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John McCaw – aviation and agricultural photographer



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contents february–april 2018 features 12 Multi-Class Nationals 2018 21 Sowing the Seeds 22 8th Sailplane Grand Prix World Final – My Chile Adventure



Audi Enterprise and NZ Club Class Nationals Competition


Inaugural Springfield Soaring Contest – A Contest Director’s Perspective


Helicopter Heroes


A week of dream weather in Namibia


Master Class – Hugo, The Duo Discus & The Man From Hibiscus


Human Factors: Cardiovascular System


YSDC 17 – The best 10 days of the year!


How Old is Too Old to Glide?


Taranaki YSD Mini-camp

regulars 6 Log Book 58 A Question of Safety 59 GNZ Awards & Certificates 60 Gliding New Zealand Club News 66 Classified Advertising





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from the editor february–april 2018 Well, I think we can say, YouthGlide is working. Two YouthGlide members from different parts of the country, teamed up to fly the Nationals – and won! Congratulations and Well Done to Allie Thompson and Campbell McIver. You bloody beauties. For the last five years we’ve watched as Nick Oakley and Alex McCaw blasted their way through the trophies on offer at the South Island Regionals and the Nationals while also flying their hearts out at the Australian Joey Glide contests, two Junior Worlds and a full ‘grown up’ Worlds. They proved that our young people can do it, but Nick and Alex, along with their cohort of original YouthGliders were ‘gliding brats’. They were kids of glider pilots and had grown up in the sport. In a way they had a secret ingredient for success. They’d grown up evaluating weather conditions, had absorbed cross-country tactics and contest skills before they’d even actually learned to fly. Nick and Alex are both incredibly skilled pilots and they’ve trained and worked hard to increase their skills. They spent most of their teenage and young adult lives preparing for World level competition, giving up other sports and activities and pouring any hard-earned funds into their flying accounts. Their successes didn’t come easily. But the question, that Allie and Campbell have answered, is could young people, coming into gliding with no previous background also fly at the highest level. The answer is a resounding ‘Yes’. YouthGlide wasn’t entirely set up with the goal of reversing the greying trend of gliding, but it was definitely in the back of our minds. Primarily, those of us involved with young pilots, our own kids and their friends, saw that learning to fly and everything that went with it was enormously beneficial to these kids. They took on responsibility and gained a tremendous feeling of selfworth. We saw them apply themselves to their school work, grow in maturity and learn to interact well with adults. The friendships they gained with like minded kids their age was beautiful and obviously long lasting. YouthGlide was a great thing for kids and obviously should be something made available to more kids. But at the same time we knew, gliding in New Zealand desperately needed young blood coming through or it was going to die. The concept of YouthGlide was a hard one to sell at first. Many people saw it as putting a lot of resources into young people who were then going to bugger off as they got into university/ jobs/having families/other interests (or reach the age when GNZ and their clubs no longer subsidised their flying) with no reward for the efforts put into them. YouthGlide hasn’t been around quite



long enough to counter that argument, but I’d like to point out that quite a few of the original ‘gliding brats’, people I learnt to fly with at Auckland in the ‘80s, Vivienne Bryner, Simon Gault and David Johnson (son of Ann and Noel Johnson who was raised on an airfield while both parents went flying) are now private owners, contest pilots and very active in their clubs. People who love gliding come back. Many of the participants in our series on ‘YouthGlide, where are they now’, express their intention of coming back into the sport as soon as they are able. At a Youth Soaring Development Camp at Matamata a few years back, Abbey Delore and Enya McPherson set a New Zealand Woman’s speed record (that hasn’t yet been beaten). Allie (who is still only 15, but one of the most exciting young pilots I have seen – ever) and Campbell have proven that young people can not just learn to fly but learn cross-country and competition skills without having any background in gliding before they learned to fly. It is fabulous to see a new cohort of competition pilots shaking up the usual suspects. Of course, not every pilot wants to fly competitions and that’s fine. Over the Christmas holidays I had a fantastic cross-country

next issue



Cross-country flight with Jono Wardman

Conal Edwards soars his Arcus above Auckland's west coast cliffs. Photo Conal Edwards.

February–April 2018

Next Issue: Gordon Hookings, the story of gliding in New Zealand Central District contest

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flight with Jono Wardman, a YouthGlide member and instructor at our club. Jono is a very skilled cross-country pilot and he delights in sharing that knowledge with other people. He’s not keen on being an ab-initio instructor, but he’s amazing at crosscountry instructing. The three hours or so he spent with me in Omarama Gliding Club’s Duo, going south out of Omarama along the ridges and then back up to Mt Cook and beyond in thermals was inspirational. I would say Jono, and Allie and Campbell are worth every subsidised penny that has gone into their training. Long live YouthGlide. Let’s keep supporting our kids to bigger and better things. Stay safe Jill

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logbook february–april 2018

Contributions to Logbook are welcome from all of our readers within New Zealand and internationally. Email your news snippets to: Please put "logbook" in the subject line.

Upgrades to Perlan 2 aircraft During December 2017-February 2018 Greg Scates led a volunteer crew and achieved some spectacular changes. The new control sticks work perfectly with no slop in the controls. While the glider was upside down, it was a good time to inspect the trunnion for the wheel and get a slightly different tyre with better clearance and new brake pads. The Perlan 2 fuselage is built of carbon fibre which blocks radio waves; fibreglass does not block these transmissions so the antennas are primarily located in two spots. The wheel fairing is fibreglass so there are antennas protected but operable inside. The inner right eyeball window was removed and a printed electric heating grid window similar to the rear windshield of most cars has been installed. This should reduce the frost impact on visibility. New inner eyeballs and hatch transparencies were made. They are all unique one-of-a-kind windows.

Late February Issue Traditionally SoaringNZ produces an issue in February. The rationale is so that new people who have joined the sport over the summer receive a magazine in a timely fashion. This year however the timing of the Nationals tripped us up. While I had expected to receive stories from all the many events that have happened over the summer by our usual deadline date of mid-January, it seems that most people who were writing about them were still very busy making the most of the summer and/or competing in the Nationals themselves. We didn’t get most of our material in until mid-February. We hope you’ll agree though that the wait has been worth it.

Insulated battery boxes were made to incorporate upgraded batteries. This will give Perlan 2 more power for heating and longer flights in 2018. By moving the larger battery aft and keeping the 50 amp battery in the original spot the centre of gravity balance improved. The GPS antenna and the ELT antenna are now mounted directly atop the aft battery box. The science/equipment bay hatch is fibreglass so antennas will work and be protected inside. The exacting detail work for the new custom hatches is why the Perlan 2 was upside down.

Who is on Facebook? Don’t forget that you can now keep up with all of your gliding buddies and share news of your flights on Facebook. GNZ and Youth Glide NZ have a page and so do the following clubs: Soaring Northland Auckland Piako Tauranga Taupo Taranaki Wellington


February–April 2018

Nelson Lakes Canterbury GNZ also have a YouTube Channel where you can catch up on the popular videos from the Worlds in Australia and other great gliding stories.


While at this time of the year most European pilots are envying those of us in the south, Sebastian Kawa still made a flight in an ASH 25 of more than 800 km in Europe in December. It took weeks of diplomatic negotiations to receive permission to fly above the Gorgany Mountains in western Ukraine. After take-off at a small airfield in the Polish Bieszczady Mountains Sebastian and his co-pilot, Piotr Bobula, flew along the mountain range to the Romanian border. The last part of the flight was very dramatic, because of the strong snowstorms and wind speeds of 100 km/h forcing them to land in Arlamow on Polish territory close to the Ukrainian border achieving 802.9 km and 4th place in the OLC daily results compared to all the other worldwide flights, who were not flying in snowstorms and very cold temperatures.

February–April 2018


logbook february–april 2018 NOT ENOUGH Hours in the Day After he published his father’s book, ESCAPE The Best Sport Ever, Arthur Gatland had a lot of friends (pilots in particular) ask, “When are your own memoirs being published?” Ironically, his mother had asked him the same question for years, and even extracted a deathbed promise – so the book was written. The blurb reads: This is the absorbing story of a New Zealand pilot who flew RAF Harriers, Hunters and Hawks, followed by a long career with Air New Zealand as a pilot, instructor and manager of flight standards. He flew F27, B737, B767, B777 and B787, and is still working as a Flight Simulator Instructor on both B777 and B787. He was also a successful sportsman from his schooldays well into his 60s in fencing, basketball, gliding and windsurfing, becoming NZ National Champion in fencing and windsurfing, and competing in Commonwealth Games, Oceanic Champs, World Champs and World Master Games in three different sports, winning medals in all sports. He also flew over 30 glider aerobatic displays at air shows, held a NZ Gliding Record, and was CFI and then President of the Auckland Gliding Club for around 10 years. During the course of his activities, he saved 9 peoples’ lives – all described in the book. He was a Sports Administrator, and organised local, national and international events, and provided coaching in all four sports.

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February–April 2018

Not enough hours in the day is an apt description of his full life…so far… The book is 320 fascinating and often humorous pages supported by over 100 colour and 30 B+W photos. “Fascinating biography that reads like a Boy’s Own adventure novel from a true leader in the NZ aviation community.” (David Morgan, Chief Pilot, Air New Zealand)

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M O U N TA IN SOARING SCHOOL Learn-to-Fly Post Solo to QGP Mountain Soaring Guest instructors: Uli Schwenk Justin Wills


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February–April 2018



One-time glider pilot Rod Stuart received a special award at the National Hang Gliding Champs held 27 January to 3 Feb at Mt Murchison near Nelson. Rod was the only pilot to compete in both the 1st and the 40th Hang Gliding Nationals. Six

task flights were achieved (although Rod reports getting in 10 great flights). Tasks were distance to a goal flights with distances ranging from 48.1km to 111.9km on the final day.

L) Mark Patton, R) Rod Stuart


February–April 2018

Turkey named as the 2020 host country for the FAI World Air Games Scheduled for September 2020, the Games will take place in some of the most iconic locations in Turkey, with the event split between Ankara, Antalya, Eskisehir, Efes/Selcuk, Ölüdeniz/Fethiye and Pammukale/ Honaz.

It’s only in the event of a


that you really find out who has the best policy!

The spectacular Opening Ceremony will take place in Turkey’s cosmopolitan capital city Ankara, while the Closing Ceremony will be in the popular tourist destination of Antalya. Kürşat Atilgan, President of THK (Turkish FAI affiliate), said: “More than two billion people from around the world can reach the centrally located tourist destination of Turkey in under four hours flight, making it an excellent venue for the FAI World Air Games 2020. “We believe that holding the prestigious FAI World Air Games 2020 in Turkey will allow us to attract a younger generation of air sports fans, both within Turkey and worldwide.” The FAI World Air Games is the premier, international, multi-discipline air sports event conducted under FAI rules. It attracts the world’s top air sports athletes. FAI activities on the FAI World Air Games agenda include Aerobatics, Aeromodelling, Drone racing, Gliding, Indoor Skydiving, and Paragliding – to name just a few.


Contact your broker or phone Zandra and talk to the people who specialise in aviation insurance. “Kiwis providing Glider pilots with aviation insurance for over 30 years”

TELEPHONE 04 473 5593


Glider pilot, Administrator and Mathematician. (Born Napier 28 October 1920 – died Auckland 1 December 2017) When Professor Emeritus, Gordon Hookings passed away recently the New Zealand gliding fraternity lost one of its champions; not only in the air but also on the ground. Gordon was hugely influential in the early days of the sport in New Zealand. Gordon first flew solo in a glider on 18 March 1946 in the UK and achieved his PPL the same year. On returning to New Zealand in 1948 with 30 hours experience he was the most experienced pilot in the country. There were no gliders in New Zealand at that time. He joined the Auckland Gliding Club and the NZ Gliding Association, imported New Zealand’s first glider (in that order) and stayed an active pilot, administrator, and gliding enthusiast all his life. The story of Gordon’s life in gliding is the story of gliding in New Zealand. We will run Peter Layne's full obituary of Gordon Hookings in the following issue.

Taking dad for a ride - Rangi De Abaffy and family.

Contributions to Logbook are welcome from all of our readers within New Zealand and internationally. Email your news snippets to: Please put "logbook" in the subject line.

February–April 2018




What follows is a collection of stories from Matamata; yours truly was doing a few other things, so I didn’t get to interview a pilot from each task. It’s not about a daily flight analysis. My aim is to give a sense of some of the more challenging flights, a bit of insight into the decisions our pilots made and to acknowledge the presence of Matthew Scutter from Australia, Keith Essex from Omarama and Campbell and Allie from the new Millennium. I can also report that volunteering at a Nationals is hard (14 hour days in our case) and lasts a long time…in my day job, I get weekends! Thanks to everyone who assisted, and to those who shared with me, whether it was bar talk, knowledge, experience or able-bodied assistance with physical stuff.


February–April 2018

DAY ONE. OPEN CLASS. MATAMATA-POIHIPIMURUPARA-ATIAMURI-MATAMATA Nigel McPhee We only got 1 ½ knot climbs at the start and the thought of going all the way down to Taupo and Murupara was daunting so we sort of struggled along until we got to Arapuni. Lindsey headed towards a stand-alone cloud where he struggled to get away and I carried on South. Once I got to Mangakino, all of a sudden 1 ½ knots became 6 or 7 knots to 5000 feet and the day suddenly started looking quite different. It was a good ride, in company most of the way, down to the first turn point (Poihipi) then there was a reasonably lined up street going to Murupara. There was a quite good build up over the forest but it had rain in it before the turn point over quite a broad area. I went around the back of it. Tony and RT were tagging along behind. I got just enough height to keep going backwards, towards the Paeroa Range where there were reasonable climbs. I ran around the south of another patch of rain. It gave me a bit of an interesting glide to get onto the hills that marked the beginning of the Atiamuri basin, from that direction (SE). They're quite reasonable hills. I managed to get over the top, probably 1000 feet above the top of the hill, and there was a good climb. It was 4 to 4.5 knots and I

Dave Dennison from Piako Club admiring the JS3

Brett Hunter with his new JS3

didn't take it as high as I should. There was a bit of a shelf on track and I thought I might get another climb but I never did. I got to the turnpoint and thought "What do I do now?" so I turned around on track and ended up with a long skinny glide to the hills behind Kinleith; again, I was down to 1000 feet over the hills. I had an OK glide to Tokoroa airfield or the paddocks before it. There was another good climb, 5 knots I suppose, and that was pretty much it. I climbed there to 6,500 feet and set off on final glide home. It was great, a really interesting day.

Various pilots around the bar There were 2 big rain cells, around Te Awa Camp, lucky they weren't too big – one on the way in, one on the way out, they kind of sat there and drifted slowly... It was an interesting day, all the weather you could imagine. There were quite a few engine starts in our class.

Matthew Scutter (from Australia) There was this big line of cloud and I got up to it and I thought "Nothing's gonna stop me now!" and there was nothing, just zero. Often in Australia it's OK to deviate like 10%, but over here more like I had to go 90 degrees off course! To Keith Essex: It's great that you came up to fly here. One of

the good things here is that if we get poor weather, it is often westerly, and we can still get a task out on the ridge. Do you think it's useful coming up, from a learning point of view? His reply: Huge! Compared to Australia, this is very complicated...very useful for weak conditions; I was expecting it to be much worse! I thought yesterday was super fun.

TASK 2, OPEN, BENNEYDALE, ORAKEIKORAKO, TOKOROA, MATAMATA Getting to Benneydale was okay, but after that it was a bit of struggling in low thermals over the high ground...the kind of thing where the next thermal had to work or it was necessary to set off on a glide towards some landable terrain. Luckily, the thermals mostly worked. After that, it was all about picking the convergence lines, following the lake breeze around towards the second circle, and again following the higher ground with its little wisps to assist with final glide.

TASK 3, OPEN, WALTON-MARAMARUAWAINGARO-KAIHERE Steve Wallace Going north with a bunch of other gliders was pretty straightforward. It was a very good run from Kopuku out towards February–April 2018



Dave Moody, Keith Essex and Karen Morgan

the West Coast and the sea breeze. There was 5-6 knots. It got slow trying to get height to get over the hills, following Tim. We had this cunning plan to follow a good looking street out to the swamp, climb up under that and glide home...except the street was shit and we couldn't get up, so we went a little bit further south, found a climb up and that was final glide, it seemed a lot slower than the first bit. Tim agreed.

TASK 4, RIDGE RUN! TASK 5, RACING: WAHAROA-TIHOI-MATAMATA Glyn Jackson: A good day! The start was pretty average, but cloud base got higher with every climb. It suited my flying style of climbing to the top at each climb. It was softer than forecast, climbs were about 1 1/2 knots. On the way out it was reliable, every cloud told the truth, but on the way back, less so. On the way back, I just didn't know the landouts between Tokoroa and Matamata very well, so I used Tokoroa for a while. I got a bit low, so I retreated to the airfield, got a low save, read the plate so I knew which way the circuit went, got a slow climb, then home.

OPEN: MATAMATA CEMETERY-ROTOAIRAORAKEI-KORAKO-MATAMATA Keith Essex It was interesting watching the field split left and right after the start. In the end it didn't seem to matter, it seemed like we


February–April 2018

Keith and Deb Essex

all joined up back in the middle. In the initial part, it was very important to go slow, it's an oxymoron, "You need to go slow to go fast". But I think yesterday was one of those days when you had to be careful, go slow and make sure that you stay connected to the sky. By the time we got south, there was this fantastic convergence running until it blued out. (I looked at Skysight after the fact – the convergence was exactly where the forecast said it would be!) I went back into the last turnpoint as far as I dared. I had learned that I needed to get a climb before I crossed the Waikato River, thinking that you're going to get it on the other side which previously hadn't worked. I worked to stay connected to the sky on the way back. Again I was conservative on my final glide because I just don't trust it here, so I took a bunch of turns that in hindsight I didn't need, but I'm glad that I did because of the reduced stress.

TASK 6, OPEN: WALTON-MARAMARUA-TIRAU RACING: WALTON-KAIHERE-TIRAU TASK 7, RIDGE DAY Steve Wallace I figured I needed to get high because the wind wasn't that strong, maybe 16 knots, so spent some time climbing out in front of the high point. There was some cloud coming so I started as I wanted to make use of the height. All that good height kind of disappeared because it was raining on the ridge as I headed along to the elevator just before Te Aroha. With cloud behind Te Aroha I went round the front, across the Waihi Gap and then up


Pat Driessen, winner Open Class, Allie Thompson and Campbell McIver, winner Racing Class

Karen Morgan presents Pat Driessen's trophy

to Thames, trying to maintain height but not very successfully. I was around 1100 feet at Thames and went onto the low front slopes back towards Paeroa. I just slowly got lower, down to 1000-900-800-700 and then just short of Paeroa about 680 feet. I thought, "It's going to be a slow climb up the hill to the back slopes towards Paeroa," but I got a bit of lift and turned in it – it turned into 8.5 knots all the way to cloudbase; I think that was the thermal that won me the day. I spent the rest of the task dodging rain showers, flying with others in places. I got to cloud base a few times but spent other time quite low.


Campbell McIver and Karen Morgan

the way home, I was struggling to get enough height for final glide. I took a weak climb, but that was okay because I was still under the 2 hours 15 minutes for the task. RACING CLASS

1 2 3

Thompson & McIver Steven Care Steve Foreman

6,270 5,211 5,162


1 2 3

Pat Driessen Keith Essex Steve Wallace

7,797 7,618 7,196

Task was set with a long (20 km) start line, giving pilots the option of starting in the easterly wave, or thermals. Reported easterly at the Golf Ball was 27 knots, gusting 35, before the start, with easterly wave visible.

