Inter Club League 2003 - Easterton

Saturday 3rd May

The forecast for the whole weekend had been abominable which of course meant that we all woke up on Saturday morning to bright blue skies and streeting thermals!The forecasts we had were all virtually useless so ignoring them, we looked at the sky and decided to set some tasks anyway.

The Pundits had a 108km O/R to Invernes and the Intermediate and Novice classes were 56km O/R to Ferness.

The grid was launched and surprisingly few people fell out despite 8/8 cloud cover and heavy showers all around. However, the showers to the west put paid to most peoples efforts to gain ground and most were forced to return to Easterton without making the minimum 20km down task. There were two heroes who did manage to push on though and they were both Fulmar pilots.

Pete Smith in the K18 punched through the shower and made 22km to win the Novice class landing just short of the turn point.

Mark Brown flying in the pundit class won by flying down the spey valley and crossing the moor near Tomatin actually turned Inverness before landing out shortly afterwards. A thoroughly deserved win and an outstanding start for Fulmar who are the defending champions.

Sunday 5th May

Sunday produced the southerly wave that was forecast in the morning. It was heaving and consequently a very optimistic 306km double O/R was set for the Pundits and intermediate classes. The task was Easterton to Dalwhinnie to Dufftown to Feshie and back to Easterton. The novices were given a 129km O/R to Feshie.

Although the crosswind was quite strong, we managed to launch the grid without incident and the intermediate class were launching into strong wave directly overhead. Climbs to 12000’ were achieved before the start gate even opened for that class which was a shame because the start height was 6000’! Unfortunately, as the grid continued to launch, the wave started to collapse and many competitors were forced to land back for relights. None of the Novice class could get anywhere and theirs was a non scoring day. The pundits and intermediates fared a little better with Guy Davidson and David Chalmers battling for first place in intermediate. David landed out at Tomatin and Guy flew to the same area before backtracking to land out near Forres. They had both been halted by a particularly solid cloud barring the way south. It was very close with David winning on speed points as we were scoring according to national ladder rules. Andrew Warbrick in the pundit class managed to thermal nearly the whole way to Feshie winning the class for Cairngorm. He stayed the night there and aerotow retrieved the next morning to claim his prize!

Monday 6th May

Mondays forecast was a task setters nightmare. Showers could break out anywhere but particularly to the west. The East was forecast to be marginally better but Easterton was the wrong side of the dividing line. After much discussion, an assigned area task was set for all three classes with Keith as one sector looking east and Dufftown the second sector looking south and east and both 30km radius. The idea was to fly as far as possible into each sector and then home to make the biggest triangle possible.
 The morning looked good with thermals up to 4200’ at 11am. The grid was duly launched with the novices first followed by the intermediates and finally the pundit class. This turned into the most competitive day of them all with everyone in the Pundit class scoring and the other classes also scoring. We even had one competitor complete a task in the novice class and finish at height restarting in the intermediate class and scoring again! Almost certainly a first especially as he won both classes! Well done to Dave Thomson for that. The only other finisher was John Williams who gave us the only competition finish of the whole weekend after turning Dufftown and Aberchirder to win the Pundit class.
 The pundit class was a real battle with everyone managing to fly far enough to score. Roy Wilson and Andrew Warbrick both managed to reach the limits of each sector before both landing out near Keith. The Acro with Trevor Cooke and Tom Hughes made a determined effort to score but the competition was too strong and they came in last place but deserve a mention for a gallant effort landing out near Glass.

Click HERE for the daily scores but as far as the final points for each club is concerned here are the results:

SGU                   3     3         15     21         1st
FULMAR          12    5         2       19         2nd
CAIRNGORM  3      7         5       15         3rd
HIGHLAND      3     7          4       14         4th
DEESIDE          3      3         5       11         5th
ANGUS             2     1         2         5         6th

Highland Gliding Club
Easterton Airfield
United Kingdom

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