Thursday, August 27, 2009

Sports TV

This was an interview I did for Sports TV before the comp in Rio. It starts on the hang gliding at 2mins 30 seconds..
Monday, August 24, 2009

Brasilia Presentation.

They had a live band in the Esplanada with lots of people,drinks and food. For the final Results of the competition CLICK HERE RESULTS.
The Open class winners.
Moyes had a great Results taking out 1st, 3rd and 5th place. Dustin and I finished nearly 500 points in front of 3rd place. Pedro matos who has not competed in 6 years flew his new fully carbon Litespeed RS 4 into 3rd place overall. Pedro aslo took out Brasilian Champion after so many years away from the sport.
Brasilian Champions.
Pedro and I very happy boys.
Gringos and their trophies. Time to celebrate my first win here in Brasil with some Caparinhas.

Brasilia day 7

Today was looking much better on the wind front so we raced off to launch. We set up and there were small cu's poping behind launch on the platau. They set an almost straight line with 2 turnpoints to Brasilia.
My glider on launch with the wind blowing straight up.
Just as launch opened you could see that it was starting to build up and we still had 1 hr before the start. It was very light conditions on launch and the first few scratched for a little while. I dove off when they started to climb and got up slowly in the stable airmass infront of the clouds.
I topped out at 1700m and glided down the ridge with a few others towards the start circle. I climbed again back to 1800m this time and then flew right to the 7 km exit mark and waited there for the next 20 mins.
Dustin had launched not long after me but was stuck down low and we they start came around I spotted him low on the ridge. A big gaggle headed for the 1st turnpoint and just before we got there we encountered some rain. It was not a lot and most of us flew through it and in to the sun and climbed again. About 10 landed just before the forest as they were lower and got drilled in the rain.
This is what it looked like when I reached the forest.
I was climbing back up in a good thermal with the lead gaggle but looking toward the next turnpoint was not looking good. Dustin now came in just above me after getting high on the edge of the last storm front that hit the 1st turnpoint.
As we get higher it is getting darker and heavier.
We were now all in one big gaggle with a wall of rain in front of us. Some tried to go around the rain like we did on the last glide but it was eveident the day was going to be called off. Dustin and Nene went through the rain and continued on to the Esplanada without the last turnpoint.
My Gps showing the direction of the next turnpoint.
Everyone else turned around and landed close by a road before the storm came in. I landed at a big fuel station with green grass and food while I waited for my retrieve to turn up.
So results have not changed since round 4 which means that I am the 2009 Brasilia Champion..:-)

Brasilia day 6

Well the wind was not looking good before we made the long drive to launch. Once arrving it was quite clear that we would not be flying again today as we could not takeoff. This wind is going down in the history books as it is so rare to have this wind at this time of the year. The clouds looked amazing but when we arrived back it had already overdeveloped and Brasilia saw its first rain in 3 months. One day to go.
Friday, August 21, 2009

Brasilia day 5

Well the cold front is arriving here today and after a 1.5hr drive to launch to check the conditions it was decided to have rest day. The wind was quite strong at times from over the back and there is only one takeoff here in Brasilia.
Everyone waiting on launch for a decision to be made.
I have done now about 12 competitions here and I think I have only ever seen it cancelled once before for this same reason. Im not sure what the weather will do the next couple of days but we could have the same problem with wind tomorow.
Saturday is supposed to be from the ENE again but with chance of rain, so we will just have to wait and see if we fly.
As you can see here the wind is not in our favour. Cloudbase is at about 3,000m again.
Thursday, August 20, 2009

Brasilia Results 2009

Brasilia day 4

After a long task yesterday and cirrus cloud covering the sun they set a 113km task with 3 turnpoints. No one wanted to be the first to takeoff as the wind was very cross and light with few cycles coming through.
Haroldo the comp Director.
Eduardo was the first to go and he scratched for awhile before hitting a good thermal in front of launch. Everyone started to launch and climb out below him. I ended up on top of the stack and at a low altitude I dove over the back onto the platau for a dust devil.
I never got the thermal and spent the next 20 mins staying in the air just above the platau. dorival joined me low and we ended having to glide back 1.5kms for the start getting there at 400m off the ground.
We then glided straight downwind for a tractor where we had just come from and hit a thermal at 200m. This thermal kicked to 800 fpm and we climbed high and were now in front of everyone who had started on the ridge.
Dorival climbing out with me in a strong thermal just before the lake.
I got under the clouds and was pushing hard in front of everyone to the 1st turnpoint but then got stuck there and caught up by Dustin, Nene and a few others. It was a short 12kms to the 2nd turnpoint and I went more to the left upwind and hit a climb just 2kms before the turnpoint with Dave seib.
Dave headed out for the last turnpoint and found a good climb just 3kms from it and we came in below him. I topped out did the turnpoint and went more to the left and had a good run at cloudbase for 10kms.
Everyday Dustin and I do about 5 interviews at launch and goal. It is not so easy doing them in Portuguese.
I passed Dave he was low and climbing and I had to divert more to the left downwind for another cloud with Michel. We hit a 400 fpm climb and took it until we had final height.
I was a little scared for final as we had a crosswind and the last few days there has been good sink just before goal. I left just behind Michel but went more to the right upwind for a cloud that was forming just in case I needed to top up.
As it was we hit good air and Michel who went straight line arrived first at goal with Dave seib who must have passed me somewhere will finish second about 20 seconds in front of me.

