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Captain’s Report ~ Day #8 (August 6)

Captain’s Report ~ Day #8 (August 6)

Pete Alexander
Greetings from Hosin!
Majority of the US Pilots had flow 10+ days since their arrival.  The rest day on Sunday was very much appreciated with most pilots and crews out sight seeing, attending to a few chores, and a little bit of tuning on a couple sailplanes.
What a difference a new week makes… We have had a definite change in the weather.  We woke to bright blue crisp skies this morning. It was the coldest morning, since we arrived over 2 weeks ago without any showers expected. A cold front had pushed through the contest area Sunday afternoon with a few thunderstorms and showers. Late Sunday afternoon, the sky was filled with cu’s.
Unfortunately, today turned out to be a tough day because the temperature did not quite reach the high of the day.  This resulted in blue thermals; no cu’s and a gaggle-tastic day.  Before the start, it was very difficult to find climbs near all start areas. The soaring improved about 20 – 25 km out on course. With the fairly narrow lift band for the day, you had to be very careful not to get into difficulty by falling below it.
All classes had 2 – 3 gaggles, some were well behaved and some not so much. Some of our pilots left gaggles before that wanted to due to the bad behavior in the gaggles. Two sailplanes from the Open Class (HAB and FJ) “touched” about 34.5 kms out on the first leg resulting in some cosmetic damage. They both returned to Hosin without a problem. Both expect to fly tomorrow.  Lot’s of teams were complaining about gaggling behavior yesterday.  It should be an interesting briefing today.
Sitting in US Team Camp watching the online trackers this afternoon… We hear a rumble coming from the distance. We look towards the rumble and here comes a B-25 which is completely polished turning right over the edge of the team camps: While Paul Weeden (5E Crew) waits for the tow rope to hook up 5E, Erik Nelson (5E pilot) takes a few moments of quiet time before takeoff: The launch begins: Andrew Watson (70 Crew) and Paul Weeden (5E Crew) assuming the appropriate grid squatting position. We squatted a little over 1.5 hours before the launch began today: Launch crew seeking shade under a JS3 wing: The view from the grid on grass Runway 06 this morning:
Stay tuned for a video from Mike Robison (PWR) about his Day #8 recap.
Tomorrow night is International Night where all teams provide food and beverages from their country. This event is one of the high points of the contest.
Stay tuned for more…

Melanie is strictly ground crew (N1K), but is an avid lover of the sport.  She is the ussoaringteams.org web master and loves new ideas so feel free to ask questions, offer suggestions, and give her additional content!

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