Pat Driessen We started in easterly wave. All of the first and second legs were in wave, and then on the third leg the wave petered out before I got to the swamp. There were some scrappy looking clouds over the swamp, but of course they didn't work. I got out around the turn and back to the same place that the GPS had marked over the swamp, got a weak climb there and drifted downwind to Morrinsville. From there it was onto the Cambridge Hills and a straightforward thermal flight around the final turn point. On

I thought, "It's going to be a slow climb up the hill to the back slopes towards Paeroa," but I got a bit of lift and turned in it – it turned into 8.5 knots all the way to cloudbase; I think that was the thermal that won me the day. Steve Wallace February–April 2018




After some basic MacCready theory (with examples), Matthew started discussions about the effect of ‘simplified’ (usually quadratic) smoothed polars used in many flight computers: Why don’t we cruise 130 knots on a 6-knot day? Matthew thinks that polars don’t actually look like the continuous curve. The way that the polar is represented in our computers, (quadratic with 2 coefficients) doesn’t actually express the shape of the polar correctly. So, when you plug in MacCready 6 on your computer and it tells you to fly 130 knots, it’s assuming that your polar continues along much flatter at high speed than it does in reality. Tim observes, “The one in the manual has a nice kink.” Matthew notes, “Some of them are honest about it, some less so. In my experience, there is quite a significant kink in the real polar, and you should know where that is for your glider. In my Discus 2, performance starts to fall off dramatically above 105 knots, but up to 105 knots it’s fairly flat. For most standard class gliders, it’s about the same. For the Discus 1 it was about 5 or 10 knots less. For the LS4 it’s another 5 knots less, for the ASG-29 it’s another 10 or 15 knots more. This sort of effect came about in the ASW-20 era, when aerofoil designers discovered they could poke this part of the curve up if they stole a little bit from that part of the curve. The designs before that, like Cirrus’ and ASW-20 did have a much smoother continuation of the polar curve.” So, if we decide we’re not going to fly faster than 105 knots, how does that affect our MacCready speed-to-fly? As this is hard to explain, Matthew has come up with what he calls ‘virtual MacCready’. He says, “When you’re cruising through lift, you need to fly at the MacCready setting for the lift you’re expecting, even if, when you’re cruising through sink, or through still air, you’re back to flying the speed limited by the kink in your polar. I typically plan on a MacCready of 4, so when I’m coming through lift I just don’t slow up, even though a MacCready 4 polar would be telling me to slow up to 60-70 knots. That’s because my effective MacCready is actually 6 or 7 or so, representing the climbs we get on a strong day in Australia. When we’re pulling up or pushing over, we pretend were flying at a much higher MacCready than is actually applicable. If I’m cruising along on a good 6 knot day, and


February–April 2018

…on a strong day, below 4 knots or so, you should never be slowing up. I’ve tested this in competitions quite a few times against other pilots, and I just sit on 105 knots, and they’re working the good air, we get to the next climb and I’m substantially higher.

I fly through 3 knots of good air, under a cloud street or something, according to my theory you should not be pulling up at all, you should still be cruising at 100-105 knots. That’s my theory…on a strong day, below 4 knots or so, you should never be slowing up. I’ve tested this in competitions quite a few times against other pilots, and I just sit on 105 knots, and they’re working the good air, we get to the next climb and I’m substantially higher. If you’re getting 4 – 4.5 knots, it starts to become a consideration, that you shouldn’t be pulling up anywhere near as much as people do. There are other considerations, like getting around an upwind turn where you maybe want to get in low and climb on the next downwind leg.” Keith asks, “What about in weaker conditions, like perhaps in Northern Europe?” Matthew answered, “In my experience in Europe, everyone likes to pull up like they were flying MacCready 0, when in fact, even with MacCready 2 or 3, you should be keeping on a lot of speed. You should very rarely be pulling up all the way past 65 knots. I do slow down if I’m expecting to climb…I start to slow before the lift, so I can ‘feel’ where it’s going to be.” The take away message is we all are spending too much time slowing when we don’t need to be. Matthew also gave two other presentations, one on team flying, and one on gaggle flying, but I’ll save these for another time.



The Nationals got a bit of a shake up this year as the young Dynamic Duo of Campbell McIver (22), Auckland and Allie Thompson (15), Hawkes Bay Waipukurau, flying Auckland’s Duo Discus, took out the Racing Class. Campbell gives a brief report on their competition.


he 2018 Multi-Class Nationals have wrapped up and thanks to the efforts of many, I am pleased to say that it has been an enjoyable, successful competition. I am a relatively new glider pilot, starting in 2012 and have found the most enjoyment in competition flying. This is my 3rd NZ Multi-Class Nationals and I was very excited to return to compete and learn as much as I could. I was very keen to fly Auckland’s Duo Discus and so needed a teammate. My good friend Allie Thompson was showing great potential as a pilot and had shown herself ready for the challenging aspects that cross country and competition flying offer. With a lot of planning and discussion throughout 2017, we were very keen to give the Nationals a solid crack. Returning to a Nationals brought back the enjoyment that only a competition can offer. The wealth of knowledge is immense and luckily, so many competitors are willing to share that knowledge. We were very fortunate to have Matthew Scutter visiting us from Australia who gave a few outstanding presentations on techniques to improve our flying skills.

Our competition started well, with us fighting the sea-breeze to be the only Racing Class competitors to get around Day One’s task. After a few more day wins over the first week of the competition, we realised that we had a chance of winning the Racing Class. Our strategy became then to take less risks and focus on completing each day’s task. Week Two of the competition brought two ridge days, a wave day and a few more thermal days. While it had its challenging moments, it was exactly what we needed to get the job done and led us to finish the competition with over 1000 points lead.

Thanks very much to the Auckland Gliding Club for use of the Duo Discus. Also, a big thanks to Kirstin and Paul for keeping us going throughout the comp. Finally, thanks to all volunteers and pilots who made the 2018 New Zealand Multi-Class Nationals such a success. I’m looking forward to the next competition I fly, wherever it may be. February–April 2018




Being so young, I felt the pressure on my shoulders to not only do well, but show the world that I was worthy of participating in this competition. Allie and Keith Essex


ight months ago, it was a vague idea in the distance, of something that would open a whole new world of flying. Campbell McIver from Drury and I thought it would be a great idea to give the NZ National Gliding Championships a try, bearing in mind that Campbell had some experience in competitions and I didn’t, and give the more experienced pilots a run for their money. I had never done any serious cross-country flying before, so this would be a life changing experience. Being young and new to the game, I didn’t know what to expect. Campbell had tried his best to explain everything that would happen during the two weeks of the Nationals, but there are things that you can only learn by being there and doing them. We arrived a day early, giving us time to unpack and get ready for the days ahead. Nervousness and excitement were rushing though our veins, waiting for the night to finally pass so we could start. On the practice day, we had the chance to meet new people and scope out the competition and then get up and have a flight. We had a few complications but that’s what practice days are for! The first day was information overload for me; I was experiencing so many new things and such a different way of flying in such a short period of time, it was just crazy. From skipping through weak thermals to gaggle flying, I had to learn everything very quickly to ensure that we would have a chance at competing seriously. The first three days were very much a learning experience, figuring out what we had to do, getting into a rhythm and figuring out who we had to compete against were our biggest challenges, but we easily overcame then. With Campbell and I swapping from back seat to front each day, I soon proved my knowledge and skills to Campbell in this new type of flying. Being two very eager but young pilots, we were so very thankful for everyone being friendly, giving us advice and feeding us well. And of course my parents were there, helping us get ready for each day and making sure that we had enough sleep. All of these things helped boost our confidence As a female in a male dominated sport (and a young female at


February–April 2018

that), it can sometimes be extremely challenging to be recognised and for people to realise that we females can fly just as well as males. Being so young, I felt the pressure on my shoulders to not only do well, but show the world that I was worthy of participating in this competition. Apart from the flying, one of the biggest challenges of being a female was, of course, the toileting issue. Flying for 3-4 hours in hot temperatures and staying hydrated is somewhat hard without some way to relieve yourself. As embarrassing as it was, everyday there was the routine task of putting the nappy on, and trying to master not walking like a sumo-wrestler. Although they were a very unusual feeling, I will admit they do give you great cushioning. I did have an accident, but I was able to laugh it off because the men recounted with great hilarity, some of their toileting failure stories, having done it at least once themselves. Ladies, don’t let this put you off the sport. Everyone one of us females have had to wear them before, and it’s just part of the sport. Having Sandy Griffin and Genny Healey there definitely helped too, as I could talk about all these things and they knew exactly how it felt. Each day after flying, we would pack up the glider, take all our stuff out, and head inside the clubrooms to join the other pilots, talking about what they had done for the day and what we had done. It was great to be able to do this and be about to talk though the different ways people went about the tasks, and what we should look out for in the next days. The most interesting day, for me, was the wave day. Easterly wave in Matamata had a reputation to be horrible, but I never knew that it would be this challenging. I was flying front seat that day and I had high hopes for doing well. That went out the window the minute we got into the wave. I started sweating. There were massive drops and then we were being sucked all the way up again. I couldn’t wait for the day to be over and done with. The task that was set made us fly out of the defined wave clouds and into what looked like blue on both sides of the bands. This was one of the days I learnt the most



Allie, how did you come to be flying your first competition in the Duo with Campbell?

because I learnt that you can fly in wave without having obvious clouds showing you where to go. This proved to be very difficult and stressful but we did manage to get around the day, albeit a little too early, but it’s safe to say we were happy to be back home, safe on the ground. Through this experience, I have gained an immense respect for those pilots who have been flying cross country and competitive cross country for more years than most of them probably want to admit to. The physical challenge, not to mention the mental and strategic energy that goes into flying each day is immense and exhausting. Yet I had a ball and am completely hooked, knowing I have years of learning ahead of me and hope that one day I can be as generous with my time and knowledge as those were that surrounded me in Matamata. I encourage all you youth flyers out there, especially females, to get into these competitions. Put your hand up, ask to fly in the back seat for the day, or fly side to side. It is such an amazing way to further your knowledge and gain experience. You’ll never want to go back to circuit bashing again. I can’t wait to fly with you all again, to share more memories and experiences.

I encourage all you youth flyers out there, especially females, to get into these competitions. Put your hand up, ask to fly in the back seat for the day, or fly side to side.

Allie: We met each other at the 2016 YouthGlide Camp at Omarama; then last year he said “Any chance we could fly Nationals?” and we sort of looked at each other. It sounded like a sort of fun game, so we flew with each other for a bit down at YouthGlide Camp and also up at Drury. Campbell was lucky that the club let him have the glider. It was just a thought 8 months ago, “OK, let’s go and kick some arse” …it was just a thought, a bit of fun. Then we came up here and won the first day. We were happy, and the second day was cool, and then the next was, “Oh, we could actually have a crack at this, we could really do it,” and then we just kept in the top three, just kept going, and then suddenly yesterday came along and we still had that point buffer and we were like “Well!” Campbell: We put the results out of our mind the whole Comp. We weren’t thinking about it, as much as everyone else around us was stirring us up. We just sort of landed yesterday, and once the prizegiving came it really sunk in. We were just over the moon.

But that was your objective, right? I remember when you asked for the Duo, you said several months ago “Hey, we want to have a serious crack at this.” Allie: We definitely weren’t here to play around. We definitely wanted to try, to show the old buggers who we are; here to give it a crack and stuff. We just played it the right way, for us. Campbell: Pretty much, yeah. Throughout the year, Allie lives in Napier, I live in Auckland, we kept in touch as much as we could, had a few Skype meetings, went over tactics, cross-country flying and how to do it, had a bit of practice at Taupo and Drury, and came here, somewhat prepared, as prepared as we could be. We gelled really well as a team, and we shared the flying well, and…

Can you talk a bit about the way that you did that? Allie: The first couple of days was Campbell flying most of the time, just because I’d never been in a competition before. He’d be pointing out things, and then all of a sudden it clicked – OK, we need to go to that cloud or, there are gliders over there. Then each day we’d swap who was in the front and who was in the back, and it got to the point where the person in the front was doing all of the take-offs and landings and we were doing a half and half kind of

February–April 2018



thing. There were some days I mainly flew and some Campbell did. By the end it just happened that we’d switch back and forward.

How about the decision-making part? Allie: For the early part it was Campbell, but by the end it was the two of us doing it together.

Are you kind of negotiating decisions, or did you have some kind of “You’re the stick and rudder person, I’m the tactician,” or is it more like, “I think that one looks pretty good, what do you reckon?” Did you allocate today is my day, or what? Campbell: I guess initially it was me teaching Allie how to do it and what to think about and she was doing a lot of the flying. She was sort of my puppet initially – I was telling her what to do and why we were doing it. Towards the end of the Comp, we’d be sharing decisions, pointing out, “There’s a good cloud,” and, “Nice shadows on the ground over there,” and it was more “What do you think?” in most decisions in the second half. Allie: Being my first competition, I didn’t know what to think. I was coming in here completely blind and Campbell had told me a little bit, but I was still sitting here on the first day and thinking, “Whoa! What’s happening?” It was quite handy having Campbell saying, “We can go here,” and I could just concentrate on how it works and get my head around it. By the end we both had a pretty good grasp of what was happening so we could share the load.

Sounds like, for you, there’s been a huge benefit in doing it in a two-seater and having someone like Campbell who can give you real-time coaching in what’s going on? One of things that interests me is, “How do we get more young guys (like you) into the game?” Allie: I really think that the clubs here (I know a couple of youth here at Piako) should have been here in two-seaters, just getting them out trying it. I would never have known what it was about otherwise. Another thing is the competition dates are not great for us youth; this one here was okay because it was at the start of the year so I could get a week off school. With the South Island Regionals, I got a free entry into that but that’s right at the start of exams; a lot of them are at times when school is on. If you want to get youth into it, you’ve got to be sure they are able to come; scholarships and the like are great but if the dates don’t work, we can’t! Campbell: You’ve also got to find the people willing to coach. Mike Strathern did it for me and that’s how I got into comps. It was pretty awesome. I think Allie and I only did it because we’re such good friends, really good mates. Allie: I would never have got into it without Campbell saying, “Hey, let’s go for it.” Lots of students just get to solo or “B” Cert and just stop because there’s “nothing else to do”. More instructors need to be pushing the kids to go solo and then teach them how to go cross-country as well. Before I came here I didn’t know much about going cross-country and so pushing the students to help them to do it, having days where you look at the weather and go,


February–April 2018

“OK, today we’re going to do a ‘lead and follow’,” and you can see where we’re going and talk about it the whole way. Campbell: My mind was blown on my first cross-country flight, down to Lake Waikare, new scenery and being miles from the airfield! Allie: For me, that’s one of the positives about YouthGlide Camps at Omarama, most of the time you’re going on huge flights. If I’d never gone to the camps, I’d probably still be rushing around the club, not doing anything. You get this whole new vision, open up to the fact that there isn’t just this little circle around the field that you can go fly in. You can go fly to places you wouldn’t have thought of. Campbell: I’d just like to say, thanks to everyone who’s supported us, especially Paul and Kirstin (Allie’s parents) and the clubs. YouthGlide’s been great, especially the clubs and the parents, friends and supporters. It got us flying regularly, keeping us current and developing us. Allie: Yes, thanks to friends and families, and you guys here, supporting us the whole way, keeping us going and making sure we kept our heads screwed on.

From me, Congratulations! It’s amazing what you’ve achieved, I’m in awe of what you guys did, absolutely brilliant, and I expect to see you round for many years to come!


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Jean-Marie Clément


Dancing with the wind


group of fellow pilots and I have recently gained our QGP and silver badges so we encouraged each other to enter the Northern Regionals Novice Class. Gliding out of Matamata is ideal for a novice pilot with most of the land to the northwest being flat and mainly consisting of dairy or cropping farms with some large paddocks. The Novice tasks for each day were set over this vast area with

a typical out and return leg of over 100 km, four AAT tasks and a racing task. The week saw a stationary high weather system over the country. All the novice pilots had land outs, which was part of the learnings. Ironically, I landed out in the paddock in the pictures, 3 kilometres short of the finish, with the farmer sowing the seeds for his potato crop. The daily process of briefings, programming your task, lining up on the grid combined with the challenge of the task was a great experience and one you would not gain just by club flying. Although we are all competitive, we are also equally encouraging and supportive towards each other with the progress we have all made. I recommend any pilot to think of flying a competition. The support from the other pilots and the experience you will gain is exceptional. This is an experience you will always remember and will hold you in good stead for your flying in the years ahead.


The Northern Regionals Contest was an opportunity for me to stretch my wings. I started gliding two and a half years ago at the Piako Gliding Club and I have been fortunate, as a student, to have been instructed and mentored by some of the most experienced instructors in the country.

Dancing with the wind

Jean-Marie Clément

February–April 2018


8th Sailplane Grand Prix World Final



February 2018 TO GO OR NOT TO GO? – THAT WAS THE QUESTION In the build up to the World Champs in Benalla, I had taken three months off work and flown close to 150 hours. While competing in the Queensland State Champs, the Australian Nationals, the Australian GrandPrix and then the Worlds themselves I had driven more miles and seen more of the Australian back country than I cared to remember. The daily routine and flying in the Worlds was intense. After arriving home, I didn’t want to see my glider again for some time. I just needed a complete break.


had largely forgotten about the success I had had, coming second at the Australian Grand Prix in Horsham. But that had been the highlight of my gliding career so far. I was leading going into the last day only to be overtaken by Geoff Brown on a short fast task where the opportunities to catch up were limited. In any event, I was more than happy with second place, particularly against a quality field of local pilots including, a few of the Australian team who were there to practice for the Worlds. To be fair, I surprised most there, including myself. But I enjoyed


February–April 2018

the Grand Prix format where you don’t need to be the best pilot around the race track. It was more about playing the man and just making sure you beat the guy next to you. I had done a fair bit of match racing in yachting and understood the concept of covering. By playing the gaggle game and not letting the ego get ahead of myself, I could see what was going on in front of me and then position myself to take advantage of what was the better air and the decisions of the pilots in front. The pilots who became isolated, got left behind by the gaggle. You didn’t need to come first, you just needed to accumulate points each day which all added up over the course of the competition. Like the traditional format, consistency still pays dividends. So, to walk away with second place and four podium day finishes, I was pretty pleased with my effort. But I had pretty much made my mind up that I couldn’t justify the time and cost of going to Chile for what amounts to eight days of flying against the world’s best, in some of the most dramatic mountains on the planet.

IT’S A ONCE IN A LIFETIME EXPERIENCE… It wasn’t until about August, after several people had said to me – “Mate – you just need to go, it’s a once in a lifetime experience”, that I began to rethink things. But the round trip

“mate – you just need to go, it’s a once in a lifetime experience”,

I began to rethink things.

Photo Sebastian Kawa

Mark and Ange

Pilots dinner and opening ceremony

to Chile with my own glider (as there weren’t any competitive gliders to rent) was going to cost about $45k to $50k – how could I afford or justify that? A discussion with my partner Angela got us thinking outside the square. I sent an email to the Vitacura gliding club to explore the opportunities of a house swap. Within three days, I had three people lining up, saying they would love to come to NZ. A long and funny story cut short, but we ended up doing a house swap with a lovely Chilean family. That deal provided us with a four bedroom home with swimming pool, one minute’s drive from the gliding club, two cars and a full time maid who did all our washing, kept the house and cooked us breakfast and dinner each night if we needed it. Ok – accommodation sorted and $10k saved. Next, the hard bit – how to get my glider there? All of the European pilots had their shipping paid for as that was just part of the deal to hold the SGP final in Vitacura. There was no money left in the kitty for anyone else, particularly for a lowly ranked Kiwi. You had to pay for your own way there or don’t go. Simple as that. As it happened, I fortuitously bumped into Graeme Marshall from the Port of Tauranga at a social function one night and got talking about the Chile opportunity. He, like many others, thought I should give it a go and thought my story from zero a couple of years ago

to hero and being invited to the world final in Chile was worth supporting. One thing led to another and with the support of the Port senior management team (who I know well from my work as a commercial lawyer), I was introduced to Gerrard Morrison, the Managing Director of Maersk Shipping Line. Thankfully, he liked my story as well and before I knew it, Maersk had offered to ship me to Chile and back in a 40 feet container for nothing – I couldn’t believe my good fortune. The whole Chile adventure was now becoming real and Angela and I were committed to giving it a crack. With the support of my partners at Holland Beckett Law, and some funding to cover the entry fee and tows from the NZ Umbrella Trust, I was on my way into the unknown and the intimidating mountains of the Andes. To be fair, I didn’t really have a full understanding of what I was getting myself into at this point.

