Brits Abroad: Mark, Abi, Steve, Russell, Nicky, Adrian and Bruce
World Championships Competition Report, 14 to 26 March 2005
|14|| Bruce Goldsmith|
|37|| Russell Ogden|
|56|| Mark Watts|
|89|| Steve Ham|
|90|| Adrian Thomas|
|134|| Abigail Barr|
|139|| Nicky Moss|
Final results (in pdf format): Teams,
Day 1, Task 1: TO
00, start 10Km radius around tp 020, tp1 020, tp2 011, Goal 035. Total distance 55.6Km
The first task of the 9th World championship in Governador Valadares in Brazil got underway with a poor weather forecast of clouds, wind and rain. Just as in the Uk the weather men thankfully got it totally wrong!
There was early cloud on take off as is normal for the area, but this soon cleared to show a rising clound base, light winds and good cumulus starting to form. A task was declared of a downwind race to goal of 55.6Km using 2 turnpoints. The window opened a little late at 1.00pm with an airstart at 2.00pm. Bruce Goldsmith, Mark Watts and Russell Ogden were away early finding a climb on the easterly end of the ridge.
They were followed a little later by the rest of the team. The conditions were
at times light with small broken thermals but thankfully the team all got away.
The race was quite slow with pilots having to find and use every climb. Mark
Watts led the way past the 2 turnpoints but was unlucky to miss the last climb
landing just 4Km short of goal. Bruce Goldsmith got a good climb and broke away
with Swiss Tammeger managing to get ahead on the last glide getting in to goal
first and winning the task by 58 seconds! Steve Ham had a slightly more difficult
mid section of the task but made good progress and succeeded in getting in to
goal in 14th place 12 minutes after Bruce. At this point the day was already
starting to get weak making Adrian Thomas fly slow and careful. This paid of
with 24th place in goal 41 minutes after Bruce. All in all a great day for the
British Team which now stands in 3rd place in the championship.
|| Bruce Goldsmith||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| Goal 1:40:04|| 999 Points|
|| Steve Ham||Gradient Avax Rse|| Goal 1:51:51|| 884 Points|
|| Adrian Thomas||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| Goal 2:21:06|| 776 Points|
|| Mark Watts|| Gradient Avax Rse|| 51.3Km|| 672 Points|
|| Russell Ogden|| Ozone Proto||20.6Km|| 253 Points|
|| Abigail Barr|| Up Trango|| 15.0Km|| 165 Points|
|| Nicky Moss|| Advance Omega 6||11.8Km|| 129 Points|
The weather forecast for day 2 is better lets hope for a great day!
Day 2, Task 2: TO 00, start 10Km radius around tp 020,
tp1 020, tp2 024, tp3 038, Goal 069. Total distance 62.4Km
The day dawned cloudy and looked windy but the cloud lifted and we were presented with a broken sky and a north easterly breeze. The task committee got their act together quickly and we had a window open at 11.50am! with a race start at 12.50. The task was a race to goal of 62.5km involving a slight crosswind leg over the boonies then across the river with a run down the road to goal at Gol Naque.
Bruce was first away with the rest of the team following as the cycles pushed through. Bruce got low out front but found a climb to base and glided over the mountain to get a good start. The rest of the team had an easier start and were off down course. Our guys were pushing in the lead gaggles but conditions at times were difficult. The thermals were small and weak, with Huge gaggles.
Adrian and Steve got caught out at the first turnpoint and had to land. Abigail was next to land after making 43.9km but unfortunately landing right out in the boonies with a long wait until we could get her back. Nicky had a good day landing just 0.7km from the third turnpoint with a distance of 51.6km. Mark flew well and was unlucky to land just 2.2km from goal! Bruce was first Brit in goal in 46th place in goal with Russell in 72nd in goal.
