2007 News Page

News from other years: 2010, 2009, 2008, 2006, 2005, 2004

Future team selection

The selection of the British Team was discussed at a meeting of the Competitions Panel held in Piedrahita earlier this year.

A consensus was reached that the current WPRS (World Pilot Ranking System) is now a better selection criteria than using the results from the British Championships.

After the selection of the team for the European Championships in 2008, which will be based on the existing criteria, team selection will be based entirely on the WPRS. There will be no discretionary element. A team place based on this selection process is no guarantee of financial assistance to attend an event

Martin Sandwith wins XC League 2007 Marra

Martin Sandwith has won the 2007 XC League with a score of 737.7. Neil Roberts was second on 704.0 with Mark Watts 3rd on 673.0.

Notable flights during the year included the straight distance record set by John Silvester at 194km and the straight distance to a declared goal record being broken three times and now at 135.36km set by Neil Roberts.

The prize-giving will be at the Sport Leisure and Aviation Show at the NEC, at 2.00pm on Sunday 25th November.

Russell Ogden is British Champion 2007 Russell Ogden

Russell Ogden has won the 2007 British championships. Thirteen tasks were flown over the 2007 series in France, the UK and Spain.

See the full British Championship results and presentation

British Open St Andre 2007 St Andre Station
27nd September, St Andre, France

The third round of the British Championships was held in St Andre from 16th to 27nd September 2007. Mads Syndergaard from Denmark was the winner, closely followed by Jamie Messenger who was only 17 points behind

This competition was combined with the Dutch and the Belgian Opens. All competitors were competing individually for the open title, but each nation has a separate championship ranking for their National championship.

Report and results

UK win Blériot Cup 2007 Uk team Bleriot winners
September 2 to 7, Corrèze, France

The British paragliding and hanggliding team hold on to the Blériot Cup for a fourth consectutive year. The weather didn't play ball with strong north wind allowing the PG team only 1 task and the HG team 2 tasks. The event took place in the Limousin region with the main site being Le Suc au May.

Comp report

British Open Long Mynd 2007 Russell Ogden winner of the second round of the British championships
August 8 to 11, Long Mynd, UK

This competition was probably the most successful round of the British Championships held in Britain. Four tasks were flown out of 4 days, including a record distance of 82.6km for an achieved British championship task held in Britain. A total of 10,750 Kilometres were flown and 112 pilots made goal.

Russell Ogden was the overall winner of the round, beating visiting Danish pilot Mads Syndergaard by just 5 points.

Report and results

Ulric, Aidan and the X Alps Ulric and Ruth training for the X Alps; click for a larger image
August in Europe

Ulric Jessop and Aidan Toase are entering the X Alps; paragliding's toughest competition. Aiden competed in 2005, shining for his walking endurance rather than his map reading ability. This sort of event is just Ulric's cup of tea. Ulric and Ruth were seen training during the Piedrahita open whilst Aidan is known to have been training in the Alps.

Best of luck to them.

More UK cross country records broken Neil Roberts breaks the UK Xc to goal record
July in the UK

The UK straight distance and the straight distance to a declared goal records were broken on consecutive days at the end of July.

On Sunday 29th July, John Silvester, flying a Gradient Avax, flew for 5 hours 39 minutes from Moel Elio near Llanberis in North Wales to the Severn Bridge near Chepstow to increase the straight line distance record to 194K.

The next day Neil Roberts flew from the Long Mynd to a declared goal at Bicester, increasing this record to 135.36K. This is the fourth time this record has been broken this year.

Neil's account of the two flights can be read here.

British Open Piedrahita 2007 Open winners; mens and womens; click for a larger image
24 to 30 June, Piedrahita, Spain

Nearly 130 pilots competed in the Piedrahita Open 2007. Four tasks were flown, the longest being 154km (with 28 making it to goal). Unfortunately the wind stopped us flying on the other days.

Lars Jonsson won the mens and Jolanda de Zeeuw the womens, pictured right.

Report and results

Fiona Macaskill beats her own world record
17 April, Plaine Joux, France

Fiona Macaskill has extended her own Female World Record of Speed over a Triangular Course of 25km to 24.12kph. Fiona has now broken this record 4 times, the first almost 10 years ago.

Flying from Plaine Joux in France, she sped around the course in just over an hour, reaching over 3250m on the way. Fiona says that it was a strong day and no other paragliders were flying: just after completing the course she hit an 8 m/s climb!

It is interesting to note that for FAI records, the difference between start and finish altitudes must not be more than 2% of the task distance; in this case only 500m.

UK goal record falls again
18th April, Combe Gibbet

The British (Local) Straight Distance to a Declared Goal record, extended to 114.0km by John Kennedy last month, has been broken again. Adrian Thomas (Airwave Magic FR3) and Mark Watts (Gradient Avax SR7) flew together from Combe Gibbet to near Lewes, setting a new record of 116.6 km. This is Mark's 10th (straight line) 100km flight in the UK and Adrian's 5th.

Adrian's report on the day can be read here.

UK goal record falls jfk fight
21 March, Wrekin, UK

Congratulations to John Kennedy (JFK) who took off on his Gradient Aspen 2 from the Wrekin at midday and flew to a declared goal at Cirencester to set a new British (Local) Straight Distance to a Declared Goal Record of 114.0km. The previous record of 108.9km was set by Mike Aston, flying from the The Lawley to Cirencester in August 2005. The flight also sets a record for the earliest straight line 100km ever flown in the UK; the temperature at cloud base was -7°.

"As we prepared for take off I wore no less than 7 layers of clothing including 4 fleeces and a flying suit.. so padded out was I that I could not even fasten the zip on my suit!"

"The two pairs of gloves and heat pads were not up to the job in hand however. At only about 15 km into the flight I was very very cold. Upon landing I could not stop shaking from the cold for 30 minutes but I would not have missed the flight for anything."

Recent rule changes give goal flights a multiplier of 1.5 so this flight has earned John 171.0 points in the XC League and the chance of winning the Winter League with just one flight. John flew most of the flight with Neil Roberts on his Avax SR7. The photo was taken by Diane Bevan from Bewdley as they flew over.

Bruce Goldsmith is the World Champion Bruce Goldsmith World Champion
24 February to 9 March, Manilla, Australia

Bruce Goldsmith won the 10th FAI World Championships in Manilla 10 years after it was last won by a British pilot (John Pendry). The British team was Bruce, Adrian Thomas, Russell Ogden, Steve Ham, Mark Watts, Louise Burnham and Nicky Moss. The competition had some rain, but eventually managed to complete 5 tasks.

Comp Report

British Squad 2007

The British Squad selected for training in 2007 is as follows:

Men: Adrian Thomas, Bruce Goldsmith, Craig Morgan, Innes Powell, John Ellison, Kai Coleman, Mark Leavesley, Mark Watts, Steve Ham, Steve Nash, Russell Ogden.

Women: Fiona Macaskill, Louise Burnham, Nia Harland, Nicky Moss.

Many of the squad are intending to enter the Paragliding World Cup tour, the highest competition circuit in the world. It is hoped that Bruce Goldsmith and Russell Ogden will be mentoring our top pilots during the World Cup events in preparation for the Europeans in 2008.