[Video] Dick Butler Wins Day 12 in Concordia!

The U.S. Team was elated on 17 August when Dick Butler posted the fastest speed in the open class and won the day—for the second time in this contest. He was obviously delighted with his flight, as was his teammate, Ron Tabery (SS), who ended up a mere two points behind Dick and in second place for the day.

The weather was classic Uvalde with cumulus fields covering the task area and long streets developing from the southeast. As Ron Tabery said, “If you don’t like today, you don’t like gliding!”

Dick completed the 685 km (425 mile) task in 4 hours and 21 minutes for an average speed of 157.5 km/hr (97.8 mph). Click here to see the open class results for Day 12.

After Dick landed, well-wishers gathered round as Dick’s expert crew rolled into action. Heinz Weissenbuehler and Karin Schlosser from M&H Soaring were there to help and to congratulate Dick and Ron, as was Sherman Griffith, a former U.S. Team open class pilot and long-time friend of Dick’s. M&H applied the beautiful finish to Concordia at their workshop in Elmira just a few months ago, so they know every square centimeter of this magnificent glider.

In this morning’s U.S. Team pilots’ meeting, Dick was greeted with a standing ovation. He then thanked his teammate Ron, who, Dick said, had sacrificed speed points throughout this competition to help Dick fly faster. Dick said, “I’ll never forget it, Ron.”

Here’s a video of Dick and Ron celebrating the victory with friends, family, and crew.

Bill Elliott

Bill is a Soaring Cafe Co-Founder and the Publishing Editor. He is a two-time U.S. 18m national champion with extensive racing and cross-country soaring experience. He represented the U.S. in the 18 meter class at the 2010 and 2012 FAI World Gliding Championships Bill earned his airplane rating in 1981, but was looking for new challenges by 1989 when the lure of motorless flight induced him to join the Huntsville Soaring Club. After soloing in a Blanik L – 13, Bill began soaring cross country in the club 1-26, then bought a Duster followed by an HP-18 a few years later. It was with that HP-18 that he won the Region 5 South Sports Class Championship in 1995, his first championship. 


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