Committee:

Chairman - Jan Sime : Vice Chairman - Gordon Browne : Secretary -Caretaken by Jan Sime & Gordon Browne : Treasurer - Juanita Smith

Representatives:

HTL - Gordon Browne : Bill Voss - Dennis Bird : Postals - Jan Sime : F3B - Juanita Smith : F3J - Ian Sime : F3K - Juanita Smith/Shaun Mileson : F5J - Ivan Williams : 2 Meter/New Commers - Shaun Mileson : Slope - Izak Theron (Gauteng) Kevin Farr (WC) Rus Conradt (KZN) : Cross Country - Chris Adrian

Proficiency Badges: Juanita Smith

Calendar: Juanita Smith / Jan Sime & Gordon Browne


18 July 2008

2008 F3J World Championship - the report (part 1)

Towards the end of June 2008, the South African National F3J Teams departed to Turkey, destination of the much anticipated 6th F3J World Championships.





Swamping the airport’s check-in desk with 9 pilots, a mountain of luggage & model boxes, with reams of documentation supporting the excess baggage definitely worked – we got through check-in without a hitch, the poor clerk was completely flustered by our en-masse efficiency!

We left a rather chilly SA behind with lots of excitement & anticipation for Turkey, but everyone was a little nervous & generally more subdued than normal. After a looooong 6 hour lay-over in Dubai, we arrived in Istanbul for the first look at this interesting country. Unfortunately the rental agency required some rather strong convincing that 9 people & luggage would not fit into a Ford Mondeo even though we had already paid for a 10 seater bus (and naturally had our proof on payment available with us). During this “convincing” process, the bus arrived which the WC organisers had made available for pilots, so 2 pilots, the boxes & some luggage were squeezed into our rental & we followed the other bus out of the massive Istanbul - 15 million inhabitants & most of these have vehicles. The bus driver had an interesting interpretation of traffic signs, and whilst the left hand drive & frightening traffic took only a few seconds to get used to, his 110 kph through peak hour & then 90 kph on the open highway was incredibly frustrating after the almost 24 hrs already in transit. Craig, who had arrived in Turkey 3 days prior, began contacting us long before we reached Adapazzari – where at approx 10 pm that evening we transferred the other bus’s passengers & their luggage (less Johan Jnr’s of course) over to Craig’s rental car & we shot off towards Hendek, our base for the next 2 weeks. Our hotel was the cheapest we could find in Turkey – but the staff were friendly, & the small rooms were clean. Without even contemplating supper we collapsed into our beds, blessing our luck for the rooms with air-conditioning in the oppressive upper 20’s/lower 30’s and with nearly 100% humidity.


Our first morning was interesting – seems that watermelon, boiled eggs, olives & bread are the staple breakfast diet in Turkey. Not a drop of milk in sight! Still we tucked in & were soon whizzing down the motorway again towards the flying field. On the way the architecture was commented upon – all houses were typically square 2 – 3 stories, with seemingly very little attempt at gardening. I estimated that 1 out of three buildings were in the process of being built – often one floor already being occupied even without walls on the remaining floor(s). Chris mentioned that this might have something to do with migrant labour, but we also suspected that a construction boom may have come & gone. Most buildings are plain concrete/plaster finish, but a few were painted (typically yellow or some form of mosaic pattern). One or two buildings appeared a little worse for wear.



The trip from our hotel to the field took approx 15 minutes, with the final stretch a 2 km dirt road along a small & very straight river. The farmlands on either side appeared to be sod-farm & nut trees, but I was never sure of this. We also encountered a few bumps in the dirt road, much to the delight of the forward seated bus passengers – the rear suspension, wasn’t as nearly effective & the rear most seat was quickly distrusted with all racing for the most forward seats during the remainder of the event. By 07h00, the temp’s were already in the mid 20’s (celcius) and humidity was well above 50%! We finally arrived at the gap in the hedge & turned right into the field. I admit that I paused when I saw the spectacle that faced us – a massive expanse of mowed lawn, surrounded by trees on two sides & a huge white tent running down one side of the trees. The parking area was clearly marked off & we had to convince the parking guards that we wished to drop off equipment, instead of having to carry it over 300 metres from cars to tent. Our spot in the tent was already marked – a section measuring approx 5 x 10 metres was made available to each team, ‘cept the USA, Germany, & Slovakia who were given bigger areas due to the tent construction, & naturally Turkey who boasted an air-conditioned tent too. We always knew that the organisation would be good, but this was impressive.



