Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Long Task, Short Flight

Today they expected the conditions to take us even higher than on the previous days, and they called a huge task with a long upwind section to start out. But the expected lifty conditions didn't quite materialize, so it was hard to get high enough to fly such a long starting leg into the wind, which also turned out to be a bit stronger than we'd expected. I got an okay start, tagging the start cylinder and thermalling well enough to get ready for the first leg, but when the guys I was with began to head towards the first turnpoint, I couldn't seem to float up and maintain my height the way they were able to, so I ended up following a lower line by myself. After a while I found myself low over the ridgeline, desperately shooting through a low gap between hilltops into a small gully to look for a last minute low save. After scratching there for a while with a few other unlucky pilots, I finally set down in a field near the Troon vineyard. I hadn't even reached the first turnpoint. Many pilots made it around a few of the turnpoints, but only one made goal: Seattle comp star Meredyth. At least I had some consolation for the early outlanding - I shared a nice bottle of cool and sweet white wine with Roger Marsh and Tom Moock while we waited for the retrieve.

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