Tuesday 3rd to Saturday 7th July.

Tuesday 3rd.  A moderate SSWly flow that backed into the SE brought generally cloudy skies and some showers but allowed 15 ATs to be flown with K21 JVZ, the DG1000, DG303 and the Discus to be flown from the club fleet.  Lift was generally non-existent or, if present, very weak, so flight times were generally in  the 15- 25 minute range with only 2 flights managing to break the 30 minute barrier.  Derek Smith with one of the day’s four Trial Lesson pupils, B Millard, had 33 minutes in the DG1000, while Rob Bailey had 32 minutes in the Discus, but at least the course members Mike Rolph and Mike Greenacre got into the air.  The day’s flying activities were  completed by 3 flights in the Falke.

Wednesday 4th.  A muggy and moderate SE’ly blew all day bringing in lots of cloud, some of it low, and a succession of showers.  A brief period of better weather mid-afternoon allowed 3 ATs to be flown, all in K21 JVZ, with Ian Plant and Mike Greenacre managing 28 minutes off their AT.

Thursday 5th.  The wind was mainly L&V but became a moderate ENE later as some thundery showers in the morning moved away.  Flying commenced around 1330 hrs and continued until around 1715 hrs during which time 14 ATs were flown.  Again lift was in short supply, with flight times in the 10-20 minute range, but Ian Plant and Mike Rolph just failed to beat the 30 minute mark with 29 minutes in K21 JVZ.  Alan Dowd and Chris Gill vied for the longest single seater flight with 17 minutes each in the Astir, flights in the Discus and DG303 producing shorter flight times.  2 Falke sorties were flown but the highlight of the day was  the first solo flights of the 2 course members, Mike Rolph and Mike Greenacre, who made their flights more memorable by taking off from runway 20 and landing on runway 06.  Congratualtions to them both.   Photos of Mike Rolph after landing in K21 JVZ, Ian Plant presenting Mike Greenacre with his wings and the 2 Mikes celebrating their achievement in time honoured fashion are shown below.

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All the excitement and achievement was, however,  not confined to the airfield, for inside the workshop, Paul Whitehead and David Watsham assembled, connected  and finally soloed in the BGA Simulator which is due to be manned by YGC members at the Great Yorkshire Show starting on  the 10th July.  The picture below seems to indicate that Paul (P1) and David (P2)  have not got to grips with the “You Have Control/I have control” dialogue as the ground approaches.

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Friday 6th.  A moderate N’ly that slowly veered into the ENE kept the site in cloud for the majority of the day and produced some torrential downpours, particularly in the morning, so the only flying undertaken was on the simulator. 

Saturday 7th.  A L&V flow was accompanied by stratus that blanketed the site during the morning, but eventually lifted, the wind becoming a moderate NNE’ly by the end of the day.  Flying commenced at 1240 hrs with a sky already full of towering Cu, the  accompanying lift providing Andy Parish and Peter Crawley the opportunity to have just over an hour in the DG1000 from the first flight of the day.  The sky then rapildy filled with cloud and a few light showers developed before the sky opened up again later in the afternoon, allowing Andy Parish and Bicester member Chris Palmer, to have an hour in K21 JVZ off the last but one flight of the day.  In between times, Rob Bailey managed to hang on to a succession of weak climbs to record the 3rd flight of the day to exceed an hour, 1:21, while John Shaw, flying his LS7 and trying out some new electronic flying aids  found a nice wet patch on the airfield on his return and spent more time washing his glider clean than time in the air.   2 Falke sorties were flown and 3 Trial Lesson pupils certainly enjoyed their time in the air including the appropriately named 12 year old, Tom Sutton.

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