Dan Smith Aerobatic Trophy

dansmithThe Dan Smith Aerobatic Trophy takes place at LGC on Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd April. The organisers have asked for Cadet help over the weekend to help launch and retrieve the gliders involved in the competition.

It should be a good weekend and you will be able to see for yourselves what a K21 is really capable of!

Liam and Eddie are collating names of you that are able to help so please let them know if you want to come along.

Keeping Up To Date

Just a quick re-blog of some useful links from last year:

Blog:

The blog will be the main way of updating you with any cadet news and upcoming events so make sure you keep checking it! If you have a bad memory or are likely to forget there is a link on the right hand side where you can insert your email address and you will be emailed whenever there is an update on here. PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU DO THIS! Also, please make sure Robin and Dan have your updated email address so that we can email you any information as is necessary.

E-mail Updates:

Signing up to the LGC mailing lists is essential for all the up to date information:

https://filter.blacknosugar.com/mailman/listinfo/LGC (you will need your membership number)

The British Gliding Association also have a variety of mailing lists that you may be interested in (eg. updates on Junior gliding).

https://www.gliding.co.uk/subscriptions/step1.php

Weekend Online Booking:

http://www.e-allocator.com/

Facebook pages:

LGC Cadet page:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/466826323385113/

LGC Members Page:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2500810527/

UK Cadets page:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/627867633906186/

There are also links to the public LGC page, UK Junior Gliding and BGA pages on the right hand side.

LGC Weather Page

http://www.instructor.andrewroch.co.uk/weather.htm

Junior Nationals 2016

Applications are now being accepted for the 2016 Junior Championships which will take place at Tibenham from 20th-28th August. As in past years, competition training in two-seater gliders will also be available to young pilots to help prepare then to fly in a rated competition in subsequent years.

Anyone can apply as long as their 26th birthday falls after 2016. A Silver badge is required to fly in the competition but pilots without a Silver can enter now in anticipation of gaining their Silver before the competition starts. If a pilot is uncertain about whether they will gain their Silver before the competition starts, they can apply for both the competition and the training,

Applications for both the competition and the training should be made by 30th April 2016 via the BGA web site at http://legacy.gliding.co.uk/juniorsentry. Applications from previously unsuccessful applicants are welcome. Questions about the competition and two-seat training applications should be directed to Andy Cockerell – ls4a535@gmail.comJuniors

Photo taken of the grid at last years comp (sorry, not sure who took it!)

LGC Cadet Dates and Opportunities 2016

Hopefully more will be added as the year goes on so keep an eye on the blog…

Jan 30                    Latest date for re-applying to the scheme

Most important if you want to be part of Cadet scheme in 2016

 

Feb 5-7                 Juniors Winter Series – The Long Mynd

BGA Juniors event for the senior cadets.

 

Mar 19                  Cadet Induction day

The day to welcome and induct the new cadets, we will use a similar format to last year. One K21 will be allocated to the cadet team on the day. It is primarily for giving the new cadets a first flight. Please try and come along, it’ll be a chance to meet the new cadets and help them get their first flights.

 

Apr 15-17             Juniors Winter Series – Nympsfield

BGA Juniors event for the senior cadets.

 

Jul 30 – Aug 7     Dunstable Regionals

This is the main week of the year which you should try and set aside and plan to be at the club to help with the competition and have a lot of fun in the process. The cadet glider will probably be flying in this comp with some of the senior cadets.

 

Aug 9-10              Cadet Challenge (Nene Valley G.C.)

An inter club, fun cadet gliding competition, which Dunstable hosted and won last time round. Only provisional at this stage, further details will appear here in due course.

 

Aug 20-28            Junior Nationals – Tibenham

One lucky cadet will fly the cadet glider in the comp and represent the Dunstable cadets.

 

Sep 3-24               Llanbedr expedition (TBC subject to airfield commitments)

This is being organised as a general club expedition by Robin and Dan. However, it has been timed to allow cadets to participate before returning to school or university. The Duo Discus and the cadet glider will be there.

HCV at the Junior Nationals – day three

It was the first decent day of the comp and a 310k task was set!  I was the 5th glider to launch so knew I was going to be waiting around for a while before the start gate opened.  The conditions in the start sector were fantastic; I spent a fun hour and a half bombing around at cloud base waiting for everyone to launch and the start gate to open.

I set off within minutes of the start opening as I knew I had a long flight ahead and that it would be a push to get it complete before the weather shut down.

The first leg was into wind towards Burbage with plenty of gliders marking the good climbs.  The next leg of 128k was the same length as most of my previous XC’s, a quite daunting thought!  It was downwind and with a couple of 5kt climbs up to 6000’, it was by far the best part of the flight and I managed to fly this leg at an XC speed of 112km/h!

It was strange flying over Milton Keynes and being able to spot Dunstable and knowing that I was a long way from finishing when I was used to being on final glide from there!

As we turned the far turnpoint near Sackville farm, the spreadout started and I had a long glide towards the next possible climb (almost 30k away) with around 10 other gliders.

It was from here that the flight became challenging and a change of gear was necessary.  Gone were the cruises at 80kts, instead we slowed right down to 60kts in an effort to preserve as much height as possible before the next climb as they were getting further apart and of weakening strength.

I spent the next two hours struggling to stay above 2500’ and expecting to land out at any moment!  I don’t know how but I managed to stay airborne and slowly push into the 20kt headwind.  Not easy when the climbs are about 1.5kts.

Quite a few of the group I had left the furthest turnpoint with had landed out, with only a few of us left.

I found myself near Gloucester airport with the only promising climb being on their ILS approach.  I spotted a couple of other gliders in the thermal so radioed up Gloucester to let them know of my position.  They were very helpful, re-directing traffic onto other runways to enable us to stay in the thermal and even offering for us to land there if we got too low!  I didn’t find the thermal worked for me as I was so low down so I pushed out a little to try and find some better fields.

I had picked a decent field and had just started to plan my circuit when I bumped into a very welcome 3kt climb which I took up to cloud base, which was now only 3500’.  My flight computer showed me as being 500’ under glide from Aston Down, all I needed was one more climb!

I set off towards Aston Down, getting lower and lower whilst not finding any lift under the clouds where I expected it.  I flew over a glider in a grass field but pushed on in an effort to get at least 300k down track!  I managed this but with the flight computer complaining of my final glide being through terrain and no possible lift around, I turned back to the inviting field already occupied with another glider.

day3-field
(my field with Ben’s LS8 behind)

The field turned out to be a little steeper than it looked from the air, but being a Dunstable pilot I wasn’t fazed a bit!  The other pilot, Ben Hughes, had already found the farmer so within minutes of landing we had the field access sorted.

The gate was nice and close to the field and Gatfield’s ford focus managed to get out of the field fine with Ben’s LS8 trailer.  Unfortunately, Rhoan’s car didn’t quite manage with HCV.  We spent a good while taking run-ups but with no luck.  We eventually had to get someone from Aston Down to bring his 4×4 to the field to pull the trailer up the hill.

My flight ended up being 7 hours and 20 minutes, by far my longest and most enjoyable flight!

The next few days were scrubbed so this ended up being the last competition day.  I had never thought I’d end up in the top 20 but I managed to come 19th overall!

If anyone is thinking of doing the juniors next year, even just for the two seat training, go for it!  It’s a fantastic experience, you’ll meet loads of great people and learn heaps about XC flying.