Task 1 - Bright Open
The forecast for day 1 was very dismall, but we woke up to sunshine and lots of CU, game on! Helka took this pic, Brian Webb is on the white wing, I am on the other wing.
Perfect task for the conditions. Getting high over Mystic was pretty easy as we had a big CU overhead and we just boated around under it waiting for the start. Pilots headed over to the start cylinder at Gold Mine Ridge pretty early, but when they got there, they looked like they were just surviving, and the CU was much less, so I stayed at Mystic playing with the edge of the cloud, looking down on them thinking "haha, I'm higher!".
I left about 15 mins before start, and went to a cloud upwind of the start cylinder but found nothing, and so my haha turned to "ah, shit, I just fokked myself". My tactic didn't work - Gold Mine is usually consistent and with that many wings there, even if they are just mantaining, at least I could have had a chance of getting a good start and staying in touch with the leaders, a pretty basic concept...
The first half of the race was pretty straight forward. I was flying conservatively, partly because I tend to not fly that well on the first day of a comp. For the transition to Little Pyramid, I went up the Gold Mine ridge instead of crossing the valley diagonally - I saw a few gliders droppping out of the lead gaggle and landing because they arrived to Little Pyramid too low. I crossed the valley perpendicular and saw gliders turning on the sunny side of Lil Pyramid, easy enough. I flew through the TP to join others in a climb and then headed back to Mystic, stopping for a climb over GM ridge.
I didn't turn over Mystic, and flew into Clear Spot low, but saw a bird coring a ways out, so I knew there was lift. The climb was super slow. High now I went for the Black Fellas TP and took a climb there. I decided to bypass Clear Spot and head straight to Mystic, but the line was bad... Took a good climb at Mystic to 1500m and left for the last TP at Reliance saddle. I got the hydraulic press for a glide - just complete shite and arrived below Gold Mine peak to find nothing but dead air with huge holes in it - it felt very weird, like 2/3 normal gravity, not enough air in the sky to pressurize the wing... And so I lurched around in tiny bubbles, dribbling down the ridge, watching other gliders hit the dirt, pretty depressing...
I dribble/lurched/gasped for air all the way down the ridge to Little Mystic where I got another 1m/s shite climb which saved me, but it was so weak that it took forever to get back up, and since there were no gliders near me, I figured there was no rush to get to goal, so I might as well make sure I got there. I made goal, but way way slow. 27 in goal, I was 25.
I'm glad day one is out of the way... If it's my worst day, i will be ok, and next task I am going to try to stay up front, and stay in touch with the leaders, at least that is the theory anyway...
Comp results are here.