Here we are for the 13th Chabre Open.
The season has been very slow this year, and stormy.
That is, until the week before the competition, and then it turned good. Last week saw pilots flying long and far. Cloud base was not so high, but the clouds were generally nice (some got a bit black at times) for some long days; even one day to St André. Epic.
We are looking forward to some great fun this week.
We are using trackers again this year, so Rego would not have been as busy as in the past. But, they are delayed, so we all need to upload waypoints and download tracks, at least for the practice task.
There are some people still to register so it will be a busy morning. The trackers will be here soon. I prey they will be here soon, downloading the practice task was loooong.
Day 0, Practice Task, Saturday June 30.
The usual Practice task was today (though this is the first one for a while that was flyable). We run a task like any normal comp day, but it does not score. This is to take the pressure off and let everyone get rid of their cobwebs and mistkes ready for the real deal tomorrow.
The morning sky is blue, no clouds, light winds predicted. Game on we hope, yay.
We all walked (without gliders) up Buc. Quite a stroll in the warmth, but we all made it. A 42.4km task was set starting at 15:00. From Buc to Orpierres, St Genis East and into camping. A new route for the Westerly because of a slight Southerly element.
55 Pilots got to goal and the winner of the day was Grant Oseland (Advance Sigma 10), then Mirjam Hempel (Advance Sigma 10) also top Woman, then Richard Meek (Ozone Alpina 2). Well done everybody.
Back at camping we were greeted with Aperos: Snacks and drinks layed-on and served by the jolly organisation.
Day 1, Sunday July 1. Task1
The morning sky is blue again. Looks like a Chabre day. Let us see.
We had a great task, 75km race to Chorges: From Chabre to Col St Jean, Les Croix, Charence and on to Chorges.
The day started inverted and the launch window delayed once. Once opened the climbs were not great and a South West wind meant the first section was trickier than expected. Gaggles were strewn along the ridge as few made it to the start line on time. From the first turnpoint back to Les Croix there was a choice of routes with some going back to launch and some dropping into the Orpierres valley. Both worked. Les Croix needed an into wind push, tricky, and the the climbs getting to Charence were good if you found them. A nice glide from Charence to goal but top ups were needed as base was hard to reach.
Winner of the day was Grant Oseland (Advance Sigma 10), Second was Anders Gustafsson (Ozone Delta 2) and third Hans Ter Maat (Nova Sector). First woman was Mirjam Hempel (Advance Sigma 10). 45 piots were in goal and 91 made it over half way. Well done to all.
Day 2, Monday July 2. Task2
Oh, my. Another blue sky and light winds from the South West. We had to go to launch.
The forecasts were mixed. Some said over-development for the afternoon, some didn't. After a lot of debate we decided for a task that stayed on a fairly fixed line to the South of the bigger mountains.
From Chabre, a 61km race to goal at Batie Neuf was set via 4 turnpoints, although the route was fairly straight. The start was at 13:35 1km from Col St Ange, then on to Col St Ange, Longue Dent, Oule (above Veynes), La Roche Des Arnoux and goal.
The first climbs were a little slow, but most of the field were ready (some high, some low) at the start line. The field split quite quickly, some chosing Orpierres to the North, some staying on the ridge and some going direct to St Genis. The wind took us down the course line, Ouze giving some of us a rapid boost, others had it a bit rougher.
The turnpoint before goal was a decision point: Would the valley beyong be bouyant or not? Yesterday it was. Well, for the leaders it prooved very sinky and only a couple got through. Dropping short was the gift for speeding.
Winner of the day was Mark Graham (Ozone Delta 3), followed by Nicola Moeckli (BDG Cure) and Andy Brown(Advance Sigma 10). First woman was Kanan Thakur(Gin Sprint). 54 pilots made goal today; well done everyone.
Day 3, Tuesday July 3. Task Cancelled
The forecast was for winds from the WNW which meant a flight from Buc.. the one you have to walk up. The clouds were supposed to grow throughout the day, but not as fast as they did.
We had a short task planned to get to camping. But just a few minutes into the task it was clear the clouds would win so the task was stopped.
Tonight is the now infamous Pizza Paella night in Ribiers. Dancing on the tables is expected.
Day 4, Wednesday July 4. Task4
There was a lot of dancing last night. Henri and son played to the audience very well.
Another clear blue sky today. Prediction is for lots of cloud this afternoon, and some of them will be leaking. We'll see.
We all went up to Chabre take off and the wind was light and switchy. The clouds were not as developed as expected but they were popping and indicating instability. We set a shorter task: A 40km race to Veynes goal field via Col St Ange (1km start at 13:05) then on to Aujour, 2km from Aspremont and in to goal.
The start was pretty good, with pilots strewn around the start gate and mostly at 2500m dodging cloud. An easy glide to St Genis and then the groups split, some taking climbs and some going on to Aujour. Hans went into orbit on his own at Aujour and sailed off into the distance getting into goal first. After some fighting the next group got up and pushed cross wind (though it felt like head wind) to get to Aspremont and a sinky downwind glide into goal. A few were short again but thankfully less than T2
First in goal was Hans Ter Matt (Nova Sector) then Alan Mcnab (Ozone Delta 2) then Nicola Moeckli (BDG Cure). First woman was Mirjam Hempel (Advance Sigma 10) and 69 pilots made goal. Well done again.
Day 5, Thursday July 5. Cancelled
Forecast for a cloudy day, very exciting.
Not exciting, sorry. The clouds won the day. We went up Bergies and were hoping for a window to fly, but no. The Cumulous continued to tower. The day was cancelled and quite a few of the field flew for a little bit, generally down to the landing.
Tonight Jocky will do a talk on some SIV and some competition flying. Should be fun.
Day 6, Friday July 6. Cancelled
Unfortunately the wind is too strong from the North today so there will be no task. A lot of pilots are flying at St Vincent.
The prize giving will be at 6:30, then a meal and then the infamous prize draw.
All of the results are on the results page.
Task reports by Mark Graham