We unpacked models – nothing was broken notwithstanding the baggage handlers obvious attempts to scramble or crush the contents of every box. We soon had the bungies & tow-lines out & practice sessions commenced until around 17h00 when Tx control was called by the organisers. The Tx control initially raised a number of eyebrows – simply because the organisers requested antennas only (admittedly, storing 170 Rx’s may have been viewed as a bit of a logistical problem - even for the supremely organised Turkish). Unfortunately after loosing a second junior’s model during the pre-cup to obvious interference & complaining that this was “simply unacceptable”, our organisers agreed to delay the flying by approx. 30 minutes whilst the Tx's were collected. To my knowledge, no more interference issues occured.

Part #2/..... follows

2008 F3J WC - Senior prelimin results

Senior pilots results after 12 preliminary rounds (one discard):

1 Benedikt Feigl GER 10987.40 (100.00%)
2 David Hobby AUS 10982.90 (99.96%)
3 Tobias Laemmlein GER 10977.40 (99.91%)
4 Philip Kolb GER 10975.50 (99.89%)
5 Sven Zaalberg NZL 10974.90 (99.89%)
6 Jiri Duchan CZE 10968.80 (99.83%)
7 Murat Esibatir TUR 10966.70 (99.81%)
8 Primoz Rizner SLO 10963.60 (99.78%)
9 Craig Goodrum RSA 10946.60 (99.63%)
10 Jaroslav Vostrel CZE 10944.50 (99.61%)
11 Daryl Perkins USA 10940.00 (99.57%)
12 Olivier Finck FRA 10883.20 (99.05%)
13 Juro Adamek SVK 10863.70 (98.87%)
14 Egbert Fokke V.D. NED 10841.70 (98.67%)
15 Marco Salvigni ITA 10818.00 (98.46%)
16 Antun Sikic CRO 10815.20 (98.43%)
17 Lionel Fournier FRA 10805.10 (98.34%)
18 Jan Ivancik SVK 10787.10 (98.18%)
19 Les Stockley NZL 10753.30 (97.87%)
20 Reto Baumgartner SUI 10714.30 (97.51%)
21 Jo Grini NOR 10707.30 (97.45%)
22 Scott Chisholm NZL 10699.90 (97.38%)
23 Theo Arvanitakis AUS 10676.40 (97.17%)
24 Eldad Manheim ISR 10674.90 (97.16%)
25 Ildar Sultanov RUS 10667.50 (97.09%)
26 Vitezslav Sterba CZE 10625.20 (96.70%)
27 Michael O-Reilly AUS 10614.20 (96.60%)
28 Dmytro Kharlamov UKR 10612.00 (96.58%)
29 Richard Burnoski USA 10577.20 (96.27%)
30 Makarov Volodymyr UKR 10548.10 (96.00%)
31 Christian Adrian RSA 10537.30 (95.90%)
32 Uri De-Swaan ISR 10459.70 (95.20%)
33 Gregg Voak AUS 10434.40 (94.97%)
34 Ben Clerx USA 10423.70 (94.87%)
35 Sotir Lazarkov BUL 10423.60 (94.87%)
36 Adrian Lee GBR 10419.70 (94.83%)
37 Alexender Petrenko UKR 10330.10 (94.02%)
38 Philippe Daumas FRA 10311.10 (93.84%)
39 Marco Silveria A BRA 10299.30 (93.74%)
40 Michelle Goodrum RSA 10221.50 (93.03%)
41 Janne Savolainen FIN 10215.30 (92.97%)
42 Marlon Luz BRA 10210.90 (92.93%)
43 Tuomo Kokkonen FIN 10200.10 (92.83%)
44 Rob Sanders NED 10151.20 (92.39%)
45 Alf Erik Ross NOR 10074.80 (91.69%)
46 Cody Remington USA 9974.70 (90.78%)
47 Mustafa Koc TUR 9972.80 (90.77%)
48 Ian Duff GBR 9929.20 (90.37%)
49 Damir Kmoch CRO 9917.20 (90.26%)
50 Cor Jong, de NED 9908.90 (90.18%)
51 Bojan Gergic SLO 9903.80 (90.14%)
52 Tor Midlund NOR 9855.00 (89.69%)
53 Hitoshi Ohtaka JPN 9790.80 (89.11%)
54 Valentin Valchev BUL 9782.30 (89.03%)
55 Andrey Volikov RUS 9738.60 (88.63%)
56 Konrad Oetiker SUI 9599.40 (87.37%)
57 Primoz Prhavc SLO 9593.00 (87.31%)
58 Dmitry Statkevich RUS 9565.50 (87.06%)
59 Sasa Pecinar CRO 9559.30 (87.00%)
60 Masahide Yoshida JPN 9318.90 (84.81%)
61 David Webb CAN 9121.00 (83.01%)
62 IIgaz Kalaycioglu TUR 9111.00 (82.92%)
63 Mauro Lopes BRA 9082.70 (82.66%)
64 Juraj Bartek SVK 9079.20 (82.63%)
65 Massimo Verardi ITA 8965.00 (81.59%)
66 Ruedi Baumgartner SUI 8869.10 (80.72%)
67 Hitomi Iwata JPN 8685.50 (79.05%)
68 Konstantin Ranov BUL 8640.10 (78.64%)
69 Ariel Meir ISR 8633.50 (78.58%)
70 Brian Johnson GBR 8613.10 (78.39%)
71 Giuseppe Gallizia ITA 8529.30 (77.63%)
72 Janos Arpad Gocsman ROM 8398.10 (76.43%)
73 Gheorghe Iordan ROM 8185.00 (74.49%)
74 Simon Thompson CAN 7966.20 (72.50%)
75 Katalin Milea ROM 7688.00 (69.97%)
76 Joseph-James Fitz CAN 5176.80 (47.12%)

