|From the SA Team....thanks guys! Just wait 'til the World Cup|
Again, the weather fine and beaut for flying with 37 pilots to get through, plus the warm-ups. The remaining top 75% of pilots were again split into three groups, with the lowest ranked group flying first, so they got the cool of the day.
Mike Vaknin flew the 300S around cleanly but had to start quite high. Jeff Bourbon and Goody Thomas both flew neat sequences in the 330SC. The Sukhoi's seemed to struggle and didn't impress, until Mikhail Mamistov had his turn, and it was a precise and impressive flight deserving of the score. Tamas Illes in the Edge 540T flew well, again. The aircraft is ugly on the ground but presents well airborne and has plenty of performance. As do the MXS-RH and Edge 540 of Rob Holland and Nicholas Ivanoff, respectively. The MXS has gained the close attention of the French and others, with it's clean lines and obviously greater performance than the stock 330SC. Rob flew well only suffering with scores due to over-flicking the first figure, the same error Ivanoff made on the same figure, but 2nd in his sequence. Late in the day Olivier Masurel and Castor Fantoba flew impressive sequences. The two CAP-232 left in the competition both have -580 engines. And Castor is one of those pilots who just looks at home in his aircraft.
Some drama occurred when Tom Cassels had a problem and landed prematurely. Similarly Victor Chmal had engine problems and landed safely, his aircraft now out of the comp. Both will re-fly tomorrow morning, along with the five pilots who did not get to fly today. Yes, we didn't get finished as the judges were tired and called a stop after Castor's flight. Additional factors no doubt were that two of the Russian pilots needed an aircraft change after the U/S of 'their' Sukhoi, so were entitled to a limited test flight in their new aircraft, which they did this evening. So fitting this all in today was not possible.
So, to fly in the morning are: Oleg Shpolyansky, Gerald Cooper, Francois leVot, Phillipp Steinbach, Svetlana Kapinina, Victor Chmal (re-fly) and Tom Cassels (re-fly). An interesting morning.