also, if you can come forward with a car that has a hitch or are willing to help out (if only for a few days) in crewing, please contact her.

Red Wright many years ago asked us to give up a lunch to help out the US Team with needed funds. The response was overwhelming. I can never fill his shoes, but I do know many of you. Now with our fewer numbers, we need ALL of you to get the word out that cars and gliders are needed not only for the pre worlds, but the Worlds in 2012. Not including the Juniors, we had 12 US Team pilots go to Europe this last summer. In Szeged, Hungary we had over 150 pilots and their were 6 of us. Shortly, that entire flock is heading over here.

Whats needed most are gliders for the pre Worlds. Older generation ships are fine, as the pilots just want to learn and fly the Uvalde sky's. So, please come forward and contact Linda.

If you have any questions please contact me.

Thank you.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ely report mid-Aug 2010

Arrived in Ely on Saturday, Aug. 14th. Got in around 3 pm and the sky was exploding with CU bases well over 18 thousand. Had to do an annual inspection on the ASG 29. As it was to late to fly, Sunday became the first fly day with the next week being really great for this time of year.
Have been keeping the daily flights to around 5 hrs. and still could have gotten in maybe 7 hrs each day. OLC flights showed maybe 650 k average with thermals being 5.7 kts (have had climbs in excess of 10 kts). Had several days with long cloud streets and flew them around 15 thousand plus.
BUT what I want to share is no one is here except Lee and 25H, his ASH 25. We have the skies to ourselves and maybe we aren't getting 1000 k flights, but for 5 hours are having a great time and am covering some distance. We are watching the weather and are hoping for another warm spell to come thru allowing several more good flights.
Today, Saturday, Aug. 20th and tomorrow we have high winds, so am waiting to see what Monday and the rest of the week will bring. Sometimes early Sept. will bring another warm period and hopefully we can get in some 800 k plus flights.
So, to sum it up, the flying has been good, no crowds to speak of and you might want to think about a late summer vacation for some good soaring times in the Great Basin.

Monday, June 21, 2010

18 Meter Nationals USA 2010

We have a daily task advisor and weather meeting at 9:30 am. Today, Monday, it was decided that the grass runway could accept the weight of our watered 18 Meter class and be launched safely. The runway has been really soft from all the rain, so up till today, its been a no water contest.
I am briefing the weather, and Ray Galloway sends me his reports and daily picture of what he thinks will be going on. Also, our task advisers are extremely talented, with weather knowledge. The top 5 had to weight if they had water on board. I put on a half load, 20 gallons, so had to weight after the pilots meeting.What we saw on the different soaring software compared to what we were watching on radar loops, caused, well, maybe best to say, the pilots meeting was called till 11:15 am. What we got, was what we had been watching, marching at us.Everyone got back in the box as the day was cancelled. Of course, I got weighted. The guys running the scales were happy someone finally showed up, weighed me, and yep, it was little over 3,000 pounds. Just think, only half a load of water. End joke. Scales reset. Now 1114 lbs.Got back to the trailer, had help, now into box.
Sky then not only got very dark, BUT had green patches where this monster was coming from. Wind came, then thunder, lighting and heavy rain. Now several hours later, still raining. Standing water everywhere. Several days ago a motor home had to be towed out as it had sank into the axes. Mine is down to the rims from just sitting where I am at
What we have been racing in is very weak lift. Our climbs, most of the time are 1.0 to 2.0 kts. Last 2 race days less than 2500 agl and the tasking has been fair at 3 hrs task time..Yes, several days ago, day 3, we had 12 land outs. Yesterday 8 landouts. The road home from the last turn took its toll. That day we also had several land outs which didn't even make min. distance. Of course on this day one person thought the task was under called, gave heck to the advisers and me, the weather guy. Then flew right over me enroute to a landout and I had a 2 knoter. Yep, landed out at the same place, with the same advisor, he gave heck to earlier. As he walked by the advisor, the advisor then asked if they over called the task. Not a peep was heared.
Yesterday, it was a long and hot day in the cockpit. With 8 land outs, you just couldn't miss a small thermal, which were around 1.5 kts. Yes, I said this has been a weak contest and even some our best guys are working very hard to get around.
KM did a great job of flying yesterday. Ken is a weak weather guy and was smiles from ear to ear with his daily win. The CD, Linda Murray. is going a great job, she has not only managed well, but called fair tasks and has used her advisers, testing every ones skill.
Our dinners and the US Team dinner were great and kudoos to all for their time and effort. Since I am the weather guy, I need to say "thanks" to Ray, as when we read his thoughts on what our day will bring, everybody listens and Ray, everyone says "thanks".
So, to sum up what has been going on. Weak lift, less than 3,500 agl most of the time. Last 2 days almost blue, ya, 2500 agl and max LD. You touch maybe 60 kts. and like wow, the cars don't pass you as fast............

