Moderator: Comp Committee
4 posts • Page 1 of 1
Day 1: We picked up a couple of sport pilots to fill the chase truck. It might me a little harder on our driver because they always fly a different course and sometimes a different direction. Mike Digtoff said it would be no problem. He is the best driver I have run across. My jitters go away once I start setting up my glider. Starting order is based on world points. I have a few because I did Big Springs a month ago. I am 30th in a field of about 35 open class pilots. Kendall is 2nd because the first 15 pilots go in reverse order. He has to stay up more than 90 minutes before the first start clock at 2:30. He is at 7000 on the edge of the start cylinder 20 minutes before the first clock and watching all the big names trying to get where he is. He went looking for something to take him higher and I found him at 5000 trying to get back in the game. We climb together to 6000 just west of Francisco Grande. We glide to the edge of the cylinder toward the first turn point. We arenâ€™t all that high any more. I see him speed off to the west perpendicular to course line. I look up and see just about everybody who is anybody. We fly underneath and Greg out climbs me. I get the pinch off. I struggle for a long time when I decide to go back to the tow paddock. I see Greg there with a couple of late comers and we climb up again, slowly, very slowly. We miss the second clock. Greg goes on course line from 6k and I follow 300 meters behind. The thing about Arizona is that it is a long way in-between thermals. We are down to 3500 before we find another. Again itâ€™s a slow climb. Greg leads out again. I take my eyes off of him to watch a T2 searching for lift. I canâ€™t see Greg anymore. Itâ€™s a long way in-between thermals. Thatâ€™s not a mistake that I said it twice. Getting low I see some high power lines going my direction. I fly over them thinking they often trigger lift. I am rewarded and start climbing at 400/min. Greg comes in from the west and below me. The climb gets ratty about 4500. I learned from earlier climbs if I wait it out it will get better after that. As I am climbing I notice what might be a glider landed off to the south, but something about it looks funny. I watch it and it doesnâ€™t move. For a long time it doesnâ€™t move. As I fly overhead I see it is nose down and still not moving. I continue on glide. When Greg sees it he calls it in to Chippy, who is driving for an Elsinore pilot. Chippy goes looking for a meet official. Greg circles down giving location information and land beside it thinking he is going to find a dead body. Just before he lands Terry Reynolds comes out and kicks some dirt. He unhooks and says,â€�The first thing we are going to do is put you glider in a position that doesnâ€™t look like you crashedâ€�. Then he gets out of his harness. I continue on to the first turn point, getting there about 300 feet over the ground. I head back north and scratch my way through every light piece of lift I can find. I make it about a mile and a half then land. Not a good day but my jitters are gone.
eat right, exercise, die anyway!
Hey Jay, glad the jitters are gone. Good luck in the future days. Sounds like Greg tanked his day to help out a pilot who didn't need help. I think every pilot has an obligation to show some signs that all is OK when you land out. Simple stuff like position the glider in a normal way, quickly unhook so folks in the air can see you walking around, etc. Grrr.