NSW CHAMPIONSHIPS SHOALHAVEN MODEL FLYING CLUB FLETCHER’S LANE
17th & 18th November 2018
NSW Pattern Flyers final competition of 2018 was the NSW Champs held at SMFC Fletcher’s Lane on the 17th&18th November.
In my short history in Pattern, Fletcher’s has never failed to serve up an “interesting” weekend with regards to weather, and this was no exception.
The Friday was great, with half the contestants bludging off work to get in a practice. Cool, dead still, and slightly overcast. As usual, I flew well above my paygrade. The recent rain had done the strip a lot of good, with many of the infamous cracks closed up, but it was still advisable to stick to the smoother near side. Not too easy for one who has had trouble landing in the right postcode!
While the grass wasn’t long, the turf was quite spongy, which led to some anxious moments for the more modest among us. (the ones wearing pants!!!) While there were a few hairy moments, the whole weekend passed without any damage to models—always a good outcome.
In contrast, Saturday dawned with the promise of rain, and a strong wind blowing straight in. Advanced were first up, (as usual—don’t know why I bothered to move up from Sportsman?) with yours truly first at the flightline, rejoicing, because the wind hadn’t come up yet, only to be brought back to earth, as the Notaumatic system had a bug, resulting in a technical hold. By the time this was resolved, the promised wind was in full flight, and I flew to my usual mediocre standard. Landing was the signal for the rain to start, and we went to a lengthy weather hold. Of course when the shower passed, the rest resumed in almost wind-free conditions—for a while! After the lucky ones, we flew the rest of the day in fairly strong and turbulent crosswind conditions, with several rain holds. The delays meant we only got through 2 rounds. However, we managed to get through the NSWPF AGM during the breaks. Congratulations (and commiserations!) to the new committee.
Saturday night was an enjoyable evening at the bowling club, highlighted by good food and conversation, as well as several groups informally brainstorming ideas to increase participation in 2019.
Sunday dawned clear, calm and warm, becoming cloudy, with the wind freshening significantly, but backing to blow more along the flightline. With everything running smoothly, we were able to complete 3 rounds for all classes, for a tournament total of 5.
Sportsman: No entries.
Advanced: Won by Chris Tindall, whose flying continues to improve in leaps and bounds.
Expert: Won by the newly resurgent Kahl Eckersley. Second was Gavin Fitz-Henry with our host Richard Knox in third.
F3A: Won in impeccable style by Dave Macca, closely followed by Jason Arnold and Brian Dooley.
Kahl also claimed his elusive 3rd promo point, so we bid him farewell from Expert, and hope he has been practicing his snaps.
Dave, Jason and Brian got promotions in F3A, while Bill snared his first.
Apart from the slightly fickle weather, it was a thoroughly enjoyable weekend, and special thanks must go out to Richard Knox, and SMFC President Gary Matheson for the use of their facilities, and especially to the latter for slaving away at the BBQ to supply the breakfast, and lunches….. even if he insisted in putting the onions on top!
F3A-FAI: David McFarlane
Expert: Kahl Eckersley
Advanced: Chris Tindall
Sportsman: Anthony Russell
F3A-FAI: David McFarlane, Jason Arnold, Brian Dooley, Bill Garrod
Expert: Kahl Eckersley
F3A Results/Promotions: HERE.
Expert Results/Promotions HERE.
Advanced Results/Promotions HERE.