Latest on 33d WGC in Finland ! What if there were no sauna’s in Rayskala!?

Z lake

"Day cancelled for all classes, sauna recommended for anti-freeze".
"Eat. Sleep. Grid. Repeat.."
" A nap is recommended"

Some quotes from the 33d WGC in Finland,where it seems they have a record-cold-summer,the coldest since 50 years,  just when the soaring world visits them for some good WGC- flying, over an inspiring beautiful country with lakes and trees.
Such a pity, as we all know what great conditions they can have there in Rayskala. But it is all in the game, nobody can change it.They are top organizers and top pilots including top crews so they know the "rules"  and keep the spirit high! weather!

Z Kuusisto

On this picture from Katja you see it ALL.
No sun, no usable clouds, strong wind , rain and ...COLD even for Markku Kuusisto, who lives in Finland.

Last Wednesday there was HOPE; 300 km. tasks were set but a small shower arrived and then it was waiting and more waiting , the cloud base stayed at 2000 ft , there was over development and the wind picked up [20 kts] ; the window-to-fly-in just did was n't possible , also not for the smaller B task and that was it,..another cancelled day in Finland, number 7.Still only 4 days of soaring at that stage and 3 hopefully to go.
But a lovely evening of good music and company in the evening. I remember and know , as I have seen and heard it, that several Finnish pilots are really good musicians.

Thursday FINALLY was a BETTER day, at least that's what the pilots thought/hoped for.
They juggled with A task,  B task and a C task. In the end they set a 323 km racing task for club, 366 for standard and 372 for the 2-seaters
Time to get ALL frustration from waiting and hanging around , out of the system.TIME TO FLY!!!
Clear area above us, cloudiness and possibility of showers increasing in the afternoon. Launching will start 12:00": was the message for the day.
The latest before they left ;" Standard and 20 m class task C, the direction of the route has changed." 

Z Field in R

The grid before departure on flying day 5.
As shared by Tomi Koivisto

the skies before launching.

Z Bleu skies

As shared by the Dutch team.

So OFF they went on a pretty windy, but flyable day 5.
BUT.....It was for some TOUGH!!! Out-landing instead of finish and  those who stayed airborne....  had to deal with all kind of circumstances as hail,  rain, strong wind and thunderstorms.
At 7.18 PM the finish line was still waiting for 11 gliders but at 8.10 PM all heads were counted.

In club class some might have thought " I wish we had not flown".Only 7 pilots finished and it was a FRENCH day with 3 pilots in that top 7!!!They just moved straight away to the overall-top , behind , yes Danish pilot Rasmus. But only with 4 points difference between him and French pilot Eric Bernard!!!
A " black"  day for the German pilots as Thomas and Chrissie [ both St Libelle] landed after 50 km. and lost their top positions.They dropped from 1 and 3 to 8 and 9 .
Pretty tough as one of their German soaring mates flew that day, also in a St. Libelle,  737 km. starting SE of Luesse.
Dutch pilot Stefan was the best of the not-finishers and climbed from 11 to 6 overall.
Compliments to Pavel who won the day in his LS 1f and " got"  the 417 points,  just ahead of Brazilian pilot Henrique and French pilot Eric, who both had 1 point less.
Lucas all the way from Argentina, flew 8.6 km. and "got" 13 points!!!
S a bit of a shuffle at the top of this class.

In standard class only 3 finishing pilots . Who else then Sebastian with his Polish mate Thomasz and also Bert jr. from Belgium. They do well in soccer and in gliding our Belgian friends.Bert's brother Tijl was 5th. and climbed from 15 to 7, Bert from 11 to 2!!!!! Sebastian leads the pack after 5 days!
As Matt from the Aussie team flying together with Allan,mentioned;
We wanted to start early, but it just wasn't possible. Every time we got high enough to head towards the line, by the time we got there, we were lower than before.
A short play with the shear wave just made things worse. We eventually got going an hour after we should have (Sebastian Kawa), and caught a few quickly - some who started 45 mins ahead.
Approaching the 2nd turn, we could see a reasonable gaggle just ahead, but just couldn't reach them.
We ended up being 2nd and 3rd into the paddock."
Great difference in start times between 1.30 PM and 3.07 in this class!!!!
For news about a retrieve in wet Finland on July 3 you can go to;

Bertje en Tijl1000

Bert jr. and Tijl here in Morocco.
It is a competition with " BROTHERS". Nive very nice!

The 2 seater pilots saw after arrival that the Jones brothers nearly made it home. They had to fly in their ARCUS T a distance of 372.4 km. and flew 367.6 km. NEARLY HOME!!!!! Well they deserved the 1000 points and won their 5th day in a row and are in the overall scores after 5 days, nearly 500 points ahead of Antti and Nikke, who were 5th on Thursday.
USA team Karin and Heinz had , as Karin said " a BLAST TODAY" !!!!! And yes they did , they were 4th with 734 points.Good on them.They moved from 14 to 10!!!!

In 1988 with the European Championships we had weather like this. Some pilots just made it home others were closed in or out by showers!!!Some even could NOT start!!! Very frustrating!! You want to go but you can't ,or you start late, some an hour behind the first and you still fight to make the best out of it and after so many kilometers you are in a paddock!!! A lottery????? gliding!
Yesterday the stronger wind than expected, " killed"  the cloud streets and circumstances were tough!!!Also blue spots did not help!

No damage, which shows how good the pilots are, when so many outland.

By the way the UK pilots are doing a great job. A bit their weather??? Maybe!
Steve and Howard are [too] strong in the 2 seater class, the other brother-team Jez and Rich Hood are on a good spot 3 and 4 in standard class and just did not make it home yesterday [ 350 and 313 km!] and in club Ge and Tim , who also both just missed out on finishing [308 km.!] are on 6 and 8  AND , is not over yet!!!!Today and tomorrow still give chances for ALL.

The picture on the top is shared by the Dutch team, I presume the TC Ben and shows the spot where you jump in the ice cold lake after a very hot sauna.
One of the sauna-lovers said;
"The Sauna (pronounced Sowna) in Finland is almost a religious ideal, part of the core culture. The process is quite structured and followed precisely – get naked, shower, sit and sweat, shower, sit and drink beer, ….sit and drink beer, … more beer then a leap into the lake to really cool off. Final beer is optional.
The idea of sitting in a sweaty room with a bunch of naked men is not the most enticing of exercises, but it became clear that one should experience it a least once."
As I did, WITHOUT the beer and you know how that went.If not,...I nearly got a heart attack from jumping in the cold water. Sauna yes too cold water no, for me now.

Friday today;drying out to the West and showers in the East at this stage racing tasks from 300 km. to 370 .B tasks will be 3 hour AAT's.
You can read all about that tomorrow or on the regular Sunday!
Also what happened to the FAI flag. It's stolen again....but we expected that is n't it!?
And will be back in time! Also that is no news.

Cheers Ritz

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