BUT HAVE I BITTEN OFF MORE THAN I CAN CHEW?? By now it was early September and it suddenly dawned on me that I hadn’t flown since the Worlds. The logistics of getting Ange and I plus the glider to Chile took a bit of effort. My glider is a JS1C-Evo and to make matters worse, I was still trying to sort out issues with my jet having sent it to Germany and back

February–April 2018


Photo Sebastian Kawa

Photo SK


Closing Ceremony with Sebastian Kawa and Łukasz Wójcik

Literally flying the flag

for certification. I had three days flying at the Taupo comp in early November to at least have some time in the saddle before the glider had to be put in the container on November 23. With Bob Dirks from M&D in Australia flying over at the last minute to rebuild the jet the weekend before I left and with Ross Gaddes from Sailplane Services doing his thing to keep it all together, things were going down to the wire. I must say thanks to Brett Hunter, Ross, Bob, Uys Jonker and the JS team for sorting these issues out, under warranty, without a fuss. Fast forward to 31 December. After, a couple of days in Buenos Aires sight-seeing and getting acclimatised, we arrive at Vitacura on New Year’s Eve to meet our Chilean ‘house swap family’, to get whirl wind instructions of how the house worked and then waving them goodbye an hour later on their way to NZ. Ange and I had a couple of wines, waited until 12 to see the New Year in and then lights out. Standing on the taxiway at Vitacura airport, looking up at the Andes in the distance through the haze, it struck me. Here I was with only 600 hours to my name and only about 30 of those in the Omarama mountains, in a Spanish speaking country, having only flown three times in the past eleven months, looking at these massive brown mountains in 30 degrees of heat, not knowing anyone, wondering what the hell I was doing here.


February–April 2018

Thank goodness Ange was with me – I couldn’t have managed on my own. There was only one thing for it – one step at a time. My primary aim at this point was to get home alive and with the glider in one piece.

NO REST FOR THE WICKED… It took that day to get the glider out of the container, to rig it, to get all the compliance paperwork out of the way and to meet and greet all the local Chilean folk at the club. I must say, all the locals were extremely hospitable and helpful. We immediately felt welcome and nothing was really an issue. Most spoke pretty good English and we got by with hand gestures and google translate for the rest. I had a good briefing on the local circuit and flying conditions from Air Marshall Phil (Google) Sturley (pretty high up in the RAF I’d have to say) who was flying locally in his ASH 26M and who I got to know quite well – good bloke. No rest for the wicked – the next day was straight into it. I had entered the Chilean Nationals as practice and today was the first task. Carlos Rocca and Rene Vidal, the two local hotshots, were a fantastic support. Carlos’ motto was – ‘we would rather make friends than win trophies’. They both imparted their knowledge freely of the local area, the hotspots, what heights you need to be to go from ridge A to ridge B and more importantly, about where

not to go. The locals pretty much had every house thermal in the first 200 kms, both north and south, dialled into their memories. Local knowledge here is everything. The only comforting thing was knowing that every mountain valley, where water was flowing to the Chilean coast, had an exit – where you could escape to the relative safety of the Santiago valley. There are no blind valley traps that you really needed to worry about. The next eight days or so were getting used to the local conditions. Just getting off tow and onto the home ridge/thermal of Manquehue, the small hill just behind the Vitacura airport, could be exciting. This is the equivalent of Omarama’s Mount Horrible. If the tow plane waved you off too far away or 50 m below the ridge, you could spend the next 20 minutes just getting back on top. You had to fly along the short ridge, sometimes very low, and then haul it into a steep left hand turn as soon as you felt the resident thermal (which starts at about 1.30 every day) kick you in the pants. Then, getting to the required start altitude was a task all in itself, which required a series of steps into rising ground, working (or on the weak days – grovelling at low level) your way up the La Dehesa valley using thermal or ridge or whatever worked until ultimately reaching the top of the adjacent Espanoles ridge at about 9000 feet – only then could you relax a bit and wait for the start gate to open.

Photo Sebastian Kawa Photo Sebastian Kawa

Photo Sebastian Kawa

Photo Sebastian Kawa


Towards the end of the comp, I was starting to feel much more comfortable flying in the local mountains, being more current and at home in the cockpit and my best results were two 14th places out of 26 competitors. I didn’t realise it at the time but we had some of our best flying weather during this comp. As we got closer to the SGP, the weather got more stable and humid with the visibility reducing to where you couldn’t even see the mountains in the distance through the haze at times. I didn’t fly every day in an attempt to keep fresh and to give Ange a break from the 30 degree heat, and before the SGP started, we took a couple of days off and drove out to the coast at Zapallar, one of the most exclusive beach towns on the Chilean coast where the richest Chilean families seem to have their weekend beach houses to which they fly by private helicopter from Vitacura. Not a patch on some of our local beaches however.

NO TURNING BACK NOW… In a flash, the SGP was upon us. It was good to meet all the international pilots and the hangers on. The opening ceremony was fun. Everyone was very friendly. The language differences made it easier to socialise with some but you could sit next to anyone and chat away quite happily. The event was well run and the results were well publicised so there is no point giving

February–April 2018



Approaching the Olivares Valley from north to south

a blow by blow account of each day. The results and interviews are on the SGP website for viewing – finals2017.aspx?contestID=28606. I think it better simply to summarise the key take-aways from the event as I saw them. ›› The difficulty of the conditions need to be put in perspective: Łukasz Wójcik, who is ranked 12th in the world, described the comp as the hardest he has ever done. We had one fatality. And one near fatality – we called the lucky pilot the ‘one-metre man’. Had his cockpit struck terra firma one metre in either direction – he would have been a different statistic. One near miss with a glider pulling up in front of another and only missing by metres – the second pilot reckoned that if he had been fully ballasted, he would not have recovered from the resulting stall when taking avoiding action. Prior to the comp, another Duo Discus was written off landing out – the pilots were lucky to walk away. One pilot, on two separate occasions, had to fly under high tension power cables to escape – there were power lines all over the place. I nearly had to crash land on a shallow plateau while trying to escape after falling off a ridge – I must have only been metres off the ground for some distance. And these were only the events I got to hear about. It wasn’t for the faint hearted. I was genuinely happy to be home alive and in one piece. But each pilot had to assess the risks he was willing to take and how far he was willing to push it. ›› Unfortunately, the weather was pretty average on the whole. Two days were cancelled and half of the remaining comp was flown in average to below par conditions. On the first day, I


February–April 2018

had no vario with water in my static and flew the whole task using good old fashion seat of the pants feeling and visual references. On the good days, the flying was exhilarating. On the poor days, it could be a grovel and downright frightening continually scratching away at very low levels, sometimes with five or six other gliders all fighting for survival. Some of the turbulence was the worst I have experienced, with all of my side pockets emptied and the contents sometimes floating around the cockpit in front of my eyes. Having flown in the Andes in these conditions, I don’t think there is much that could phase me now back in NZ. ›› My best result was 11th – only 8 kph behind Sebastian Kawa and only 1 kph away from that elusive one point. I had some fairly famous names sitting below mine at least once. I thought there may have been a bit of magic still to come – but that was not to be. Some poor decisions and some circumstances that were forced upon me in the weak weather scuppered any change of that elusive point. Report card reads – “was competitive in parts, but could do better.” ›› But I have learnt a heap – flying at this level, you can’t not absorb the quality of the flying going on around you. One of the most exhilarating legs of a task was following Sebastian Kawa up the Animeta Valley – cruise climbing at 180 kph, polishing the rocks, pulling up and over the spines – when I got to the top, I said to myself – “Ahhh, so that’s how it’s done.” And when I was chatting with him over a beer afterwards, he said to me – “Ohhh, that was a bit dangerous, I didn’t know where I was going!!” But I was impressed with how smooth he flew in close proximity to the contours of the


Photo Sebastian Kawa

Photo Sebastian Kawa

Dinner party at Mark's place. Carlos Rocca, Mark, Sebastian Kawa, Rene Vidal, Phil Sturley and Jon Gatfield.

5th largest copper mine in the world

ridge, using all the energy that was available to him.

›› One of the highlights for me was getting up and over the pass of the Olivares Valley. The pass is close to 16,000 feet and you fly very close to sheer rock faces, glaciers and some of the most spectacular scenery imaginable. North to south is reasonably straight forward if the conditions are good. However, we got tasked one day going from south to north – only about 50 people in the world had ever done that route previously. Unfortunately, it was a difficult day – I didn’t make it despite several attempts. Being at 14,000 feet but only a couple of hundred metres off the valley floor was not very comfortable – time to cut the losses and escape while I still could. ›› As with most things however, not many remember the results, but the relationships you develop with the people you meet along the way endure. Most pilots stayed on for a beer on most nights. Many nights were shared in restaurants swapping war stories of comps gone by. Personal and enduring friendships were forged. Contacts for future gliding adventures to Europe and beyond were made. This experience was made better by the small group of pilots attending. You rely on each other to keep each other safe – an unspoken bond develops between you – like having gone into battle and survived. ›› I really like the SGP format. It is just more fun. You start together, finish together and get to the bar together. Short fast racing tasks in the strongest part of the day with a late briefing. No silly start line games. Close flying with high energy finishes make for exciting racing. If we want to

encourage young people into competition flying, then this would be a good way to do it. I would encourage the sailplane racing committee to consider the North Island Regionals to adopt this format. I’m getting Brian Spreckley (Contest Director of the SGP) to send me the formula to hold a SGP with handicapped gliders – this can be easily done using various turn point circle sizes depending on the handicap of the glider. SGP versus the traditional format is a bit like the difference between One Day Cricket verses a five day test match on a dead pitch. The one day format is just more fun and fun is where it’s at to retain interest in the sport.

WOULD I DO IT AGAIN? So when it’s all said and done – would I do it again? The competitor in me says yes, as I always strive to do better and I know there is better in me. But not anytime in the foreseeable future – the cost and energy required is right up there. What appeals to me now is putting on the 21 m tips and picking the eyes out of the good weather for a change and seeing how far and in which direction the strong conditions will take me. I need to again thank my sponsors: Maersk Shipping Line, Holland Beckett Law, Port of Tauranga and the NZ Umbrella Trust for the support and funding they have given me. Without it, this adventure simply would not have been possible. Thank you. Lastly, I need to thank Angela who would have to be the No. 1 crew in the world. The support during the competition and her sufferance hanging around gliding clubs in the heat is very much appreciated. We both had a great time but some boating and more leisurely pursuits are on the cards for now.

February–April 2018


AUDI ENTERPRISE AND NZ CLU NATIONALS COMPETITION DRURY, JANUARY 2018 CHALLENGES We started to plan for our Drury based summer competition about the middle of 2017. There was some discussion at the Matamata Soaring Centre meeting surrounding the NZ Club Class Nationals which was struggling to gain support in the South Island but there were supporters for a Northern event. It was decided that the Auckland Gliding Club, with support from the MSC, could run the CC alongside the relatively new to Drury, ‘Enterprise’ concept. This event was to be held in early January 2018. A huge drawcard (for me) was that Robbie Lyon was prepared to be Contest Director. Rob is a great asset to any competition he presides over as CD and he has lots of experience to draw upon. The big challenge was to marry the two totally different competition concepts into one event. The FAI type Club Class is about a race with the winner doing a course in the fastest time (kph), but the Enterprise concept is about flying as many kilometres as possible during the usable day. It is deliberately short on rules in order to encourage enterprising flights and traditionally enables pilots to access controlled airspace as well as having an ‘all day’ start gate. Bonus points may or may not be used to encourage particular facets of the competition day – e.g. bonuses for landing back at the home field.

COMPROMISE In order to marry the two competitions, we made a decision to use the OLC distance formulae for the Audi Enterprise flights. We had used the OLC the previous year with some success. It enabled us


February–April 2018

to find the tracks for the day to enable manual scoring, but it also served as a great media tool to show interested pilots all over the world that flying out of Drury can be really satisfying. This year we had the added support of Tim Bromhead – not just as scorer – but we could use his online website ‘Gliding Contest Manager’ that is designed specifically for managing competition events. Russell Thorne had made application for airspace concessions to the Southwest areas and the normal areas to the Southeast (used by Taupo and Matamata based events) were also available. There were two catches however – we could only open one side at a time and we would not be able to allow entries into controlled airspace as part of our competition. The compromise was worth it however as co-operation from Airways during our competitions is proving to be very successful and helpful. The other compromise was that we decided to use a normal grid for purely logistical reasons. It would simply have been a mess if we allowed a random launch.

PRIZES This year we received support from several great companies. The main supporter is of course Audi NZ. Audi had supported our Drury Enterprise Competition last year by offering the winner the use of the ‘top of the range’ Audi Q7. This year they had extended that to a full month’s use of one of their flagship models. Karven Craft Distillery had also provided a huge amount of product for day prizes and promotional use. This fantastic offering was in the form of nearly $2000 of gift packed Gin and Vermouth as well as

The big challenge was to marry the two totally different competition concepts into one event.


tee shirts and miniature bottles. Finally, Sunshine Breweries also provided promotional material as well as some kegs and bottles of beer – also for day prizes and promotion. This is fantastic support but we needed to return that support by driving these great products for the sponsors. The best way of course is via social media – Simon Gault has been a wonderful helper in this respect as he understands how this all works and is able to communicate the importance of these relationships. Simon has been a great supporter of the Auckland Gliding Club and the Enterprise Soaring event and gave a short presentation clearly stating that we hold the future totally in our hands. It was great to be able to extend some support, in the form of day prizes, to the Club Class as well.

THE COMPETITIONS As we approached the first day it felt – as always – a shambles, however we had a great CD in Rob who quickly got things in order. Thankfully Russell Thorne had done a great job of organising airspace and supplying information to the initial 26 entries. In the end 13 entries were in the Enterprise class and 10 had entered the NZ CC Nationals. Mike Strathern had ventured up from his Nelson base with Mark Wilson and Alain Marcuse driving from Wellington to partake. All three were keen Club Class competitors with the rest of our entries from Auckland Aviation Sports Club, Auckland, Tauranga and Piako Gliding Clubs. Interesting that all these clubs belong to the MSC as does Rob Lyon’s club in Taupo.

DAY 1 The first day was (as forecast) not suitable for either flying out of Drury and probably not for any competition. We considered using the predicted strong westerly to fly a task along the West Coast ridges, but in the end we elected to take the winch to our Douglas Road airstrip (near Waiuku) which is about 600 feet ASL and right on the coastal cliffs. It was great to be able to treat our guests to west coast soaring between Port Waikato and Muriwai. Everyone had FUN, something quite different to the next few days.

DAY 2 – TASK 1 The weather was tending light westerly but conditions to the west were still ok. Club – Drury – Pirongia (20km) – Ohinewai (5km) – Kaihere (15km) 161/296 km AAT Audi E – Pirongia (20km) 40pts – Ohinewai (5km) 40pts – Kaihere (15km) 40pts – Drury Landing (40pts) Steve Wallace won the first day at 82.75 kph with Alain Marcuse (congratulations Alain) and Tim Bromhead close behind. Pat Driessen made 496 points (1 point per km plus bonus) with Lindsey Stephens and Ross Gaddes (me) following up. If you check out the traces you will see the difference – the Enterprise concept allowed us to utilise the light westerly to get kilometres along the Kaimai range. Pat did 356 km and got 380 points for OLC.

February–April 2018


Simon Gault and Hugo Corbille

This is fantastic support but we needed to return that support by driving these great products for the sponsors. The best way of course is via social media – Simon Gault has been a wonderful helper in this respect as he understands how this all works. and is able to communicate the importance of these relationships. Dave Moody

DAY 3 – TASK 2

DAY 6 – TASKS 4 (AUDI) & 5

Still light westerly winds but getting stronger – Club – Drury – Kinleith – Drury 306 km Racing Audi E – Matamata (0.5km) 40pts – Kinleith (0.5km) 40pts – Reporoa (0.5km)– Drury Landing (40pts) In Audi our young French instructor – Hugo Corbille cleaned up by thinking kilometres and Kaimais with a 370 point flight. Ian O’Keefe (congratulations Ian) and I also made podium behind Hugo. In the club class there were land-outs as everyone tried to battle a strengthening west wind cooled by the Tasman Sea. Alain won after flying 260 km with Mike Strathern and Mark Wilson close behind.

Very similar tasks were set because of a similar weather pattern. Club – Tirohia (10km) – Hinuera (25km)– Twin Quarries (10km) – 166/288 km AAT Audi E – Tahuna (40pts) – Te Miro (40pts) – BOP depot (20pts) – Tirohia (20pts) – Tokoroa (40pts) – Drury landing bonus. Again only 3 turnpoints could be claimed (all 0.5 km) Tim finally got in front of Steve for 280 km and 1000 points. Close behind were Steve and Bob Gray. This time we managed to get at least half home – I’m sure the retrieve process was getting tiresome for some. In Audi we weighted hard to get to areas to prevent Kaimai kilometres being such an influence. Even though we weighted the difficult turnpoints (hell, I nearly landed near Morrinsville, it was hard), the Kaimais still helped get those kilometres piled up. Hugo again gained good points (569 points), to win the day. Pat and Nigel McPhee were 2nd and 3rd for the day.

DAY 4 – TASK 3 More light westerlies predicted. Club – Tirohia (10km) – Tirau (25km) – State Highway 27 (10km) 187/313 km AAT Audi E – Tirohia (40pts) – Morrinsville (40pts) – Te Poi (40pts) – Tirau (40pts)- Tokoroa (40pts) – Note only three bonus turnpoints (0.5km) could be claimed plus a 40 point bonus for landing at Drury. The club class pilots were still struggling to push back to Drury, but Steve showed his skill by getting around for 1000 pts. Bob Gray and Tim Bromhead landed close to Drury for 2nd and 3rd for the day. In the Audi group, Pat won with 517 points followed by Hugo again and Russell Thorne.

DAY 5 – TASK 4 Weather was increasingly scratchy around Drury causing a very delayed start (for Drury at least) so the Audi day was cancelled. However to our surprise, the Club Class, who launched first, got started. Club AAT – Ohinewai (10km)– Tirohea (10km) – Hinuera (25km) – SHighway (10km)– 171/132 km Steve won at 75 kph and was again the only one to arrive back with 268 km. There was a pattern emerging here. Mike Strathern and Mark Wilson were close behind. Many landed off field again.


February–April 2018

DAY 7 – TASKS 5 (AUDI) & 6 At last some good weather to the west. We were able to attempt a ‘go around Hamilton’ task. We managed to get airspace approvals that opened the west earlier in the day and then the eastern side for the later part. This is a first as far as I can remember and showed great co-operation and support from Airways as well as lateral thinking from Rob – good work. Club – Waitomo – Tirau – Drury 309 km Racing Audi E – Te Kuiti (40pts) – Tirau (40pts) NO Landing Bonus The first part was a great example of the west run from Drury. I love it when this sets up and after a battle to get the first 20 km we all (mostly) had a great fight to Te Kuiti / Waitomo. But the way towards Tirau in the east was very bleak. The Club pilots pushed on through the blue sky towards Tirau and northwards. They had great struggles and will remember the flights with many landing in over-developed conditions. I turned back from Te Kuiti and had a fantastic strong convergence flight which I soared a couple of times. Hugo embraced the enterprise concept and went way south to Taupo coming up and landing at the Matamata field.