This was a day where hanging back and following paid off for some people but the new scoring system rewards people leading out. The team is in 4th place overall (behind the Swiss, Germans and Austrians).
|46||Bruce Goldsmith||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)||Goal 02:03:05||835 Points|
|72||Russell Ogden||Ozone Proto||Goal 02:11:12||782 Points|
|82||Mark Watts||Gradient Avax Rse||60.3Km||485 Points|
|100||Nicky Moss||Advance Omega 6||51.6Km||355 Points|
|107||Abigail Barr||Up Trango||43.9Km||281 Points|
|111||Adrian Thomas||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)||23.3Km||192 Points|
||Steve Ham||Gradient Avax Rse||22.8Km||188 Points|
Day 3, Task3: TO 00, start 13Km radius around tp 021,
tp1 021, tp2 015, tp3 020 Goal 019. Total distance 52Km
The third day came with a nice blue sky and lighter NE winds.
The task was
changed a few times but then settles in a 52 km race to goal via 3 turn points
taking the pilots into the boonies, then back to the main road, out to an antenna
and back to the goal field on the main road! The launch window opened at 12:45hrs
and saw the team take off almost straight away. Good climbs in front of take
off made for big well-spread gaggles taking everyone to cloud base and along
the track towards the virtual start gate. The race started again one hour after
launch at 13:45hrs and the whole field flew to the 1st turn point. The crosswind
leg back to the main road proved a little more challenging as thermals got
fewer and far between. Steve just made it beyond the 2nd turn point before
he went down and Mark and Russell followed a few kilometres further. Bruce
made it almost to the antenna, which placed him 12th. There were only 5 pilots
in goal and the point spread not very large. The task was won by the Brazilian
Frank Thomas Brown. The results placed Bruce now in 4th place overall but a
Czech pilot in goal meant that we dropped into 5th team place. However, it
was an excellent effort by everybody and we were going to celebrate it!
|12|| Bruce Goldsmith||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| 47.4 Km||820 Points|
|32|| Russell Ogden|| Ozone Proto||42.5 Km||743 Points|
|38|| Mark Watts|| Gradient Avax Rse|| 40.1 Km||686 Points|
|77|| Steve Ham||Gradient Avax Rse|| 37.6 Km||627 Points|
|89|| Abigail Barr|| Up Trango|| 36.7 Km||576 Points|
|102|| Adrian Thomas||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| 36.1 Km||542 Points|
|110|| Nicky Moss|| Advance Omega 6||34.8 Km||454 Points|
Day 4, Task4: TO 00, start 5Km radius around tp 016, tp1 016,
tp2 05, tp3 017,Goal 03. Total distance 58.4
Another day and a blue sky, light NE winds and a higher cloud base. After
the team meal last night we were highly motivated to get into goal again and
particularly Mark was now under strict instructions! The Task was set to be
a 58.2km race to goal zigzag around the mountain. The end of speed section
and goal was a field full of ticks, so there was some motivation for the pilots
to fly on that little further into the La Paz landing field in town where the
Press and the public were waiting. It was quite a spectacle for them too as
most of the course could indeed be observed from there.
The launch window opened at 11:50hrs and Bruce, Mark and Russell took off
in quick succession, followed by the rest of the team. The pilots found the
thermals again to be quite slow and big gaggles caused a few minor incidents,
like touching wingtips. The race started at 12:50hrs and everybody was high
at cloud base, but then Abigail did not get any other climbs and landed far
too soon after the1st turn point and only 16.5 km. Both Adrian and Nicky got
back to the mountain Ibituruna and the 2nd turn point but unfortunately could
not climb out from there again. Bruce, Mark and Russell were still flying in
the lead gaggle and Steve in the one following to the 3rd turn point at Alpercata.
From there the course brought them back to Ibituruna again and across the river.
