Gordy goes “Down Under” to get his LSF Level 3!

Gordy goes “Down Under” to get his LSF Level 3!

Our man Gordy was in Australia over the last week, under the pretense of “work”, but managed to get that all squared away to get some flying in. You might remember that Gordy flew with the same Sydney club (Heathcote Soaring League) club last year for the Heathcote Cup.

This year, Gordy was present for the Heathcote Cup Round 1 — and despite a couple of mishaps, still managed to get his LSF Level 3 done! Read on for his full account, and his account of his harrowing LSF Level 4 1-hour flight! Then check out the 2005.03 Gordy in Australia gallery!

The Heathcote Cup

Carl Strautin hosted my Sydney visit and it started with a birthday breakfast on Manly beach with gorgeous girls. We then went to fly all that Saturday and I spotted a group of kangaroos sleeping in the tall grass close to where I had landed. THought they were deer (which we are used to seeing but when they popped their heads up instead of antlers I saw ears).

The contest was similar weather to last time I flew,cool overcast and windy. We had about 10 winches all with mono. Man on man and everyone in the group solid pilots.

It was clear immediately that Allan and Matt Lowe and another Matt were on their game. Matt Lowe was flying an Extreme and Matt a Pike Superior V. Not sure what Allan was flying I think a Stratos V (probably have all three mixed up!). There were a few Pikes there and a some wood 2ms mixed in. 24 pilots in all.

Carl was flying his Shandy (a sharon Vtail) and it helped. Span and visibility both played a role that day. Matt Lowe was going to switch to his Pike Superior X tail but had just refitted it and had some plugs in the wrong spots.

I was on my game as well and put up thee 1000’s. ON the fourth flight the air was clearly good so was looking at a gimme flight, but the line snagged and I popped off. I quickly circled around for the catch and handed the plane to Carl who was throwing for me in the wind. I apparently had slipped the canopy back off its pin on the catch becasue about 20 feet up, off it came. The rules here are lost part zero flight.

They decided on a mercy throw out so I was possibly back in the game, but on the next flight I managed to draw another snagged line and then a broken line for top of 200′ in cold air. Carl and Matt both managed the average 600′ (I checked a launch with my Picolario for the heck of it) and caught the down wind run on their flights. I hit a 100 landing but was short about 6mins.

A bad day on the field is still a good day and I had a great day because my host and a total best friend won. (he’d have beat me anyway, as last time he only lost by 2points to me, and did that by being greedy on time taking two more wraps on the clock and then ending short of the landing zone.

He’s world class F3J and me…I just travel a lot :-)
Wish you guys could have been there…I need more guys to beat now that its LSF4 time :-)
Ilost the contest but WON my LSF3….paper signed first by Ben Clerx (past F3J world champ and last by Carl Strautin and CD Bruce to finish my level 3…doing it in style :)

New Zealand adventure this week!

The LSF 4 One-hour flight

So it was gorgeous in Auckland yesterday, perfect conditions, even if the 7
of us weren’t..(a couple of beers and steaks the nite before and bull session
to almost midnite took its toll some!)

I borrowed a futa wall charger from Les Stockely and had my Pike and Stylus
on charge all nite…figuring it would be fun to start my LSF4 bid with a one
hour in New Zealand.

I got to the field and we set the winches…the day was one to dream about
high fluffy clouds light winds and gentle temps..mountains and a lake in the
back ground.

I put up my first launch and ran out my talking timer (always set to count
down 10’s) and decided to float around some for a total of just over 30mins.

I got the idea to go for the one hour task so brought it down to check
everything out for the bid….seemed okay, made a quick rest room run and drank a
bottle of water then launched to settle in for the hour.

it was big sky so only had one sort of close sink period bur for the most
part it was 900+ altitude for the whole event (no I am not using my Pic for
anything other than voltage reports and occassional alt reports for the
reference of guys on the field for time tasks or contests).

At about 14mins, my TX low voltage started in. Very annoying but figure I
have time. I kept it up till about 4mins were left and the voltage indicator
said 8.5v.

Everyone was with me at that point and there were at least 3 watches on the
flight. Everyone was just as nervous as me…but I decided to stay with it.
We even tried a momentary fast charge but the RX in the plane wouldn’t rest
at zero (PCM would a have been nice then.)

Anyway, like I said, no one wanted or felt it was worth losing a Volz
Powered Pike Superior over, so at about 2mins I brought it down to the top of the
tree line at the fields edge so in case I lost the TX the plane would soar off
to a subdivision or hit a cow somewhere.

Needless to say the stress was huge.
At one min I brought it below tree height to minimize possible damage. I
was going for it…but a sink came thru and while she really hung in there, and
I was heading toward a slope in the field…at 59minutes and 53seconds the
nose touched terra firma….and the TX stayed strong for at least another
3mins!!! :-(

Next time :-)

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