23 July 2010

Dave's Practice Day 3

Today was another interesting day.  The launch started at 1155 and I was first in line for the second day in a row.

Immediately off tow I was able to climb to cloudbase at 4500 (42 AGL) and then went and hung out in a quiet part of the sky while I ate a couple of sandwiches before the start.

I started earlier than I wanted to because a group flew past me and started while I was waiting and it was too hot to wait another hour for a more optimal 2 pm start.  According to the LX, the temperature was 36 C at 3000 ft today.

I had a reasonable run along the first leg and averaged about 115 km/hr into the first turn area.  With that speed I decided I needed to go to the center of the first zone since the second zone jammed up against the Romanian border and would only allow to shorten the task, not lengthen it.

As it turns out, I went about 10 km too far in the first zone as the lift became weaker and I got lower and had to stop for weaker thermals and then cut short the second turn as I was now in an overtime position.

The thermals today were a little bit tricky and hard to find and center.  I flew a search pattern under many clouds and just couldn't find the lift and other clouds you could pull right into 5 kts.  There were also large areas with ragged cu and no workable lift and several people landed out today.  My task speed was 97 km/hr a long drop from my first leg speed of 115!

I had a good final glide of about 74 km with an average speed around 125 km/hr for the last leg and that made up for some of the slow bits on the second leg.

Tomorrow we have the Official Opening, so there is no flying and we get a chance to rest after the last 4 days of flying before it starts for real on Sunday!

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