Steve got caught out and grounded on the way back but Bruce and Mark got a
good climb back up the mountain and raced into goal landing with the cheering
crowds - having finished the Speed section 8th and 14th. Russel got caught
up by the second gaggle but made it to goal 43rd and only 15 minutes after
the winner – Christian Tamegger. This was a fantastic result for the
team, although still 5thoverall, only 30 points behind the 4th and 128 points
behind the 3rd team. It also kept Bruce in 4th place overall.
|8|| Bruce Goldsmith||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| Goal 02:22:13||946 Points|
|13|| Mark Watts|| Gradient Avax Rse|| Goal 02:22:37||934 Points|
|43|| Russell Ogden|| Ozone Proto||Goal 02:35:54||808 Points|
|94|| Steve Ham||Gradient Avax Rse|| 51.9 Km||394 Points|
|117|| Nicky Moss|| Advance Omega 6||29.0 Km||209 Points|
|124|| Adrian Thomas||Airwave Magic Fr (Proto)|| 27.3 Km||194 Points|
|139|| Abigail Barr|| Up Trango|| 16.5 Km||96 Points|
Day 5, Task 5: TO 00, start 2Km radius around 009, tp1 009, tp2 029, goal at Gol Tarumirim 030. Total distance 60.9 Km.
Again the day dawned promising but the weather forecast was for changing winds, high cirrus cover, low cloud base and weak thermals. Also thermal activity was expected to cease at 3.30pm.
With this in mind it was difficult to understand the task committee's decision to set a task out into the sticks with only one dirt road in the area. Just to make it really interesting for the final leg into goal, there were no land out options for the last 7Km!
Everything went well at the start with weak but useable thermals, Very soon after the start the day started to get difficult with long glides between weak climbs. It soon became obvious that there would be no one in goal. The largest part of the Field landed around turn point 2, some pilots had to put down in some very tight spaces indeed! The first accident of the competition occurred at this turn point with Italian pilot Marco Littame unfortunately hitting power lines on landing approach in a tight valley. He suffered a broken pelvis and arm but is stable. The helicopter rescued him within 20 minutes of the accident.
The day was not the best for the UK team. The task scored 917 points and the spread of points in the area around turnpoint 2 meant that a very small distance cost a lot of points. Our best scoring pilot on the day was Bruce with 54th place at 44.1Km; a pilot landing 6km further gained 100 points!
The Team Standing has slipped to 8th but the points difference between us and the 4 teams above us is small. In this area with these conditions it only takes 1 less than perfect decision to put a pilot on the ground. It has happened to almost every pilot here at least once. I believe that we were a little unlucky on this day but I am convinced we will climb back up the standings in the next tasks.
|54||Bruce Goldsmith||44.1km||742 points|
|92||Mark Watts||32.8km||452 points|
|92||Adrian Thomas||32.7km||452 points|
|100||Abigail Barr||31.8km||437 points|
|117||Steve Ham||27.8km||347 points|
|117||Russel Ogden||27.8km||347 points|
|137||Nicky Moss||7.9km||127 points|
The Weather forecast was for total cirrus cover and 80% lower cloud cover with no useable thermal activity. At the team leader meeting a number of us tried to get the organisers to declare it a rest day, especially as the official rest day (Monday) had the best weather forecast of the competition so far. Unfortunately we were not successful and the organisers decided we should go up the hill and attempt to task.
A task was set but with cloudbase already on the mountain at take off and descending fast the day was cancelled (what a surprise) some of the pilots flew down through gaps in the cloud until the cloud cover got too thick. 1 pilot, Len from America decided to do some acro over the official landing field, unfortunately he got it wrong and had to deploy his reserve parachute which failed to open. Len fell from probably 60m and landed in the middle of a number of buildings on a corrugated iron roof suspended between 2 walls. He got up and walked away with his worst injury being 2 scratches on his leg. We think he gets the title of Mr lucky for this competition.
Day 7, Rest day.
As forecasted the rest day dawned with sunny skies, light winds and nice cumulus. The team decided to go practice in the afternoon and we all flew off the mountain with the plan to land on the main road to make the retrieve easier. An enjoyable day was had by all. I must mention our retrieve driver Mauro. The guy has been great. Nothing is to much trouble for him and all the other teams envy us.
