This will be my last report until we get back to the United States. This morning the sky looked good with no clouds and bright sunshine. We all drove up to launch prepared to fly a task. At launch we talked to several pilots who said we would not fly today. The sky still looked good, but we would start to see a front moving in from the west. There was a chance of thunder storms to the east. The winds were not too strong, at least they did not look like yesterday.
The weatherman gave his report without comment, it sounded pretty much like what we were seeing. After his report, Tova ask him if he had seen any rain yet. He said no, and just then most of the women pulled out bottles of water and totally drenched him. It seems that is a tradition at the competitions in Australia. It was all done in good fun. Someone produced some dry clothes so he could change. He started to go into the hut when the women started chanting for him to "take it off". He did a strip tease, much to the women's enjoyment. He revealed enough to make the women scream with delight (you will have to ask the women pilots for all the details).
After the show, the meet director said that there would be no task for today. It looked like most of the pilots were satisfied with the decision. We had talked to Felix and Christoph about them taking our rental gliders back with them to the AIR factory. Since they both had their vehicles at launch, we broke the gliders down, up on the hill and loaded them onto the cars. This was really great for us, since it will save us 6 hours of driving on Saturday.
The final standings have Bruce in 19th place, moving up from 34th earlier in the meet. He finished 9th for the task yesterday. I placed 33rd, moving down from 24th earlier. Jim placed 36th, Davis 39th and Ron 42nd. As a team we did not do very good. I can't make excuses for us. The European pilots here are very good. I think local knowledge of the site was very important. We very seldom flew along the course line, but would cross valleys and mountain ranges depending on the wind, sun, clouds etc. On the first three days when I made goal I was just following other pilots. Later in the meet I started to try to make more decisions for myself. Obviously I was not making the best decisions. Even though I did not make goal yesterday, I was still happy with most of my flight because I was making my own decisions and catching up to the group in front of me.
The awards ceremony will be tonight at 8:00. They are supposed to last one hour, I am guessing that means 3 hours in Austria time. Nothing happens quickly over here.
The plan for the rest of the week it to drive up to Munich on Saturday with Jim and Bruce. We all fly out of Munich on Sunday. We will get a hotel near the airport for Saturday night. We should arrive back in California on Sunday night, we gain back 8 hours we lost on the way here.
This is Bruce getting in line to launch yesterday. The previous day he won a new pair of speed sleeves for making goal. He has been flying with white speed sleeves, but these were red. This confused a lot of competitors and probably helped him beat a few pilots who could not figure out who he was.