Friday 7th. Having had the assistance of Josephine in retrieving my notes for Friday 7th, I can now give a more comprehensive report. The day was characterised by a light and variable wind that started in the S and eventually, after becoming W’ly, finished up in the E as the sky became overcast. 32 ATs were flown, and as reported earlier, Derek Taylor in his ASW22 and Paul Whitehead in his Ventus both completed 400 km flights, Derek turning Ripon, Pontefract, Gainsborough, Pocklington and York based on his OLC trace. Phil Lazenby also flew a cross country in his Pegase, turning Beverley, Pocklington and Langtoft to cover 167 km. The good soaring conditions of the day were reflected in flight times, with 17 of the day’s flights exceeding and hour and 5 pilots exceeding 3 hrs, Bob Calvert in his Ventus with just over 5 hours, David Bradley with 4:35, Chris Thirkell with just over 3 hours in his Open Cirrus, Graham Morris with a similar time in his ASW27 and Frank Wilson with 3:27 in the club DG303. Ken Duxbury and Polly Whitehead each spent over an hour in the Astir, while David Hill and Mr Robinson made sure 2 seater pilots were represented in the list by having 1:03 in K21 JVZ. As well as the club single seaters, the 2 seaters were kept busy, partially with 3 First Flight pupils.
Saturday 8th. See the previous report.
Sunday 9th. In keeping with the variability of the UK’s weather, the good soaring weather of Saturday was replaced by a predominately cloudy day as a weak occluded front crossed the country. Although not giving any rain, the overcast skies meant that it was a day for mainly gliding, although brighter conditions in the afternoon did allow some soaring to take place, with 3 of the day’s 22 ATs leading to flights of over an hour. Two of these were by the 2 private owners to launch, Darren Lodge having just over 3 hours in his LS8 and Martyn Johnson having just under 3 hours in his DG600. John Carter and Mark Newburn made sure that club gliders were represented with 1:10 in K21 KLW, Mark later having 2 solo flights in the same glider. Steve Ogden in the Discus and John Marsh/Tony Smith in K21 JVZ, approached but did not pass the 1 hour mark with 52 and 53 minutes respectively. Most of the 6 First Flight pupils who flew, this definitely including the 2 Mile High pupils, were in the group of 8 flights to exceed 30 minutes.
Monday 10th. Monday saw the start of another holiday course, Andy Trewitt, Matthew Kirkham, Ian Marshall and David Trouse being introduced to the course instructors and , following the morning briefing, being briefed on safety and what to expect from the week. A light to moderate SSE was accompanied by cloudy skies which meant that flying was of the up round and down variety, this applying to the majority of the day’s 19 ATs. However, around 1300 hrs a weak cold front crossed the site leading to a marked veer in the wind to W’ly and a increase in strength to moderate. Consequently, the 6 flights following the passage of the front were all in excess of 30 minutes, the day giving the course members a taste of both gliding and soaring. Andy Parish and Andy Trewitt had 55 minutes in K21 KLW, while Albert Newbery and YGC member Alex Constantin had 52 minutes in K21 JVZ. The remaining course members had between 44 and 46 minutes, as did members Naomi Kennard and George Elborn in company with Albert Newbery and Steve Thompson respectively, on a day when only 3 of the club 2 seaters were flown. The day’s other aviating came in the form of 3 Falke flights, 1 of these a solo by Andy Hatfield and the other two accompanied by Paul Whitehead.
Tuesday 11th. A light to moderate W’ly that slowly veered into the NW produced another flying day and one that had sufficient soaring potential to allow a least one cross country and 7 flights to exceed an hour. 4 private owners flew, recording flight times of between 2 and 4 hours, the cross country being by Derek Taylor in his ASW 22 who visited Ripon, Pontefract, Gainsborough, Pocklington and York in a flight that covered 267 OLC kms. Bob Calvert in his Ventus, Albert Newbery and Stuart Heaton in their DG1000 and Bob Beck in his Ventus were the other private owners to fly. The course members continued with their training, this proving to be especially beneficial to David Trouse who re-soloed after having a couple of check flights on the day, his solo in K21 KLW being off the day’s last flight, so congratulations to him. Charles Willoughby added another 1:17 minutes to his log book’s solo flying time, this time flying the Astir, so yet more congratulations to him, while Colin Troise managed to repeat the achievement recorded a week of so ago by keeping the DG1000 up for 1:30 while all about him were struggling to get to 30 minutes. None of the day’s 2 seater flights managed to reach the 1 hr target, with Andy Parish and course member Matthew Kirkham coming closest with 48 minutes in the DG1000, on a day when all the club 2 seaters were flown, but only one of the single seaters, the Astir.
Wednesday 12th. A forecast for a good soaring day saw the private owners out in force, contributing 13 of the 54 launches achieved as course members, club members, visitors, a day course member and 3 First Flight pupils took to the skies, the hangars being emptied of all the club aircraft including the Falke. Derek Taylor flew a 356 km task, taking in Market Raisen, York and Sheffield East and after finishing the task flew a sea breeze front from the Tontine to Sherburn and back to Sutton, adding on further kms to give an OLC total of 502 km. George Rowden flew 420 km in his LS8 with TPs at Alfreton, Masham and Mexborough, while Rob Bailey flew a 362 km FAI triangle with TPs at Horncastle and Bakewell in his ASG29. Phil Lazenby, flying his Pegase, completed a fast 300 km YoYo with TPs at Scunthorpe, Richmond and Wetherby South, his handicapped speed of 82.2 kph no doubt the result of a domestic 3 line whip to be home in time to get to a performance of the Pirates of Penzance at the Gilbert and Sullivan Festival in Harrogate. Phil commented that the only iffy part of the flight was when crossing the Humber, a sentiment shared with Derek Taylor. However, the iffyness of this part of the world obviously became greater later in the day as Paul Whitehead in his Ventus and John Ellis in his DG800, the latter having just returned to the UK from gliding in Spain, both had to resort to their engines on returning north from the Midlands and the South of England, while Steve Thompson in his Discus landed out at Burn on the return leg of a flight to Saltby, having covered 264 km. I am not sure if Lindsay McLane, another Ventus pilot, had the same problems or managed to traverse the area on his return from his planned flight to Gransden Lodge. Another pilot of land out was Richard Watson, who flying his DG200 landed out at Pocklington on the return leg of a Sutton/Thirsk/Market Weighton/Thirsk/Sutton task. However, subject to confirmation, his Thirsk/Market Weighton leg satisfies the requirements for Silver Distance, so well done Richard. Another Silver Distance, again subject to confirmation, was also flown by Duncan Pask in his LS10, so congratulations are again due. Amid all these Silver distances and 300 to 500 km flights, special mention must be made of a 160 km flight by Andy Hatfield around the Sutton/Pocklington/Rufforth/Sutton triangle and then to Knaresborough and Helmsley, notable because it was flown in the Ka8. The day’s congratulations do not however stop there. Tom Dale added a second Bronze leg to his tally with 1:16 solo in K21 JVZ, Peter Wright successfully converted to the Discus, Mark Newburn successfully converted to the Astir and enjoyed it so much he stayed up for 1:09, while to complete the picture of a very busy and successful day, Peter Marston went solo. So well done to you all. 23 of the day’s flights exceeded an hour, with Frank Wilson joining the >4 hr brigade in the DG303 and John Carter and Ian Marshall being one of the 4 two seater crews to exceed an hour, with 1:08 in K21 KLW.