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F3J 2014?


Peter
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The 2013 season is nearly at an end and in the next few weeks decisions will need to be made about how to organise competitions and the league next year. Any changes need to be agreed by the SFTC and incorporated into the 2014 rule book early in the New Year so if you want to have a say now is the time.

 

In 2012 reducing numbers at competitions, the costs of traveling to monthly locations round the country and a shortage of people prepared to do the organisation prompted a change to the traditional format in 2013. Basically the pilots participating in the 2012 league had expressed a desire for the 3 major competitions to revert to a 2 day format so team selection was based on the results of these events only.  Other competitions that qualified for the BMFA league could be organised locally with reduced qualifying criteria in order to encourage more regional events and a wider participation in F3J.

 

So do we continue this format in 2104 or should there be changes?

 

But remember before saying 'I want' also be prepared to say 'I will do'.

 

Peter

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Hi Peter

 

I would definitely prefer a f3j national one day league, but F3j is not my main thing so like you say I ain't organising it!

I would fly f3j one day events, time allowing, but I am not really interested in team selection events.

 

Tom

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One day league will not come back for the very reason it ended. Lack of organisers, no one wants to travel far to one day events. Weather reliability. 

 

I don't see much of an option but to continue the current format. I do however think the scoring to qualify (2 to count from 3) should be dropped to all 3 count. Yes some people have holidays that clash but thats tough and if you know the dates early enough you can book your holiday another time. Jees if you can't find 2 days 3 times a year for you hobby I wonder about real interest.

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This year's format worked for me.

 

I don't know how many retired/self-employed flyers there are but I've often wondered if the odd event could be held mid-week, as a weekend worker I struggle a bit with time off.

 

If we wanted to use the Bicester gliding club facilities again for Interglide it would be useful to synchronise the dates, it was just luck this year that the comp fell on their party date.

 

Another random thought that I had was that in full-size gliding we used to organise 'task weeks', a sort of boot camp of constant practise with expert instructors on hand to prepare for competitions. Could be an opportunity to introduce new F3J flyers to the sport in a low-pressure environment and the top guys to hone their skills. Just need somewhere to do it.

 

I would be very happy to help if needed with the Marsh Gibbon comps as I'm local.

 

 Cheers

 

   Gary

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Austin - I don't think making it 3 from 3 is the way to go. Non specifically to f3j - anything can happen from illness to family problems. You can suffer one model problem and it puts you out.  I don't think making all events counts really works. It's not a professional sport.

 

I think f3j does a bad job of promoting itself. Information seems really sketchy - even on what the league standings are. 

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Austin - I don't think making it 3 from 3 is the way to go. Non specifically to f3j - anything can happen from illness to family problems. You can suffer one model problem and it puts you out.  I don't think making all events counts really works. It's not a professional sport.

 

Why would suffering a model problem put you out. The thing is in the 2 day events its possible to reach 8 rounds which means a discard so if there is a problem with a model then you get another chance. F3J rules mean for 1 day events all 5 rounds count and you done for with small issues even a line break or something.

 

 

I think f3j does a bad job of promoting itself. Information seems really sketchy - even on what the league standings are. 

 

Are you talking about UK F3J here or in F3J in general. The standings are published for the last three seasons including this one and are on the F3J page of this website? All the event dates and entry details are published well beforehand so not sure what you mean.?

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The 2013 season is nearly at an end and in the next few weeks decisions will need to be made about how to organise competitions and the league next year. Any changes need to be agreed by the SFTC and incorporated into the 2014 rule book early in the New Year so if you want to have a say now is the time.

 

In 2012 reducing numbers at competitions, the costs of traveling to monthly locations round the country and a shortage of people prepared to do the organisation prompted a change to the traditional format in 2013. Basically the pilots participating in the 2012 league had expressed a desire for the 3 major competitions to revert to a 2 day format so team selection was based on the results of these events only.  Other competitions that qualified for the BMFA league could be organised locally with reduced qualifying criteria in order to encourage more regional events and a wider participation in F3J.

 

So do we continue this format in 2104 or should there be changes?

 

But remember before saying 'I want' also be prepared to say 'I will do'.

