Two Oceans Slope Soarers Aerobatics Event 2011
Hosted in Cape Town for the third year in a row on the last weekend of January,
the Two Oceans Slope Soarers Aerobatics Event rolled out for the 2011 competition.
As blessed as we are in this wonderful slope soaring part of the world,
one could not have hoped for better weather as Mother Nature rolled out the red carpet
and delivered a Saturday competition session of note up at Red Hill.
Starting off a little bit on the light side there were a few worried organisers
but true to form, as the 10 AM start time approached the South Eater stirred,
gathered it’s wits and blew through the most beautifully consistent South Easter
that we have had this season. Ranging from the early morning 25 KM per our in the morning,
right through to the 40km per hour wind by the evening, the lift remained perfect,
stable and offered the gathered sloping clan the best available opportunity to show off
their competition skills.
First round kicked off at 10AM sharp, and with ready boxes in place there were always two pilots
airborne and two at the ready, and in said box, keeping the flow of air traffic at an optimum
under the steady direction of Uncle Bill Dewey, Contest Director for the event.
Competition and nerves go hand in hand and there were more than a few nerves
jangling away at the competitors as they stepped up to the line. The more seasoned competitors,
the likes of Marc Wolfe and Louis Genade handled their nerves the best and
so showed what regular competition flying can do for ones performance in front
of the 4 excellent judges who stared out into the blue yonder.
Due to a lack of calling practice, some scored less than they could have and showed the need for
a caller/pilot team to be really established, well practised and versed with each other.
In the end, we were able to fly the full 15 pilots through round one, round two
and the half pipe routine all in one day. Quite a feat for the organisers.
A few injuries to gliders occurred, Cape landing are not as easy
as they first appear with the fynbos only too happy to chew up any erring gliders.
But true to slope fellows, never is not an attitude well applied.
Notables for the day were Dave Greer literally shaking off the Toksix vertical stabiliser
mid-flight, requiring the generous application of cyno,
Russel Conradt damaging his aero on landing, taping with fibre tape and continuing to compete,
and the best being Bobby Purnell who snapped his Vector 111 boom,
called his wife to race out to Red Hill and bring his repair kit. He repaired the boom in the
car-park and then flew the second round with said repair while the epoxy dried in flight.
It’s really difficult to beat that sort of spirit.
Sunday dawned promising but failed to deliver as a southerly wind blew
and the one slope we cannot cater for at this stage is a south slope.
So after breakfast, plenty on toungue wagging, story swapping and photographic sessions
the entire crew headed for Fisherman’s and the awards presentation.
Results as below:
The Durban crew of Dave Greer, Russel Conradt, Mark Phillips and Johan de Lange
spent the weekend grinning like Cheshire cats, and once more we have to thank them
for making the journey to the Cape and adding their special characters to the mix.
A big thanks to the judges, Andrew Anderson, Johnny Calafato, Claude and Kurt-
the expert father and son team, for toiling tirelessly though the heat of the day.
Thanks to all the competitors who attended the event and through their friendly,
humorous and indomitable spirits made it one more an event to remember.
A huge thanks to TOSS Chairman, Jeff Steffen and the TOSS committee who prepared, sweated blood and
planned for the best and as such received the best. Well done lads, one and all.
And finally a grateful thanks to all the sponsors who came to the party with excellent prizes,
from the last position to the first, every participant receiving a prize. Just plain magic.
Sponsors were as such:
DAVE GREER AND FRAGRAM
KEVIN FARR AND IRIS VAN DER VLIST
PHOTOS for this specific article: Shane Swartz
Too many photos to add to blog,
so this is just a pick of them.
Will add more at a later stage