Friday, 2 March 2007

Day 6 Task 2 Friday 3 Mar.
After three days of rain it was a relief to be greeted with a clear blue dawn. The ground was very damp and when some Cu’s did start to pop, the base was very low, and the development was scraggly and weak looking.
(Photo by Brett Hardin “Behind launch” - click on photo for a larger version)
A 60.7Km elapsed time race to goal with three start gates (14:15, 14:45, & 15:15), via three turn points was called. Launch was open at 13:30 but conditions were still very fickle and the wind techs had difficulties staying up.
A few brave souls took off (including Thomas) but the thermals were very weak and broken. They found themselves at the bottom of the hill shortly after. No one else was so keen to take to the sky for quite some time. Thomas was back up ready to launch before the next pilots launched.
Eventually a few cycles started to come up the face of the east launch. Two wings were seen starting to climb of the North launch and pilots started to take to the skies. It quickly became congested in front of launch and launch was suspended for a short time. The gaggles slow started to climb out and launch was reopened. By the time we reached cloud base the last start time had passed and we were straight on cause, the first turn point, Tarpoly, was 14.4km to the north along the Borah ridge. Then back 29km south past Mt Baldwin to some large chicken sheds. The last turn point was 6km East of Manilla.
By the time we reached this point conditions had started to weaken again. The climbs has slowed to around 0.5m/s. We had to change down a gear and take every thing available. We could no longer get above 1100m now and many snuck into the last turn point. At this stage there were gliders littering the ground beneath everywhere you looked. I left with four others and made in with only five metres over the line the others were not as lucky! Harmo was not too far behind but had to go on final glide with goal closing at 18.30pm, she didn’t have the time to top up to make it in, she and 6 others landed within the 1km mark from goal, and narrowly avoided power lines that were difficult to see in the low setting sun!! Thomas landed at the same time as Harmo 2.8km from goal.
Overall a wickedly slow and demanding day. We are shattered!!!

60km around Manilla, STARTG, TARPOLY, CHICKSTH, NAMOIPK, MANILLAE (caravan park goal) with about 35 in goal.

1 comment:

Dorie said...

Keep up the good work.