The Red Elvis's performed in the pilots tent last night. They are a pretty fun band. I guess I am getting to be an old fart because the music was just too loud. I had to stay at least 50 yards outside the tent for it to be bearable. They played until 12:30 am. We arrived back at Quest at 9:00 pm last night and it looked like only half the pilots were back by then.
The lift yesterday was much better than I had expected. I had over 700 up twice. I topped out at 5,800' on my short flight. Bruce hit 6,200' later in the course.
I got up this morning at 7:00 to start with all the day's task. The air was calm and a layer of ground fog blanketed Quest. The dog situation is getting out of hand. They are crapping every where and most of the owners do nothing. I saw a dog piss all over a guys computer bag (which his computer was in) at the pilots meeting. I told the dog's owner and his response was "he must have smelled something on the bag and he was only marking it".
I took my laundry to the Groveland laundry mat this morning. For 11 pounds of clothes it was $9.23 a far cry from the $160 Bruce and I paid for the same amount of clothes in Austria. They said they would have it ready by 4:00 and they closed at 6:00.
The winds today are supposed to be lighter than days past and from the same direction. Cloud bases would start at 5,000 and rise later in the day. Lift was supposed to be more consistent than yesterday. An out and return task was called to Winter Haven. Total distance was 65.9 miles. The launch and start times were the same as yesterday with the rigids starting first.
Bruce told me he wanted to take the first start time today. That sounded fine with me. I was second to tow in our line (there are two towing lines). A large gaggle formed up shortly after I released (it was a slow tow). I was lucky enough to find myself at the very top, about 400' higher than the rest. As the first start time approached, no one looked like they were going to go. Bruce was still climbing and not in position to go. The clouds out on the course line looked good so I started as a gaggle of one.
I took my time and just flew from cloud to cloud, trying to stay upwind of the course line. The clouds were not very large and did not last very long. I did manage to climb above 5,000' on most climbs. A few miles from the turnpoint the lead gliders caught me. Jim Yocom was one of them. Robert, and Primoz (who won the day yesterday) were about 100 yards ahead of me as we rounded the turnpoint. I got a good climb and they continued on and I never saw them after that.
Again I was flying by myself. Jim was following from below, but was never quite able to catch up. I tried waiting at a couple of thermals for him, thinking we could team up for the return leg. It never happened so I flew all the way back by myself. I followed a street of wispy clouds all the way back, sometimes dolphin flying for several miles, never getting below 5,000'. The winds up high were only 4 mph compared to 15 mph at 3,000', so I tried to stay as high as possible, even if it meant thermaling more often.
As I crossed goal I saw only two rigid wing gliders on the ground. I was third to cross goal as far as I could tell. I did take the first start time so those on the ground would have flown at least 15 minutes faster than me. The scoring program does reward early starts, so I could finish as high as third or low as 6th for the day. I won't know until all the scores are in tomorrow. Jim said the reason I did so well was I wanted to get back early enough to pick up my laundry.
My track is in red, Bruce is green and Jim is blue.
This is a picture of the launch lines. The VR gliders have to put their wings under the trees to make enough room for other gliders to get by and the tugs to land.