Once again it is my pleasure to collate the reports from Radioglide 2017. Held for the first time at the BMFA National Flying Centre. Photo credits are Gary Binnie, Chas Dunster, Graham James and Neil Harrison (F3K).
Saturday 27 May
Two competitions were held on Saturday, a combined Open class/100S at the eastern end of the field and F5B just south of the main runway. The day started with light winds and a high, thin overcast allowing milky sunshine through, there was a light shower early on but the main problem was an ever-increasing wind strength which caused us to give up early.
Report by Peter Allen (CD)
18 entries, six of whom were doubling up with both Open and 100" models and all battling the wind! We were lucky to avoid the heavy showers that affected many areas but the wind strengthened enough to make flying unpleasant and more of an endurance test so we decided to curtail the preliminaries after 3 round and move straight to a four pilot fly off. Two of the contestants managed to land in trees so the result was an unexpected but very well deserved win for Alan Morton flying his trusty Tracker.
Report by Greg Lewis
Round 1 of the inaugural F5B event at Radioglide at the NFC started with very calm conditions. Running up to the event the forecast had been for winds gusting up to 40 mph.
A band of rain passed through as forecast and Alan Flockhart had the honour of being the first pilot to fly. Alan and the next pilot Steve struggled in the humid dense air. Next to fly was Greg Lewis who posted a more respectable flight of 46 legs. Josef Mouris was the last of the top flight pilots to fly and hit 48 legs.
A number of pilots missed out on landing points or used motor on time to complete the duration.
As forecast the wind increased and through Round 2 the forecast high windspeed arrived. Due to the close proximity of the F5B landing spots to the hedge landing became a dangerous task. Model survival became more important than going for the landing bonus. After Round 3 two planes had been damaged and we decided to call a halt to the event after a vote from the pilots.
As usual the event was close with Alan Flockhart claiming first place, with Josef Mouris pipping Greg Lewis to 2nd place by .7 of a point. Tony Wilson with some excellent flying won top spot in the intermediate class.
We all agreed the NFC is an excellent field and once the seeded areas are in use we will have more scope to get the landing circles away from the hedge.
Sunday 28 May
Report by Pete Mitchell
I am very happy to say that this ‘trial’ BARCS competition run to Bartlett’s rules was a success. We were lucky with the day, it was dry with light’ish winds, sunshine rarely, and cloudy. What more could you want, typical weather for the time of year.
It was all a bit daunting for me as I had persuaded the committee to give it a try, so I felt under some self-imposed pressure. Added to that, it was one of the first comps at the NFC so I did not want to be the one BMFA spoke to if their property got damaged.
For those who have not yet been to Buckminster, it is worth a visit. At the moment you can only see the terrific amount of preparation work and new build that has gone on since the lease was signed. The flying field is very large, not suitable for all classes of competition, but more than adequate for most. I am sad to read some of the comments made on other forums which say it is a waste of money. I think they are wrong and all model flying is going to benefit from it in one way or another as time goes on.
The comp was a little late starting due to new equipment gremlins, but after a pilots’ briefing to clarify a few points we started first flights at 10.15. Conditions at first looked as if it was going to be an easy day, but this soon changed and it became more difficult to find and stay in good air.
Most pilots had at least one or even two bad rounds, some had even more. Pete Allen was the worthy winner, and prizes were presented by BMFA Chairman Chris Moynihan. The old BARCS Electroslot trophy was presented to Peter, and it looks like the Electroslot name will be used for this new set of rules.
Thanks to all who supported and took part, everyone seemed to enjoy the format. And also thanks to those who voted at the following AGM to approve the adoption of these rules as BARCS own.
Report by Mike Fantham
Entries were well up this time on the past few years at 18 - we only had 8 in 2016. This trend has been there for all of the first three F3K events this season and is a very welcome sign. Not just more entries but an improving standard of flying across the board with several new names coming in and already flying at a good standard.
We were all keen to see and try the new BMFA National Centre field and we were not disappointed. Driving up from London I met increasingly overcast conditions and a fair breeze from the west. The sky cleared during the day and the wind dropped off giving ideal conditions for a contest. F3K set up camp outside what will be the main carpark for the field with the box towards the south-western corner of the property. People were able to operate from their cars but the box was constrained by the newly seeded runways which we need to stay off until the grass is established. Once we can get on there, it will be an even nicer set-up.
CD Michael Stern had set up 8 rounds of 3 slots to give a relaxed contest and make sure that the newer pilots could always get an experienced timer/caller to help them through the various tasks, which can seem a bit confusing at first. Everybody enjoyed the way the contest ran and we were treated to some spectacular flying from the top pilots who seem to able to conjure some help from the slightest waft of lift with their modern high performance airframes.
Some of the tasks require pilots to make fast turnarounds – a tip catch timed to the second followed but an ultra-rapid re-launch – to maximise air time. We fly to a 10 minute slot for the 1,2,3,4 task. Here, you need to make four flights as near as possible to the maxes to win – you can do them in any order so you need to think on your feet. You cannot actually do the full times as they add up to ten minutes and you need to re-launch three times on the way.
The eventual winner, Michael Stern (yes the CD!) did 0:57 1:58 3:00 4:00 making a total of 9:55 in 10 minutes! In the 5 x 2:00 round he also did 9:55 but this time with four re-launches making 2:00 1:59 2:00 1:59 1:57. That’s about one second for each re-launch given that times are rounded DOWN to the nearest second.
As Team Manager, it was good to see this year’s Team of Michael Stern, Mike Challinor and Richard Swindells finish in that order in the top three places.
Full results are in the Forum post below
Nick winds up for a big launch.
Matt and Phil head out for a flight.
The AGM was held after flying in the restored indoor dressage building, there was a good attendance by members. In memory of Robin Sleight a pair of his gliders were placed either side of the projector screen and we held a short period of silence.
A BARCS Fellowship was awarded to Colin Paddon and the Eppler Trophy was awarded to Colin Paddon and Kevin Beale for their Proglide design.
Two proposals were carried with no opposing votes, a committee proposal to allow re flights in Open class competitions and a member’s proposal to update the BARCS ELG rules.
Monday 29 May
It had rained heavily during the night and the morning dawned foggy and damp with a very low cloudbase. We spent the morning chatting, a couple of pilots launched into the low gloom but at 12:00 the decision was taken to cancel the F5J competition.
And there it was, all over for another year! Shame that the weather played a part in spoiling what is always a great weekend, my thanks to all the organisers and CDs.