 

Peter

 

Levels of pilots competing in most F3X classes other than F3F perhaps, seem to be in decline the world over. Therefore I think we have to be realistic about what is practical/achievable for the UK team selection process.

 

With this in mind my vote would go with continuing the system that we used this year with all qualifying events being 2 day one's x 3  but to reinstate the option to use one Eurotour event to replace the score of one of the 3 domestic qualifying events. Then make it 3 out of 4 best scores to count towards team qualification.

 

I am not sure why after fighting for so long to get a Eurotour event to be included/allowed as part of the selection process it was somewhat unceremonuosly dropped from this years selection process. Everyone who flys competitive F3J knows that to score well in a Eurotour event is a lot more difficult than our own domestic events. If you score well in a Eurotour event you really deserve those points to be allowed in your UK team qualification scores IMO.

 

I do hope that other UK F3J pilots contribute to this thread with their own views.

 

Colin

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Under the old system a single Eurotour score used to be allowed to replace one of the 6 domestic competitions and was the best score achieved from an unlimited number of Eurotour events, however large, small or remote. This did lead to accusations from some pilots that it was possible to 'buy' at least part of the team qualification process by repeated trips to competitions in far flung corners of Europe.

 

If a Eurotour score were to be permitted under the 2013 system it could have replaced one of the two qualifying scores and therefore assumed a greater significance. The SFTC certainly want to continue to encourage UK to compete in Eurotours so last year did consider how an extra score could be fairly permitted in the team selection process. Options like limiting the qualifying Eurotours to competitions with a minimum number of contestants or within a limited travelling distance from the UK were discussed but rejected as being too complicated. It was therefore decided to limit the team selection competitions to those in the UK where the potential UK team pilots were competing against each other.

 

A Eurotour score continues to count title of BMFA F3J League Champion.

 

I am sure that the SFTC will be discussing this point again so suggestions are welcome. Can a suitable formula can be found to fairly include a Eurotour without unduly advantaging those with enough time and money to do the Grand Tour?

 

Peter

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Having spent plenty of time over the last couple of years competing in Euro tours and others outside the UK, it gives a pilot a great deal of experience and helps towards preparing them in a way you couldn't achieve competing only in local 1 day uk comps for international events. That's not to say that 1 day events are not important because they are.

All international events are over a week and involve a considerable amount of focus to maintain the highest possible standard of flying from the pilot/ team. Multi day comps are extremely important uk or otherwise when selecting a team, the focus of the pilots will ultimately be rewarded. I know from many discussions, that a number European countries use Euro Tours to count towards team selection.

It is a difficult balance as Peter mentions above when it comes down to who has the time and money to support such adventures.

Martin

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Hi boys and girls

If I was to organise a weekend event early in the year with F3J on the Saturday and F5J on the Sunday would this be something you would like to attend, we use to have a 0 F3J event at Ashurst to kick off the year I'm sure if I dug Colin out of his bed this is something we could arrange again.

The next question is would you enter both days, as my idea is to not only run a wake up event for F3J but introduce F5J into the loop

Sit back now and wait for the response

Bernie

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I would probably give the saturday f3j a bash if it is wasn't too close to an f3b event. Saturday's are a lot better for flying IMHO - less traffic for a start.

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Hi Bernie

 

Under the 2013 system there were numerous 1 day F3J events that counted towards the BMFA F3J League but not for team selection. They just need volunteers to organise them! If we continue the same system into 2014 another one down south would be most welcome.

 

Having an F5J on the same weekend is fine by me and I know that there are a number of F3J pilots who are interested in F5J so I expect that you would get support.

 

Peter

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Hi boys and girls

If I was to organise a weekend event early in the year with F3J on the Saturday and F5J on the Sunday would this be something you would like to attend, we use to have a 0 F3J event at Ashurst to kick off the year I'm sure if I dug Colin out of his bed this is something we could arrange again.

The next question is would you enter both days, as my idea is to not only run a wake up event for F3J but introduce F5J into the loop

Sit back now and wait for the response

Bernie

+1. Great idea Bernie.

 

I would prefer the F3J day to revert back to it being a "Thermal Soaring Clinic/Practice Kind of Day" rather than an outright F3J contest though. Such an event advertised well in advance might hopefully garner some interest from potential new F3J pilots. However I have found in the past that any whiff of the word "competition" is often enough to stop any potentially interested parties on the outside of the sport from attending.

