Buzzards DLG – 10/31/09

The Gordon Report – Faith it till you make it.
Hey Guys and Gals,
What an unbelievable day for Oct 31st! Temps in the mid to high 80’s and hardly more than a 4 mph breeze. In fact the breeze was so light that a number of times thermals back it up to either a standstill or we had a reversal of the wind briefly. Great conditions for DLG and every round was filled with fun.
We thought that a 5 min max for Round one was a tough call for the light conditions at 10:00 am. But as in most cases “the cream rises to the top” and Ed White, David Forbes and Roy Berklehammer all maxed this 1st round while the rest of us tried to catch the bottoms of their thermals without a lot of success. Jody Miller was the nearest of these “also rans” missing the 300 by 17 seconds.
Round 2 was an easier task and the scores reflected that with a much larger percentage of the field getting the max with a last 2 count task of 3min each. Ed, Jody and I all made the correct flight choices and achieved the max with 360 seconds. It was Round 3 that sorted a few final positions out in the field with AULD producing a couple of Rounds where everybody but one flyer was down while that last down pilot buried his group. That was certainly my moment of glory as I ventured further away from the pack and was rewarded with a great bubble and a 3 min max while everybody else held their planes and watched. Ed and David Forbes shared the max in Group B while I got the 1000 in Group B.
Round 4 was the 15 sec increase round and one that I love because it makes you work hard and you have a real accurate idea of how you are going compared to the others as you make each successive launch. Most pilots managed 6 out of the 7 scored flights in this round with just Roy making the final 7th flight count to be the only 1000 pointer in his group.
Rusty Carver set up the grill while we licked the wounds inflicted on us by Ed White and pondered what we could do to rein him in for the final 3 rounds of the afternoon. (Aside from breaking his plane there wasn’t going to be any stopping him. ) As always Rusty’s burgers and hotdogs were excellent tucker and Rusty deserves a big Thank You from all for the extra effort he puts into every contest day at the Buzzards.
After lunch CD Raed Elazzawi got things moving with Round 5 – a 5 X 2min round. Another task I particularly enjoy because with moving thermals it requires plenty of mind strategy during each flight and once again you can keep tabs on your competitors during each launch. Rusty must have been “fired up” with all his grub preparation because he took the max in his group. Tom Shupe showed he liked this task too with the 1000 points in the other group. During this round Jody Miller decided to roost his Light Hawk in one of the pine trees and missed most of the fun while he retrieved her.
Round 6 was scheduled as a 1,2,3,4 round and Ed White and Jody Miller put it all together when it counted with 574 and 576 seconds scored. A loss of only 24 seconds or 8 seconds per relight. Most everyone else did better than 500 seconds for this round as the lift was good and not moving away very quickly so each pilot could fairly easily launch back into the same air each time. I launched my Vixen for flight 2 with my flaps down. With less than 50 feet in hand I decided to work a bubble and managed to complete 2 minutes at tree top height. My flirting with the trees finally got me though as I took a perch high in a pine tree just as I was making my way home. My Vixen wriggled her way down a few branches and almost free, but became stuck out of bounds for a zero. I spent most of that round retrieving her with the pole Jody kindly left on the fence from his earlier escapades. My Vixen suffered no damage so I did manage to salvage a 2 minute flight before we ran out of working time. I must thank my tireless timer Mickey Nowell for helping guide the pole and finding lift for me all day.
The final Round 7 was 3 X 3 task and I saved face a little with the highest score in my group while Jody Miller maxed the other. The air was a little fickle and I had to venture further away than many were prepared to – to catch the good air.
With 7 rounds complete Raed called it a day with the Gainesville crew in a hurry to hit the road home and Ed keen to get to work.
Clearly the practice put in with these little planes makes a big difference. I have watched Mickey Nowell improve in leaps and bounds to score better every time he flies because he puts in the practice. Ed White and Jody Miller have also been throwing DLG’s every time we are at the field and the practice shows in their confidence, launch height and better scores in contests.
Ed was crowned the victor on this day with a small margin over David Forbes in second place. Roy flew really well to take 3rd and has shown much consistency during the last 2 contests. A special thankyou to Peter Jensen for the photos as always. It was your day with the plane mate. Thanks also to Lewis Gray for coming out with his camera. Raed – you are a gem for putting this contest together and doing all the leg work. You are worth more money! Thankyou also to Hank for coming out and taking many photos as well as demonstrating that at 83 year old you can still throw a DLG. After seeing that I will never complain about being sore again.
Every time I fly DLG with this Florida group I have a great time and it is simply more fun than a barrel full of monkeys. I look forward to the next DLG contest at the Buzzards on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Thankyou to everyone for a great day.

1_ Ed White__________Arrow______5938__100%
1_ David Forbes__ ____Vixen______5871__98.9%
3_ Roy Berkelhammer__Vixen______5657__95.3%
4_ Gordon Buckland____Vixen______5403__91%
5_ Tom Shupe________SWII_______5332__89.8%
6_ Jody Miller_________Lighthawk__5330__89.8%
7_ Rusty Carver_______SWII_______5012__84.4%
8_ Mickey Nowell______Lighthawk__4754__80.1%
9_ Peter Jensen_______Lighthawk__4694__74.5%
10_ Raed Elazzawi_____Falken_____4088__68.9%

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