The closing ceremony is in the books, and the 34th WGC has been declared Official. The contest was something of a French triumph, with 4 of the 9 podium positions hoisting the Tricolore, including two firsts (Standard and 20-Meter classes) and a second (Club class). Coach & Captain Eric Napoleon stood on the podium to collect the Team trophy, and has to be proud of what his pilots have accomplished.
It wasn’t a podium finish, but I must call attention Mike Robison’s efforts in 20-Meter class. With the medical issue that caused co-pilot Larry Timpson to have to withdraw, their Arcus could no longer be scored as an official entry. But Mike was allowed to fly hors concours, and if you add up the points his speeds would have earned, you find he’d have finished seventh, only a few points out of 6th.
I’m happy to report that the FAI flag flew proudly at the closing ceremony. The story behind this was not made public. Some say that pranksters returned the flag (or was it two flags?) that had been purloined during the course of the competition. A less noble suggestion is that a replacement flag was ordered from FAI headquarters in Switzerland, and was express-shipped here (presumably at considerable expense). In any case, all was well at the closing ceremony. Skies looked threatening, but rain mercifully held off until about 45 minutes after all trophies were awarded, national anthems played (La Marsaillaise featured prominently), and celebratory songs sung.
John Good has been a member of the US Team at many World Gliding Championship events, serving as crew, Team Captain and report author. He was the Deputy Championship Director/ Task-setter at the 2012 WGC in Uvalde, Texas and brings a wealth of international rules knowledge as Captain.