Day 8, Task 6: TO 00, goal at Gol Porquinos 035. Total distance 53.1 Km.
The day started with heavy cloud cover and a forecast of average thermal activity,stopping early at 3:30 pm, easterly winds and high cirrus clouds coming in early. Everybody was a little down hearted considering that the rest day was such good flying weather. However on this occaision the weather men were wrong. A task was set with an elapsed time speed run of 53.1km from take off directly to goal at Goal Porquino. 10 mins before window opened there was very little lift and the wind dummies were struggling. The team decided that with the forecast it was still better to go early to take advantage of the departure points and the leading bonus points. Mark and Bruce were first away closely followed by the rest of the team. After a difficult first climb just behind take off and cloud base 60m above the hill, Mark and Steve lead out on the first glide. The conditions became even worse with light rain around the first village of Era Nova. And every bit of lift however poor had to be used to maintain. At this point further down the track it appeared that the sky was breaking up. Mark continued to lead out with the rest of the boys meeting up about 20kms down the track and taking a climb up to an improving base. Abigail unfortunately got caught in the shaded, rainy area and landed out beyond Era Nova. Nicky was feeling unwell at launch but after some attention from the doctors was able to make a late start just before window close. With such light conditions and no gaggle to help she did a good job of getting to the second village of Aplpercata. Abigail joined me in the team bus to help relay information to the guys in the air in tru Brit team spirit. After the next glide which mark again led out, Bruce and Adrian were unlucky to get in the next climb to low and were not able to get back up. Most of the climbs were both weak and small. This left Mark, Russell and Steve still running. At this point the sky really started to open up and the climbs started to improve a little. What at first seemed to be an impossible task was looking like it was going to work. The guys continued to work well together and remained in the lead 2 gaggles with mark leading out on each occaision. The conditions although improving were painfully slow and the pilots were often having to fly back up the track after a glide to get climbs.
At 10km out from goal the gaggles started to close up and the pilots were working to get every inch of height before making the final glide. Mark at this point was a little head of Russell and Steve. Mark went on final glide with a group of pilots but was unlucky to get line with bad sink. Mark was first Brit in goal but unfortunately was overtaken by 12 other pilots on the final glide. Russell was next in goal for Britain about 1 minute after Mark. The next few pilots either scraped in or landed just short so Steve decided to gain a little more height to make sure and came in to goal about 5 mins after Russell. A great result for the Team with 3 pilots in goal! With it being a speed run we all had to wait until 9:00pm to get the actual results. Congratulations to the Team on a great effort in difficult conditions.
There maybe some changes to these scores on Thursday as the scoring officials are investigating both cloud flying and airspace violations (none of our people involved but some of the pilots above them)
|25|| Mark Watts|| Goal||748 Points|
|26|| Russel Ogden||Goal|| 742 Points|
|41|| Steve Ham||Goal|| 654 Points|
|78|| Adrian Thomas||23.6km||295 Points|
|79|| Bruce Goldsmith||23.5km||294 Points|
|88|| Nicky Moss||16.1km|| 237 Points|
|106|| Abigail Barr|| 9.2km||156 Points|
Day 9, Task 7; TO 00, tp1 011, tp2 026, goal at 027. Total distance 66 Km.
The Weather forecast was good with a light north easterly wind, 1900m cloud base and good thermal strength. A similar length of task was chosen as the other days due to the thermal activity being expected to die out from 3:30pm. The task was a 66Km race to goal via 2 turn points. Turn point 1 (011 Sobralia), across the river to Turn point 2 (026 Antigo gol) and goal (027 Gol Posto Falcao) back by the road. The window was opened at 11:30 with a race start at 12:30. Bruce was our first pilot away right at window open time closely followed by Russell and Mark and within 15 minutes all our pilots were away. In the air the conditions proved to be much better than expected with a nice cloud street stretching to the first turn point. The guys were going that fast that I could barely keep up in the minibus underneath them. Nicky landed at turnpoint 1 finding it very difficult suffering from a virus infection. The next leg was cross wind over terrain with no roads! The lead gaggles were able to cross this without to much difficulty with then a short race in to goal. Abigail landed just short of the last turnpoint with the conditions getting weaker all the time. All five of the boys got into goal led by Adrian and Russell and followed by Bruce, Mark and Steve within 6 Minutes. However the number of pilots in goal increased the point spread so we’re still lying in 7th Team place ahead of the French.
