26 January 2010

Not a pretty sight...

the result list that is. Or rather the scores for us Finnish pilots in the Monarca Open 2010. Yesterday Karoliina however did quite well with 41 km, good for a 67th place, and nicely second of the ladies.

But today's task may well have been even trickier. It was "only" 56 km, with a exit start around the Diente turnpoint, then on via La Pila to Aguila; all these points in the "flats". From Aguila then back over the plateau to Javon and via a detour over Sacama back to Valle. Although today we saw some cumulus forming it was very difficult to get high in the valley. karoliina and Jyrki didn't make it to Diente and I myself bombed out after La Pila.

In the series of mistakes not to make: 1 km before La Pila I was in a dispersed gaggle switching a bit from one group to the other to chase the best core. I was eventually going up slightly quicker and when the thermal got a bit better organized decided to fly out to take the turnpoint and then return to the same thermal. Although that quite often is a reasonable tactic, this time I was too low. Especially as the thermals were fairly short lived (in that area) as I should have noticed and taken into account. So upon my return the thermal wasn't there and I had too little altitude to search for a new one (track).

Finnish pilot Make saved our day though. He patiently worked his way along the course and did a good 44 km of it. Several of the top pilots didn't make it today so the rankings will be shuffled a lot.

There were also a couple of pilots that got caught in the turbulence of the "crazy thermal" today and had to use their reserve parachutes. They landed in the trees but did not occur any damage. Also their equipment seemed to have survived the ordeal in good order, kudos to the excellent rescue team at this competition.

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