Today was our teams official practice day but unfortunately mother nature had other ideas. Low clouds and mist enveloped the Muncie area and the flying site was basically shut down. You could fly low but no vertical elements could be flown.
After a requisite stop at Starbucks we arrived at site #1 and saw numerous people milling about. As I mentioned the weather stopped the flights and we all waited patiently for the clouds to break. We headed over to Camp Canada and relaxed when the skies parted and the big orange thing arrived on que! We quickly headed back over to the site and got the planes assembled and ready. The Brazilians were first up followed by China and then Belgium.
|The Three Amigos at site #1|
We then got our chance to have each pilot unofficially timed along with a courtesy sound check. I took careful note of the process and with assistance from Tim Jesky, Robert Gainey and Jerry Plyer I had the sound test pretty well figured out. Those guys could not have been more helpful and easily answered my questions regarding when the clock stopped and started during the sound test. This seems to vary at times hence my Q.
|Mark readies his gear.|
All our planes easily made sound (Max is 94db at 3 meters) and completed the practice rounds in under 7 minutes & 30 seconds. Max is 8 minutes to complete the last maneuver in both P and F schedules.
Chad was up first and to my eye, once again had a solid round. Very minor blemishes but hey... no one is perfect. Mark went second and also had a solid round with Hartley calling for him. Slight adjustments were suggested for the next flights later in the day. Dez was last up and put in a good round with some minor issues on a couple elements as well. He has improved steadily as we approach the first of four P-11 flights tomorrow and will be ready.
The last team to fly at the site was Chinese Taipei and once finished it was a team free for all for practice rounds. After a short discussion regarding a sign up sheet versus the existing rotation we followed Brazil’s Carlos Haub and Belgium’s Bert Delaere and got in several flights each before pulling the pin on the practice session.
|Team Canada and supporters.|
The teams all formed up for a short march on to the grass area beside site #3’s entrance. With anthems playing the various teams marched in. We heard some nice short speeches by dignitaries and CIAM officials and then we were dismissed to a dinner and reception under the big tent. Lots of people enjoyed the meal and the odd libation.
|Kelly toasts Team Canada!|
The Team Managers met at the AMA Boardroom (Hartley came along in case I missed something:-) where we were brought up to speed on how the timing would be done, the planes sound checked, and impounded after for either weight or possibly a full inspection. All E powered planes will be weighted to negate the possibility of having heavier packs installed and thus fly over the maximum limit. A flight disqualifying no-no.
We also discussed the proper safety procedures regarding plugging in and the subsequent unplugging of batteries. The circuit must be open for safety reasons... hey it’s safe! :-)
Planes that failed sound checks would also be impounded following completion of their flights until the same packs could be fully recharged and the check done again. Failure on the second attempt would nullify the flight score :-(
The rosters were published with the flight order and locations for the following four days. Based on the amount of entries there will be 27 Semi Finalists at this year’s event. We all received a nice booklet featuring all the team members and a short bio on each.
|Managers at Site #1|
The team managers all took a drive to both flying sites and had the locations of the pits, sound test and impound areas all clearly pointed out. Also the scoring facilities and other amenities of each flying site were discussed. In short order we were done and we headed back to Camp Canada to let the folks know when we would be flying.
Tuesday the 26th, 2011
Dez at site #3 at 8:39
Mark at Site #3 at 11:24
Chad at Site #1 at 14:30
I made sure everyone had the details as the team will be up early to support Dez in his first flight. That said it’s time to hit the rack... I am beat!
BTW I write this blog when I have time which is usually late at night when I am really tired! I try to cover everything that I can think of but as the days blend together I can make mistakes and well... can’t put two words together.... :-) This is why I go back and check the next day... to correct grammar and/or the infamous “run on sentence error”!
More pictures posted on Xavier’s folder.