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Chairman's Newsletter October 2020

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Get Your Bronze This Winter

The good weather is now starting to disappear which means we have less opportunities to go flying, but this doesn’t mean that the fun has to stop… A great way to continue to develop as a pilot over winter is to tackle the Bronze endorsement, which includes both theory and practical elements. We’re looking to start a new Bronze theory revision group which will offer a mix of theory talks and revision sessions online – this would be open to anyone in the club who is looking to brush up on their Bronze theory. And if you’re looking to progress with the flying side, why not arrange for your winter refresher flights to double as Bronze preparation, or maybe even take the test?

Please get in touch if you would like to join in. If any instructors would like to be involved, it would be great to hear from you.

Congratulations to Sam and Peter from UWE who both passed their Bronze theory exams last week. They were both part of the university club’s online study group which helped them to learn the topics and revise for the exam.

Sunday 27th September

A very quiet day today with just a handful of UWE students coming to the airfield to fly. Ben completed another phase of his BI qualification with a visiting examiner, whilst Peter flew his Bronze GST to complete his Bronze endorsement. New student Rhys was treated to his first flights in a glider, and Olivia made some progress with her training. As there were no volunteers for the ground duties, Brian and I also refreshed ourselves on the winch by taking turns doing winch driving and instructing. All in all a very nice day.

Saturday 12th September

Another nice autumn soaring day with a number of private gliders flying cross-country in thermal and wave. The launchpoint was kept busy all day by a small group of students flying the two-seaters and K23. Many thanks to Tim and Mike for driving the winch, and to Don and Finn for looking after the launch point. Let's hope for a few more days like this before winter.

Sunday 6th September

A pleasant autumn day with a much longer queue for the K23 than any of the two-seaters. The K23 and K13 were kept busy for most of the day and the soaring weather attracted a few private single-seaters out of their trailers as well. Thanks to Ben and Caleb for driving the winch.

Competitions at Aston Down 2021

The BGA has now confirmed the national competition dates for next year. The club will be hosting the Junior Nationals & Cotswold Regionals (the comp that should have started tomorrow) on 21-29 August 2021.

If you're keen to get into competition flying, then flying your first regionals from your home club would be a great way to get experience and build confidence. Please see the competition website for details and feel free to get in touch if you have any questions. We're also looking for people to help us run the competition, so if you're interested in taking part in any capacity, please let me know - there's lots of ways to get involved.

Sunday 16th August

Today turned out to be a nice flying day despite the dubious forecast. Congratulations to Dan from UWE on passing his bronze GST and many thanks to Andy Smart for his excellent winch launches.

Saturday 1st August

Warm but cloudy day on runway 21. The alto-cu/stratus broke up to allow a period of soarable weather with max cloubase reported at 3000 feet. We operated K21 LRT and the K13 for check flights and the K23 was busy all day. Good to see some more members being checked and re-soloed to expand the pool of people able to fly. Those Instructors doing the 2-seat flying are starting to get more comfortable with the new arrangements.

Aerotowing w/c 27 July

Sorry to say, no Eurofox tug this next week as it is poorly and going for recuperation. Hopefully it will be back the following week. If the weather looks really promising I shall see if we can get another tug in.

Instead of emailing all members like this, please check this website from time-to-time for any update on aerotowing this next week and for subsequent weeks. It’s also useful to use Whats App to check.

David Roberts

Wednesday 22nd - another fantastic day

The forecast for Wednesday was not as optimistic locally as previous days but that didn't stop a few private gliders being towed early. The tug going U/S dampened their enthusiasm though and some decided to call it a day.
The Wednesday team were out in force and despite some early winch problems managed to get some check flights under way with various simulated launch failures being undertaken.
In addition it was Elliot's 14th birthday and he has been working towards first solo for a while. The recent lockdown had put a stop to further progress but thankfully two seater flying was relaxed early enough for him to knock the rust off. Under the watchful eye of Geoff Dixon he flew his first solo at lunchtime during which he proudly managed to take a thermal climb. A second flight drew the day to an end for him as the wind increased. Congratulations to Elliot and all those who achieved something this week and a big thank you to the instructors who have helped to make this happen.

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