77 Teemu Ranta FIN 3361.30 (30.59%)

2008 F3J WC - Senior fly-off results

Results after 6 fly-off rounds (one discard):

1: Benedıkt Feıgl GER 4997.30 (100.00%)
2: Jırı Duchan CZE 4997.30 (100.00%)
3: Tobıas Lammleın GER 4994.40 (99.94%)
4: Sven Zaalberg NZE 4993.50 (99.92%)
5: Craig Goodrum RSA 4991.50 (99.88%)
6: Daryl Perkıns USA 4988.70 (99.83%)
7: Prımoz Rızner SLO 4988.60 (99.83%)
8: Jaroslav Vostrel CZE 4988.50 (99.82%)
9: Davıd Hobby AUS 4982.00 (99.69%)
10:Phılıp Kolb GER 4959.20 (99.24%)
11:Murat Esıbatır TUR 4941.20 (98.88%)

2008 F3J WC - Senior Team Results

Results after 12 (preliminary) rounds and one discard:

1. GER 32940.30

20 Feigl, Benedikt 10987.4
22 Laemmlein, Tobias 10977.4
21 Kolb, Philip 10975.5

2. CZE 32538.50

17 Duchan, Jiri 10968.8
19 Vostrel, Jaroslav 10944.5
18 Sterba, Vitezslav 10625.2

3. NZL 32428.10

51 Zaalberg, Sven 10974.9
50 Stockley, Les 10753.3
52 Chisholm, Scott 10699.9

4. FRA 31999.40

28 Finck, Olivier 10883.2
27 Fournier, Lionel 10805.1
26 Daumas, Philippe 10311.1

5. USA 31940.90

71 Perkins, Daryl 10940
73 Burnoski, Richard 10577.2
72 Clerx, Ben 10423.7

6. AUS 31725.00

2 Arvanitakis, Theo 10676.4
3 O-Reilly, Michael 10614.2
1 Voak, Gregg 10434.4

7. RSA 31705.40

75 Goodrum, Craig 10946.6
77 Adrian, Christian 10537.3
76 Goodrum, Michelle 10221.5


8. UKR 31490.20

70 Kharlamov, Dmytro 10612
68 Volodymyr, Makarov 10548.1
69 Petrenko, Alexender 10330.1

9. NED 30901.80

45 Fokke V.D., Egbert 10841.7
46 Sanders, Rob 10151.2
44 Jong, de, Cor 9908.9

10. SVK 30730.00

63 Adamek, Juro 10863.7
64 Ivancik, Jan 10787.1
62 Bartek, Juraj 9079.2

11. NOR 30637.10

47 Grini, Jo 10707.3
48 Ross, Alf Erik 10074.8
49 Midlund, Tor 9855

12. SLO 30460.40

59 Rizner, Primoz 10963.6
60 Gergic, Bojan 9903.8
61 Prhavc, Primoz 9593

13. CRO 30291.70

32 Sikic, Antun 10815.2
34 Kmoch, Damir 9917.2
33 Pecinar, Sasa 9559.3

14. TUR 30050.50

66 Esibatir, Murat 10966.7
65 Koc, Mustafa 9972.8
67 Kalaycioglu, IIgaz 9111

15. RUS 29971.60

56 Sultanov, Ildar 10667.5
58 Volikov, Andrey 9738.6
57 Statkevich, Dmitry 9565.5

16. ISR 29768.10

35 Manheim, Eldad 10674.9
36 De-Swaan, Uri 10459.7
37 Meir, Ariel 8633.5

17. BRA 29592.90

9 Silveria A, Marco 10299.3
8 Luz, Marlon 10210.9
10 Lopes, Mauro 9082.7

18. SUI 29182.80

16 Baumgartner, Reto 10714.3
14 Oetiker, Konrad 9599.4
15 Baumgartner, Ruedi 8869.1

19. GBR 28962.00

31 Lee, Adrian 10419.7
29 Duff, Ian 9929.2
