A Bit of This and a Bit of That!

Picture courtesy Bert Schmelzer Jr. br />
Four teams from Kronau ready for a Bundesliga race.

Young Bert Schmelzer is back in Switzerland and shares with us his fantastic pictures again. I love them!!!!! Here are a few pictures loved by a lot of people, also “not FB viewers”, from his latest series “ ridge flight towards Thun and Back” [19 pictures].


In Finland the last day of the Nationals was cancelled as well, so only ONE dayA pity.

The people flying in France in Issoudun were all very pleased with the atmosphere, as I heard. A great mix of over 100 pilots, among them, top women practising for the real stuff in Issoudun in 2013, top pilots fighting for the National title in 18 m, “lovers” of the “elegant ” Libelle and pilots flying the annual International competition; how could it be different??? The weather is the weather can’t help it! We all know!

Last sunday the summer comps started at Malden close to Nijmegen, the place where more than 40,000 people from all over the world (to be precise from 71 different countries) started yesterday for four days of walking, [unfortunately in the rain] the famous 4 Daagse!
Not so many, but still 26 pilots started for the competition,in 2 classes, where you can qualify for the Dutch Nationals. So in general pilots compete here when they want to continue in or like/love competition soaring.
But as it is always a great atmosphere at Malden, pilots who fly the WGC already compete as well. Also pilots who just love soaring.

Between ALL the rain, a small window was “found” to let the pilots fly that Sunday! 123 km for club class with winner Gijs Schwarte in an ASW19 gaining only 71 points for finishing under these pretty marginal circumstances. From 12 pilots in this class only two finished!
In open class nobody from the 14 pilots finished but one pilot flew over 100 km, gaining 29 points!
Monday was cancelled!
Yesterday was cancelled as well, they tried hard but no window was found. Some pilots flew locally.
Today they fly again. A bigger window, even here more in the west, though not very flash here at the moment, but DRY finally and temperatures up to 25 dgr after 15 dgr the last days.
A 2.30 AAT has to be flown in open class, as well as for club. First start should be at 12.

The airport Malden [where I went solo!!!!]

In Holland we do have a real soaring family as well and they are flying in Malden. It’s Dad Ferdie Kuijpers, who flew EGC’s and WGC’s in the past [ flying in Malden the duo discus XL]. Mum Frouwke, who is top sport co-ordinator, a steward at FAI comps, and represents Holland at IGC meetings, flies in the ASW 20. Son Tim still studies to be an airline pilot, but as you know he was the JWGC winner/champion in Musbach. Daughter Maaike just finished her study at university in biology and has a new job, so no flying at this competition, but her partner Gijs Schwarte flies and won day 1. Another Schwarte, also a Tim, flies an LS4, and the youngest son of Frouwke and Ferdie, Jasper, flies in club class in an LS 4 as well.

Ferdie, Maaike, Casper, Ger [brother of Frouwke, also a glider pilot and task setter during the last Dutch Nationals] and Frouwke.
AND WGC champion Tim

Miserable weather as well during the Swedish 18m Nationals in combination with the 2 seaters.[14-21 of July]
–172 km on day 1 with one finishefront of 13 participants and NO valid day.
–A 1.15 AAT on day 2 with a best result of 42.9 km and NO valid day.
–Day 3, FINALLY, it was better!!!! 218 km was flown by ALL pilots except one.
–Day 4; a 2.15 AAT. The 18 m ASG 29 had 297.8 km in 2.42, but handicapped the ASG 29 with 272 km in 2.23 was better and got the most points, 753.
Nice to see Torbjörn Hägnander is still flying [18m LS-10] After four days he is in first place overall with 1333 point--just 5 points above Holger Erikkson in an ASH 26.
Torbjörn was one of the Swedish competitors in Uvalde in 1991. By the way, one Swedish 18 m pilot, Rulf Ringertz, is not competing, as he will compete in this year's WGC and should be on his way now to Texas.

A few of my soaring mates are flying in Fuentemilanos at the moment. Good to see Michael is there as well now! And…at least they have great weather with flights up to over 800 km in an ASH 26!

Enough news, so back to see if I can save my beautiful garden after it is “ruined” by TOO much rain. Cheers ... Ritz

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Since before the word “blog” was created, Ritz wrote about her experiences every day after flying at the Sportavia Soaring Center in Australia, where she helped run a successful business from 1996 to 2005. Her first blogs on soaring.eu date from June 2006, and she has been blogging ever since, joining Soaring Café in January 2011. She says her experience as columnist for Gliding International and blogger for Soaring Café has enriched her world more than she can say and that her soaring friends keep her young and ”going”.

Read Ritz' full bio under the menu item About -> Our Contributors.

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