Hive of activity in the morning with club gliders being dragged to the far end of the field and 4 private glider being rigged. Clear blue sky but the possibility of thermal activity at some point, northerly straight down the strip offering high launches but not enough of it to bring the ridge to life. Visibility was exceptional.
K8 back on-line so I test flew it with a 2,000′ launch and put Andrew B’s repair to the tailplane through its paces. At midday, just as the first hints of thermal activity appeared, the Janus had made it’s way to the front of the grid (yes, we had a queue for launches) and a black car appears. Out steps the CFI, already wearing his parachute, steps into the caravan to sign himself off on the flying list, then straight into the Janus and does the first soaring flight of the day – 21 minutes. Chris, contain yourself as Carol insists the flight was 22:15 because that’s what the LNAV said. I was even dragged over to verify this. Your choice whether to go with the log or the LNAV. Doesn’t really matter as later Carol and Phil did a 1:40 flight and at 16:30 (after a mass landing and it looked as if the thermic part of the day was at an end) they did a 23 minute “circuit”. Not the longest flights of the day though. Trevor G topped this with a 1:53 flight but the soaring god of the day was Colin B with 2:07.
Jon G converted to the Vega which he then soared off a launch at 17:00. I was kept busy with annual checks (yup, that time has come back round) but indulged myself by ending the day taking the 52nd launch. Few feet short of the 2,000 this time and a gentle 15 minute drift to earth with the lengthening shadows.
Over17 hours flown off 52 launches. 21 members flew using 8 gliders over 7 hours. A remarkable day for this time of year. The last time we flew over 50 launches was in June 2011 and the previous highest launch count in October was in 2007 when we did 43