30 Johnson, Brian 8613.1

20. BUL 28846.00

5 Lazarkov, Sotir 10423.6
6 Valchev, Valentin 9782.3
7 Ranov, Konstantin 8640.1

21. ITA 28312.30

38 Salvigni, Marco 10818
39 Verardi, Massimo 8965
40 Gallizia, Giuseppe 8529.3

22. JPN 27795.20

43 Ohtaka, Hitoshi 9790.8
42 Yoshida, Masahide 9318.9
41 Iwata, Hitomi 8685.5

23. ROM 24271.10

54 Gocsman, Janos Arpad 8398.1
53 Iordan, Gheorghe 8185
55 Milea, Katalin 7688

24. FIN 23776.70

23 Savolainen, Janne 10215.3
24 Kokkonen, Tuomo 10200.1
25 Ranta, Teemu 3361.3

25. CAN 22264.00

12 Webb, David 9121
13 Thompson, Simon 7966.2

11 Fitz, Joseph-James 5176.8

2008 F3J WC - Junior Preliminary round results

Results after 12 preliminary rounds (1 discard):

1:AJ Mc Gowan:USA:10989.30 (100.00%)
2:Christian Reinecke:GER:10981.70 (99.93%)
3:Jan Littva:SVK:10945.10 (99.60%)
4:Tomas Kadlec:CZE:10931.70 (99.48%)
5:Brandon Beardsley:USA:10918.80 (99.36%)
6:Lesley Laan v.d.:NED:10897.00 (99.16%)
7:Johannes Weber:GER:10882.30 (99.03%)
8:Giovanni Gallizia:ITA:10873.50 (98.95%)
9:Alexander Chekh:UKR:10869.10 (98.91%)
10:Robin Galeazzi:FRA:10856.70 (98.79%)
11:Dmitry Gashnev:RUS:10851.80 (98.75%)
12:Jan Leiner:CZE:10787.40 (98.16%)
13:Manuel Reinecke:GER:10766.30 (97.97%)
14:Michael Abraham:AUS:10701.70 (97.38%)
15:Arijan Hucaljuk:CRO:10673.50 (97.13%)
16:Conrad Klintworth:RSA:10551.00 (96.01%)
17:Filip Stamenkov:BUL:10502.00 (95.57%)
18:Simon Tladi:RSA:10495.40 (95.51%)
19:Marco Gallizia:ITA:10435.10 (94.96%)
20:Ali Ersu:TUR:10415.40 (94.78%)
21:Marc Jure:SLO:10404.30 (94.68%)
22:Jeffery Walter:USA:10173.10 (92.57%)
23:Jakub Lzicar:CZE:10171.80 (92.56%)
24:Florian Bocquet:FRA:10096.30 (91.87%)
25:Georgy Dimitrov:BUL:10089.10 (91.81%)
26:Mikhail Lobov:RUS:10061.30 (91.56%)
27:Ryan Nelson:RSA:10058.60 (91.53%)
28:Carlo Gallizia:ITA:10012.40 (91.11%)
29:Alex Sakhno:UKR:9989.10 (90.90%)
30:Elad Mazor:ISR:9961.00 (90.64%)
31:Tom Dagan:ISR:9912.10 (90.20%)
32:matej Gorok:SVK:9867.60 (89.79%)
33:Yair Lange:ISR:9839.20 (89.53%)
34:Teemu Ranta:FIN:9735.50 (88.59%)
35:Metod Meolic:SLO:9694.10 (88.21%)
36:Robert Ratajc:SLO:9607.10 (87.42%)
37:Daniel Demecko:SVK:9571.90 (87.10%)
38:Nikola Francic:CRO:9504.20 (86.49%)
39:Diren Ustundag:TUR:9361.40 (85.19%)
40:Esra Koc:TUR:9205.80 (83.77%)
41:Jury Gavrylko:UKR:9205.50 (83.77%)
42:Delyan Todorov:BUL:9094.00 (82.75%)
43:Vladislav Frunze:RUS:8864.60 (80.67%)
44:Balasko Marjian:CRO:8140.40 (74.08%)
45:S Norbertcarlat;ROM;0.00 (0.00%)

2008 F3J WC - Junior Fly-off Results

1:Gıovannı Gallızıa ITA 4990.90 (100.00%)
2:Brandon Beardsley USA 4987.10 (99.92%)
3:AJ McGowan USA 4985.50 (99.89%)

4:Jan Lıttva SVK 4764.90 (95.47%)
5:Johannes Weber GER 4764.70 (95.47%)
6:Chrıstıan Reınecke GER 4760.60 (95.39%)
7:Lesley v.d.Laan NED 4673.80 (93.65%)
8:Tomas Kadlec CZE 4592.40 (92.02%)
9:Alexander Chekh UKR 4302.00 (86.20%)

2008 F3J WC - Junior Team Results

1. GER 32630.30

8 Reinecke, Christian 10981.7
10 Weber, Johannes 10882.3
9 Reinecke, Manuel 10766.3

2. USA 32081.20

41 Mc Gowan, AJ 10989.3
42 Beardsley, Brandon 10918.8
40 Walter, Jeffery 10173.1

3. CZE 31890.90

5 Kadlec, Tomas 10931.7
6 Leiner, Jan 10787.4
7 Lzicar, Jakub 10171.8

4. ITA 31321.00

20 Gallizia, Giovanni 10873.5
22 Gallizia, Marco 10435.1
21 Gallizia, Carlo 10012.4

5. RSA 31105.00

43 Klintworth, Conrad 10551
44 Tladi, Simon 10495.4
45 Nelson, Ryan 10058.6


6. SVK 30384.60

31 Littva, Jan 10945.1
32 Gorok, matej 9867.6
33 Demecko, Daniel 9571.9

7. UKR 30063.70

38 Chekh, Alexander 10869.1
37 Sakhno, Alex 9989.1
39 Gavrylko, Jury 9205.5

8. RUS 29777.70

25 Gashnev, Dmitry 10851.8
27 Lobov, Mikhail 10061.3
26 Frunze, Vladislav 8864.6

9. ISR 29712.30

18 Mazor, Elad 9961
19 Dagan, Tom 9912.1
17 Lange, Yair 9839.2

10. SLO 29705.50

28 Jure, Marc 10404.3
30 Meolic, Metod 9694.1
29 Ratajc, Robert 9607.1

11. BUL 29685.10

3 Stamenkov, Filip 10502
2 Dimitrov, Georgy 10089.1
4 Todorov, Delyan 9094

12. TUR 28982.60

35 Ersu, Ali 10415.4
34 Ustundag, Diren 9361.4
36 Koc, Esra 9205.8

13. CRO 28318.10

14 Hucaljuk, Arijan 10673.5
16 Francic, Nikola 9504.2
15 Marjian, Balasko 8140.4

14. FRA 20953.00

13 Galeazzi, Robin 10856.7
12 Bocquet, Florian 10096.3

15. NED 10897.00

23 Laan v.d., Lesley 10897

16. AUS 10701.70

1 Abraham, Michael 10701.7

17. FIN 9735.50

11 Ranta, Teemu 9735.5

12. ROM 0.00

24 Norbertcarlat, S 0

2008 F3J World Championship - Juniors

I am not only immensely proud of the achievements of our F3J junior pilots, but am awed by the level of maturity & professionalism they have consistently displayed. Based on my observations of these gifted individuals, I think SA’s F3J future is looking very good.

