Saturday, August 6, 2011

End of the Worlds, S of France and heading home.

We did get to Foligno, and Flocky, Trent and I did get shoes and pedals. Dave and Neil came along for support and it turned out a good team bonding exercise centred around a bar run by a very easy on the eye 21 yo Albanian girl.
Could have been awkward if most of the Aus team had got wiped out together, but we survived despite getting bogged during some oncoming truck evasion manoeveres. Obviously pilots do not have no entry signs in the sky!

The end of the worlds was anticlimactic with the last task being called due to some suss air around launch. Attila had launched early and completed the task in about 2 hours.

The closing ceremony had lots of flag waving and the Italians also had much to wave their flag about.

Gubbio Flag Wavers

Christian, Alex and Primoz on the podium.

Alfio and Bill telling stories at the presentation
Vicki accepting the FAI flag for Forbes from Flip.

Predictably the flying became epic the day the comp finished. Grant Crossingham from team Pom and I flew to Castellucio after the presentation. Louisa chased us with their two kids so we did not bother coming back. After doing a circuit of the awesome valley we landed and had dinner in the town.

Next day I helped drive Francoise and Margo to their magnificent home just outside Montpellier.

I had some interesting flying in Francoise's S3 nearby, first at Ganges:

Then at Millau next to the famous 2.4 km long, 300m high, bridge.

Millau, W launch just behind upright, landing in frront next to the river and the bridge in the background.

Home via Annecy, Geneve, Rome and Singapore. Hell Australia's a long way from anywhere!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Tourist, tourist, tourist..............task 2

A break from wind and rain and we sqeeze in a 110km race. Scary death gaggle at Gubbio followed by 60 pilots arrriving in goal in 5 minutes. (No exageration 94 total. Nobody hit anyone but it was interesting. Alex Ploner takes the lead after getting into goal 5 minutes before the peleton. I hung onto 17th overall as everyone was so close. The team drops a few spots but there are only a few points in it. The weather does not look good for the rest of the week but there may be windows to get a task in.


Steve, Bill and Trent celebrating surviving the death gaggle.

I am running out of tourist stuff to do but did see some awesome caves yesterday.

Frasassi Grotto

Some great bike shops here in Italy and everyone is happy to talk about Cadel when they find out you are Australian. Loking at buying some Sidi's.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Task 1................finally

Finally got a task in. We flew Sabbasio right above Assisi. Jonny and
I made goal for the Aussies, 22 out of 145 got in on a very demanding
day with strong wind at altitude.
It was wierd landing at goal and spectators knowing exactly where you
got low and how you went as they were following the live trackers. If
we fly they are turned on about 12:30 local time if you are

Off to get some rest, maybe another 5 hours tommorow.

Blown out day 1 - Never seen so many topless laid flat.


Back to thunderstorms the next day and no flying. 5 pilots got a zero for hitting Perugia airspace, two had made goal. Hurts.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


The first flying day was blown out so we went on a tourist drive to Castelluccio. Stupidly we did not take our gliders. The German team did, found it quite flyable and got to 13,000ft in wave. The Castellucio valley is like nothing else I have seen. The floor of the valley, at 4000ft, is dead flat and encircled by beautiful flyable hills.It seems to have its own weather. Wildflowers give the valley patches of vivid colour.

In the evening free food and wine was put on by a recently renovated wedding reception location. Stunning.
Brown Tent enjoying the spread.

Greg Kain waiting on the team

Russian spy reporting the Aus Team members (Bill Moyes in disguise)

Cucco practice and opening ceremony

The weather has turned crap but we got in an awesome practice day when it was possible to fly anywhere.

Sprog measurers, Denis Pagen and Thomas


 Note Aus team shirt with built in Stubby holder as worn by Brown Tent
Opening Ceremony

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Goodbye Switzerland hello much more affordable Italy.
Drove with Trent and Roberto over the Nurfenen pass and across northern Italy to Swiss Nic'c other house near Bassano. Absolutely beautiful spot. Huge clubhouse and restaurant in the landing area. This vid gives an idea of the convenience of the ramp launch and the beautiful flying. Naturally a restaurant at launch.

Now off to Cucco for the main event.

Sunday, July 10, 2011