The Gordon Report – Saturday
Was one of the nicest December flying days I can remember. We arrived to a low ceiling which was fine because a little extra time was spent setting up on the new field. What a wonderful flying site this new field is for the Buzzards. Not only is access fantastic with drive on and off the field from Highway 50 very easy but we were excited by the large number of visitors that dropped in on us during the day. Some showed a clear interest in our hobby and recounted the days long ago when they tried RC flying etc. There is no doubt that being in this extremely visible location is going to enhance the Buzzards membership and grow the participation of the other clubs in FSS events as well.
CD Tom Galloway started us off with an 8 minute task and 100 point landing tapes. We would be flying Open winch with honors callup. The honors callup had a twist though as the top 3 placing pilots would lead us off rather than the winners of the previous round.
The air was consistently good all day though at times the lift was soft and our models needed careful coaxing to actually gain height. In some rounds a lot of patience following the lift for 3 or 4 minutes was required before it finally grew in strength sufficiently to see significant gains. It wasn’t all up air every round as I can attest because my round #3 flight ended prematurely as I was unable to make soft lift work for the full 10 minute task.
The group of 13 pilots were made up of visitors from elsewhere in the state as well as the Buzzards and a great contingent from Pompano Beach, our new star pilot Jeff Duval from Gainesville, Jim MacLean and the Graves from the IRKS club made a good friendly group. It was also terrific to welcome Davd Veatch back to Central Florida after being away from the area for a decade or so but now living in Winter Park and flying once again with the Buzzards.
After 3 rounds of the contest completed we had Mike Naylor leading the Sportsman class with Dillon Graves in front in the expert class. He was closely pursued by Jody Miller and Jeff Duval in 3rd.
During lunch the pilots gathered around the Toys for Tots donations for some photos. The concept of a donating toys to this charity was suggested by Buzzards president and was a great success as a couple of dozen really nice toys were brought along by the pilots.
With the sun beating down more like an October day we continued the contest after lunch with 10 minute maxes set by CD Raed. For most pilots it was fairly easy air until the final round when the honors group of Jody, Dillon and Jeff all launched into air with few signs of lift. Jody went right and Jeff went left while Dillon went forward to the right. With all three aircraft descending Jody used the indication from his transmitter streamer to fly further to the right and further downwind to intercept the lift indicated by the streamer. He hooked up at about twice tree top height and began to slowly claw his way out of trouble. Dillon saw his model making progress and broke immediately downwind to join Jody but arrived at tree top height and in line with the trees. He found the air but for him it was a real struggle as he courageously made turns eeking out less than 5 feet at a time as his model was constantly drifting further and further downwind. He was flying one of the best saves of his short career and with out help from his usual mentors. It was nail biting stuff as he finally decided to make a break for the field when it was apparent that he wasn’t buying his ride. He made it back for a scoring landing but had to pick his way around the trees to do so. I have watched hundreds of Dillons flights and although this one didn’t yield a max it was in my mind the best example so far of Dillon displaying true soaring skills without his coaches advising him. Meanwhile Jeff had also bombed out to the left and landed early so it was just Jody who made a max from this honors callup in round seven to be only one of two pilots t complete the day with a clean slate. Jamie Mercado was the other pilot and he finished the contest in second place. By virtue of Jeff and Dillons low final score I jumped from 5th to 3rd.
1st place Sportsman for the day was Mike Naylor, with Lewis Gray 2nd and David Veatch 3rd. Davids old school “Dodgson” Lovesong was truly a pretty sight and his model was one of the best examples of the early 80’s era of RC sailplanes I have seen.
The first day at this new field was a tremendous success and it is so exciting to have such a fantastic facility. With a steady stream of visitors to develop new members from the club is truly blessed by Raed’s persistence and dedication to get this site established for us. We also must thank the Larry who visited the field today. Larry is the guy who did all the hard work with the county officials to procure the field.
Looking forward to another wonderful soaring day tomorrow.
If you are in Central Florida come out and join us.
You won’t be disappointed.
Scores Full Round by Round – 2012 – FSS8 Sat Full