... and it did yesterday. This was the biggest struggle you can think of mixed with fear of gliders performing ridiculously dangerous maneuvers. I just have to mention it because it was insane at some stages. There were 40 gliders (all classes) in gaggles spread over maybe 200 m altitude (between 300 m and 500 m AGL) and some ladies had the wonderful idea to join thermals like that, at the same altitude, pulling up like crazy. How stupid is that? Flarms were yelling RED all the time and I had some gliders at my 6 o'clock less than 5 meters. It was scary but on the other hand you had to stay with them to survive ...
Weather was worse than marginal. Very strong winds and convection (0.5 - 1 kts) up to some 1800 ft AGL when they launched us. It then got "higher" to 2500 ft AGL. The whole flight was like this. Absolutely crazy.
|myself (photo by organizers)|
|Asia (photo by organizers)|
Coming back home was the hardest part especiall for club class gliders. There was 15 kts headwind and almost all of tem landed out - some managed to cross the finish line before doing so. We were lucky to have the high performance gliders that don't care much about wind and made it back over the finish and to the runway.
Something just had to happen and we were extremely lucky that there was no mid-air yesterday. We ended up with one hard landing in a field short of the runway. Glider seems to be OK but the pilot was taken to the hospital for observation over night and released this morning. Another glider ended up 15 meters above ground hanging in the trees. It took them hours to free out the pilot, who was taken to the hospital as well and will be released this afternoon. Glider is still hanging in the trees ... Sometimes I just cannot understand the amount of risks taken for something that it supposed to be fun. In my opinion we shouldn't have been flying yesterday but I'm not the one to decide.
Today is the last day. The organizers seem to want to be more cautious about the conditions. The deal is: if we're not gonna get 3000 ft AGL at 2 pm we will not fly. Tasks are ready, so are we. We will see what happens.
Here are few pics taken by Ogonek: