Tuesday 1.11.2015 – Cancelled first competition day

What can you write about a first official competition day, which was cancelled? The day was really hot from the morning and wind kept getting stronger. Jenny told in the briefing that despite of the high cloud, the weather should be good enough for about 500 km task, as the cloudbase would be high and some cumulus will develop under that. Towings started after 15 minutes of postponing at 12 o’clock. Wind was really strong at that point, someone said it would have been 20 kts.

Just a part of the club class was launched, when the wind had changed about 40 degrees. We were launching at runway 04, and we were just in a junction of runways 04 and 36. So all we had to do was change the direction of launches just a little bit. I heard that the Australian team “met man” Alex gave some information of the weather to one of the Australian team members. He had followed the weather from the morning and saw that the front was developing much faster and getting thicker than predicted. I heard the competition director & co. having a short conversation should the day be cancelled or not. At that point the launches had been stopped for a while. The decision was made quite quickly, but I think it was based on good reasons.

Meeting and planning

After the cancellation I got back to the clubhouse and started going through all the suggestions what SGP guys have still for the website, and sorting out the pictures from yesterday and today. Then we had a meeting with Adam, Terry, Sean and Wojtek about the information and news, we were listened by the Head steward and Jury president Max. Now we have quite a good plan for publishing tracking, news, stories, photos, videos and latest feelings.

In the afternoon some peculiar weather system started developing, and all I can say that I’ve seen similar in Khartoum, Sudan. That’s haboob – a sandstorm coming in the afternoon just before the raining front arrives. But this was apparently much milder, as you could see the airfield, but not the woods behind it. Also there was heavy winds, I got some of that on video. I noticed the weather as I saw on the corner of my eye how Adam was running towards the official flags. When I got up from my chair, I saw he was holding the FAI flag against his chest. I don’t know if the wind had ripped it off from the pole or what, but Adam said something about the wind trying to steal the flag. I heard that two gliders were damaged. Danish team ASW28 wasn’t tied down properly so it moved backwards and bumped into LS8, which gladly didn’t suffer big damages and is still flyable. Danish team will borrow a rudder from Jenny (our weather lady) so it seems that everybody can fly.

I thought this would have been easy day because of the cancellation, but I left the airfield same time as always.

I don’t have a car here and as I have lot of stuff with me, it’s not that comfortable idea to walk or drive a bike. That’s why I always try to find a lift, which has been quite successful so far. In the beginning I was calling to Pete to take me here and there, but I started feeling quite uncomfortable when doing that, as he never wasn’t at the same place as I was. So usually I just start walking towards the town, and hope some car will go out as well. So far I have never had to walk out from the gate. Today was the same.

I got a lift to the town from Italian team, it was great as we don’t talk that much with them. Perhaps they now know that I won’t bite.

Dinner time

After all I had dinner with 10 other people at the local RSL club. Few other teams were there too. Then I heard that the party which had been originally planned to be in the hangar, was going to take place at the Royal hotel. I had just got up to leave and see the party, when Andy Davis and his wife Pam arrived to our table. I’ve heard so many hero-stories of Andy that I thought that I should stay there for a while so I could tell stories at home. But I headed to the Royal hotel instead, just to find out that it was raining outside and that the party had ended half an hour ago. I walked back to my hotel, which fortunately isn’t far from the Royal as I had to walk in rain, there was some kind of party at the Imperial verandah. I am not sure if that was German team or part of it there, but their language sure sounded like that.

Evenings start to be alike, we sat in common room with Pete and Wojtek and we watched the next part of the Star Trek movies. Well, mostly we talked and followed this one big cockroach which flew in and was chasing after Wojtek’s chocolate cookies.

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