Steve Wallace


Russell Thorne struggled beside Steve for hours and made it to Mercer. Steve scraped his way back to Drury, another remarkable effort. This is what I believe it’s all about. I know there were some long drives home but most had an amazing flight. Lindsey’s day ended with a long retrieve from Te Kuiti – I haven’t seen him so far from home in a long, long time.

DAY 8 – TASKS 6 (AUDI) & 7 Last day and it was not really that great a forecast. But hey, it was warm and sunny. Club – Pirongia (40km) – 119 / 279 km AAT Audi – Pirongia (3km) 40pts – State Highway 27 (3km) 40pts – Drury landing (40pts) For Club pilots this was the 8th consecutive day (9th if they had flown at the coast). We set a task to get people back if possible. We did similar for Enterprise but we had the luxury of not collecting the points. It was an ok day with Pat (383 points), myself and Nigel taking the stand for Audi Enterprise. Although most got around at last, Steve didn’t do so well. This allowed Mike Strathern, Tim and Rae Kerr (in the Dart 17) to take the podium on the final day.

THE FINAL DAY With some wicked support from Audi, we had all sorts of blow up banners and balloons to make this even more special. We set up a stage outside on a balmy and very pleasant evening with the Drury hills bathing in the red sunset as a backdrop. Steve Wallace (6042 points) deserved 1st place and the National Club Class trophy – he understands how to fly in our tricky sandpit. Mike Strathern (5509 points) and Tim Bromhead (4714 points) were 2nd and 3rd respectively. The rest of the field also deserve accolades – I think everyone had some good flights. Hugo Corbille, who had taken Dion Manktelow, Greg Balle and Simon Gault for flights they will never forget, won our best ever Audi Enterprise Competition. He totalled 2520 points. Pat Driessen (2278) and myself (2276) came 2nd and 3rd (talk about pipped at the post!) The Audi is being driven as I write this.

When the last prizes were handed out we retired to a fantastic final meal prepared by (who else?) Simon’s staff at Giraffe restaurant. The party went (very) late and the stories flowed nearly as well as the beer.

LASTLY – UNTIL NEXT TIME I think we pulled it off. Of course, we can work on stuff for the next event. We were a little short on ground staff – who all need to be thanked over and over. We also need to sort how to prevent Kaimai kilometres being racked up due to the OLC type scoring system (for Enterprise). But they’re not unsurmountable problems and in both classes, no-one could say the best person did not win. The truth is that ‘the cream always comes to the top’. Thanks to Robbie Lyon for a thoroughly professional approach to a very responsible and important job. I cannot say enough about how much difference he was able to make to our success. Thanks again to all the other helpers – especially for the radio support at the Matamata Clubrooms. The co-operation between our Drury club and the Matamata Soaring centre was also a lateral thinking example of how the MSC can work to promote, not only competitions, but cross-country flying for the member clubs away from the Matamata base. It worked. We had races all but one day (Club Class at least), often in hard, but really changeable and memorable weather conditions. Many flew every day from Saturday right through the next Saturday – that is, after all, what most of us come to do. Thousands of kms were flown, hundreds of hours were logged, and quite a few kms driven – a lot of fun was had.

Lastly – a special thanks to Audi NZ, Karven Distilleries and Sunshine Breweries – please check these products out and ensure you mention them on social media sites in some way that associates them with our great sport. This is a two-way street and we need to show that being involved with us has real benefit for them as well.

February–April 2018


Inaugural Springfield Soaring Contest



A good contest from a Director’s point of view is where you have good people around you and a group of enthusiastic pilots who don’t push the limits, where you count them out and the number of pilots that come home matches that. That matching gets interesting when a trailer is involved or in this contest a helicopter, but that’s Rob's story to tell.


he week started with blue skies and heat exceeding 30 degrees. Apart from one day, that ended up being a recurring theme. Summer had arrived and stamped its mark. Briefings were held in the Club’s superb facility, a relocated school room, with coffee and homemade scones served up by Mike Marra. These were very well received, to the point where I would not start briefing until everyone had been served (well, me at least). It had been decided that as an inaugural contest, it was best to set a few ground rules and add a rider to them that the contest was about having fun within some boundaries. There would be


February–April 2018

time limits to getting home so we could all be sitting under the shade of the trees at home base at the end of the day, enjoying a BBQ and beers while cooling down. We also added in fine print that the CD could be flexible in the interpretation or use of said rules, in the interests of keeping the contest from venturing into uber-serious mode. Oh, and no water was permitted. This was partly because the Springfield farm just didn’t have enough water to allow everyone to fill their wings and still keep the toilets flushing. This caused some angst for Derek who spent the week comparing his non-ballasted ASG29e to a paper bag, autumn leaf in the wind and the like, much to everyone’s amusement. The no water also meant, no cool photos of gaggles approaching at full noise trailing water. As a keen photographer I shared Derek’s pain. However, the rule enabled a quick launch cycle from the three Dynamics (our own and two others), safe launching on a hot and high field and didn’t drain the water from our farm tanks. That meant we didn’t run out of water for drinking and showers so there was an added bonus that everyone who camped out could make it through the hot week rehydrated without being all pongy at briefing. The contest itself was a great week with five contest days

ERSPECTIVE Obligatory group photo

Photos Geoff Soper

Jerry O'Neill and Mike Strathern

Greg Tucker, Kev Bethwaite, Nick Oakley, Wal Bethwaite and MIke Oakley

flown. One day was cancelled because of a brief front that clagged us in on Wednesday and the last day (Saturday) was canned after launch due to too much moisture spilling over the main divide in the Nor-west flow which cut off the southern turn point. Naturally as a good CD, I kept the daily task winner’s sheets. Upon looking at the Club class, which began with 10 pilots sharing 6 gliders (some had to go back to work during the week) the number one spot had the same name each and every day; Mike Strathern from Nelson flying his beautifully restored Ka6e GFM. On day two, Mike managed a speed of 131.8 kph over the 113.7 km AAT task distance he flew. Mike finished the week with 2509 points, some 1300 points ahead of second place, proving wood is still good. The Open Class began with 18 pilots and 14 gliders. The first two days were dominated by the Tango Fox team of Mike Oakley and Julian Stevens however day three saw Mike’s son Nick Oakley in Papa Bravo take the win with 1000 points after a 314.2 km distance flown at 119.8 kph. Little separated them when TF beat PB on day four (Thursday) and a win by Derek on day five (Friday) at 143.7 kph over 287 km saw PB retain the overall lead by a mere 6 points. Therefore, you can imagine the huge grin on Nick’s face when the final day was cancelled just before all had

launched. Oh, and the paper bag ended up in third place. It was a great week in the country at the Canterbury Gliding Club’s home field at Springfield. I’d do it again but would love a day up flying as well. Huge thanks to all the pilots, plus special mention to Kev Bethwaite, Mike Oakley, Task setter Jerry O’Neill, Lex McPhail, Pete Chadwick (and all the tow pilots), Abbey Delore, Jill McCaw, Scott Parlane, Mike Marra and all the others helping with radio and grid for a fun week. Results CLUB CLASS

1 2 3

Mike Strathern Oude Vrielink & Kevin Bethwaite Marc Edgar

Ka6e Ls4b Ls4

2509 1135 760


1 2 3

Nick Oakley and others Mike Oakley and others Derek Kraak

ASH 25 4047 Janus CE 4043 ASG 29e 3615

Finally, big thanks to Kerry Jackson for making the airfield look like a bowling green prior to the contest start. February–April 2018


Alongside the world's 5th largest copper mine. Photo Sebastian Kawa


February–April 2018

February–April 2018




Photos John McCaw


There is only a small elite group of glider pilots that have either been so intrepid, or perhaps incompetent enough, to put their gliders in a location so awkward that it requires extraction via helicopter. This is the story of a pilot that falls into the latter category after ignoring some basic gliding lessons.


fter five years of less than minimal time flying due to, in my view, the unreasonable insistence from my partner that I should in fact partly care for my children, I was determined to get in some more flying this soaring season. I decided to take a week off work and enter the inaugural Springfield Soaring Championship in the Fun Class to get up to speed with some consistent flying.

COMP DAY 3 It was day three of the competition and I strode confidently to my Libelle, India Uniform, after two great results on the previous days. The first great result was simply a completion of the day one task. It was only a personal completion as I had been cruelly penalised by the scorer for going around the wrong turn point, a mere triviality in my mind. On Day 2 I scorched round the task with a career best speed of 110 kph, only to have Mike Strathern show me up by 20 kph in his wooden Ka6. Day three was predicted to be not as good as the previous two


February–April 2018

days with an inversion at about 4000 feet, so we had been allowed to tow to 4500 feet. I was about 3rd to launch and on tow, the air seemed lively. As we went through a patch of 10 knots up, I instinctively reached for the release but stopped myself. “No, don’t be idiot. Stay on tow. Don’t make it hard for yourself.” But at the very next bump I inexplicably reached out and pulled the release. I turned expecting to find surging lift but predictably found nothing. “Idiot!! Gliding 101, stay in tow until you’re certain you’re in lift!” Now I was low, scratching for lift and looking at a possible embarrassing land back. Little did I know the embarrassment was yet to come.

SWEATING After an hour or so of sweating in 30+ degree heat, I managed to drag myself up thorough the inversion and make it to a decent height at the start gate. I called my start and set off to the local number one, 100% guaranteed source of lift, Red Hill just south of the Craigieburn range. I arrived just on the top at about 5000 feet again expecting great lift and of course, it was a dead duck. I sat there circling in negligible to no lift, procrastinating about my next move. I vacillated long enough to sucker in Derek Kraak who must have assumed I had found a thermal, "Ha, a fool to think I would actually be turning in lift!" but Derek sensibly moved on which is what I should have done. As I couldn’t make it back to my first thermal it was obvious that I should push on and attempt to soar the lower scree slopes on the Craigieburn. If that didn’t work, it would be a downhill dash for a land-out in the paddocks by Lake Coleridge. Pushing on, I arrived at the scree slope lower than I


“Idiot!! Gliding 101, stay in tow until you’re certain you’re in lift!”

Now I was low, scratching for lift and looking at a possible embarrassing land back. Little did I know the embarrassment was yet to come.

Rob and Dougal Monk from Christchurch Helicopters

would like, a consequence of dithering. I started S turning in violent horrible gusty surges. Every time I turned back into the lift the gusts would pick up my outer wing and try and turn me into the slope. Even with full opposite stick I was only maintaining my proximity to the ridge, a situation I was feeling very unhappy about. “I can’t believe I do this to myself for fun,” I thought. I remembered Jerry O’Neil’s words, “When close to the ridge, add 10 knots speed for safety + 10 knots for each kid you’ve got,” so another 30 knots it was then. Eventually as I got higher and more comfortable, the lift got more consistent and then boom, I was on the tops with big fat thermals to 10,000 feet. To quote Leonardo DiCaprio in ‘Titanic’, “I’m on top of the world!”

BACK ON TRACK Feeling better about how the flight was going I glanced down at my super advanced flight computer (my hand held Garmen GPS that I balance on my leg), I saw that I could pretty much ping the first turn point on track, as it had a 10 km AAT circle. I lowered the nose to a near supersonic 80 knots for a Libelle and headed north. I got the turn point and was determined that I would stay high for the rest of the flight. Arriving at the end of the Craigieburns, I had the decision to try and reach the Puketeraki range as I had done previously or head west into uncharted territory. I bravely chose to go west. I was progressing well after a few good climbs but when arriving at Mt White I inexplicably chickened out. I turned and headed east across the valley to the Puketerakis which at the time felt like the safer route... a fateful decision.

ON THE PUKES Arriving well on the tops of the southern end of the Pukes, I headed to the northern turn point, the Puke saddle which had a generous 20 km AAT circle. It was then that I made the inexcusable error of thinking it was 10 km circle even though the correct distance was plain to see on my GPS display. Gliding lesson 102, ‘Know your task!’ At this point I could have clipped the circle and final glided back to Springfield for a glorious podium finish. Instead I pressed on. The Pukes weren’t working particularly well at all which should have set off warning alarms in my head. At 10 km from the turn point I looked at my GPS to finally realise I had gone way further than I needed to. I quickly turned south but now I was down at ridge level. "Ok, stick to the sunny western faces; it’s got to be working somewhere!" but deep down, I started to get a familiar nervous sinking feeling.

DOWN THE PLUG HOLE Heading south I came up to a large gully. “Surely there’s got to be thermals ripping up here!” How wrong I was. I watched as the ridge line rose up to completely fill my canopy. I quickly banked

Gliding lesson 102, ‘Know your task!’ At this point I could have clipped the

circle and final glided back to Springfield for a glorious podium finish. Instead I pressed on.

February–April 2018



Gliding lesson 103, ‘Always, always know which direction the wind is coming from!’ Obviously

the easterly had come in and was pouring over the ridge.

away and got flushed down a gully ending up only a couple of hundred feet above the valley floor. "Shit shit shit. How do I get myself into these positions and so quickly?" I berated myself. Gliding lesson 103, ‘Always, always know which direction the wind is coming from!’ Obviously the easterly had come in and was pouring over the ridge. I was flying on the complete wrong side. I started to try and work a sunny spur at low level but it was beyond my skill set and I was still losing altitude. I made a rushed radio call to Mike Strathern who I knew was on the Pukes as well to report I was in trouble. From my GPS I knew there were two landing strips nearby. Across the valley there was one that stuck out like the proverbial dog’s balls.

ON TERRA FIRMA Still looking for an option I looked down the valley thinking I might be able to glide it out to something better, but the river gorge that appeared benign from altitude now looked like death. So, I thought about my kids and put the under carriage down. I dabbled a couple of last turns in some half lift then I headed across the valley on finals. The strip was narrow and uphill. I flared out and touched down, the strip was rough and was getting narrower as I continued on the ground roll. I saw that my right wing was going to hit some scrub so put the opposite wing down and came to a stop. Silence. I jumped out and looked at my glider. No damage. Amazing. Now what to do? The strip looked long enough to tow out of but the width was a bit of a worry. If I dropped a wing on take-off it would end in a


February–April 2018

damaging ground loop. In any case it would be too rough for the Canterbury club’s Dynamic tow-plane. Across the valley, I saw a glider heading south so called him up to report my predicament. It was Pete Chadwick who relayed to Springfield that I had landed safely and confirmed that the Pukes were indeed not working so he wasn’t sticking around. Next I heard that Mike Strathern was getting low and looking at a land-out (at a much more accessible location). I felt the guilty sense of relief that at least I wasn’t the only one landing-out today. Next to fly past was Mike Oakley in his ASH 25, I radioed him to say where I was. “I’ll get my mate to come pick you up in his Cessna 185 if you like.” Well that sounded pretty good to me. “Yes please.” Mike flew on. After a bit more garbled radio traffic I heard Mike talking to Springfield base, “What do you mean we’re not f@ckn going to get Rob!” That was the last thing I heard from the radio.

SUPPLY DROP In a stroke of good luck, I had spotted a hut a across the river when I was coming in to land. I decided to wait until dusk for rescue. If nothing came, I would walk to the hut and spend the night there instead of in a cold uncomfortable cockpit. About 7pm I was just about to set off when I heard the drone of an engine heading my way. It was Mike Oakley and Jamie Halstead in Mike’s newly acquired Cub. Mike must have completed the task and then driven home, jumped in his plane and kindly come out for a look. “What do you think?” I asked on the radio. “Looks like you will be staying the night,” was the reply. Mike then informed me that his mate Brian Fechney would come out the next morning to pick me up in his Cessna 185. “But he may be a bit hung over because


I saw that my right wing was going to hit some scrub so put the opposite wing down and came to a stop.

Silence. I jumped out and looked at my glider. No damage. Amazing. Now what to do?

it’s his son’s 21st tonight.” Well I wasn’t going to refuse. Mike did a couple of practice bombing run passes while Jamie tried to figure out how to get a backpack from the back of the plane and out the door. They eventually did, and the pack was pushed out and landed with a large thump about 20 metres away. Inside was my sleeping bag, some cold sausages, a packet of broken biscuits, fruit that had liquefied on impact and miraculously, an intact bottle of beer. Things were looking up.

RESCUE It was about an hour’s walk to the hut and it turned out to be one of the more civilised huts I’ve stayed at. Bunk beds with mattresses, battery powered lights, a half full bottle of whisky and a good stack of 10 year old hunting magazines and Women’s Days. I had very pleasant evening eating sausages and biscuits, reading the latest goings on of the royal family, polished off with a beer and some borrowed whisky. The next morning, I left a thank you note for the bed and the whisky and set off back to my glider. After an hour of waiting I heard a plane engine. Brian in his 185 flew overhead and started circling. “You the glider man?” he radioed. “I sure am,” I replied and gave him my thoughts on the strip condition and wind direction. Brian came in for bit of a bumpy landing. We shook hands, took a few pictures, then packed my stuff in the plane and headed off. I hoped the Libelle was tied down sufficiently as I wasn’t sure when I was going to be back. In the air I inquired about how Brian’s son’s 21st birthday celebrations went. “Oh, it wasn’t a late one as the boys are tailing at Mt White station today. I was only late because it was clagged in over the pass.” He

then took me for a tiki tour of local strips where I also could have landed. We then did a few passes over the tailing crew before tracking back to Springfield.

OPTIONS “I believe this belongs to you,” Brian said to the contest director, Geoff Soper, as we entered ‘Kraak Control’, the new Canterbury club flight office. After regaling my adventure to the contest crew, Brian flew home. I headed off to have some breakfast, make some phone calls to family and syndicate partners and mull over options for getting my glider back. The options considered were: A. Bring in a robust and grunty tow plane and try to tow out. B. A four-wheel drive expedition by club members, strapping the glider in bits to the roof of the trucks and driving out to a towable air strip. C. A helicopter. Option A was discounted as the nearest tow plane we could think of was at Omarama. After paying for the ferry flight there was no guarantee that we could even tow out. Option B was also discounted after a review of the 4WD track on Google Maps and reports of low hanging beech forest that we would have to navigate. Option C it was then. I started making phone calls. I was advised that the sure fire way of airlifting a glider out was to fly the trailer to the glider, derig, put the glider in the trailer and then fly it out. But even though my Libelle is light, my ancient home-built trailer was heavy and the combination would require a heavy lift AS350 Squirrel at eye watering, mortgage increasing, hire rates. There was an alternative, cheaper but riskier option, of using a smaller machine

February–April 2018



First lift, before the ballast was lost

and just lifting the glider out by itself. The cheaper option was selected, and I decided there was no need to burden my syndicate partners with trifling details or risks. Canterbury Club member John McCaw had some connections at Christchurch Helicopters and managed to get me a bit of deal on their Eurocopter EC120. I booked them in for the next day as there was Nor-west wind predicted so I needed to get the Libelle out quickly before it blew away.

FUNDRAISER Arriving in the club room to have a well-earned beer, I was gobsmacked to be informed that Terry Delore had rallied the troops and organised a fundraiser for me. On the wall was a hand drawn fundraising thermometer with pledges of not insignificant amounts of money from the Canterbury club members and visiting pilots. In fact, so much money was raised that it covered the cost of the helicopter. I was taken aback and genuinely moved that so many of the gliding fraternity would dip into their own pockets to help a fellow pilot get out of sticky situation.

DAY OF RECKONING I had a sleepless night mulling over what could go wrong with the lift. I got up early and convinced club members Pete Taylor and Sandy Yong that they didn’t need the stress of flying in the comp that day and that should go on a relaxing drive to Mt White Station with me and my trailer, to which they generously agreed. After a scenic two hour drive, we found the paddock near the homestead that station manager Richard Smith had allowed us to use. We only had to wait a few minutes before the Christchurch


February–April 2018

Helicopters EC120 HTV arrived and who should jump out but John McCaw. I felt a bit happier seeing John there for support as he has some experience around helicopters and always has good advice. I wasn’t so happy seeing John’s camera and instantly regretted wearing one of my more ridiculous sloganed t-shirts as I now knew my adventure was going to end up in the pages of SoaringNZ. I was introduced to pilot Dougal Monk and his crewman and after a safety briefing, John and I jumped into the heli to see if my Libelle was still there.