Monday, May 17, 2010

Region 9S El Tiro, AZ. Several short stories.

Above is Alex and his father, Sean Franke. Read below to find out more.
Folks, if you ever get the chance, stop by and fly with this group. The soaring was great and even what was better were the folks from the club and the young folks who helped put on the contest. They have a very modest $30 guest fee for private owners and you need to show them your insurance before you get a tow. El Tiro is an old Stearman training base and has many runways.

The surrounding areas vary from flatland soaring conditions to mountain flying. Varied conditions can test your soaring skills. Lift can run as high as 6-8 kts on the average with lift to 17,000 ft. plus. See the SSA web page for Region 9S contest with tasks called and winning speeds. Below link is great video from Bruno who came down from UT. for a ride with US Soaring Team member Garrett Willat

During the Region 9S contest I would like to share with you the folks who came forward and really helped the US Soaring Team raise funds for the World Soaring Championships this summer. The US Team held a beer, pizza and dessert feast on Tuesday evening, May 11. John Seaborn, Gary Ittner and Garrett Willat all gave presentations on different subjects about the past Worlds. Many question were asked and a good time by all was experienced.

Wednesday morning, contest pilot Bob von Helens, came forward at the pilots meeting and offered to match up to $1000 in donations from the pilot group to the US Soaring Team fund. Thursday morning came and we had only one donation. This is where contest manager Micki Minner came in. She approached me and had an idea. See, since we didn't fly on Tuesday, she was going to refund the daily tow fee to the pilots, but what she did instead was talk to the pilot group and see if they would use those tow fees as an donation to the US SoaringTeam fund instead. Well, it appears close to 30 pilots made that donation and what a great surprise. Many thanks to all that did. Micki, thank you and Charlie "lite" for your time in helping the US Soaring Team raise needed funds.

The Tucson Soaring Club also came forward and really helped us with the beer and food feast on Tuesday night. Many thanks again to all of them. It wouldn't of happened if the club members didn't step forward. El Tiro is along way from the food stores but Tony Smolder and his trusted set of helpers stepped up to the plate for us and really helped out. Thanks TS 1. Mike, the towpilot, chef, cook and all around great guy came forth with a big effort in helping out. Many kudoos, Mike. Many kudoos to everyone at El Tiro.

Now, the final story is about a young boy. See, his father is on the World Team, Sean Franke. His son, Alex, whos 10, came forward. He helped his father crew, he helped on the line and also one other place. On Thursday morning we had only 4 Clear Nav raffle tickets sold. Well, Alex took over the sales, and by the end of the contest on Saturday, we now had 34 Clear Nav raffle tickets sold. Yep, all in cash and not one dollar lost!!! His award winning smile and smooth sales approach won everyones heart and the great Region 9 contest pilots one more time stepped in to help.

Even if we had not raised any funds, we still would of claimed success. In having young folks at our contests and having them help out and be apart of our sport is the best thing that could ever happen. See, the late Charlie Spratt, still has his golf cart with kids smiling and ridng around the airport. This is a good thing, a very good thing.

Thanks again to all who came out and helped, raced and was apart of the Region 9S contest.

Friday, January 15, 2010

US Team raffle news & stuff.........

THIS MIGHT BE THE NEW US TEAM LOGO...........................

Clear Nav raffle tickets should be $25.00 each. Drawing, at this time, will be mid-Sept at New Castle, VA. Winner need not be present. These Clear Nav raffle tickets will be available to purchase @ the US Team booth @ the SSA convention and an announcement will be made shortly where and when they can be purchased elsewhere. At the SSA convention, the US Team might have silent auctions to be held for various gifts. The silent bid allows you to bid on an item which then will go to the highest silent bidder. Yes ladies, jewelry, is also in the planning stages.
as of Jan. 11, 2010.
Bob Drew (10 copies of the newly remastered Sun Ship Game),
Chris Woods ( 4 copies of The Gray Eagles),
Craggy Aero (4 logger calibrations),
Cumulus Soaring, Paul Remde (3 books),
Eastern Sailplane, John Murray (Canopy Cover, Canopy Cleaning Kit),
Jonker Sailplanes, Leo Benetti-Lonhini (JS1 Shirts),
Knauff and Grove, Tom Knauff (4 copies of 2010 edition of "The Glider Flying Handbook"),
M&H Soaring, both Heinz and Monty (Racing Calenders),
NK, Richard Kellerman, (ClearNav),
Lee Kuhlke (desktop StrePla and a Spot-2),
Noelle and Williams Soaring Center (refurbished Sage Vario),
Wings & Wheels, Tim Mara (1) flyWithCE Flight recorder (2)flyWithCE Navigator software license for PDA,
Sky Sailing (silk screening with the US logo),
GoVino (donating 4-6boxes (of 72) wine glasses. 1 box will be grouped in 4, 18 4 packs for the convention. The others will go to various contests for the US Team wine and cheese taste.
Silver Parachute Sales (1 repack plus re-shipping back to owner in the US).
SEVERAL VENDORS maybe missing, this post will be updated as new information is received.
At the up coming Seniors, you will be able to review and purchase clothing items, Clear Nav raffle tickets and hopefully other goodies.
Region 5N Perry, SC will have a cookout to raise US Team funds.
Also, at other contest sites, the US Team will be planning events. If you would like to help out, please do so by contacting any past or present US Team member. Or contact me, ALL funds raised go into the general US Team fund.
The US Air Force has been contacted about helping to get the gliders over to the World's. Word came today that this won't happen. Also, a major airline (one that I use to fly for) has just turned down the request for travel tickets, as they don't support sports teams. My personal view on this is fly United, Delta and American, now these are great airlines. If anyone you know, including yourself, can help out with frequent flyer miles, this would be welcome.
I know I am shaking the tin cup, but the estimated cost of one team member going to Szeged, Hungary is over $20,000.00. Our Team funds have never received any tarp funds and there are no Wall Street bonus's coming from any of the US Team Funds.
When we get some pictures of the clothing and other items, I will update that here.
My plan will be to ship my ASG 29 to Bremmerhaven, Germany early June. I then will fly over to Frankfurt, take a train ride, pick up the car, go to Bremmerhaven and then drive 950 miles to Szeged, Hungary.
I plan on flying in the Flatlands Cup, Szeged, Hungary from July 3, 2010 to July 14, 2010 and then pre practice, then the World's from July 20, 2010 thru Aug. 7, 2010. Drive back to Bremmerhaven, drop glider, take train, fly back to the States, get glider, go home and sleep. Then when I awake after my summer travels and racing of 2010, it shall be with a priceless smile....................

Sunday, January 10, 2010

For old and new racers & RAFFLE

EARLY ROUGH DRAFT.......................
Changes will be made.
Here's a link which will take you to Doug Jacobs post's on many different topics.

Also, you will see Andy Davis as you scroll down. Andy has written several articles which the new and old sailplane racer, which I believe, will benefit from.

Shortly, their will be a major announcement from the US Soaring Team, which pertains to a raffle. Tickets are being printed now and the top prize will be a Clear Nav. Also, their are many other prizes which will be won in the raffle. All the past and present US Team members want to say "Mahalo" to all the sponsors who have made prizes available for the raffle.

At the SSA convention, the US Team will be manning a booth, which will have a big screen TV, playing dvd's and the US Team member's manning the booth will do their best to answer any of your questions. So stop on by if your going to the convention and say "Hi".
At the World's, in both Prievidza and Szeged, Flarm's will be allowed. In Szeged, Hungary, we may have up to 150 glider's in the air before start, circling around the airport. The current Flarm range is several miles and you can imagine what the display will be doing. I do believe that no electronic transmission on data will be allowed between Team mates, but this will be hard for the organizer's to enforce.

Their are also new proposed entry requirement's which concern the IGC ranking list. You might want to review this, as it will affect who gets into the World Championship's. Each country gets only one spot guaranteed per class, after that, it comes from the IGC ranking list. Its possible some country's may have only one entry in a class and other's may have more than 2 in a class.

A big "thanks" to XC Skies for their 12 subscribtions for the US Team members. I now have been using XC Skies for several years and do find it useful. The 3 day Thermal Index Analyzer is a very useful tool. Also, you can plot a route and what it gives is amazing information.