Author Archive for Gena Tabery

2014 WGC in Leszno, Day 7

At pilot meeting today, MikeYoung of the UK seemed to speak for many when he asked, “Did you set the tasks last night?” Perhaps because the organizers did not want to face the wrath of those who believed that canceling Tuesday, 5 August, was a mistake, there was no captains’ meeting scheduled this morning. Several…

2014 WGC: How to Avoid a Mid-Air Collision

Today’s pilot meeting included a safety talk about mid-air collisions from the competition Chief Steward Robert Danewid. From 1974 to 2013, there have been 58 mid-air collisions involving gliders. Gaggle flying seems to be the culprit for many of these collisions. Some possible solutions to reducing such collisions include: 1) Giving a bonus to pilots…

WGC 2014 Leszno Day 4 & 5

30 July, Day 4For the fourth day, all three classes will fly area tasks. Each class today will fly with 3 areas with a Minimum Time of 2 hours. Fear of late afternoon thunderstorms drives this decision, which makes for a short day of flying and a de-valued day, pointswise. Rain is predictedtomorrow, although the…

Morning Routine

The sun rises in Leszno about 4:00. We sleep a little later than that, but SS and DB are usually on the airfield between 6:30 and 7:00. By7:30, the entire U.S. team has arrived and is assembling. It is to the advantage of the big-winged planes to weave through the trailers and to the scales sooner rather…

U.S. Team WGC 2014, Opening Ceremonies

At the 2012 World Gliding Championship in Uvalde, the U.S. team contrived to be first in the parade by walking under the sign “America.” This year, the U.S. team was last, strangely, behind team Uruguay. One hundred thirty two pilots, and many more crew members, marched down Ulitza ? to the Rynek, or Town Square.…

On the Fly — WGC 24 July 2014: Team USA

Today is the third of four official practice days, and the rain is relentless. Captain Dennis Linnekin took advantage of the weather to call a complete Team USA meeting: all six pilots, full crew, and interpreter Greg Swiderski. Then he made a few observations and exhortations. The runway situation is great. There is a well-marked…

Gena Tabery, On the Fly: Ground Operations

The 2011 Pre-World Competition in Uvalde helped to make ground operations as efficient as those at any WGC. Ground Operations Chief David Coggins, who ran operations last summer, spent three weekends with his crew in Houston making 113 ropes. Said Mr. …

Gena Tabery, On the Fly: Flight Operations

The 2011 Pre-World Competition in Uvalde helped to make flight operations as efficient as those at any WGC. Flight Operations Chief David Coggins, who ran operations last summer, spent three weekends with his crew in Houston making 113 ropes. Said Mr. Coggins, “We knew that according to rules, we knew we’d need a maximum of 120. We had 99 planes in the competition, so we ended up with a few extra, which have come in handy.” Coggins also made seven tow bars for rope retrieval, and a special bar attached to the back of his Suburban for dragging the ropes straight during retrieval and for laying them out in the morning.

Gena Tabery, On the Fly: Teamwork

The United States team operates at a disadvantage, compared to other countries, because United States contest rules specifically forbid team flying. Most U.S. pilots have not flown collaboratively with a teammate until they reach the world competition …

Gena Tabery, On the Fly: Days 10-11

For Open Class winner Oscar Goudrian (OG) of South Africa, Day 10 turned out to be the slowest winning day of this race, at 134.5 kph, or 83.6 mph. The fastest speed of the day went to Australia’s 18-meter pilot, David Jansen (4D), at 141.2 kph, or 87.7 mph. As for Day 11, another day,…