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Monday, May 27, 2013

What a spring season !

This week end was the local F3F competition, part of the french league (Notre Dame de Vaulx). Despite the very bad weather forecast, some pilots came from far away (Auvergne, Alsace) hoping to fly anyway.

Thing were clearly annoucing very bad, as friday evening when the clouds cleared, we could see from GRenoble the mountain totally white with 5 to 10cm of snow on it. In the night of Friday to Saturday, more snow falled.

Saturday morning, it was impossible to reach the parking at the bottom of the slope, as there was too much snow on the road. The pilot meeting therefore moved to the village below. after some discussion, we finally decided to try another slope close to first one. After a fist attempt on the main slope, we discover that the wind was too crossed to fly, so we continued to walk to a mini summit facing the north, not ideal at all for F3F, but however fliable.

Under a threatening grey sky, we installed the pylons, and flew a first round (best time 40s). We started the second round but quickly had to stop when the snow decided to fall again. Temperatures were freezing. some drop of water went to ice on the wings, while putting back the plane in the bag. OK, we are crazy, I know !!!!

Now the question was, what to do the next day to ensure we could fly more and validate the contest (4 rounds needed, given  the 14 pilots presents). We decided to move the contest 60km to the south, near Gap, to retrieve the sun and the wind.

On Sunday, we arrived at the parking around 10:30, climbed the slope and installed everything, then resumed the contest with round 2, under a blue sky, but still freezing temperatures, especially becuase of the strong wind (8 to 13 m/s).

We managed 6 new rounds, in superb conditions, with some thermals. Best time is 34s by Alain Galinet with his Alliaj HM. Lot of sub-40 has been flown. The only drawback of the slope was that the landing area was behind the course, so we had to wait the landing of the pilot before to launch the next pilot.

We finished around 3:00 pm with a total 7 rounds in the pocket. We all had a great day on this slope, that we need for sure insert in the calendar of the french league for next year.

Thanks to the organisers for making this contest finally possible !

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