The name Goondiwindi derives from an Aboriginal word ,meaning "the resting place of the birds".
Last 2 weeks they had BIG birds in Goondiwindi, as Gliding Queensland was this years proud host of the Sport Class and Club Class Nationals there.A little town , about 345 km. SW of Brisbane, with less than 6000 inhabitants welcomed the 48 pilots with their crews and gave them a great time.
The first Nationals of the 2014/2015 season were a fact.
The airfield at Goondiwindi as seen by Mike Codling.
These 34th Nationals counted 9 days out of 11 and the early spring weather was good for the pilots, as already during the practice day a speed of 152 km./h. was flown by WGC pilot David Jansen over a distance of 380 km. during a 2.30 AAT.
More strong weather days, more WGC pilots , old but also young and more fulfilled dreams and lost illusions.Here is the story.
Day 1 had in both classes a small task,a 2 and 2.30 AAT. In club class 21 pilots finished , unfortunately 4 did n't, among them WGC pilot Lisa Trotter,[ ASW 20] who flew 237.9 km., more then a lot of other pilots but she did not finish.A loss of more than 400 points. BUT,...on the last day she was on spot 13, so some good soaring after this day 1.
In the Sport class WGC pilot Tom Claffey [ASG 29] won with a speed of 127 km./h. over 359.2 km.
Day 2 was cancelled but after the less good weather had passed by a fixed task from 408.8 km. was set in Sport Class and Ian Craigie in his JS 1 flew as a Speedy Gonzales over the area; 156.2 km. /h.being 6 km. faster than the runner up.
In club class a huge effort by Steven Cesko flying his " little" St. Libelle with a speed of 112.7 km./h. over 368.8 km. during a 3.15 AAT. His handicap is 980, the one from WGC pilot Bruce Taylor in his ASW 20b, 1095.Bruce was the runner up with a speed of 122 km./h.
The ASW 20's did well as on day 3, with a set 411.8 km.- task , another one won now with Jim Crowhurst in it; 121.3 km./h.
In sport class David had another speedy day with 139.6 km./h. over 465.3 km.
The wind was tough over most of the days and it could be a bit chilly, but still good speed in Sport Class as Butch showed on day 4 with 140.8 km./h. over 538.2 km., Tom on day 5 with 156.4 km./h. over 475.6 km. , Andrew Georgeson on day 6 with 142.9 km./h. over 434.6 km. , Ian on day 7 with 129.3 km./h. over 437.6 km.,David again on day 8 with 139.1 km./h. over 416.9 km and on day 9 the last even BLUE day with WGC pilot Peter Trotter flying over 487.2 km. with a speed of 118.8 km.
A good spot overall on 7 by young Andrew Maddocks.
After 9 days the new CHAMPION was known; TOM CLAFFEY , 100 points ahead of David Jansen and Andrew Georgeson just beat Butch [John Buchanan] with 6 points!!!!
In club class they " suffered" from the same tough wind and the same blue last day, but also they were good with their speed.Bruce flew 124.2 km.h. over 413.6 km.and one day later even 10 km. faster 134.6 km. over 475.5 km.
Allan Barnes was the only one out-landing in his class on day 4, loosing about 640 points, dropping from 7 to 17 in his LS 1f, BUT he fought himself back to a nice 8th spot in the end.
The young ones like Adam Woolley and Matthew Scutter occupied a good 7th and 6th spot, whilst Terry Cubley in his "old" LS 3 was 3d. I met him and Butch already in 1984 during the Pre Worlds in Rieti.
The new CLUB CLASS CHAMPION is Jim Crowhurst and the runner up is Bruce Taylor.
We are going to see many more comps in Australia and South Africa, so stay tuned as when they are on I will keep you informed again.
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