 

A couple of years back Graham Wicks and I held a "Thermal Soaring Clinic Day" day at the Tonbridge club for local pilots. We were amazed at the number of people that turned up on the day from local clubs to get help and advice on all aspects of Thermal Soaring from launch optimisation, reading air, right through to proper model set-up. Those of us who have been doing this sport since the ark just assume that everyone knows this stuff, they dont, but are apparently keen to learn. This taught me that in the first instance, people are far more interested in coming to this type of event than a competition. A lot of those that turned up with the latest moulded F3J gliders and expensive winch's were pilots I have never ever seen at an F3J competion.

 

Gary B has already mentioned about the possibility of holding an event like this. I'm sure that there are aspects of a day such as this that might even interest some of the electric soaring guys as well. If we are truly interested in trying to get some new blood into RC soaring I think this would be a far better use of the day.

 

As Pete said above though, "I want" must be accompanied by "I'm prepared to do" so I will say straight away that I would be very happy to help put on just such a day.

 

Colin

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F3j 2014 should continue as 2013 but include the option to include a eurotour score .

It would then allow all competitors an equal chance to compete in sufficient competitions to achieve the best 2 from 3 +1criteria

Eurotour could be from selected events .ie holland glide & Belgium glide or any other drive able ET.

I don,t think it is nescessary for the 3 Two day events to include RG or the NATS .but must include IG and possibly any other 2 weekends at a time off year that suits the majority and potential good weather.

I must say thanks to Pete etc for their efforts in 2013 but I did come

close to not bothering to compete in the league because I could not attend IG A situation beyond my control that gave me a 33 % disadvantage

In team selection criteria

hope fully solved by the eurotour scenario .

The practice day / clinic Colin mentioned was worthwhile as a club day , but if it was held else where (wetlands) I don't think the attendance would have been as good .

However i would be happy to travel to other clubs to offer the same clinic type day

For me Bernie,s idea is the way forward . We all know F5j is coming and will take over from f3j but for now let's enjoy the cross over with some 2 day events f5j one day f3j the other.If camping is available on site ,or local hotel for the posh ,even better, for me it will make the distance and time spent traveling worth while.

Graham

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For me Bernie,s idea is the way forward . We all know F5j is coming and will take over from f3j but for now let's enjoy the cross over with some 2 day events f5j one day f3j the other.If camping is available on site ,or local hotel for the posh ,even better, for me it will make the distance and time spent traveling worth while.

Graham

 

No wish to interfere with the F3J debate, but this idea gets my vote.

 

I do not fly F3J but I would help out timing or whatever.

 

2 day events do make the travel distance more worth while. 

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The option of including a drivable to Eurotour was an option considered by the SFTC last year but there was no Belgium in 2013 which left only Holland and that was only a week before the Nationals so was far from ideal.

 

Certainly worth considering again though.

 

Peter

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The option of including a drivable to Eurotour was an option considered by the SFTC last year but there was no Belgium in 2013 which left only Holland and that was only a week before the Nationals so was far from ideal.

 

Certainly worth considering again though.

 

Peter

 

Driving wouldn't get around this issue though Pete.

 

The idea though of being able to use a Eurotour score from one or two "drivable" pre-specified Eurotours such as Belgium & Hollandglide is definately one that deserves serious consideration by SFTC.

 

IMO, encouraging pilots to compete in Eurotours really is essential if they have any aspirations towards securing a UK Team place. As someone has allready mentioned above many countires use mostly Eurotour events to choose their national team pilots. Germany being one I believe. They havn't done too shabilly in the past using such a system :D

 

Colin

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Why the "driveable" constraint? It is unnecessary/redundant. Just allow pilots to choose any Eurotour. I doubt there are any 'easy' ones! As Colin says, getting UK pilots exposure to this level of competition is essential if we are to be successful (or indeed if we remain able to form a team).

I would certainly be interested in a southern 'practice' day, and I know others (at least 3) in the SE who have the equipment but have never flown a competition. Ideally choose a date that doesn't clash with F3F comps

Simon

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