Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Contest - Saturday. (updated)

A six o'clock start today as we need to be up to the flying site early. Harry had all the gear loaded for his CD duties so they led the way up.

29 competitors arrived to battle it out for National honors and the beginning of the Team Trials. The grounds were awash from the previous nights rain which unlike BC, stays on top of the clay and awaits evaporation. There were numerous wet patches all over the field and impound that everyone walked around, over, or through. Wet feet was the order of the day but at least we know it's clear skies for the rest of the contest. By Monday it should be dry :-)

CD Harry Ells gave the pilots the lowdown on the event and reviewed some of the rules for judging. The hot topic was the pause after the 2/4 in the first manouver in P-09.

Mark was first up in FAI and put in a solid round. The 11 other FAI pilots followed suite as the other flight line catered to the remaining classes. Jeff Stevens kept the flight lines & judging order going.

The pilots rotated through judging assignments and the rounds went by pretty smoothly. Paul Hepworth had his plane go into failsafe on the trim pass but managed to get it back down ok. He was unable to sort out the problem so the plane was grounded.

Chad easily outdistanced the rest of us with solid rounds in FAI. As the winds were a blow in from the North West several people struggled to maintain distance. Ivan returned to the skies as well and it was a pleasure to watch those great stall turns he does. (I always remembered those from the 2000 Nats in Vancouver, BC) He looked like he was enjoying himself.

Sportsman flyer Ethan Chariandy, whom just passed his wings test, was doing very well from what I observed. (He got a bullet in round 1!) Watching his dad call for him reminded me a little of my past flying with my own son. Ah... memories. Phil Stang leads right now going into round 4.

Scott McNaught and Bert Armstrong have a real battle going in Intermediate with only 7 points separating them after 3 rounds. It's going to be another tight race.

Advanced has Bev Cowell out front but there will be pressure applied by both Jim Eichenberg and Ross Erwin on Sunday.

In Masters we have a great battle between Steve Miller and Ken Velez going. It will start to shake out after the rounds get dropped but Ken is coming on strong after having major TX problems. Seems his TX fell over while being charged in the vehicle en route. The charge plug broke and a short was created within his TX. Suffice to say the TX was "unserviceable" after the melt down period. He used his backup TX (for foamies) and trimmed during the first flight this morning. Tim Pascoe was having wheel issues as his plane shed them on landing.... too wet to glue them on. (Harry has a fix for him though)

We managed to almost complete 4 rounds with the Sportsman fliers to finish up in the morning.

Scores after 3 rounds (4th not completed yet.)





FAI P-09

Once the fourth round is posted things will change again. Mark should move up as he had a solid 4th round... Xavier had a great 4th round going too but had snap switch issues (seen that movie myself!) It will be a tight race going into Sunday. As Chad said... it ain't over till the large lady sings... hang on tight!

I have struggled with my own flying today and my scores reflect that. Consistency and execution have been my nemesis this season and it has become quite frustrating frankly. I'll give it my best shot tomorrow and try and improve my flights. In the meantime, Mark is in the hunt for a team spot so I'll do my best to help push him through.

After the flying ended we packed up and headed to the Peterbourgh Boston Pizza for dinner.

I have been going for 16 hours now and I am completely beat. Type later.

New Pictures posted.