|26|| Adrian Thomas||Goal 02:04:08|| 908 point|
|28|| Russell Ogden|| Goal 02:04:35|| 900 point|
|41|| Bruce Goldsmith||Goal 02:06:04|| 874 point|
|64|| Mark Watts|| Goal 02:09:18|| 836 point|
|67|| Steve Ham||Goal 02:10:38|| 821 point|
|115|| Abigail Barr|| 59.0 Km|| 321 point|
|135|| Nicky Moss|| 43.8 Km|| 182 point|
Day 10, Task 8; TO 00, tp1 016, tp2 006, tp3 058, tp4 045, goal at 001. Total distance 76.4 Km
Another excellent day with light NE winds and 1700m cloud base was forecast. The sunny and very hot take off was soon covered with colourful gliders and wind dummies were very happily thermaling about. The race task was set around the mountain again with turn points 016 (Sao Geraldo), back over the mountain (006 Aeromodelismo), out north to (058 Gol Posto Cherokee) and east to (045 Gol Posto Perim Prf). The goal was Torre Embratel(001), a tower on the foothills of the mountain and again was meant to encourage pilots to land in Feira da Paz in town for the spectators and press. Total race distance 76.4 Km and the window opened at 11:40hrs with a race start at 12:30hrs. The whole team was off very quickly again and climbing away in the gaggles, ready to race along the cloud streets at start opening time. However the weather forecast hadn’t quite predicted the feeble winds changing directions and making the task much more technical. Steve was very unlucky to get grounded at the first turn point and then assisted the retrieve. The rest of the team successfully came back to the mountain and crossed the river towards the 3rd turn point. Mark got very low at this point and could not get back up. Abigail and Nicky both landed just before the third turn point. That left Bruce, Adrian and Russell in the race and we were very hopeful when we saw them cross back over to the mountain and the goal line, but unfortunately the goal line was on top of the hill and neither Adrian nor Russell made it back up there in catabatic winds. So Bruce saved the british pride gaining some extra height and crossing the goal line 12th. This task however made history – it was won by a woman - the Czech Petra Krausova!
|12|| Bruce Goldsmith||Goal 02:06:04|| 882 point|
|42|| Adrian Thomas||74.8 Km||727 point|
|49|| Russell Ogden|| 74.6 Km||723 point|
|104|| Mark Watts|| 41.7 Km||333 point|
|114|| Abigail Barr|| 39.4 Km||298 point|
|118|| Nicky Moss|| 36.6 Km||256 point|
|137|| Steve Ham||12.6 Km||96 point|
Day 11 Task 9; TO 00, start 10Km radius around 018, tp1 018, tp2 016, tp3 009, goal at 003. Total distance 53.1 Km
The forecast for today was for light winds good thermals but the day dying off quickly due to an approaching frontal system bringing a lot of high cirrus. A task was set of 53.1 km with a start at 12:30 10km from turn point (018) Antenna Alpercata. The to (016) Sao Geraldo then back across the mountain to (009) the bridge and then into goal at (003) Carrapato. Again the organisers hoped that the field would be able to make Goal and then land in Feira Da Paz in town for the media and public. Take off conditions were tricky with very light winds and constant direction changes this made for many failed launches and delayed many pilots take offs. The last pilot launched only 14 minutes before the start gate opened! If you got away early the run to the first turn point was straight forward but later on in was more difficult. Many pilots got low at turn point 1 but most managed to get up. Bruce, Mark, Steve and Russell were in the lead gaggles Adrian was a little further back after A low save at Turnpoint1. Abigail and Nicky both hard a hard time getting the first turn point to were a little further back again. After turn point 2 the leaders raced back over the mountain to the final turn point. At this time the cirrus had started to approach from