British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

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Skywings Archived News - Apr 2013

Gin backs the Wide Open

The organisers of the Wide Open competition have just announced a five-year partnership with Gin Gliders. Gin have agreed to donate prizes worth more than 5,000 euros including a paraglider, harness and emergency parachute.

Passion Paragliding, xTc, Flymaster, XC mag and others are also sponsoring the event with prizes including flying holidays, and Flymaster are providing live tracking hardware too. The Gin Wide Open kicks off at Meduno in Italy on May 18th for a week of fun competition, barbecues, parties and lectures by experienced pilots including Pat Dower and Gin teamsters.

The Wide Open promises to be one of the defining paragliding events of 2013; Meduno's huge grassy launch, reliable conditions and plentiful land-out options make it an ideal venue for a fun-centred event. If there are any places left you'll find them at

Posted: 2 April 2013

The Richard Westgate Cup

A new trophy is being set up to honour Richard Westgate's memory, and to acknowledge how much he inspired others achieve all they could in paragliding. Pilots who were close to Richard have suggested an annual UK-based award and his brother Guy will set the parameters.

It has been suggested that the Cup could be awarded to the first pilot to reach 1000km in the UK XC League, or for the longest open distance, best tandem flight or greatest number 100km flights, etc. It is hoped that a commemorative cup, inscribed with winners' names, will be presented annually for the winner to hold and pass on the following year.

Any surplus funds will go to a charity proposed by Guy.

Posted: 2 April 2013

GPS technology - a new level

Northern Ireland paraglider pilot and electronics expert Gary McKie has exploited reverse-engineering principles to develop an advanced GPS unit that alters your surroundings rather than record them.

Still at the prototype stage, the Feck-it Master works by simply swapping the positive and negative battery terminals, thus reversing the original functions found on so many devices. "It's so simple you can try it on your mate's new GPS and see how it works," he says. "The controls manage all the essential functions and you can alter several parameters to suit your own requirements, although there may be a conflict if more than one pilot is using the same channel at the same time."

The Feck-it's advanced features allow you to alter wind direction to suit the hill, alter the gradient of the hill you are on and change wind speed to suit your wing. Other functions are a Pub Finder, Blue Sky meter and eBay account checker. The price has yet to be decided but forward enquiries are welcome. Send blank cheques to Gary McKie at 13 Parawaiting Lane, Co Feckit, Norn Ireland BT42 9FO.

Posted: 2 April 2013

Wendy Windblows update

Rod Buck has obtained permission to resite the Carlton Bank station near its original location following the demolition of the hangar on which it had been sited.

Rod is rebuilding it in reasonably vandal-proof form as a freestanding unit and hopes to have it reinstalled this month. However seasonal repair, maintenance and upgrading of the Bradwell, Westbury, Combe Hill, Pule Hill and Wether Fell stations may be delayed briefly due to Rod having dislocating his metal hip, now levered back in with tyre irons.

Rod and Lynn ask Wendy members to bear with them; they are trying to get all the stations working properly as soon as possible.

Posted: 2 April 2013

Icarus Cup 2013

The second RAeS Human Powered Aircraft (HPA) Icarus Cup will take place at Sywell aerodrome over a nine-day period from July 19th - 28th.

The aim is to progress the sport from occasional record attempts into a viable activity. Tasks will include duration, distance around a triangular course, 1km and 200m (sprint) races, slalom, take-off performance and landing accuracy.

The FAI have has sanctioned the meeting as an FAI Category 2 event. For details go to 'events' at or contact Kirsten Scully on 0207 670 4345.

Posted: 2 April 2013

New meethead for hangie comps

Pete Coad, hang gliding 'meethead' at the BOS and Nationals comps for the last four years, has had to reluctantly stand down for health reasons.

His place will be taken by former UK distance record holder, multiple XC League winner and British Team member Nick Pain. "The last four years have been great fun and I would like to thank all who have entered competitions for your help support and friendship," writes Pete. "This is going to leave a void in my life and I will miss you all."

It is a matter of record that the hang gliding League/Nationals/BOS has always had absolutely top blokes running it.

Posted: 2 April 2013

Volunteers wanted

Following on from the communications survey, the Exec have approved a project for a new BHPA website. As a result we are looking for a number of volunteers to help with the project.

If you want to help, have the necessary skills/experience and have the time to give, please contact John Nash.

Posted: 2 April 2013


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