Friday, January 02, 2015

Forbes Flatlands - Day 2

Awesome call on both the weather and the task!  The forecast called for quite a lot of overdevelopment around the area, especially in Forbes by mid-afternoon.  The task committee (Jonny, Atilla and Gerolf) found a narrow corridor to the south (which was very convenient since we had pretty strong north winds) that took them to the only area that didn't look to have any overdevelopment.  The only concern was that the weather was meant to build and follow us south, so there was a chance it would catch us and spoil the day.  

Winds in the tow paddock started out fairly strong out of the north and people were running around with wind meters worrying that it might be too strong.  Early readings were around 30km/hour.  It lightened up just a bit by launch open.  By the time everyone was towed up we could see the overdevelopment all around us (except to the south).  When I left Forbes to head to goal, this was chasing me.

 But, out in front, in the direction of goal, the sky was classic and it was clear if they were out in front of the weather, it would be a fantastic day.  The task zig zagged to the south and with the strong tailwind component, they were moving fast!  I arrived at goal watching the first guys with trackers right on my tail, but I couldn't find the goal field - no goal keeper, no line, no nothing.  I thought I was at the wrong coordinates.  Not two minutes before the first glider came in, I found goal keeper Rob.  But, he had just arrived and didn't have time to get the line out before Zac came racing in.  I had watched him on the SPOT page and knew he was making really good time, but I had no idea if any non-tracking competitors were with him.  There were none!  He was completely on his own and it was nearly nine minutes before we saw the next one - Jochen - then another six or seven minutes after him when Gordo came in...three very happy boys!  Eventually two more big gaggles straggled in, but they were 35 minutes or so after Zippy.

In the end, there were somewhere around 30 in goal - about the same as yesterday.

We passed through a massive gust front on the way back to Forbes...just about the biggest (area-wise) I've ever seen.  Forbes weather is so powerfully cool!!

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