FIRST LIFT After about a 10 minute flight we saw the Libelle in the distance, sitting just as I left her. We landed and set about strapping her up. I had been advised that the best way to lift a glider was with the wings off, but I like to learn my lessons the hard way. I decided that to lift the glider rigged would be the easiest way. We added foam and covers to the wings to spoil any lift, added a drogue chute to the tail to keep her stable and hung some plastic drench containers of water off a rope on the tow hook to keep the nose down and finally strapped her up for connection to the helicopter. Dougal started the chopper and began the lift. It was all going well until the plastic handles snapped on the water containers hanging off the nose. Dougal managed to get her back down safely and then set the chopper down and shut the engine down. Gliding lesson 104, ‘Listen to advice from people who have done it before’.

SECOND LIFT I told Dougal he may want to add a few dollars to the bill for that


Plan B

attempt. "No, I gave you a price and we will get your glider back for that price," he replied generously. Time for plan B; take the wings off. John, in a brilliant MacGyver moment, had brought along our saviour, five rolls of black silage tape. We lay the wings against the fuselage and then taped the whole lot together. After 30 minutes of effort in the blazing sun we were dripping in sweat but the Libelle was trussed up like a Christmas turkey. We added the lifting straps and were ready for the second attempt, Dougal lifted her up and the tape and straps held. "It feels good, I’m gonna go for it," he radioed, and set off across the valley. John and I stood and looked until he was out of sight. Now all we could do was wait.

Second lift

It was all going well until the plastic handles snapped on the water containers hanging off the nose. Dougal managed to get her back down safely and then set the chopper down and shut the engine down.

Gliding lesson 104, ‘Listen to advice from people who have done it before’.

SUCCESS John heard it first. The chopper was returning. We stood and waited till it came into radio range. "How did it go?" was the tentative question. "No problems," Dougal replied. You bloody ball tickler! Success! Dougal landed and explained the transfer went without a hitch. She didn’t even spin with the rotor wash on landing. The news was like an instant weight off my shoulders. We quickly packed up the rest of the gear and jumped into the chopper for the ride back. I was in the front with John in the back with his camera, taking pictures and giving us modelling directions for his photos. "Look left; turn your head, now you and Dougal, look into each other’s eyes." Geez John I’m not sure that SoaringNZ is that sort of publication. Once we got back, Pete and Sandy were waiting with one very much intact Libelle. We said our thanks to the crew at Christchurch Helicopters and Richard from Mt White who had stopped by to see the proceedings. We

then de-taped the Libelle and loaded her back into her trailer. Not even a scratch. We returned to Springfield, so I could fly another day.

THANKS So, an adventure that I would not be in a hurry to experience again. And I hope I have learnt some of the lessons. The big positive is the gliding community that rallied around a fellow pilot in a time of need. I literally have too many people to thank. From all the people that donated money to the many that gave advice and went out of their way to help me.

A big thanks to everyone. February–April 2018


A week of dream weather in



The old adage, “It doesn’t matter what you know, it only matters who you know” is still very valid today.


t the AERO trade fair in April I met with Axel Anschau of Komet trailer fame. While we inspected his latest trailer features he expressed an interest in a week of flying in Namibia. So far, I had always dismissed this idea but the chance of not only sharing the experience but also the expense put an entirely different complexion on the matter. Obviously, both of us liked the idea of flying together, but Axel said, “It won’t be easy to get our hands on a decent two-seater for an entire week, especially at this late stage.” “Leave that to me,” I said, and before the day was over I had an offer to hire an ASH 30 Mi for a whole week in early November. “Early November is far from ideal as it is usually blue around that time of the year,” Axel objected, “and the convergence lines are not yet fully established either.” “Beggars can’t be choosers” I replied and promptly suggested we grab the opportunity with both hands.

GETTING THERE ISN’T EASY! Using Frequent Flyer miles (my own and my wife’s), I flew to Namibia, courtesy of Qantas Airways. Of course, convenience goes out of the window when you fly for free. Qantas booked me on a 33-hour trip to Windhoek via Dubai and Johannesburg, and on top of this there was then the three-hour drive to the gliding centre at Bitterwasser. On arrival we noticed a long row of shipping containers with plenty of European gliders in their bellies. While we completed the formalities, four very competent local men were busy rigging our ASH 30 Mi. Sure, they have done it many times before but their efficient service with a smile had to be seen to be believed!


February–April 2018

We only helped with the fitting of the outer wing panels and then met other early arrivals for dinner. Of course, gathering as much information as possible from these seasoned Bitterwasser visitors was high on the list of priorities but eventually my jet lag caught up with me and we both put our heads down in expectation of reasonable soaring conditions for the day ahead.

EXCITEMENT ON THE FIRST DAY! The morning weather briefing had everyone excited! Above average flying conditions were forecast and most pilots promptly prepared for long distance flights. Being new to flying in Africa we decided on taking it easy, getting our bearings and exploring the area. We watched others launch while getting the glider to the most remote take off point on the dry and almost perfectly shaped salt lake. The locals simply call it “The Pan”, which is not really an apt description for an airfield with a diameter of almost 3km. Getting to the launch point takes a while as gliders must be towed along the outer perimeter of the pan. Take offs are by self-launching only and landings are allowed in any direction but the elevation is well over 4000 feet and the surface is a little soft in places. With ambient temperatures exceeding 35°C and, with our take off weight of just under 850 kg, the ground run turned out to be longer than usual. When the glider got airborne the rate of climb was over half of what I’m used to at home – a brilliant reminder of the effects of density altitude. A wisp of a cumulus helped us to find the first good thermal and not long after that the sky exploded with nice thermal markers in all directions. Good climb rates boosted our confidence and

we soon decided to combine our intended area exploration with a 750 km FAI triangle attempt. Without having turning points or track lines on our moving map display we simply flew in a northwesterly direction while keeping an eye on the Windhoek airspace. Then we ventured into the mountains east of the Namib Desert and on the final leg we overflew Bitterwasser far enough to complete a 750 km FAI triangle. In the end we accumulated a greater distance than intended, but our flight path had much in common with the path of a badly drunken sailor on the way home.

IT GETS BETTER STILL On our second day it was Axel’s turn in the front seat. As the forecast was equally good we decided to go into the direction of the most promising cumulus clouds and take it from there. It led us into a northeasterly direction and when we arrived at the border to Botswana we turned south to follow a well-developed line of clouds. Good streeting with strong embedded thermals made for excellent progress and when the clouds thinned out we first followed another cloud street to the west and later northwest. Soon after our onboard computer indicated 1000 km on landing at Bitterwasser, we went home. A speed of 141 km/h turned out to be the fastest 1000 km flight for both of us but after the landing we agreed that we should have extended the flight on such a good day. The forecast for the following day was less optimistic with showers predicted from mid afternoon. I was in the front seat again and after the initial blue thermal we headed for some goodlooking clouds about 50 km north of the airfield. Of course, when we arrived there they turned out to be just inside the Windhoek

Photo Bernard Eckey

Sunset at Bitterwasser

Photo Bernard Eckey

Climbing away in the first thermal of the day

The ASH 30 Mi on short final

airspace. This left us with little choice but to point the nose of the ASH 30 in an easterly direction and we soon reached an ideal cloud density east of Windhoek. We took advantage of it for a while before venturing into Botswana and far into the Kalahari Desert. The sky over the Kalahari looked very good indeed but the total lack of roads or any other infrastructure made us feel a little uneasy. Although we were cruising between 12,000 and 16,000 feet (8,000 feet -12,000 feet AGL) the lack of landmarks for terrestrial navigation was a little unnerving. When the only reasonable outlanding option appeared to be an occasional dry salt lake the mind started to play funny games with me. It let me contemplate a catastrophic failure of our avionics and prompted me to work out a rough compass heading for a return to Bitterwasser – just in case! Bar talk of retrieves taking seven days also sprang to mind and so did the apparent abundance of hungry hyenas in Botswana. It eventually made us turn tail and head towards the relative safety of Namibia again. Our average task speed had been subject to some jubilation in the cockpit, but the forecast showers were slowly creeping into our flying area. Some of them turned out to be only virga but that made little difference at our level. We did our best to avoid getting wet but that was not met with great success. The lift, however, was still strong and we were still confident of making it back to Bitterwasser when some sparks forced us into quite significant detours. However, on arrival over the Bitterwasser oasis the area to the north appeared to be clear of rain. At first we felt that it was safe to continue towards the northwest but we soon changed our mind for fear that a thunderstorm might be over or near Bitterwasser on landing. After all, ‘safety first’ was our motto right

February–April 2018



The entrance to the Flying Lodge

Other pilots are also having a rest day

International atmosphere

The “Line Boys” in action

from the beginning! We had already flown more than 900 km at a pleasing speed of 144 km/h and we were happy with our efforts. However, after looking at the OLC results we had to concede that other pilots flew further and even exceeded the magic 1000 km distance. They elected to fly in a different part of the country where they had no problems with rain or thunderstorms. Of course, we debated whether they were just smarter or whether they had better local knowledge but in the end, we concluded that it was probably both!

HAVING A DAY OFF Whether you believe it or not – this long-distance flying is hard work. After three long days in the cockpit a rest day was warranted and a visit to the neighboring gliding centre at Pokweni was decided upon. Again, the airfield consists of a dry and surprisingly firm salt lake. It is incredibly flat but can quickly fill up after heavy rain. Therefore, a slightly elevated emergency strip is usually located next to Namibian ‘pans’ with gliding operations. After a guided tour, a cold drink and after hearing stories of very fast long distance flights from Pokweni, it was back onto gravel roads with potholes and corrugations galore. Some African wildlife, including giraffes, was spotted alongside the never-ending gravel road but after a 200 km round trip we were wondering how a little hire car like ours could possibly survive such torture.

NO REST FOR THE WICKED The weather prediction for the following day created excitement again. This time we used preselected turn points and we worked to avoiding track deviations as much as possible. As both of us


February–April 2018

were keen on another 1000 km flight we were amongst the first to launch. With the engine still humming we encountered a nice round 4 knot thermal that was slowly getting stronger in line with our increasing altitude. On our way to the far northeastern corner of the Namibian gliding sector we found truly excellent thermals and the now familiar track along the border to Botswana produced equally good conditions with climbs to 17,000 feet. In an attempt to contact the famous convergence line, we eventually turned southwest for about 200 km but couldn’t find this energy highway amongst the increasingly dense cumulus cover. Therefore, we abandoned the idea and headed in a northeasterly direction again. As the thermals along our new track were still peaking at 8 knots we decided to overfly the airfield and turn back with enough safety margin for a landing close to a 7:03 pm sunset. It worked well for us! We landed shortly before last light after a flight of 1155 km at a speed of 144.44 km/h. Twilight is almost non-existent in Namibia and when the glider was properly tied down it was almost pitch dark.

MEETING EUROPEAN GLIDING GREATS At dinnertime we noticed that a few more European gliding heavyweights had escaped the northern winter. It turned out that some of them even live in Namibia for several months every year. Not a bad idea, if you ask me, especially if you are retired and want to engage in your favorite pastime all year round. Here was our chance to share views and opinions with world record holders, World and European champions and pilots who always tend to occupy a top competition placing. As an opportunity like this doesn’t come up every day we opted for another rest day with a few relaxing hours in the pool.


No doubt, we were extremely lucky to strike such superb weather conditions and to have access to an equally superb glider. postcard Cumulus on most days. Airspace restrictions are hardly worth mentioning, but the number of soarable hours is still relatively low in early November. They dictate high to very high average speeds for flights with four-digit kilometre distances. We both knew that, but not in our wildest dreams did we expect to fly a total distance of 4711 km in only five days – all without a drop of water ballast. The peak of the season in the southern part of Africa is normally between the middle of December and the middle of January. Around that time the convection is often even stronger, and thermals can extend to 19,000 feet or even higher. With an additional hour of daylight around Christmas it is little wonder that triangle flight distances in excess of 1400 km have been recorded. Two-seaters, capable of self-launching are almost exclusively used at Bitterwasser, and for good reason. Regularly handing over the controls on flights lasting 7 or even 8 hours and some smart joint decision making is vital if the prime objective is not to collect as many OLC points as possible but to avoid stress and stay safe.


The next day we were keen to fly again. It was our last day with access to the ASH 30 but it was deemed to be largely blue and not good enough for another 1000 km flight. We launched first but only got going well after midday. To our surprise, the first thermal was stronger than expected. We headed due west but due to blue conditions and scarce outlanding options we adopted extremely conservative flying tactics. After about an hour some distant cumulus clouds developed in the northern corner of the Namib Desert. They were still well over 100 km away but we promptly made a beeline for them. After a low point and after some experimenting, we finally got into the world famous convergence line over the mountain chain east of the Namib Desert. It was marvelous and can best be described as a typical Australian trough line on steroids. With the flaps in maximum overdrive and with the ASI hardly ever indicating less than 100 knots we made rapid progress but our late start killed any hope of another four-digit flight distance. Still, we accumulated 850 km for the longest flight out of Africa on our last flying day at Bitterwasser and we were pleased to pass the glider on to the next charterer without a scratch.

A GLANCE IN THE REAR VIEW MIRROR It is hard to avoid superlatives when it comes to summarizing our week at the Bitterwasser gliding centre. No doubt, we were extremely lucky to strike such superb weather conditions and to have access to an equally superb glider. During the entire week an elongated heat low was hovering over Namibia and Botswana, which directed warm and moist air from the Indian Ocean over our flying area. The interaction with the cold and dry air of the Benguela current on Namibia’s west coast produced picture

No doubt, the Bitterwasser gliding centre is the most popular destination for glider pilots in southern Africa, mainly due to this well looked after oasis near the fringes of the Kalahari Desert and its superb facilities. A first class restaurant provides buffet style breakfast and lunch plus three-course dinners on a daily basis. Different levels of accommodation are on offer, plus swimming pool, workshop, superbly maintained gardens, an oxygen and fuel replenishment service, expert weather briefings, a fully staffed laundry, and – best of all – a large crew of ‘Line Boys’. They wait for your landing and have the towing vehicle parked right behind your glider the moment you open the canopy. Before you get out and unstrap your parachute, wing walker and tail dolly are already attached, and the aircraft is on its way back to the tie down area. They even wipe the bugs off the wings before they put the weatherproof pyjamas on the glider for you. Simply fantastic!!! A German team of gliding gurus manages the staff of 45 locals. They attend to almost every need and they always do it with a big smile on their face. All of them are happy to have found very scarce employment at the gliding centre and all of them go out of their way to maintain a high standard and a very pleasant atmosphere for pilots from all corners of the globe.

SAFETY FIRST When looking on the flip side of the coin, the long trip from Australia and the associated jet lag problem cannot be overlooked. In the interest of safety, it is highly advisable to conduct a few days of sightseeing prior to engaging in aviation activities. Exotic wildlife, including oryx, kudus, giraffe, springbok, wilderbeast and ostriches are found in the area but if you want to see elephants or lions you’d best invest in a trip to Etosha National park, located about 500 km north of Windhoek, the capital of Namibia. Do I recommend a visit to Bitterwasser? Most definitely, but make sure you select a competent co-pilot with experience on type and always put safety on top of your list of priorities.

February–April 2018


MASTER CLASS – Hugo, The Duo Discus & The Man From Hibiscus BY MURRAY WARDELL

“You have control.” “No, you have control,” I tell the instructor. “I already know how I fly,” Hugo replies. “I want to see how you fly!” And so began my Master Class. Duo Discus (Hugo & Murray) Mangatarata 4,000'


fter a break of several years I am getting back into gliding. Fri 29th Dec was a chance for me to have another familiarisation flight utilising the skills and knowledge of Hugo, our French visiting instructor. Circumstances of the day meant that we couldn’t get airborne until after 5:00 pm – not really the recommended practice for a cross country flight, but we were both keen and two eager fools are better than one. Our plan was simple enough, probe the blue sky above Drury to get some height and see if we could connect with some better looking sky to the east and south. We released from a 2,000 feet aero-tow and I left it to Hugo in the back seat to deal with the scrappy lift and get us some height.

LESSON 1: With some height gained I was tracking towards an obvious solitary cloud in the direction of Mercer – feeling quite proud and assured of my flight path decision, when the voice from the back said, “Fly to the RIGHT of the cloud ahead.” I adjusted our track in quiet obeisance. This is not what I would have done if I had been on my own. I wanted to say, “Why would you want to do that?” but I decided to keep my mouth shut and see how this would unfold. As we got closer to the cloud it started to dissipate and I realised that ‘my’ cloud was history. A few smaller active clouds upwind (yes, to the


February–April 2018

right of the one that I was heading for) had started to appear and we were now right on track to intercept them. Hugo recommended angling upwind at about a 45-degree angle as we approached them – to maximise the opportunity to connect with what might be a small, lightly defined, mini street. Now if we imagine (in a parallel universe), me flying my flight plan and Hugo flying his, then I would have been tracking to the ONLY visible cloud as we started our glide and Hugo would have been tracking to my right. When we got to the next lift source, I would have been in the wrong place, by a couple of kilometres, and Hugo would have been in the right place. I may have still have had enough height to connect with the street (flying a less efficient route, but Hugo would have made a gain in distance and height over me. I might also have been on the ground at this stage. Aside from the issue of youth and nationality, this is one of the reasons why Hugo is in the French Junior Team and I am not. This is text book application of theory to practice. Perhaps this was way down in my subconscious brain but it was definitely in Hugo’s conscious mind. We arrived low but connected with a good climb to escape a landing at Mercer. I heard the voice from the back seat, “It was worth it, just to come to here!” Hugo is such an enthusiastic and happy pilot. (If we had been unsuccessful and landed at Mercer, it would still have been a lesson well worth the learning for me.)

It’s not every day that the man from the Hibiscus (Coast) flies with Hugo in the Duo Discus – and I’m very glad that I did.

Thank you Hugo.

On the south side of the Bombay Hills and close to cloud base we had some cross-country options. Heading across the base of the Firth of Thames towards the Kaimais seemed an obvious choice as the clouds and their shadow pattern on the ground indicated a mix of streeting from the South Westerly and convergence from the Northerly coming down the Firth of Thames.

LESSON 2: We climbed well in a couple of good thermals and aimed to stay high at this late time of the day. It had been about five years since I did a cross-country flight – and this reminded me that I wanted to do more. My French is even more rusty than my flying, but I managed to say, “C'est magnifique,” with some enthusiasm. Close to cloud base again, we flew a more direct line towards Thames. I was surprised at how frequently and how far Hugo was changing direction to try to connect with the energy line, as he felt for the difference in lift under each wing and turned to the uplifted wing where the lift was better. We pulled up through one really good thermal and gained some good height as we pressed on. I can’t remember who said it first or if we both said it at the same time, “I think we should have taken that

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last thermal and headed back to Drury!”. Instead I let Hugo show me how to do a text book landing at Thames Airfield. The bonus of landing out was that I got to see how to de-rig a Duo Discus. I let my young, idealistic companion run off, eager and shirtless, through the impenetrable mangroves in search of a tempting white beach that he was convinced must be on the other side but didn’t actually exist. The fresh scars on his return indicated his failed attempt. Meanwhile I sat by the road waiting for the retrieve – thanks Ross Gaddes. If you’re in Auckland and you get the chance, I urge you to fly with Hugo – that’s why the Auckland Gliding Club has him here. Hugo has that rare combination of having the knowledge and being able to impart it. Join the queue for a fly with him but don’t be surprised if I’ve re-joined ahead of you. [Sorry this advice comes too late. Hugo is now back in France – ED] If I had to sum up what I gained from that single flight, it would be to think about the air that you are flying in, anticipate what lies ahead, keep an open mind on what’s possible, explore the sky, and don’t necessarily always do what you’ve always done. I now have a few extra ideas in my head and a re-freshened way to look at the sky.

