Thursday 5th to Friday 6th July 2018
Posted: 08/07/2018 20:27
Thursday 5th. Thursday dawned blue with a light to moderate NW'ly wind, this slowly veering into the NE over the course of the day. Cumulus started to appear mid morning, with the first of the 6 private owners to launch, Lindsay McLane, setting off in his Ventus. Lindsay visited Barnard Castle and Grantham, but on the way home ran into overcast skies due to overconvection and had to resort to his engine after covering approximately 350 km. The overconvection happened after a couple of hours of good soaring conditions that enabled Paul Whitehead to turn Tontine, Kirton in Lindsey and Thirsk, a flight of 239 km at 103 kph. However, a number of other pilots were affected by the overcast, with Rob Bailey abandoning a double O/R to Doncaster NW after covering 180 km in his ASG29t and Peter Clay, after turning Carlton and Burn, abandoned his attempt to get to the Humber Bridge and then had to resort to the engine of his Ventus close to home when his arrival height became very marginal after a flight of around 205 km. Other cross country pilots included Jim McLane who completed a 107 km O/R to Market Weighton in his ASW24 and Phil Lazenby who took the Discus around Kirbymoorside, Foston and Thirk, 80 km and illustrated the initially good soaring conditions by climbing to 6,500'asl. All the above flights were between 1 and 4 hours, with Chris Knapp joining this list with 1:23 in the DG303. A further 7 flights exceeded 30 minutes, with the longest of these being by Nigel Burke in his DG600, 57 minutes, while the course members continued to enjoy their week with John Crossman having 54 minutes with Steve Thompson in K21 KLW. Stan had a busy day with 8 First Flight pupils and during the afternoon, 3 pilots from Rufforth landed at site before taking AT returns to their home airfield. The day's launch total numbered 31 plus 2 by the Falke.
Friday 6th. The conditions for flying on Friday, almost replicated those of Thursday, with a blue sky start in a light N'ly flow, this increasing to light to moderate with the wind direction change this time not being into the NE but into the W. Initial soaring conditions were good, with strong climbs and a high cloud base of around 6,000' asl, but cloud cover soon increased to yield an overcast, this causing a few problems to some of the 10 private owners who flew. This didn't include John Ellis, who abandoned his declared task due to an active Danger Area but flew 231 km in his DG800 with TPs at Richmond, Hawes, Pontefract and Thirsk, while Peter Clay flew around 161 km in his Ventus, Paul Whitehead 158 km in his Ventus and Rob Bailey 153 km in his ASG29. George Rowden, flying the Club 100km FAI triangle task in his LS8-18, had to resort to the engine when approaching the last TP and Phil Lazenby spent a significant part of his 53 minute flight in the Ka8 at circuit height near Bagby. Other pilots to exceed 2 hours of flying included George Goodenough in his Standard Cirrus, Jon May in his Ventus who flew Northallerton, Rufforth and Pocklington, 134 km , Jim McLane in his ASW 24, Frank Wilson in the DG303 and Dave McKinney in his ASW28. Other flights to exceed an hour included course member John Crossman with Steve Thompson in the K21 KLW with 1:28, Geoff Turner solo in K21 JVZ with 1:12, and Andy Parish and Peter Whitehead with 1:08 in the DG1000. The 35 launches of the day yielded 14 flights of > 1 hour, a further 9 > 30 minutes and allowed 6 First Flight pupils to experience soaring conditions. However, the longest flight of the day was by Jerry Murphy who managed to stay up for the 5 hours required for his Silver C leg, despite the complete overcast at times, so congratulations to him.