GETTING READY FOR COMPETITION

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Transcript GETTING READY FOR COMPETITION

Getting Ready For
Competition
Topics
 Preparation
– Glider
– Pilot
 Expectations
 Practice
 What to Expect
Glider Preparation
 Be Sure Everything Works
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Annual/Condition Inspection
Wheel Brake
Fix dings, wax
Instruments (keep it simple)
 Know how they work
 Know that they work
 Program PDA
– Relief (pee) System/Drinking Water
– Cockpit Comfortable
– Trailer (lights, hitch, tires, interior)
Pilot Preparation
 Task Area
– Turnpoints
– Map, Restricted Areas, SUA’s
– Google Earth (where terrain a factor)
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Competition Rules-know them
Read SRA, Moffat, Davis (see end)
Local Field Protocol
Crew Arrangement
Physical Conditioning, Rest
Map
 Why a map? I have GPS and a moving
map on my PDA.
 Big picture
 Planning
 Familiarization with the area
 Reliability of glider electrical systems
Pilot Preparation
 Checklists!
– Before leaving home
– Glider
 Before Take Off
 After Landing
Sailplane Racing Checklist
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W3
PREFLIGHT:
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Critical Assembly Check
Batteries (charged)
IPAQ (turnpoints loaded and charged)
Cellphone (charged)
Pee Thing & connector
Sunglasses
Map
Road Map
Landing Cards
Retrieve Numbers
Grid Sheet
Task Sheet
Sun Screen/ChapStick
Lunch
Drinking Water
Oxygen On
Ridge Head Pad
Landout Kit
ELT armed
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W3
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POSTFLIGHT:
Download flight log
Turn Off:
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Remove from cockpit:
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IPAQ
Landing Card
Cellphone
Batteries (to be charged)
Camelbacks
Lunch
Return to Cockpit
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GPS-Nav
Instruments/Master
Oxygen
ELT (for trailering)
Sunglasses
Dump valve tool
Pee Connector
Clean off bugs
Secure glider in trailer
Expectations
 Competition often turns perfectly good pilots
into idiots!
 Set realistic goals. You are probably not
going to win your first contest.
 If you finish every day, you will surprise
yourself with how well you do!
Racing Strategy
 Not rocket science
 Set MacCready conservatively
– Pick a reasonable speed for the day and use
that in cruise.
– Flying a little slower increases range for finding
the next thermal.
 If you get low, survival, not speed is priority
 Minimize circling; Fly lift lines
Racing Strategy
 Focus on reaching goal(s)
– Next cloud, turnpoint, finish
 BUT, always keep several options in mind
 Think flexibly, don’t become fixated
 Use other gliders. (Be sure they are really
climbing!)
 If flight is not going well, evaluate other
alternatives. Perhaps try something else.
Practicing for Racing
 Racing (and XC flying) is a complex task
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Good start
Finding & centering thermals
To circle or not to circle
Gaggle flying
Identifying best lift lines to next turnpoint
Proper speed control
Outlanding options
Drink, eat and pee
Final glide
Finish and LANDING!
Practicing for Racing
 Fly cross country every chance you get
 Whenever possible, set a task and try to
complete it, preferably racing with several
other pilots
 Vary task setting: AST, TAT, MAT
 Analyze each flight, using SeeYou, etc.
Identify areas for improvement
 Develop feel for starts and final glides
Practicing for Racing
 On weak (non XC) days practice finding and
centering thermals at low altitude.
 Practice picking landing fields, and visit later
 If your next contest allows water ballast, use
it in practice on good days.
Your First Contest
Stay ahead of the curve
Eat a good breakfast
Assemble and CAC glider early
Grid early
Use your checklist
Comfortable in cockpit
Be ready to go with 4-5 gliders ahead of
you for tow
Your First Contest
Your First Contest
Stay relaxed, but alert
Don’t worry about the weather. It is what it is.
Create several general strategies depending on
task and weather.
Use your mentor. Ask questions. Discuss your
proposed strategies.
Avoid Distractions
Your First Contest
 Review the Task Area
– Map
– Terrain features, issues, aids
– Outlanding options
Your First Contest
 Flying the task
– Don’t start first, or last
– Use the skills you have learned and practiced at
home.
– Avoid the onset of “Contest Idiocy” You don’t
have to follow those other guys streaking at a
high rate of speed towards the ground!
– Watch weather trends, keep flexible, be ready to
change strategy if conditions warrant.
Your First Contest
 Flying the Task
– Use other gliders, but don’t blindly follow them
– Flying to your next thermal (cloud), have a plan
for the possibility it is no longer working.
Your First Contest
 Finishing
– Plan to finish high (1000 ft agl) until you have a
better feel for final glides.
– Don’t miss the bottom of the Finish Cylinder
– If the finish looks marginal, keep landable fields
within reach.
– After the Finish, focus on fitting in with the
traffic, landing the glider and clearing the
runway.
Your First Contest
 Post Flight
– Glider clear of the runway
– Flight log to scorer
– Put the glider away for the night (Check List!)
– Have a beer and discuss your flight with the
other pilots
Other Reading
 SRA Guide to Soaring Competition
– http://sailplane-racing.org
 “How to enjoy your first gliding competition”,
Sailplane & Gliding,June-July 2004
 Cross Country Soaring by Helmut
Reichmann
 Winning II by George Moffat
Good Luck!
Fly Safe!