The Junior team was formed during the initial selection process which commenced around mid 2007. Due the number of juniors involved actively in competitive RC gliding during 2006/2007, it was agreed that the juniors need only qualify for selection based on achieving 80% of the top score during senior qualification rounds. In the event that more than 3 juniors were eligible, a fly-off approach would be adopted as per the seniors. This is a reasonable approach as the results achieved by our top flyers are comparable with world standards, and the 80% was based on an evaluation of past international junior results. For the record, the juniors all exceeded this minimum. Initially 3 juniors (the same team as the 2006 Slovakia campaign) qualified – giving a number of senior pilots some serious challenge in the qualification process. Due to factors outside of our control, one of the juniors identified that they were unable to attend the WC early on, but we were fortunate to receive interest from another individual who soon qualified according to the same set of criteria.

The Junior Protea Team of Conrad Klintworth, Simon Tladi & Ryan Nelson were accepted on their qualification results without questions by the SIG/SAMAA. Soon after this, Ian Lessem was appointed by the pilots as their Junior Team Manager as per the previously agreed team manager process, and due to the fact that Ian has considerable experience in F3J & Junior World Championships, and was busy coaching Simon Tladi already (Simon incidentally won the first RC Gliding competition in 2008, competing on even terms with the seniors at the January Highveld Thermal League event hosted by ETB).

Late in 2007, the Juniors began an intense campaign of practices & competitive flying, Conrad converted early on to the Pike Perfect with devastating results to the senior flyers, Simon & Ryan staying with the X-Pro / Shadow combination, and also providing a strong challenge to senior pilots. It was clear that their youth had negligible affect on their piloting skill & these individuals stood proud as extremely competent pilots amongst the far more “experienced”. Strong support from their families and a self determination & inner strength that I have never witnessed amongst kids before, ensured that they remained with their practice schedules, each pilot continuing to improve measurably as the World Championships drew nearer.

The sponsors played a huge role – SAMAA’s Transformation & Development in particularly providing an ex gratia donation to significantly assist the juniors with their considerable expenses of competing internationally. The SAMAA T&D is mainly funded from the Lotto organisation & this year saw a considerable increase in funding that will permit this community focused SAMAA group continue to ensure a place for an aeromodelling future in South Africa. In addition, a generous donation from Basil Read was made to assist the Juniors & Senior towards transporting their model aircraft to the WC. Kaytie provided embroidery and printing services for team golf & T-shirts, which soon became much sought after items by teams from other countries – it was particularly amusing to see Daryl Perkins wear his SA T-shirt two days in a row; he claimed it brought him good luck in his landings! The MGA & SAMAA also provided funds for the FAI licenses & WC entry fees, whilst individuals including Peter Eagle, Rudolf Engelmann, Craig Goodrum, and Wolfgang Steffny all contributed towards assisting the team in terms of their own time & money.

Whilst funding was happening separately, the juniors continued practising, and reverted to low level thermal & landings using bungy launches. I often heard that each pilot completed 20 – 30 launch & land type practices per day, and I worried about their batteries being drained (no, not the model’s flight packs, but rather just the concern of individual burn-out), but these pilots persevered & even appeared to up the number of and intensity of their practises!

Suddenly the big day arrived, and with boxes & bags packed an excited group met at OR Tambo, departing for Turkey using Emirates via Dubai. I was bemused by the fact that Emirates insisted on their free luggage wrapping service due to the incredibly high incidence of thefts encountered at OR Tambo – made even more interesting as OR Tambo officially denied claims of excessive baggage theft the same week we departed?

After a loooong trip, we finally arrived in Turkey, passed out in our hotel & the next day were absolutely stunned by the amazing facilities provided by our accomplished hosts. A huge mowed grass field & massive tents, with onsite toilets, AC & restaurant serves only to scratch at the surface of this organisation – it was AWESOME! Soon the juniors’ models were extracted from the travel boxes & even though it was obvious that every baggage handler from Cape Town to Cairo had attempted to rubbish the contents, not a single model appeared damaged! The bungy was laid out & practice lines set-up with the towers getting to “grips” with the grassy conditions. Poor frequency control soon saw Conrad’s #1 Pike shot out of the sky & the explanation of the Russian helper that he had “his” peg on the board was not acceptable to the team. When Simon’s Ryan’s XPro was also shot down & virtually totalled, a brief but somewhat blunt word in the ear of the organisers was sufficient to impose rigorous Tx control. Chris, was able to rebuild Ryan’s XPro fuselage from jigsaw sized pieces in less than a day (!) & Ryan’s dad went on a mission to blow his 2008, 2009, 20… model budget by buying as many new models as possible for Ryan (obviously not for dad, of course!).

