Thursday 10th to Saturday 12th August 2023

Posted: 12/08/2023 21:28

Thursday 10th.  A light to moderate SSE'ly advected a  warm, humid air mass over the UK, the maximum temperature at local RAF Leeming reaching 27.3C.  The day was generally cloudy, although there were occasional brighter spells with Cumulus, but the conditions made soaring difficult and the only pilots to have greater than an hour all flew turbos and used them at least once during their flights.  4 of the Task Week pilots flew the day's task which was to visit as many as possible of the 37 TPs within 40 km of Sutton in the hope they would visit a mystery one that would result in the pilot gaining 100 points.  The mystery TP turned out to be Churchhouses, which wasn't visited by any pilot, and the pilot gaining the most points on the day was Les Rayment in his DG800.  However, as he had won a previous day, junior pilot Amelia Forrester flying Astir DPO was declared the winner with John Ellis, who didn't fly, remaining the overall leader.  Les spent the latter part of his flight looking up at site, while the other 2 pilots flying for more than an hour were Bob Calvert in his Discus 2ct and Dean Crosby in his LS10t.  Only two other flights reached 25 minutes, these being Ivan Maczka in Astir DPO and Ian Pattingdale/guest Holly Simpson in K21 KLW.  5 First Flight pupils were flown and the day's activities included a Falke flight this adding to the 26 ATs flown off runway 20.

Friday 11th.  An overnight cold front freshened up the air mass as a moderate  SW/WSW'ly blew.  Cumulus developed relatively early and soon formed active streets that provided strong soaring conditions the moderate SW/WSW'ly wind providing hill lift and wave for some.  The day saw 43 ATs off runway 24 with landings on both 24 and 20, while there were 2 land outs and flying continued into the evening to try to reduce the backlog of First Flight pupils due to a succession of non flyable weekends.  24 of the day's launches led to flights of over 30 minutes, with 20 of these an hour or more, the latter ranging from Bob Calvert's 7:04 in his Discus 2ct to Bruce Grain/Amelia Forrester's an hour in K21 KLW, the flight including some aerobatics.  The Task Week pilots were set a task that allowed gaining points from hill soaring and pilot selected thermal and wave based cross countries and climbs, and the day was won by George Rowden in his LS 8-18t who used the active streets to cover 236 km.  Guy Hartland contributed 4 flights to the Task Week list by taking 3 YGC early solo pilots on thermal cross countries in the DG500 and also one of the day's 4 First Flight pupils on an hill soaring flight in K21 JVZ, his thermal cross country flight with Steve Ogden resulting in a second place on the day.   Non of the  Task Week pilots used wave but Bob Calvert in his Discus 2ct  and Chris Handzlik in  his DG300 did, Bob  contacting the wave over Boltby and Chris 6 km east of Masham.  Both pilots climbed to their maximum altitudes over Bedale, Bob climbing to 7,800' asl and Chris 12,700' asl.   Bob went on to visit areas around Ripon, Leyburn, Aysgarth and Northallerton with Chris staying in the  Masham /Catterick area.  Several pilots transitioned from hill to thermal lift including John Marsh in his DG303 and Dean Crosby in his LS10t, John visiting Thirsk, Northallerton, Boroughbridge and Helmsley and Dean Catterick, Boroughbridge, Pickering and Wetherby, but had to deploy his engine to get back to site.  Other pilots to deploy  their engines were Derek Taylor  in his ASW22 and Dave Latimer in his Ventus 3M both of whom initially went wave hunting around Ripon.  Derek deployed his engine just north of Boroughbridge while Dave had his low point east of Leyburn and, before returning to land, had a spot of hill soaring as far north as Thimbleby.  Task Week competitor Toby Wilson in his Standard Cirrus and Dave McKinney in his ASW 28  both landed out, this being Toby's 3rd land out of the week.  Toby landed out near Dishforth after visiting Ripon, Northallerton and Boroughbridge and Dave near Tontine after visiting Ripon and Guisborough, .  Clive Swain in his Kestrel indulged in some local cloud climbs getting to a maximum altitude of 7,500'asl while James Prosser in his Ventus ct did successive O/Rs to Tontine, Knaresborough and Harrogate North and then finished off with some hill soaring.

Saturday 12th.  A forecast of a band of heavy showers/rain in the early afternoon as a occluded front crossed the north of England followed by more showers, led to the last day of Task Week being scrubbed.  John  Ellis was declared the overall winner and received a handsome trophy to add to his overflowing trophy cabinet, his winning score of 3,444 points  being  followed closely by Les Rayment's 3,224 points with Toby Wilson 3rd on 2,962 points.  A photo of John receiving his handsome trophy from Task Week Director George Rowden in included below.

The forecast proved to be correct with early afternoon rain followed by showers, limiting flying to 4 launches prior to the arrival of the front, all the launches being for First Flight pupils in K21 KLW off runway 20, with Tim Stanley and Chris Collingham sharing the P1 duties.                    

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