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February–April 2018




In this issue we look at the cardiovascular system and how it can be affected by flight, and particularly ‘g’ forces. THE CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM The cardiovascular system consists of the heart, the arteries, veins and the capillaries, and comprises the transport system of the body. It has many transport functions but we are concerned primarily with transport of oxygen to all tissues, especially the brain, and carbon dioxide back to the lungs. The heart (which is a simple pump and works by contraction of its muscular walls, the direction of flow being controlled by valves) actually drives two circulations. The circulation we normally associate with the heart is of oxygenated blood pumped through the arteries to the tissues, where it gives up some of its oxygen and picks up carbon dioxide before returning to the heart via the veins. This is achieved by the left side of the heart, whilst the right side of the heart, working at lower pressures, pumps blood to the lungs to lose carbon dioxide and gain oxygen before returning to the left side of the heart to start the cycle again.

BLOOD PRESSURE AND ‘G’ Blood pressure is usually measured just above a person’s elbow, as this is more or less level with the heart whether we are sitting or lying down. The typical figure is 120/80 (mm Hg), this being the highest pressure reached at the end of contraction of the heart muscle and the lowest pressure reached during the heart muscle’s relaxation. The cycle is repeated about seventy times a minute as rest, this being the heart rate. The figure of 120/80, whilst widely quoted, is no more definite than is for example, the average height of adults (in New Zealand, 177 cm for males, 165 cm for females). Your normal blood pressure may be a bit higher or lower. When we are sitting, for example in our glider, the blood pressure is less in the brain than in the heart as the brain is some thirty centimetres above the heart. Converting that to millimetres of mercury, a typical figure of arterial pressure in the brain would be around 90/50.

‘G’ So far we have only talked about the 1 ‘g’ (or normal) situation, but you will be familiar with the expression of pulling ‘g’ when doing aerobatics. 1 ‘g’ is the force we are subject to at rest on the surface of the planet, where our weight equals our mass. However, if we were to stand on the moon, where the force of gravity is just one sixth of that on Earth, we would weigh just one sixth of the Earth


February–April 2018

figure, say 15 kg instead of 90 kg; our mass has not changed, but our weight has. In flying the opposite often occurs. If we turn steeply, our weight increases. In a steady sixty-degree banked turn, for example, we are subjected to 2 ‘g’ or twice the force of gravity and therefore our weight is doubled. A smoothly executed loop takes us to 3 ‘g’, or to 4 ‘g’ if a little ham-fisted on the pull out. If we are experiencing 2 ‘g’, the pressure drop from heart to brain is doubled and if there were not compensatory mechanisms in the body, the blood pressure in the arteries of the brain would be only 60/20 and at 4 ‘g’ (that ham-fisted loop) it would be zero. No blood pressure means no blood flow, so no oxygen would reach the brain

You will experience small transient increases in ‘g’ during your training. A competition pilot, spending much time in a sixty-degree banked turn to exploit narrow thermals experiences 2 ‘g’ for long periods. That is very tiring indeed.

and we would soon be unconscious. Tall pilots suffer more from ‘g’ forces simply because their brain is further above their heart. Fatigue, dehydration, hypoxia and a naturally low blood pressure also reduce ‘g’ tolerance. In fact, humans can take about 5 ‘g’ (or 6 ‘g’ briefly), which is about the safe limit for the glider’s structure anyway. This is achieved by the “Anti ‘g’ Straining Manoeuvre” (AGSM) which is really just a big name for a subconscious reaction, that is tensing the muscles of the belly and legs to resist the downward force (whilst still breathing hard) thereby forcing blood back to the heart rather than letting it pool in the lower body. Glider pilots are further helped as most glider seats recline steeply. Whilst this is to reduce the fuselage cross section and thus drag, it also lowers the head a little which helps us to tolerate increased ‘g’. The pilot’s seat in an F-16 reclines at 35 degrees as the aircraft can pull very high ‘g’ and this reclining is reckoned to increase his ‘g’ tolerance by 1’g’. Military pilots also use a ‘g’ suit to prevent blood pooling in the lower body, but this is not dramatically effective. It adds only about an extra 1.5 ‘g’ tolerance. With much weight training to strengthen the muscles, plus the AGSM and a reclining ejector seat, a trained military pilot can tolerate a sustained force of 8 ‘g’ and remain conscious. Just. You will experience small transient increases in ‘g’ during your training. A competition pilot, spending much time in a sixtydegree banked turn to exploit narrow thermals experiences 2 ‘g’ for long periods. That is very tiring indeed. As ‘g’ forces increase, you will notice a progression of effects: »» a) ‘Tunnel vision’: Peripheral vision is progressively lost. Blood enters the eye close by the optic nerve and as the arteries branch out they get smaller and the pressure within lower. The blood supply ceases first at the periphery, the effect moving inwards as ‘g’ increases. »» b) ‘Grey out’: Colour vision is lost. Remember that the cones in the retina (see section on ‘Vision’ in a previous issue) are very sensitive to hypoxia. »» c) Blurring of vision. »» d) ‘Black out’: This is when all vision is lost BUT THE PERSON IS STILL CONSCIOUS. This is not the same meaning as a black-out, as in fainting. »» e) ‘g’-LOC: (‘g’ induced loss of consciousness) When a person exceeds their personal limit, about 6 ‘g’ (but possibly as low as 4 ‘g’ – a loop) they will become unconscious. This can be very damaging to the neck. A human head weighs about 7.5 kilograms, and thus at 6 ‘g’ weighs 90 kg. (For this reason, when beginning aerobatics under instruction be very careful about turning your head; try to stick to gentle fore

and aft movement, moving just the eyes rather than turning the head, until you know what to expect.) Normally, if a solo pilot does experience ‘g’-LOC, the ‘g’ force will reduce as they relax on the controls and they will recover quickly without injury (unless the glider crashes in the meantime).

REDUCED ‘G’ Glider pilots also experience reduced (rarely even negative) ‘g’. If the stick is eased forward a little (as in a stall recovery) but then held there, the centrifugal force will reduce a person’s weight towards zero. At zero (a gentle bunt) the sensation is similar to that of falling through space, and some people find this extremely disconcerting. There have been instances where a glider has crashed, probably due to stall recovery being taught and the student panicking and pushing the stick hard forward such that the instructor cannot recover from the steepening dive, the glider then exceeding VNE and breaking up. To avoid an inexperienced student coming across this sensation unexpectedly and reacting dangerously, before completing the ‘A’ certificate syllabus a student experiences reduced ‘g’ in a briefed dual exercise. As with most unpleasant experiences, expecting and understanding it removes most of the unpleasantness. Humans generally react to negative ‘g’ badly, and even minus 2 ‘g’ is very unpleasant. Apart from a feeling that your head is about to explode, vision ‘reds out’ as the retinal blood vessels engorge. Because pilots cannot take significant negative ‘g’, so aircraft structures are generally only designed to take about half the negative ‘g’ compared to their positive ‘g’ limits (e.g. +6g, -3g).

AEROBATIC PILOTS Few glider pilots become qualified aerobatic pilots, but their efforts are greatly appreciated by airshow audiences. They find what their capabilities are by progressive training but need to be aware that ‘g’ tolerance (not to mention motion sickness tolerance) is acquired slowly but lost rapidly, and thus they must retrain after a layoff of only a few weeks.

February–April 2018




The best 10 days of the year began with 31 students travelling to Omarama from not only New Zealand but as far as Australia, Japan and England. Not only did we have students attend from across the globe, this year we also welcomed our largest ever group of female pilots to the Youth Soaring Development Camp (YSDC) with a total of 10 attending.


t didn’t take long for the locals to make way for the young bunch as the largest YSDC kicked off. The sound of fun and excitement echoed throughout the Omarama airfield; tents were quickly pitched, caravans were unlocked, gliders were rigged and the crowd of grey hairs and youth gathered around the campfire. Roger Read, head organiser and Chief Flying Instructor (CFI) for the camp alongside his lovely wife Kim, her kitchen crew, 18 instructors, 4 tow pilots, 10+ support crew and a fleet of 18 gliders were ready to roll. Briefings were held, personal goals were set, students were assigned instructors and the flying began. Gliders spent very little time on the ground with a total of 380 flights and 298 flying hours completed over the duration of the camp. There was no time for sleep-ins with students eager to start the flying day. Gliders were towed to the grid, instructors and students were strapped in and gliders were soon rolling.


February–April 2018

QUICK STATS ›› 31 Students ›› 18 Instructors ›› 4 Tow pilots ›› 10+ Kitchen/ Support crew

›› 10 Days ›› 380 Flights ›› 298 Flying Hours ›› 5 First Solos ›› 10 Female youth pilots

›› 18 Gliders

For many, the Youth Soaring Development Camp provided first time experiences including solo flights, cross-country flights, task flights, use of oxygen, experiencing wave, high altitude, out-landings and of course, flying over Aoraki Mt Cook. Five students, Ben Carlisle (Canterbury), Callum Fitzsimons (UK), Carmen Haybittle (Auckland), Hunter Masfen (Auckland) and Peter Brunton (AU) completed their first solo flights during the camp. Other notable achievements include the longest flight of the camp flown by Isabelle Burr (Auckland) who completed her 5 hours in a LS4 (MT) on Mt Horrible and Sam Patterson (Omarama) who successfully completed his first unintentional out-landing at Dunstan Peaks. With an introduction to taskPilot, presented by Brian Savage, students were quick to take advantage of the new Nanos

giving up their time and fleet. The growing interest in YouthGlide is a testament to the hard work that many have put in to provide great training and support to New Zealand’s youth pilots. YouthGlide New Zealand do their best to keep costs to a minimum and provide young aviators with many opportunities, experiences and scholarships. We would like to thank and recognise the following sponsors, supporters and prize givers for their continued support.

funded by the Pub Charity along with downloading TopHat and attempting their first task flights. Tasks were set to cater for all experience levels with the first task providing a tour of the surrounding land-out strips. In between flying or on days where Mother Nature didn’t want to co-operate, there was definitely no shortage of fun and activity on the airfield. The tiring tabata sessions in the terminal attracted the fit and healthy along with a few unfit outliers, thank you Toni Thompson. Students were put to the test with the first international dart competition hosted in the Omarama terminal. Discussions and lectures were presented on all things aviation, including topics such as CAA, understanding tephigram diagrams, reading airspace maps and various other gliding subjects. It wasn’t long before the Camp drew to an end. The sound of yawns and groans could be heard as the traditional early wake up call from the bagpipes vibrated through the walls of tents and caravans at 0700 on the final morning. At this time, the sad reality of having to wait another 12 months before the next YSDC became apparent. On behalf of YouthGlide New Zealand, we would like to thank everyone involved in making the 2017 Youth Soaring Development Camp another huge success. We would like to specifically thank Roger and Kim Read for everything they do, year after year, organising this wonderful event that we look forward to. Special thanks must also go to all the instructors, tow pilots, clubs, organisations, syndicates, kitchen and support crew for

›› Air New Zealand ›› NZ Civil Aviation Authority ›› Z Energy ›› Gliding New Zealand Umbrella Trust ›› Glide Omarama ›› Omarama Gliding Club ›› South Canterbury Gliding Club ›› Nelson Lakes Gliding Club ›› Gliding Hawkes Bay and Waipukarau ›› TF Syndicate ›› MT Syndicate ›› Omarama Airfield Limited ›› Omarama Soaring Centre ›› Air Safaris ›› The Helicopter Line ›› Milford Sound Scenic Flights ›› Ballooning Canterbury ›› NZ Association of Women in Aviation (NZAWA) ›› Oakleys Premium Fresh Vegetables ›› Meadow Mushrooms ›› The Health Discovery Company ›› Baker Boys ›› Watties Heinz ›› Tip Top Icecream ›› Avon Technical Solutions ›› Airways New Zealand ›› G Dale ›› Norbert Scarlat ›› Justin Wills February–April 2018


ISABELLE BURR Age: 16 Club: Auckland Aviation Sports Club Hours: 60 I was lucky enough to spend the first two weeks of my school holidays in Omarama for the 10-day YSDC, with over 30 other pilots and instructors. The camp included many firsts for me, first time flying in the South Island, first cross-country flight, first flight on oxygen, first flight in wave and the list could go on. It will be hard to forget seeing Mt Cook, while at 18,000 feet from the rear cockpit of an ASH 25 (thanks Doug!). On the other side of the scale, I will never forget the feeling of sitting above Mt. Horrible for five hours straight in an LS4. I don’t think I had ever been so pleased to see the ground before as I was after that flight. Thank you to Clive Geddes, Budd Pratt and Phil Penny for letting me fly MT during the camp, it made the five hours more bearable having a nice glider to fly. My happiest moment of the course would have to be finishing my QGP on the last day, just over two years after my first flight with the Air Training Corps at Whenuapai. Thank you so much to Trevor Mollard and Ray Burns for helping me finish this during the camp, as well as all the help back home. The last highlight for the camp I’ll mention has to be the food. If it wasn’t for the campground setting, I would’ve believed I was in a fancy city restaurant, with spit roast lamb and salmon making up part of our dinners. Kim and her team of volunteers served many delicious meals through the camp and I’d come back next year just for that. Another thanks to the tow pilots, instructors, support crew, sponsors and gliding clubs for their time, aircraft and support, and of course most of all, thank you Roger and Kim Read for putting together such an amazing camp!


February–April 2018

This camp isn't just about flying (although that’s what brings us together);

it's about making great friendships that'll last a lifetime, gaining life experience which we otherwise wouldn't get, having loads of fun, and most importantly, making this camp the experience of a lifetime for all of us who've attended.



Age: 16 Club: Melbourne Gliding Club Hours: 61

Age: 16 Club: Wellington Gliding Club Hours: 60

YSDC 2017 – what an experience to be had. With a combination of great people, awesome food, insane flights, brilliant weather and amazing experiences both on and over ground, I don't think that you can get any better than this camp anywhere in the world. I've recently moved to Australia with my family and only just got back into the rhythm of things when I received an e-mail from Roger Read which read "Good evening all. This is a quick note to say I have your registration for the camp," as soon as I read these words, I jumped up and screamed, super excited to be going back to one of the best soaring locations in the world. A couple of months passed and then came the day that I got on the plane to head back to Omarama, Heaven on Earth. Once I got there, most of the other YSDC attendees were there already, new faces and old mates. The next day the flying started, and boy, did I get reminded what actual flying was. My first flight was one to be remembered: I had the air speed indicator and altimeter covered up and I attempted to fly along and climb up on the nursery ridge, but failed and had to land almost straight away. A few days passed and then came my time for more type ratings, I got rated for the Standard Libelle (GHN) one day and rated for a LS4 (GMT) the next. Two ratings in two days isn’t bad. My best flight of the camp would be in the Libelle. I was towed to 3500 feet ASL onto the nursery and climbed up to 7000 feet. I attempted to reach the wave which was pumping that day but didn’t quite get there. I blasted up and down Mt Horrible with Allie Thompson, Tim Tarbotton, Sam Tullett and Callum Fitzsimmons, all of whom were attempting to stay up and to fit in a good soaring flight. We all stayed up for at least a hour and loved flying alongside each other. The amount of camaraderie and support given by both students and instructors is absolutely amazing and I would like to thank everyone for their support in both getting me to and from Omarama and being supportive of everyone else who is attending the camp. This camp isn't just about flying (although that’s what brings us together); it's about making great friendships that'll last a lifetime, gaining life experience which we otherwise wouldn't get, having loads of fun, and most importantly, making this camp the experience of a lifetime for all of us who've attended. Opportunities like these don't come often, and for those who've taken a risk and go to a completely different part of the country (or different country in some cases) not knowing anyone, or anything about the place, will be forever grateful they took the opportunity of a lifetime. I highly recommend this camp to everyone who has even just the slightest interest in aviation as trust me, you'll be hooked by the second day.

The Omarama Youth Glide New Zealand 2017 camp! For me, this was a different order of flying altogether. Just imagine, seeing the Alps each time you go up, and the fantastic feeling of flying in the wave up to Mount Cook for the first time. The scenery from the air is simply fabulous and as for the flying, the word ‘exhilarating’ simply doesn’t do it justice. At Omarama, my flying skills and confidence in the air improved hugely under the guidance of skilled instructors. I was able to finish my B certificate and move onto single seat gliding in a Libelle (now my favourite glider), generously loaned by the Hawkes Bay Gliding Club. And all this with people around my own age who love gliding as much as I do. I had great flying, great fun and met new and valued friends. And the evenings!! I recall camp fires with karaoke, friendship and laughter among air-minded people and each night, a joyful reunion with our fellow flyers, the local sandflies. I’m sure we could learn something from them by the way. Of course, none of it is possible without the hard work and logistical skills of Roger and Kim, the clubs who loaned gliders and the many others great people who all did a great job of organising everything on the ground; the people who really made this camp so successful. An army marches on its stomach said Napoleon, and so it was at Omarama. So, to all the instructors and helpers and admin staff and cooks and bottle washers and tow pilots, and the many friends that I met at that camp - thank you. If you haven’t been on a Youth Glide camp, try one out. If you’ve never been to Omarama with YouthGlide New Zealand, I can assure you that it will be something you’ll never forget. Get there!

February–April 2018


PETER BRUNTON Age: 13 Club: Darling Down Springs Club Hours: 82 I was amazed at how many young people there were at the camp. I am more used to seeing much older pilots in the clubs I have been to so far. It was awesome to have a good laugh and make some new mates that are interested in the same stuff as I am. I particularly loved going solo; I still have to wait another two years to go solo back in Australia – yay for NZ! I will have to convince my Mum and Dad to let me come back so I can fly more by myself and finish off my B certificate. I thoroughly enjoyed learning ridge soaring as where I am from it is all thermal flying. It was great to learn a new skill. I also really enjoyed seeing different types of gliders and each of them had slightly different controls. I’ve become used to seeing the gliders we have at my club, and I saw lots of new sorts of gliders that I hadn’t seen before and it was great asking people what all the controls do. I was particularly impressed with all the different sounds coming out of the varios! Way better than our boring beeping ones. I have never seen 3 tow planes so busy towing all the gliders up. I also loved seeing the small patches of snow on the tops of the mountains. We don’t get snow anywhere near my place. Another highlight for me was doing the out-landing practice down the other end of the runway. It was really weird to be doing these circuits after doing normal circuits for 10 days. The low approach and landing was brilliant. I packed lots of learning and flying into a very short period and I am going to be re-reading my diary over the next few months to remember all the notes I took. The instructors were really fun and knew lots. It was good to have so many instructors all in the one place to help us out. Whenever someone was doing something to the gliders – rigging, cleaning, testing, someone would always take me through it if I asked. That was awesome. I am thankful to Gavin and the other gliding clubs that allowed us to use the gliders and tow planes at reduced rates, although I got so much flying in that I will probably be doing jobs around the house for a long time to repay the ‘Bank of Dad’. Thank you to all the helpers in the kitchen, the cooking was delicious and although Dad said he ate far too much and it will take him a while to lose the weight, I think it’s good as I won’t need ballast in the glider. Thank you to all the sponsors and organisers, especially Roger and Kim Read that made the camp so special for all us kids. I want to continue to improve my flying, so I can enter some competitions and one day maybe represent NZ, although this might take a while. I made lots of new friends who I hope to see around the gliding fields in the future.


