Friday, August 21, 2015

Krushevo, pre-Euros, day 3, task win :-)

Day 3 started with rain in the morning and almost everyone was already giving up the idea of having a flying day. Briefing was delayed until 11:30 and because the sun started to appear at that time, we went to the Treskavec launch on the west side of the valley. Whilst driving there, the conditions improved dramatically, the question just was when the thermal activity would start and if there would still be enough time for a task.

We set a 75 km task, which was pretty optimistic at the time, because although clouds were abundant on the east side of the valley, there were few in our area and we also didn't have thermal cycles passing by launch. But, we wanted to get everything going as fast as possible, to have a reasonable task window.

The rigids launched first and all thermaled up, be it slowly. So, there was hesitation with the flex to launch, because it was easy to bomb out. I launched quite early behind Primoz, Alex and Anton. The best part of the cycle had just passed and I saw the others climb out while I had a bit of a struggle. In the meantime, the wind sock on launch showed winds from the back and no-one could launch for quite a while. I realized that probably few people were going to be able to take the only start gate in time.

I searched around in the area and very slowly gained height. A few minutes before the start gate, people launched again, straight into a strong thermal. Primoz and Anton were able to take the start gate, while I thermaled up in the 25 pilot gaggle. The majority of the pilots, including me, took the start gate 7 minutes late. For the task, it would have been better if we would have added another start gate.

Anyway, I enjoyed being in the air after dark grey morning skies and we started racing. My glide to the first turnpoint was bad and the clouds in the valley looked nice. I had nothing to lose in the overall standings, since I messed up the first task, so I could take the risk of trying it on my own through the valley. And it worked out super nice with beautiful climbs. The flying was very enjoyable and the late afternoon light was just beautiful. Sasha made some beautiful pictures while flying.

I hadn't seen anybody along the course and flew into goal first. Always nice ;-) The naughty lawyer was there to capture the moment:

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