Saturday 26th. A light to moderate SE’ly brought hazy conditions and limited soaring opportunities but flying action covered 7 hours from 1000 hrs to 1700 hrs with the club’s K21s. DG1000, Discus and Astir in action but only 2 private owners launching. In all 25 ATs were flown, including 6 Trial Lesson pupils and 1 guest and there was a single Falke flight. Only 1 flight managed in excess of an hour, the Jon May/Steve Ball/Duo Discus combination staying aloft for 1:48. Roger Burghall took guest Lewis Calder for a 39 minute flight in the K21 and Andy Hatfield had 25 minutes in the Astir.
Sunday 27th. The light wind started in the SSE but slowly veered into the SW as the day wore on, the air mass generating thermals by around 1030 hrs, albeit with a 2000′ QFE cloud base. Cloud base and thermal strength improved as the wind veered, cloud base eventually reaching 5000′ asl and 5 kt thermals were to be had. 16 private owners took advantage of the conditions contributing to the 35 ATsflown on the day, with flying starting at just after 1000 hrs and going on until 1730 hrs. 22 of the day’s flights exceeded an hour so the 5 Trial Lesson pupils had a good introduction to thermal soaring. Jon May/Steve Ball had the longest flight of the day in their Duo Discus but no details have emerged of where they went. Bill Payton/Stuart Heaton in their DG1000t turned Thirskbefore going way down south to turn Alton Towers, while Derek Taylor and Andy Wright both did 300 km flights, Derek via an O/R to Grantham and Andy via a Yo Yo with turning points at Doncaster N, Leyburn and Pontefract. Tony Waddoup literally made a flying visit to RAF Linton on Ouse in his Ka6. Kelly and Chris Teagle “hot bedded” their LS6C with successive flights around the Sut/Ruf/Poc/Sut triangle, Chris covering the 100 kms at 73 kph and Kelly at 62.9 kph in spite of Kelly carrying water. The fact that the water was amniotic fluid may have contributed to the result. Back at Sutton Eric Preston had 2:14 in the club Discus and Messrs Kiely and Hancock had 1:03 in the K21. Among all this activity, the Falke managed a single flight.
Monday 28th. A light to moderate WSW’ly airstream saw thermals blossom by mid morning although the cloud base was initially only 1800′ QFE. The cloud base rose steadily during the day and the sunny conditions generated some strong thermals, encouraging 11 private owners to rig. 25 ATs were flown off runway 24 with landings on either 20 or 24 and the club K21s, Astir, DG303 and Discus were well utilised with club members, a Day course and 2 Trial Lesson pupils. 14 of the day’s flights exceeded an hour, with Bill Payton circumventing the Doncaster ATZ anticlockwise inhis Ventus 2 Cxt, via Aysgarth Falls, Sheffield South, Tuxford Junction and the Humber Bridge, a distance of around 350 km, the total flying time being 5:20. Bill had the unique experience of out climbing a carrier bag over Pontefract. George Rowden did a 304 km YoYo in his LS8t, turning Pontefract, Catterick and Beverley. Martyn Johnson also turned Pontefract and Staindrop in his DG600 but returned to Sutton to record 219 km, having to abandon his attempt to get to Garforth due to wave influence and increasing cloud. Ian Bullous also found the going difficult late in the afternoon and, with the A1 north of Dishforth only 800′ below, started the engine on his DG800. The wave influence that had contributed to Martyn’s return to Sutton, was investigated by a number of pilots, but only one, Malcolm Winter in his Kestrel managed a significant climb, contacting the wave over Dalton and eventually reaching 8500′ asl. Back at Sutton the Day course member enjoyed his day clocking up a couple of hours flying while David Watsham had 2:16 in the club Discus and Ian Plant/Andy Bowes had 52 minutes in the K21. The sky clouded in around 4pm and some light showers arrived around 6pm but in between Albert and Martin Newbery in their DG1000t landed back having done an O/R to Gainsborough, managing to find a last thermal near Pocklington that got them on their final glide to Sutton.
Just for the record, the attendees on the very successful course of the previous week together with their course instructor’s John Carter and Dave Ashby and the aftermath of Will Parr’s solo have been captured for posterity and are shown below.