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07.04.2018 First competition !

Last modification: 26 May 2018
The 07.04.2018 I could participate to my first paragliding competition.

The only problem was that the organizer Steph Benoit (world-class pilot, top organizer) told me on the morning of the competition that I could not participate officially: one had to take the competition card online at least 20 days before the first competition day. This condition was nowhere to be found online.

I'm only allowed to participate "unofficially" - without ranking. I decide play the game fully and with 100% commitment.
The organizers gave us a great briefing in the morning. Afterwards, we headed towards takeoff.

Up there, the weather is uncertain: there is wind and many high-altitude clouds in the air slowing down the convection. So far, no glider in the air has managed to gain altitude.

That's why the organization made us wait for the time being. After some time, it looked like the high-altitude clouds were tearing apart and let the sun shine through.

The decision was then made very quickly by the organizers: a task was planned, with 25km to 30 km in total: Aerotec --> Rothen (4 km Radius) --> Gommkopf --> Husseren --> Gustiberg --> Goal Aerotech.

Below you can see a photo of the briefing:

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The start of the competition is at 13:45, the pilots start taking off 30 minutes earlier.

Immediately after the start of the competition, the glider with high aspect ratios (Enzo 3s + many Zenos) race towards waypoint 1 (Aerotec / landing site of Oderen).

I fly there too, but slower and higher.
Back at the Treh, I'm already 5 minutes late. At the Treh, I realize that the return from the next waypoint (radius of 4 km around the Rothen) will be hard: a Stack of high-altitude clouds comes fast towards us and will put everything in the shadow. Additionally, the south wind + valley breeze will further complicate the return from the next waypoint. Consequently, I decide to let the Zenos rush forward and low, while I take time to reach the highest possible height of 2500 m. Only then do I go forward towards the next turnpoint.

This decision has proven to be reasonable: on my way back from Rothen and against the wind, I flew very high over the Zenos and other competitors who had to land one after the other in the shadow. I reached again the Treh with a few "survivors".

At the Treh, I managed with the Rise 3 to gain altitude a little bit faster than the others, and then race towards the next WP (Husseren). On the last turnpoint (Gustiberg), we were only 3 remaining. Again, I gained altitude faster than the others (thanks to my dear Rise 3!) and then started the final glide towards the goal.

Great: in the "Sport" category, I finished in first position (3 Enzo 3s arrived before me)! Unfortunately it did not count due to my invalid registration.

Francis G., who arrived just a few minutes after me with his Delta 3 won consequently the competition !Congratulations !

Today it was a game of patience and not of speed!!

Many thanks to the organizer!

Here are the GPS tracks: