SEN 97-05 - 4 Aug 1997

SEN 97-05 4 August 1997

The 20th Journees de Vol Libre en Poitou

Well, folks, I just got back from France this morning after the 20th
Poitou event, which was a good one even if the entries were a lot down
on previous years due, no doubt, to the proximity of the World Champs.

I travelled over on Tuesday night with Chris Edge, taking the overnight
boat from Portsmouth to Le Havre. We drove down to Poitou, which is 50
Km south of Saumur on the Loire river, getting there on Wed midday.
After putting up the tent we did a spot of trimming - nice weather,
though breezing up a bit in the evening.

Thursday was the mini comp for Coupe, A/1 and 1/2A (actually F1G/H/J).
The day was really nice - warm with a few cumulus and the breeze took a
typical flight around 1 Km - about a mile. There was humungous lift
though, with a big flight going three times that distance and some
Coupes lost. The max temp was around 25C and the breeze never exceeded
3 m/sec. The mini field was big enough for all flights except flyaways
to (just) stay on it and was covered with the usual wheat stubble. As a
result my 1/2A needs recovering. In fact on two flights I landed on last
year's sunflower stubble - that shattered a wing panel and took a lump
out of the middle of the stab main spar. No bits were lost and thanks to
cyano and dope I was able to use the same model throughout.

F1G (16 flew, no f/o, hot, dry, light breeze)
1 Dave Greaves GB 630
2 Serge Millet France 628
3 Anselmo Zeri Holland 622

F1H (21 flew, 3 in f/o)
1 Bertrand Pouzet France 630+240+123
2 Hans Peper Germany 630+240+66
3 Armand Biton France 630+84

F1J (3 flew)
1 Martin Gregorie NZ 613
2 Fred Chilton GB 603
3 Roy Summersby Australia 594

Fred and I were flying Coxes - mine is 10 year old 1/2A Train with VIT
and a/r on a Seelig minicombo timer and weighs 220g or thereabouts. Roy
was using an AD-06 on a 300g carbon model. Who says you need an AD to
win F1J? Roy's model is covered with violent purple ripstop nylon kite
material. That's worth a look as you don't need to dope it - the only
thing he put on the covering apart from sticking it to the ribs was to
fuel proof the innermost 200 mm of each wing. Its light and pretty
strong and punctureproof, and tightens with a heat gun.

On Friday we flew F1A glider. This was flown on the usual field for the
three bigger classes, which is around 10 Km in diameter (6 miles) and
covered with the usual predominant wheat stubble, melon patches,
sunflowers, and maize - fortunately there was very little of the latter.
The day was hot (30C), dry breeze with to 4 m/sec. No rounds were flat
calm, though - something that is hell on wheels in glider - ever tried
to tow for 10 mins in hot, flat calm sink? As usual, there was a beer
and food tent on the field, a lunch break, and it was very pleasant to
sit with a beer to watch the flyoffs.

F1A (75 flew, 13 in f/o)
1 Martin van Dyke Holland 1260+300+420+259
2 Vincent Croguennec France 1260+300+420+249
3 Francois Moreau France 1260+300+281

F1B and F1C were flown on the Saturday on the same field. The day was
cloudier - overcast at times but much hotter when the sun came out.
Calmer too - Roy Summersby had two d/t failures in F1C giving flights of
25 and 15 minutes. The first went 3Km or so and the second went 200
metres. The lift was even stronger than on the previous two days. In the
last round Reinhardt Truppe had an F1C flight high under a dark cumulus
that must have reached 1000m (3000+ ft) and took 15 mins to come down.
At one point it was going up on d/t.

F1B (32 flew, 6 in f/o)
1 Anselmo Zeri 1290+300+420
2 Mick Howick 1290+300+326
3 Pim Ruyter 1290+300+267

F1C (9 flew, no f/o)
1 Hans Seelig 1320
2 Dave Thomas 1294
3 Gerhard Aringer 1291

Sunday featured a relatively formal prizegiving in the morning -
speeches, and a winners podium, with specially made ceramic pots and
bouquets for down to 5th place in most classes.

Following that, Chris and I made our way back to Le Havre, had a meal in
a fish restaurant that was really one to remember, and caught the
overnight boat back to the UK. I drove home this morning and am getting
caught up on domestic stuff and model repairs in preparation for next
week's departure to Sazena.


Harlow, UK.