Dartmoor Gliding News-Sunday 25th March 2018

We’re flying!  After a delay caused by ‘an Obstruction on the Runway’ (see photo), by lunchtime we were up and running, with check flights and simulated launch failures (cable breaks) aplenty as the instructing team strove to check out as many members as possible (in which they were fortuitously assisted by the addition of an hour’s daylight...) 

Delayed Due to an Obstruction on the Runway
And it wasn’t all ‘up, round and down’  as the light NW’ly and heat from that rare golden orb in the sky started to set off thermals in the valley to the north of the site, which were instantly spotted and taken advantage of by Andy Davey, Roger Appleboom and Peter Howarth in the K-8 (Roger reaching 1,800ft whilst Peter managed 2,200ft in their half-hour flights), whilst Mark Jerman shot to 1,600ft on his check flight before being told to get back on the ground and join the queue for the K-8! 

A packed grid under a promising sky...
Trainees Ed Borlase and Dave Westcott enjoyed the opportunity to get back in the groove under increasingly cloud-free conditions, whilst Leith Whittington did his best to line the Treasurer’s pockets with as many launches as possible in his Dart 17R (one of which included 2 minutes in wave...) and Rich Roberts fly his ever so sleek Discus for the first time from Brentor this year.  As the afternoon drew on (and Allan Holland was being checked out by Peter Howarth) we decided that low angle of the sun was becoming an increasing threat and hence it was time to pack the kit away safety – at 7pm! 

A successful day saw 25 launches achieved on the 25th day of the month.  Thanks go in bucket-loads to our winch drivers, Dave Downton and Roger Appleboom, who between them coped with nine simulated/real cable breaks, which with a nearly-90 degree crosswind resulted in the cable going over the boundary on a number of occasions, that can (it is suspected form the launchpoint end) cause a certain amount of, er, frustration... and opportunity to build  teamwork with the retrieve driver, of course..! Well Done Guys!

Martin Cropper

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