A traditional meeting of Gauchos in the goal field

Dustin will finish 4 mins behind me so we will be pretty much tied for first place now. I think about 20 pilots made goal today and only about 5 crashed in the goal field.;-)
Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Brasilia day 3

Having internet problems here in Brasil so the updates are a little slow. 139km task with 4 turnpoints a later start due to the Ambulance not being at takeoff and less clouds. I started good was alone for the first 60kms then met up with Nene and flew with him for the rest of the task. We were in front of everyone and the day was running out due to the late start. We left a light climb at the forest hoping to get one more thermal before the day shut down but it never happened and we landed in a small field 26kms short of goal. A gaggle that was climbing low below us in our last thermal all came gliding over but most turned around for better landings and only a few went a couple of kms further. I flew for 4.5hrs landed in a field with grass 8 feet tall with Nene. After he landed he said to me you are crazy why did you land here, I said I did not want to give up and obviously you did not either. He wanted to turn around and fly back to the better landings where most of the gaggle landed. Dustin was only about 600m behind me so he will still be wining and I am in 2nd abot 50 points behind him.

Brasilia day 2

Today was looking like another great day so they called a 135km task with two turnpoints and goal in the Esplanada. I had a great start headed off down the ridge for the 1st turnpoint 35kms away. Everyday Tv crews are at takeoff and in the goal. The gaggle went more into the valley and ran down the clouds. I got stuck a couple of times on the ridge and when I reached the turnpoint the gaggle was high above me. I just decided to relax and get high before I tried to chase the gaggle down. We were now heding back down the ridge towards launch for the 2nd waypoint. I had a couple of good climbs and when I arrived at the turnpoint I came in on top of the gaggle. Dustin and I headed more to the west for some clouds and got a good thermal. Moyes on top of the gaggle. We were now in front and alone again but with good clouds and only 45kms to fly. Dustin and I flew together for a couple of thermals before he went more downwind for a cloud. I did not like his decision so I crossed a blue hole hoping to get a good climb on the otherside. I arrived low and had to take some crappy lift for a while to gain some altitude. Dustin stayed high and saw me circling and crossed over to me arriving 2,000ft above my head. Dustin went on final and I was left circling and then was joined by Nene and a few others. I left on a shallow final and Nene followed me from 16kms out at 12:1 with a light tailwind. I managed to pull 30 seconds on him plus some height arrving in 2nd place again 4.5 minutes behind Dustin. 28 pilots made goal again with lots of crash landings due to conditions and many pilots trying to land at once. We found out today that we will get to drop our worse score after the 5th round so the scores will change a lot in a few days.
Monday, August 17, 2009

Brasilia Day 1

Today was the first day of the Brazilian Nationals with 70 pilots in the comp we were in for a good week of flying. Brasilia was off to its usal weather with puffy clouds filling the sky as far as you could see. They set a short 101km task with 2 turnpoints bringing us into the Esplanada for the most majical goal in the World. I started in the valley up high with Dustin and a few others and raced off down the ridge to the Waterfall. I was leading out and finding good thermals with Dustin, then we decided to cross onto the platau while some others continued on down the ridge. We got a good climb and topped out at 2800m just before the forest crossing. We glided under a cloud street all the way to the turnpoint and then headed back for the second turnpoint crosswind. Dustin and I were tip to tip gliding back for the second turnpoint to a big cloud. We hit a strong 900fpm climb to 3,000m 2.5kms from the turnpoint did the last turnpoint side by side and now had a 30km final for goal. We were picking different lines the whole way and we kept meeting back up almost side by side at the same alttitude.
Cloud streets along the course line. Just another typical Brasilia sky.
Just before the lake Dustin went more to the right and I stayed on course for my final. Dustin hit a good thermal and started to climb 13kms short I kept going knowing that I had final. He climb for a good minute then chased off after me for goal. I was doing 110kph trying to stay in front of him as he was higher and cathing me from behind. I hit big sink before the goal and had to slow up and Dustin passed me 500m before the finish line as he was higher. I just made it in above the lamp post with enough height to turn and land safely in the Esplanada. Dustin crossed about 20 seconds before me in a time of 1hr 44mins and then there was about a 15 min gap before the next pilot crossed goal. I think 28 pilots made goal with quite a few landing between the lake and goal in the last fields before the Esplanada. Looking down at the goal field along the Esplanada with the white house in the background. It was a great racing day and the weather is looking good all week long. It is an amazing place having 80 landings in the Esplanada during my last 11 comps here it still blows my mind. For scores and report in Portuguese with some nice pics check out the official blog. Official Blog Here.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Christo in Rio

Looking back toward Ipanema beach on the bottom right,Christo top left and Copacabana which is to the right of the lake below the paraglider. Arriving at the Christo low. Christo High above Rio De Janeiro