Initial conditions were excellent – a light breeze triggering strong thermals provided the SA team’s with virtual homeground advantage and first scores looked very promising. The afternoon weather soon took a turn for the vicious, when a strong wind started blowing & model carnage ensued. The lightly loaded models being struck by massive sink & simply unable to penetrate, these soon began dropping out far away from the field. Simon was one of the first to experience this & his Shadow smote a tree with considerable force, exceeding the material strength of most components by a fair margin and the resulting bag of bits were rendered somewhat useless for the remainder of the Championships. During this time, Ryan also “elected” to land in tree, but did so with a little more elegance – Craig scrambling to the top of a “very thin & bendy” branch before it was retrieved with hardly a scratch (dad’s blown budget was saved). During all this time & even with these set-back’s, the juniors mustered on as if they were veterans of world cups & showed considerable maturity & emotional strength far beyond their years.

Their social interaction with neighbouring teams was exceptional & Simon Tladi, in particular, soon had the entire WC eating out of his hand.

The results were extremely promising with Conrad lying 3rd overall until an unfortunate 9th round which saw 11 of the 12 pilots forced to land early due to oppressive sink & one pilot max the 10 minutes slot due to a high risk gamble – which dropped Conrad down to an unrecoverable 18th. The most amazing thing was that he came back to win his next slot – proving just how professional & mature a pilot this young man is. Simon Tladi was especially consistent, and although he achieved a few slot wins, the initial out-landing cost him severely in an incredibly closely contested event where a few seconds or only 5 landing points cost people many positions. Finally Ryan, flying in his first WC, was able to maintain his mid 20th placing throughout, & his ice cool demeanour behind those sunglasses were enough to scare a number of seasoned seniors! Their combined results were simply stunning, with a 5th overall position against absolutely world class pilots. In fact, I have to remind myself time & again that these are juniors – there humbling flying skill & maturity make it difficult to remember this somewhat minor detail.

With ongoing support from the gliding community, and financial support from SAMAA, the astonishingly high level of skills displayed by our juniors bodes well for a very bright F3J gliding future in South Africa.

Well done, Conrad (“rash”) Klintworth, Simon (“lightning”) Tladi, and Ryan (“chucky”) Nelson.
I believe that everyone will agree that YOU have made us all proud.


Electric glider - fun day at Groen Goud

The Groen Goud Glider Club will be hosting a electric glider day from 09h00 until sunset/batteries flat on Sunday, 20 July 2008. Based just west of Centurion, the Groen Goud field is located on a vast sod (grass) farm & is surely one of finest gliding fields available in SA.

Any electric glider will do with no competition. Just a fun & relaxing day to bring family & picnic baskets along to share with like minded enthusiasts. I understand that some participation from full size gliders has also been arranged - so this promises to be a very interesting day.

Fly safely

16 July 2008

2008 F3J World Championships

An exhausted National F3J Team arrived back in SA on Tuesday afternoon, 8 July 2008. After months of preparation & practice, the 7th (seniors) and 5th (juniors) team results are the best achieved (to my knowledge) to date. Craig Goodrum (senior pilot) also achieved 5th place in the individual rankings in a very closely contested fly-off that had everyone rivited to their flying.

Following tremendous interest shown by the people at home, the team wishes to share some of their experiences with people interested in F3J and are in the process of preparing a presentation. The interest shown in SA has also prompted some discussion towards hosting the 2012 F3J world championships in SA, and more details will be discussed /published in due course.

Due to time limitations & professional/family commitments, a more comprehensive report & additional details will be made available in the near future. For now, suffice to say that I am immensely proud of the achievements of our teams, and that they have created a tremendous amount of goodwill amongst fellow competitor and organisers alike.

They are to be commended for their professional attitude towards the World Championships & congratulated on their results achieved.

Fly safely