the south west and was starting to overtake the tail of the field. Bruce was first to go on glide in the leading group with mark close on his heels. The glide to goal was very difficult with a sinking air mass on the line in. At one time Bruce though he may not make it but in fact crossed the line in 5th place 1.5m above it!! Mark arrived in 9th place only 49 seconds behind Bruce. Russell was next in 32nd place 4 minutes later. Steve was really unlucky on his final glide and landed 1.5km short of goal in Jungle! Next along was Adrian who was just managing to stay ahead of the Cirrus and Knowing that time now was not as important, Took every climb to ensure arriving in goal. He crossed the line in 91st place with plenty of height and landed in Feira Da Paz. Abigail and Nicky were not so lucky with cirrus overtaking them on their glide to the last turn point forcing them to land at the foot of the mountain. A great day for the team with 4 in goal and 2 in the top ten. This task also broke a record with it being the first World Championships to have more than 8 tasks.
The Team is still in 7th place overall and extending our lead over France and Closing the Gap to Brazil.
|5th|| Bruce Goldsmith||Goal 1:29:29||966 point|
|9th|| Mark Watts|| Goal 1:50:18||945 point|
|32nd|| Russell Ogden|| Goal 1:53:59||869 point|
|91st|| Adrian Thomas||Goal 2:31:26||572 point|
|105th|| Steve Ham||51.6 Km||402 point|
|129th|| Abigail Barr|| 39.9 Km||236 point|
|130th|| Nicky Moss|| 39.7 Km||233 point|
Task 10; TO 00, tp1 046, tp2 00,
goal at 002. Total distance 54.6 Km
The Day started with a poor forecast of Low cloud base, increasing cloud,
weak thermals and a risk of storms. But considering how wrong the weather
had been so far it was decided to go up the mountain and try. A Task was
set and then reset with approaching cloudbase and sheets of rain visible
in the distance. The take off window opened at 1225hrs and the course was
finalized to an out and return race to goal from Take off out to
turn point (046) and then back to take off (000) with goal Fiera da Paz
(002) a total distance of 54.6Km.
The smaller South launch needed to be used and pilots were queing and
ready to go when the task got postponed again for approaching cloudbase.
We thought it might now be time for the organization to cancel the day
but the window was reopened 10 minutes later and the race began. The
climbs were weak to begin with and the gaggles struggled to get around
to the north side of the mountain where cloud base was appreciably higher.
There was 2 choices of route, one taking pilots north of the river on
the turn point side the other staying south. To begin with the south
side appeared to be the better line but that soon changed as a large
storm cell of to the south started to shadow the ground. By the time
the leaders were at turn point 1 all the ground was in shadow and That
was the end of the day. Only about 35 Pilots managed to get the turn
point and then glide to the ground. Some pilots found the conditions
near the ground challenging with 30Km winds at ground level but all landed
safely. Russel Ogden was first Brit with 751 points in 27th place.
|27|| Russell Ogden|| 751|
|47|| Steve Ham||675|
|84|| Bruce Goldsmith||426|
|106|| Adrian Thomas||348|
|134|| Mark Watts|| 199|
|137|| Abigail Barr|| 196|
|139|| Nicky Moss|| 131|
It seemed a pity to end on such a poor task after 9 good ones but I guess
that’s paragliding. With Christian Tamegger landing early he lost
his overall lead Giving Steve Cox the World championship with Tamegger
2nd and Wyss 3rd. in the Teams Swiss took first place followed by Germany
and then the Checks.
We achieved a creditable 7th place overall finishing ahead of the French.
And just behind the host nation Brazil. Well done Team.
report by Calvo