February–April 2018


How Old is Too Old


90 year old John Andreae finally got to realise a life long dream and have a go at gliding. Unfortunately, after some very pleasurable learning experiences he has had to give it away, but his experiences show that age is not always a barrier to learning. Of course, everyone is different and instructors need to assess each learner as to their particular abilities. John is sad to go, but he had a good time.


n Derek Piggott’s useful book Beginning Gliding, he advises “Not many pilots are really ‘with it’ beyond the age of sixtyfive and many are too old at fifty. Learning to fly is a very different matter and, for the majority, even fifty is getting old to start gliding.” For an increasing number of fit people retiring and looking for new sports or hobbies to enrich their later decades, this advice will be unhelpful. The art of soaring over long distances in varying weather conditions is undoubtedly demanding, but there is plenty of enjoyment to be found in local thermals and wave. I have had a yearning to glide since I was young, but a lifetime of research, coupled with tramping, have kept the idea on the back burner. My family have known this and at the beginning of 2017 my daughter, Gillian, booked me in for a surprise gliding experience for my big-O birthday coming up that August. Wellington Gliding Club were understandably a little reluctant, but Ross Sutherland (“no joy rides”) was persuaded by Gillian. In the meantime, I had just finished a big research project and had the same idea. Discovering gliding at Papawai, I mentioned it to my wife, Molly, and the surprise had to be sprung. On a casual visit to Papawai Airfield in June to see how things were done, I was welcomed by Stewart Barton and his offer to give me a flight was accepted immediately. Within no time, I had a “to Solo” package and was going to Papawai every Saturday that the weather allowed. Flying instruction by many different instructors and on-the-ground lessons by Brian Sharpe

Within no time, I had a “to Solo” package and was going to Papawai every Saturday that the weather allowed. and Michael O’Donnell, backed up by Moodle and its wealth of information, revealed the world of gliding to me. I am ready to admit that my learning would have been slower than the 12-yearold Henry at the other end of the Club’s age spectrum but I enjoyed the challenge and made a gliding dictionary to help me with the plethora of new terms. 39 flights later, whether scratching for lift on a poor day, corkscrewing up a powerful thermal on a good day or sailing peacefully along at 9000 feet on the wave, I was beginning to feel comfortable in the glider. Early on, the wet winter weather saturated the Papawai Airstrip, so I experienced aerotow at Hood aerodrome as well as being whisked into the sky by winch. In the end it was my deteriorating hearing that made me decide to stop gliding. I had no trouble with hearing my instructors but understanding radio messages threatened to be a problem. Everyone at Papawai has been welcoming and encouraging. One can’t help being impressed by the effort being put in by members to establish new facilities there. Wisely, the Club wasn’t going to let an old man fly without a safety pilot but as it happened this ninety-year-old didn’t get that far. Back doing my research on brain modelling, I have a wealth of wonderful gliding memories. February–April 2018



Youth Soaring Development Mini-camp STRATFORD AIRFIELD, 15-19 JANUARY


Connor and Tim


he first day of the camp came with some of the best flying conditions of the camp, allowing the students to experience good introductory flights around Mount Taranaki and farther east along a booming convergence. Day two was another great soaring day with a focus on pre-solo training for all six students, some even managing to find and stay in some of Stratford’s difficult thermals. Day three saw more circuit training in the morning but deteriorating weather meant no flying that afternoon. Sadly, days four and five met a similar fate. Due to this poor weather, the camp was extended to a sixth day on Saturday, but a low cloud base meant only short circuits were possible on that day too.


February–April 2018

While Saturday marked the end of the camp itself, five of the six students came back the following weekend to continue their training and there has been a continued interest from all of them in the weeks since. This is very promising for the club and plans are underway for the camp to become a regular event. Thanks so much to the parents and club members who collectively provided food for the camp, to the Stratford Holiday Park for providing cheap accommodation and allowing us exclusive use of their backpackers' facility and to the TSB Community Trust for funding a majority of the flying for the week.


Liam Finer

Wet day stuff

John T and Melanie

The Taranaki Gliding Club hosted the Taranaki YouthGlide Mini-camp at Stratford Airfield during the week of 15th - 19th January. We think the six students had fun. The instructors and the gliding club certainly did. The weather was a bit Taranaki - two days of marginal thermally low cloud northerlies, followed by two and a half days of rain. The organisers of the camp extended things for a couple of days, so the students got five and a half days of flying. We stayed in tents and occupied the backpacker kitchen at The Stratford Kiwi Holiday park. Local club members and student’s families provided food and chaperone services and transport. Local instructors Tim Hardwick-Smith, Glyn Jackson and John Tullett were joined by Roger Read for what developed into an enjoyable week of flying, learning and truth stretching. The two girls and four boys came from the Taranaki area and were aged from 14 to 18. Between them, they did 78 launches for a total time of 35 hours. As part of their YouthGlide membership, they are members of the Taranaki Gliding Club and their interest in gliding did not wane over the week. One of our students, Nathan Whittleston, went solo a month after the camp. For a small club like ours, the benefits of hosting a YouthGlide Mini-camp are immediately obvious: ›› A sudden influx of keen and motivated students ›› A refresher course in the Art and Science of purposeful ground and flight instruction for instructors ›› Common short term organisational and logistic goals for the active club members (there isn't anything like making a promise, then having to deliver). If your club is ever in a position to offer to host a YouthGlide Mini-camp, or is asked to host one, you will be doing three things: ›› Gaining new and enthusiastic members ›› Reinvigorating your instructors ›› Creating new and meaningful links between gliding organisations. I would urge your club to enquire of YouthGlide about hosting a camp in your area.

The Taranaki Club needs to thank YouthGlide, the students who came, Roger Read, John Spence and Denis Green. The camp could not have proceeded without the help of these people. We are also indebted to our sponsors, who included the TSB Community Trust.

February–April 2018


a question of safety STEVEN CARE National Operationals Officer

TRIAL FLIGHTS A lot of our new membership comes from a Trial Flight. If you are doing lots of Trial Flights but not getting new members, then it may be a good idea to review how you are doing these flights. Be open, the club does these flights to attract new members. Instructors need to not just be able to do the basics, such as effects of controls as per the instructors' manual, but also be inspirational. Often we end up talking a lot, but sometimes less is more and listening is just as important as the things we say. Be honest about the cost of gliding but also highlight the tangible and intangible benefits. When you have done a great job, ask if they would be interested in coming back next weekend for another flight lesson at club rates? Ask for a time that suits them then contact them later in the week about weather, what to bring and make sure that someone is there on the day to meet and greet them. Not every instance of a Trial Flight will result in a new member but often strong prospects are turned off by over or under instruction and/or just not being asked if they would like to do another flight.

ACCIDENTS We had three accidents last season, but this year the total is eight. More importantly, we have had two fatal accidents. Our sincere condolences go out to Ricco Legler’s family and close friends in the Kaikohe club. The affect on a small club can be significant and as always, we are left asking ourselves - what could have been done to prevent such a tragedy from happening. Our condolences also go out to David Wilson’s family. While he was an Australian visitor, this is still a New Zealand accident. CAA are investigating both accidents and I am sure the root causes will be found. Summary of other accidents: Canopy hinge damage after canopy opened in flight


February–April 2018

Lower airbrake arm bend in paddock landing Canopy broken and underside of fuse stressed in paddock landing

Some recent reports are quite serious and identified significant hazards. The opportunity to take corrective action is not to be lost in the process and I am pleased that some good outcomes have resulted.

Undercarriage broken in paddock landing Pilot fractured lower vertebrae in heavy landing in paddock. Glider undamaged. Canopy broken in paddock landing Some have little or no damage, but they are still classified as accidents. Paddock landings seem to be a common theme and while I don’t feel there is any complacency involved, it does highlight the need for good training. Access to a motor glider with a cross-country instructor for training purposes seems quite limited in some areas and I suspect some of the accidents might not have happened otherwise.

PROPRIOCEPTIVE I often refer to this in training and it is about being able to feel the air with the movement of your muscles. I get students to imagine that they are the glider and the tips of the wing are their fingertips, feeling the angle of bank with their shoulders and listening to the sound of the glider. The audio vario is a great instrument for thermalling but there is always a lag and it won’t tell you how to best use the core. It is something that takes time to learn and the best way to develop your proprioceptive senses is time in the air.

CAA are asking for all accidents to have the investigation part completed, as they should. It is something that we have not been doing well for many years, mainly because there is a lack of knowledge on what to do. Good information can be found in CAA AC12-2, which can be found on the CAA website. The best way of doing it is for the CFI, or if a contest, the Contest Director to action it. The ROOs and NOO should assist. Requirement is for the investigation to be completed within 90 days of the accident.

INCIDENTS There has been quite a reduction in the number of incidents being reported. It could be that pilots have found the process cumbersome, but I also feel that some CFIs or Contest Directors are not passing on the reports as they should. Hopefully this will be resolved when we get electronic processing but meantime please keep sending the forms through.

Experience is a hard teacher. First comes the test, then the lesson.

GNZ awards & certificates


EDOUARD DEVENOGES GNZ Awards Officer 40 Eversham Road, Mt Maunganui 3116.

Pilot’s Name Mathias Ecker Graham S. Brown Erik Engelsman Jose A. Blanco Quesada Daniel L. Mathers Michael Graves Isabelle Burr Georg Schulte Christopher Terry

Club Glide Omarama Omarama GC Wellington GC Wellington GC Auckland GC Glide Omarama Auckland ASC Wellington GC Canterbury GC

Date Glider 9 12 2017 3 12 2017 5 12 2017 5 12 2017 6 12 2017 7 12 2017 23 12 2017 11 1 2018 23 1 2018

SILVER DISTANCE Norbert I. Scarlat Glide Omarama Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC

19 12 2017 G102 Astir 28 12 2017 Discus 2CT

SILVER DURATION Malcolm Piggott Piako GC Isabelle Burr Auckland ASC Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC Derek S. Wagstaff Tauranga GC

12 11 2017 15 12 2017 2 1 2018 28 12 2017

Astir Club LS 4 Discus 2CT ASW 20

SILVER HEIGHT Isabelle Burr Auckland ASC Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC Derek S. Wagstaff Tauranga GC Malcolm Piggott Piako GC

11 12 2017 28 12 2017 28 12 2017 31 12 2017

Libelle Discus 2CT ASW 20 Astir Club

SILVER BADGE 1182 Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC 1183 Derek S. Wagstaff Tauranga GC 1184 Malcolm Piggott Piako GC

9 1 2018 13 1 2018 25 1 2018

GOLD DURATION Isabelle Burr Auckland ASC Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC

15 12 2017 LS 4 2 1 2018 Discus 2CT


11 12 2017 Ventus 2b

Auckland ASC

GOLD DISTANCE Andrew C. L. Campbell Auckland GC Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC Ross Gaddes Auckland GC

28 11 2017 Ventus CT 2 1 2018 Discus 2CT 29 12 2017 Ventus 2a

GOLD BADGE 337 Ray Burns

Auckland ASC

23 12 2017

DIAMOND HEIGHT Norbert I. Scarlat

Glide Omarama

19 12 2017 G102 Astir

DIAMOND GOAL 341 Andrew C. L. Campbell Auckland GC 342 Stephen J. Davies Howard Masterton SC 343 Ross Gaddes Auckland GC

1 12 2017 Ventus CT 2 1 2018 Discus 2CT 29 12 2017 Ventus 2a


29 12 2017 Ventus 2a

Auckland GC

AIR NZ CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS Pilot's Name Club Points NORTHERN DIVISION Alain Marcuse Wellington GC 1423.39 Sarel Venter Piako GC 988.75 Neil Harker Taupo GC 986.14 Genevieve Healy Piako GC 894.91 Malcolm Piggott Piako GC 865.37 Glyn Jackson Taranaki GC 745.82 Dylan Watson Auckland GC 740.76 Michael Cooper Tauranga GC 394.24 Gregor Petrovic Auckland GC 304.49 Jason Kelly Hawkes Bay GC 194.69 Graham Cochrane Auckland GC 168.82 Sam Tullett Taranaki GC 163.75 Stephan Hughson Auckland GC 160.26 Will Hopkirk Taranaki GC 52.43 SOUTHERN DIVISION Daniel McCormack Glide Omarama 2657.11 Jyri Laukkanen Omarama GC 1684.39 Ken Montgomery Nelson GC 488.63 Colin Winterburn Canterbury GC 117.13

Photo Geoff Soper

QGP No 3369 3370 3371 3372 3373 3374 3375 3376 3377

February–April 2018




Link for club info Auckland Aviation Sports Club Club Website Club Contact Peter Thorpe Ph 09 413 8384 Base RNZAF Base Auckland (Whenuapai) 021 146 4288 Flying Weekends, Public Holidays Auckland Gliding Club Club Website Club Ph (09) 294 8881, 0276 942 942 Club Contact Ed Gray Base Appleby Rd, Drury Flying Weekends, Wednesdays, Public Holidays Canterbury Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Kevin Bethwaite Ph (03) 318 4758 Base Swamp Road, Springfield Flying Weekends, Public Holidays Central Otago Flying Club (Inc) Club Website Club Contact Phil Sumser Base Alexandra Airport Flying Sundays, and by arrangement Glide Website Contact Gavin Wills Base Omarama Airfield Flying October through April 7 days per week Gliding Hawkes Bay and Waipukurau Club Website Club Contact E-mail:, Ph 027 2877 522 Base Hastings Airfield (Bridge Pa) and Waipukurau Airfield (December & February) Flying Sundays and other days by arrangement Gliding Hutt Valley (Upper Valley Gliding Club) Club Contact Wayne Fisk Ph (04) 567-3069 Base Kaitoke Airfield, (04) 526 7336 Flying Weekends, Public Hols., Mid week by arrangement Gliding Manawatu Club Website Club Contact Ron Sanders Base Feilding Aerodrome Flying Weekends, Public holidays Gliding Wairarapa Club Website Club Contact Diana Braithwaite Ph (06) 308 9101 Base Papawai Airfield, 5 km east of Greytown Ph (06) 308 8452 or 025 445 701 Flying Weekends, or by arrangement Kaikohe Gliding Club Club Contact Peter Fiske, (09) 407 8454 Email Keith Falla Base Kaikohe Airfield, Mangakahia Road, Kaikohe Flying Sundays, Thursdays and Public Holidays Marlborough Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Base Omaka Airfield, Blenheim Flying Sundays and other days by arrangement Masterton Soaring Club Club Website Club Contact Michael O’Donnell Ph (06) 370 4282 or 021 279 4415 Base Hood Aerodrome, Masterton Flying By arrangement Nelson Lakes Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Frank Saxton Ph (03) 546 6098 Base Lake Station Airfield, St.Arnaud Ph (03) 521 1870


February–April 2018

Flying Weekends and Public Holidays Norfolk Aviation Sports Club Club Website Club Contact Kevin Wisnewski Ph (06) 756 8289 Base Norfolk Rd Flying Weekends and by appointment Omarama Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Bruce Graham Ph (03) 358 3251 Base Omarama Flying 7 days a week by arrangement Piako Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Steve Care Ph (07) 843 7654 or 027 349 1180 Base Matamata Airfield, Ph (07) 888 5972 Flying Weekends, Wednesdays and Public Holidays Rotorua Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Mike Foley Ph (07) 347 2927 Base Rotorua Airport Flying Sundays South Canterbury Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact John Eggers 33 Barnes St Timaru Base Levels Timaru & Omarama Wardell Field Flying Weekends, Public Holidays & by arrangement Taranaki Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Peter Williams Ph (06) 278 4292 Base Stratford Flying Weekends and Public Holidays Taupo Gliding Club Club Website Club Contact Tom Anderson PO Box 296, Taupo 2730 Ph (07) 378 5506 M 0274 939 272 Base Centennial Park, Taupo Flying 7 days a week Tauranga Gliding Club Club Website Club President Adrian Cable Base Tauranga Airport Flying Weekends and Public Holidays, Wednesday afternoons and other times on request Wellington Gliding Club Club Website Club President Brian Sharpe Ph 027 248 1780 Base Greytown Soaring Centre, Papawai Airfield, 5 km east of Greytown Bookings Ph 027 618 9845 (operations) Flying Weekends and Public Holidays 7 days a week December through to March

The club news is your chance to share with the rest of the country and abroad, some of what makes your club the best gliding club in the world. Club scribes, please watch the deadlines (but we'll make allowances for special circumstances so contact the editor before you panic) and likewise, the word count is supposed to be 300 words to allow everyone to have a say. If you need more words than that, you probably should write a real article about that special event. Deadline for club news for the next issue 17 April 2018.

AUCKLAND AVIATION SPORTS CLUB Boom Boom… Well the weather is flaming hot and this has been great for soaring activity. Our YouthGlide members who returned from Omarama with all sorts of ratings, experience and confidence, were out in strength taking our club fleet aloft and doing some great soaring flights. Congratulations to Geoff who went solo and to Rahul and Simon who have progressed to our PW5 over the holiday break. Our other students are progressing well and are benefiting from long soaring flights to consolidate their handling training. Our competition team did well at the Northern Regionals in late November with Steve Wallace and Steve Foreman winning their respective classes. We had four club members partake in the National Club Class and Audi Enterprise Competition held at Drury in January. In conditions that were challenging and where others landed out, our Steve Wallace managed to streak around the course to end up winning the club class at the end of the week. Steve Foreman placed a very credible fifth position and Ian O’Keefe and David Todd did well in the Audi Enterprise Competition and learnt lots. Even our tow plane partook in the comp, coming to the rescue of an unserviceable aircraft, which was great experience for our tow-pilots. Our thanks to the sponsors such as Audi and the members and volunteers from the Auckland Gliding Club and Matamata Soaring Centre who made it a great soaring event. The two Steves are now partaking in the National Multi-class competition. So, may the soaring weather continue and we soar high and long…… Skipperoo

AUCKLAND The season has started really well with at least 13 new members and some good weather to assist with training and cross-country experiences. We have two


CENTRAL OTAGO FLYING CLUB As I'm sure every glider pilot knows, this summer has been a fantastic one for soaring. Down south we've had excellent soaring weather nearly every day since November until now (end of January). Unfortunately though, we haven't actually flown much! Our active gliding membership is now very low, and over the holiday period we're often busy with other commitments so we struggle finding enough numbers to get started. However, we're back on deck now and have had excellent club soaring during the last days of January, with some long flights out of Alexandra plus some excellent local soaring while the town baked in 35 degree temperatures, 10,000 feet below. JR



international visitor instructors and as a result, the airfield has been busy since early November. It seems like members at every stage of training have been able to take advantage of every flyable day. This also takes pressure off club gliders and instructors in weekends and gives much better access for those who can alter their work commitments to suit the mid-week operation. The individuals – Hugo Corbille (France) and Gregor Petrovic (Slovenia) have formed a great team. We truly owe them a lot and wish them every success as they return to Europe in anticipation of a good 2018 summer. Hugo has just left NZ and will be attending a French Juniors camp in St Auburn and Gregor leaves in early March to return to his friends and local club in Slovenia - we will miss both of them as they have become good friends. The Drury based Audi Enterprise Comp. and NZ Club Class Nationals enjoyed consecutive flying, albeit not spectacular flights but enough to give a great time for

all involved (see the associated article for more information). We got to see a lot of countryside from the air and roadside. Thanks especially to the Matamata Soaring Centre who also assisted with event organisation. There is no doubt that the weather pattern, which affects us so much, has been different with many east and north type air movements. But we have luckily been able to fly on a lot of days which is helping the club no end. We are planning some (incremental) drainage improvements which, if all goes to plan, will extend the usefulness of the airstrip. We are also in the process of purchasing a new tractor to do the critical job of mowing and maintain our strip for safe operation. As always, feel free to drop in if in the area as we are handy to the southern side of the Auckland city and enjoy each other’s company socially on the ground and in the air as well. RG

The club has had a number of good summer soaring days but has often been frustrated by unsuitable soaring weather occurring on Sundays which is the club’s traditional flying day. Early December had fine, hot and sunny day with thermals and a convergence that was ideal for soaring flights around the area with pilots reaching from Blackhead Beach to the ranges. The following weekend the local ATC squadron undertook their annual gliding experience flights with strong thermals reported. Omarama has been visited by a number of members, led by club president Graham White, for the South Island Regionals in November, the Youth Camp in December and also post-Christmas with some memorable soaring completed. Flights to Mount Cook and return were achieved a number of times. Trials continue with the Skylux tow plane. There are a number of teething problems arising and which are being quickly resolved. Membership continues to improve with Antoni Milewski (12 years old), Pawel Milewski and Liz Husheer (Orr) joining recently. Preparations continue for the 2018 Central Districts Championships being held from Waipukurau Aerodrome from Sunday 18th to Saturday 24th February 2018 inclusive. We look forward to some more great summer soaring weather.

PIAKO Please make a note in your diary. Our Club’s 60th Anniversary is on April 14th. We will have Tiger Moth BFF, one of our original tow planes, towing some of our original

February–April 2018


CLUB NEWS gliders. The season started with our compulsory “Start of Season Briefing”. Since the SOSB, four pilots have attained their QGP and three their Silver Badge. With all this activity, new OOs were needed and Edouard Devenoges, the National Awards Officer, kindly did a course one Wednesday after flying and BBQ tea, cooked by one of our YouthGlide members Rakesh Allen. We now have ten new OOs and eighteen in total. While the weather has been a mixed bag, there has been some excellent soaring days. This is reflected in Piako’s standing on the OLC table of 3rd in NZ. Labour Weekend we welcomed Aviation Sports Club on their annual camp and the arrival of our new Pawnee tow plane CNC. The Northern Regionals saw the seasoned Piako pilots such as Tim Bromhead, the recent winner of the Central Plateau Champs and runners up David Jensen and Brett Hunter entered. Malcolm Piggott won the Novice Class and Tim Bromhead the Open. Our CFI Bob Gray leads an enthusiastic and encouraging team of instructors. Another one week ab initio course using the winch is planned for February. Our Christmas Camp ran from 26/12/17 - 5/1/18 and overlapped the MSC CrossCountry course which was unfortunately rained out. Rain delayed our annual departure to Raglan while The Walsh Flying School was running at Matamata. Tracey Gore was tow pilot for the double tow of the two Puchaz which saw Gareth Cartwright and Rakesh Allen get their cross-country tow signed off. The camp was well supported by members flying and we have gained a new member from a trial flight. The weather meant we packed up at Raglan a day early and took a club trip to Taupo instead. The erroneous weather reports resulted in many Piako members not making the trip but the sun shone on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and those that came, enjoyed good soaring conditions and the excellent hospitality of the Taupo Club who arranged nibbles and petanque on Saturday night. S&G

TARANAKI January finished on a busy note with halfa-dozen YouthGlide pilots receiving flight instruction. Both of the two-seaters were used and a good pace was maintained in the flying schedule. Tuesday – January 16th was a good day with some long flights being achieved by all. Wednesday and Thursday were rained out but Friday was a flying day. Not sure about the weekend but Thursday


February–April 2018

Hawke's Bay and Waipukurau:



February–April 2018



Taranaki: Jacob Harper and Tim Hardwick-Smith wait for the rope.

Taranaki: John Tullett listens as Melanie Bishop calls out her pre-flight checks.


February–April 2018


Tauranga: an excursion over the hill

the 25th saw four of the students flying again…and again on Sunday 28th. Three instructors were kept busy and Andrew Berry, down from Auckland, busily towing. Roger Read arrived on the Tuesday and was happy with what he saw. The visit to Omarama went well with a good total of hours racked up. Not sure of distances covered – that is I don’t know – but the glider and people all arrived back home very happy. This trip is the longest made by a club machine, if you don’t count the Standard Astir NG which we have not owned for many years now. December was busy enough for the private owners, though Dennis Green has flown the PW5 valiantly and to good effect on behalf of the club. Interesting to see how the club operation has changed during the past few years with acquisition of privately owned gliders with better performance than offered by the club. The problem for the club is that there is less glider income and interestingly enough, tow heights to 2000 feet sometimes the exception rather than the rule providing less income from that source. Progress is always good but the unintended consequences do leave things to ponder. And to finish off, Glyn Jackson is trying his luck at the NZ Multi Class Nationals at Matamata right now. The conditions are a challenge, it would seem. PJM



Activity around the club has increased since the weather has improved and there have been some great flights and with a bit of luck, the improvement in the weather will continue. Although there has been an increase in activity, it is still reasonably quiet. Before Christmas we had an ATC camp which saw cadets flying gliders as well as doing some powered training flights. We had a visit by 12 students from Tauhara College, whom all had a trial flight. There have been a couple of early achievements with Akira Petersen attaining his ‘B’ Certificate and Vijay Singh attaining his ‘A’ Certificate. We would like to welcome one new member - Matthew Pepper and returning members Karl Barrie and Peter Nicholson. This year’s Christmas camp was a quiet affair with only Lionel Page and family staying on site but those that did fly over the period had enjoyable times. Some Piako Club members are intending on having a long weekend in Taupo and we look forward to having them here. There is a social evening planned on the Saturday evening at the club to have a few rounds of boules/petanque and with the Piako club members being in town we could see an inter club challenge taking place. Time will tell. And that is about it. Enjoy the flying. Trace

Tauranga's season has been another fairly average one based on the weather. We seem to have had more than our fair share of NE conditions which does little for our type of flying out of Tauranga airspace. It's been hot and humid too, so not conducive to sitting under a canopy! The simulator has been gaining popularity when we haven't been able to get off the ground, for those wanting to test their skills on flying somewhere they wouldn't ordinarily. I'm told it takes some getting used to but is quite realistic, the graphics and VR goggles doing their best to make it 'real'. Nevertheless, some of the faithful have used the weather situation to spend more time flying out of the Waikato and both the Duo and Taurus have had a number of excursions from Tauranga, over the hill, to make the best of it. Contests have been represented by our members and aircraft keeping the interest levels up and of course, Mark Tingey from the Tauranga club represented us and NZ Gliding so well in Chile recently. It's great to now have the technology to sit at the breakfast table and watch them do battle - you can only imagine the effort going on at that level while munching on the Weetbix! Spectacular stuff! As always, hoping for better weather during late summer and Autumn to get the best out the season that's left.

February–April 2018


F OR S A L E • WA N T E D • S E R V IC E S • E V E N T S

We take our classifieds list from the GNZ website and from ads detailed with us personally. To update your ad, please go online or advise our webmaster. Ads notified to SoaringNZ will appear on this page but we are unable to make changes for you on the web page. Please contact the webmaster if your item sells.

GLIDERS SILENT IN • Self Launching Sailplane -$44K. Alisport (Italy) self launching sailplane with retracting Alisport 302efi FADEC 28hp engine driving a monoblade propeller. For full details, Google 'Alisport Silent In' or <>. Airframe 890hrs, engine and propeller less than 4hrs (new 2013). Removeable winglets, tinted canopy, usual instruments plus Trig TT21 transponder (with Mode S). Wing wheel, tail dolly and one man rig gear. Excellent open trailer with current reg. and WOF. Currently registered as Class 1 microlight. Neville Swan. Phone 09 416 7125, email: Nimbus 2b ZK-GIW • Maintenance and Hours updated also Flamview and Flarm. Mouse installed. Next ARA due Nov 2017 updated hours 1881hrs 561 flts. PU Paint, Fixed Tail plane, All Surfaces Sealed and Mylared, Tabulator Tape, Mask Winglets, Double Bladed Airbrakes, Tinted Canopy, Adjustable seat back, L-Nav, GPS-Nav, Oxy, C Mode Transponder, National Parachute, Tow out gear, Trestles, One man electric wing rigging cradle. Trailer refurbished and New Trojan Axles fitted. Glider located at Auckland. $43,000. Marc Morley. Phone 027 462 6751, email: Std Astir CS77 ZK-GMC • 1820 Hours total time. Recent annual and ARA inspection. New nose hook. Becker AR3201 radio Terra TRT 250 transponder. Good trailer. Can be viewed at the Tauranga Gliding club. May consider a syndicate. $20,000 or make an offer I can’t refuse. Ben Stimpson. Email: Phone 027 555 5485 LS8a • Amazing glider which handles like a dream. PU paint, cobra trailer, carbon panel, LX9000, leather interior and all the bits you would want and race ready. Hadleigh Bognuda. Email: Ventus 2cxt, GBZ • Half share. This is a high performance, current technology, aircraft with excellent flight characteristics with a sustainer engine. This is a unique opportunity to own a plane of this type at half the price but still enjoying the benefits of one of the best aircraft in New Zealand. To be based in Matamata. Maurice Weaver. Email: project.technologies@gmail. com phone 021 757 972 Taurus 503 VH-NUF • 20 month old Taurus M powered by an air cooled two stroke two cylinder 50 hp Rotax 503 engine. Two seat, side by side, spacious self-launching glider. Only 114 Total hours and only 30 Engine hours. Comes with Pipistrel 5 year extended Warranty. Fitted with every possible extra including a Galaxy Ballistic parachute and a full set of instruments including an LX9000 with ProStick control. Even has an E22 Tost nose release. Beautifully finished with acrylic paint and a very high build quality. Spacious cockpit with leather seats and trim and maximum cockpit load is a generous 190 kg. Large blue tinted canopy with excellent visibility. Includes a dedicated Cobra trailer for long distance travel. Price $AU 190,000 negotiable. Grant Rookes/Owen Jones. Email: phone +61 4 0799 8959 +61 8 9332 7382 GMB Grob 102 Astir CS77, Standard 15m • Under 1,000 hours #1768 Price negotiable to right buyers. Seeking potential keen young light-weight owners for delightful to fly Astir. Cockpit weight limit 88kg incl parachute. New ARA inspections & instruments done before handover. Maintenance up to date. Great Doug Hay custom built trailer in good condition. Easy rigging system, one person’s assistance required for just six minutes, the rest is a one-man rig. Excellent ground handling tow out gear. No canopy damage. L/D 37 dry,


February–April 2018

38 when ballasted. Borgelt & Winter varios. Terra Transponder + mode C & S mods. Microair 760 VHF Radio. $20,000. Warren Pitcher. Email Phone 0274 720 338 Discus 1a. ZK-GYO • Cobra Trailer with spare wheel. 2 sets of winglets. Cambridge M20 with Winpilot and Ipaq. Flarm system. Becker AR4201 radio. Borgelt B40 varios. Terra transponder. Mountain High oxygen system. Carbon fibre cylinder. Twin battery system. Gear-up warning. National 360 parachute – rectangular canopy. Tow-out gear (Tail dolly, tow bar, wing wheel, stand). Factory manuals. Location: Upper Hutt/Wellington. $70,000. Tony Flewett. Email:, phone 04 526 7882 or 021 253 3057 Ventus 2cT 15/18m • Immaculate 2002 Ventus 2cT, GRY #95 finished in PU paint. Fully equipped including LX Navigation Zeus with Flarm and AHRS. Remote stick, Eos vario, com, Txpdr and EDS 02. Komet trailer. Full set Jaxida outdoor covers. Motivated seller with genuine reason for sale. Please present all offers. Alan Belworthy. Email:, phone 0274 960 748 PW6-U. ZK-GPK • Constructed 2002. s/n 78-03-01. In very good order cockpit paint re-furbished. Normal instrumentation i.e. 2 x Altimeters and ASI's. Microair 720 Com. Borgelt B40 electric varios front and back seat. 2405 Total Service Hours in service. Full service history with Sailplane Services. Fully hydraulic disc brake Mod. (CAA approved). Currently no transponder or trailer but these can be supplied if required. Ross Gaddes. Email:, phone 027 478 9123 ASW 20 cl in great condition • Piako Gliding Club in pvt Hangar. Price includes new instruments and radio. # 20823, Manf: 1985. TT 1655 hrs with 811 launches. 2 pot finish. Instruments: Ditter KRT2 Com, Terra TXPDR, Flarm. LX Navigation EOS Vario (GPS IGC LOGGER) with Remote Stick Controller. Water bags all good in wings. Mountain High oxygen system. Homebuilt Trailer. Hangar at Piako by negotiation. $60,000 Contact S Griffin. Email:, phone 027 595 5191 Jantar STD2, ZK-GML • 1980. Hours to Date 3160. This glider is in excellent order and very good for a first glider. New wing spar pins fitted at 3000 hours. Now OK to 6000 hours. Radio, Altimeter, Transponder and E.L.T. checked May 2016. Needs a new ARA. Annual due 18-2-18. Photos on Taupo Gliding Club website. Inspection Welcome at Centennial Park, Taupo. $20,000 ono including Trailer. Contact Tom Anderson, Manager, Taupo Gliding Club. Email:, phone 07 378 5627 or 0274 939 272 PW5, ZK- GBD. 1996 • Hours to Date 2276. This glider is in excellent condition. Fuse, tail plane, wings and all control surfaces re-finished in 2008. Radio, Terra Transponder, ELT included. Owned by TGC from new, this glider has given excellent service but is now ready for a new home. Avionics all checked May 2016 – will have new annual when sold. With trailer. Photos on Taupo Gliding Club website. Inspection Welcome at Centennial Park, Taupo. $20,000 ono including Trailer. Contact Tom Anderson, Manager, Taupo Gliding Club email:, phone 07 378 5627 or 0274 939 272 Schempp-Hirth Standard Cirrus • GHD S/N 62. 1970. 1485hrs 812 flights. Original gel coat, still in good condition. New Airworthiness and all instruments checked before sale. Braked Trailer. Will require some work, some minor water damage to wooden floor during storm. New logbook, DI book and AD folder. All flying tail. Includes: TRT800H-OLED Mode S Transponder, Naviter Oudie, Cambridge Variometer, King KY97A Radio, Wheel Up Alarm, parachute (I have been unable to get packed in Auckland due to its age), 2 new batteries, Rigging Cradle and wing stand. Currently at Whenuapai. $28,000 ono. Contact Nathan Graves email: ASW-28-18E. 2013 • 15 hours. All tow out gear included. $159,000. Contact Demitry, email:, phone 021 0265 1128

GNZ members are eligible for one free non-commercial classified advertisement per issue. Deadline for receipt of advertising for our May 2018 issue is 22 April 2018.

DG808B 18m self-launch glider 2001 • TT 411 Hrs Engine Solo 2625-01 TT 23 Hrs. Annual and ARA due may 2018. Fully equipped, Winter vario/ASI/Alt, Becker AR4101 radio, Trigg TT22 transponder. LXNAV V7 linked to Oudie 2/ LXNAV Nano. Kanardia Horis mini EFIS – Horizon/ALT/IAS/TAS/Temp/HDG. Solar panels fitted with 2 x 12v 9AH additional batteries for endurance flying. One-man rigging equipment, Cobra trailer with new tyres, current rego and WOF. Parachutes Australia slim-back emergency chute available separately. All in excellent condition and ready to fly. $165,000. Contact T Harrison. or, phone 09 423 9494

Parachute originally used in a K6 • As far as I'm aware this parachute has never been used. It was repacked about 2012 by a master parachute packer in Masterton and was certified fit for use. It has been stored at home in a linen cupboard so is dry and free from mould etc. Am happy as condition of sale for the chute to be repacked (at purchasers cost) and certified as fit for use as a condition of sale. As far as I'm aware there is nothing wrong with this chute and it has been properly stored when not in use, Reason for sale is I no longer have a glider to use it on. All reasonable offers considered. Contact Paul Clarke email:, phone 027 264 2254

Schleicher ASH25e, GOA • 1210hrs, Engine 4.04hrs not currently fitted but can be refitted easily, Cambridge LNAV, Cambridge 25 GPS, Sage mechanical vario, T&S, EDS Oxygen, FSG71 radio, Transponder, 26.5m wingtip extensions with winglets, 2 parachutes, tow out gear, Cloud dancer all weather covers, Trailer. $110,000 Contact Jamie Halstead, email: halstead., phone 021 409 933.

Homebuilt self launch. 18m • 4 piece wing flapped modern airfoil all glass, disk brakes, 28hp Hirth motor, with trailer. Mostly ready for paint. Ring for more details. Contact Garry Morgan email:, phone 020 4118 7493 or 03 572 5409

HANGARS Omarama Hangar 15M slot • Slot 'T' in The Third Hangar Co Hangar (row closest to the terminal building). This slot has the end wall on one side. Email me for details. $30,000 Contact Paul Ramsay, email: paul@agriservice., phone 027 628 6448

AVIONICS Cambridge Vario readout • Suit LNAV or SNAV. As new large size readout. Requires 80mm hole. Never used. $75. Roger Sparks email: r.sparks@xtra., Phone 027 495 6560 Becker panel mount radio and WIN handheld • European 8.33 upgrade forces sale. One each panel mount and handheld radio, both in NZ ex UK. Top quality Becker panel mount radio, made in Germany AR4201 in original packing with JAA Form 1, full owners manual and quick reference instructions. Handheld radio WIN 747 including VOR and Scan functions, made in Japan, in storage box with 240V charger and original instructions. NiCad pack in good condition. Both items are in good clean condition, about 15 years old, in full working order, never opened or repaired, with one owner from new. Prefer not to split, $NZ 525 or near offer. Contact Annie Laylee email:, phone 027 943 6240

TRAILERS As new trailer, 8m X 2.4. about 1.8m high • Was used to ship my motor glider to NZ. Spare wheel. $3000. Contact Garry Morgan. Email, Phone 02041187493

OTHER FOR SALE Tim's Glider Tape, is back in stock • Contact to order more. Check website for availability. Custom made wide insulation tape, just for us! It has the perfect stretch and stickiness. Available in 24mm ($6) or 32mm ($7). Tim Bromhead. Email: phone 021 217 9049 See pics and order online at Tost High Powered Winch • Up for grabs is a high powered winch, on the back of an Izusu truck. Perfect for any club that needs a new winch. Comes with 2 new reels of wire each 1500m long, three new parachute assemblies, cable splices, crimping tool etc. V8 small block engine rated to winch up to 750kg gliders. $45,000 Bruce Drake email: Drakeaviation@hotmail. com, phone 03 313 4261

Windsock for your gate, club rooms or control van • Length: 800mm, Inlet Diameter: 250mm. Come with a wire hoop to hold open. Great for assessing wind strength and direction for many activities. Put one at your flying field gate, hanger, clubroom, control van etc. Light enough to take anywhere. I have sold these to Fishermen, Hunters, Emergency Services (for helicopter rescue) Pilots, Paragliders, Microlights you name it. Great product made from Ripstop Nylon like paragliders are constructed from. $14. Contact Pilot Pete email:, phone 027 455 9449 Copies of G Dale's The soaring engine Vol 1 Ridge thermal flatland mountain and Vol 2 Wave and convergence are available from info@thesoaringengine. Cost per book is $66 plus $5 postage and packing.

WANTED Wanted – Damaged/broken Oudie • Oudie1 (or Oudie2) to use as parts for repair. (cracked screen OK as I have a working screen). Contact Glyn Jackson email:, phone 021 0250 4646 Used Terra Transponder • Current one is US. Hamish McCaw phone 021 558 842, email: Parachute • I need a replacement chute, ideally less than 10 years old and reasonably thin, needs to be good for 100kg. Phone Jason 021 977 240, email: Glider wanted, or share of (recently qualified QGP, 80 hours, flying regularly) • Top end of budget around 20k. Hoping to travel to contests so sound roadworthy trailer important, and ideally an easy to rig type. Reasonably large cockpit for someone of medium build. Contact Derek Shipley email: Blanik L13 nose cone and front cockpit canopy in reasonably good condition for a non-flying project • Please make contact if you have any of these available for sale. Mike Packer email:, phone +64 21 059 8648 Instructors Wanted, Omarama • Experienced Instructors required at Omarama from October through March in one of the three following categories: 1. BCat Instructor, 1000 hrs, 500 hrs at OA. 2. BCat Instructor, 1000 hrs, tow rating, 200 hrs tail-wheel. 3. BCat Instructor, 1000 hrs, 500 hrs OA, German speaking. Extensive cross-country coaching as well as basic instruction experience is required. Email:, phone 03 438 9555

February–April 2018


SAILPLANE SERVICES LTD Specialist Composite Aviation Engineering

NZ agents for Schempp-Hirth Sailplanes, LXNav Soaring Equipment and Trig Avionics all state of the art equipment for soaring aircraft. Ross Gaddes email phone +64 9 294 7324 or +674 274 789 123

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