A reminder that the Sport and Light Aviation Show takes place at the NEC on November 29th and 30th.
Free flight importers and dealers booked as we go to press include Airways, Bailey Aviation, Flylight, Northern Paragliding, ParAvion and UK Airsports. There will be a presence from the various airsports' governing bodies: the BHPA, BMAA, BGA, LAA and CAA; also the BHPA Simulator, plus Cross Country International, Today's Pilot, Extreme Kites, Onrisk and Airsports Insurance.
An exciting schedule of talks and seminars has been arranged including Jocky Sanderson (thermalling and glider safety), Michel Carnet (maximum fun with minimum risk), and Nigel Page (starting XC flying). There will also be talks from Dr Bill Brooks (flexwing developments) and Richard Meredith-Hardy, and we hope to be able to confirm a talk about the Yuneec electric paramotor. Entrance is £5 to BHPA members with a valid membership card and £10 to non-members (doors open 10am).
For further information, please visit theflyingshow.co.uk.
John Dickenson presented with FAI Diploma
The Kernow Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association held a reception at the Railway Inn, St Agnes in September in honour of John Dickenson, inventor of the flexible wing hang glider.
During the reception past BHPA President Noel Whittall, on behalf of CIVL President Flip Koetsier, presented John with the FAI Hang Gliding Diploma for his pivotal role in developing the sport of hang gliding.
Jason Board of the British Hang Gliding Museum and historian Mark Woodhams have constructed a replica of the original Mk1 1963-vintage John Dickenson hang glider design. The replica has wooden leading edges and keel, a taped-together polythene sail and no top rigging. John witnessed the replica‘s first ground hops and it is hoped to ridge soar the glider later when conditions are suitable.
Brits dominate at Annecy
British pilots Brendan Reid, Jon Shaw and Tom Payne collected the lion‘s share of the prizes at the Annecy XC Challenge - the friendly XC league for pilots flying from Planfait and Col de la Forclaz.
Jon Shaw was second in the Sport class (DHV2-3 and above) with a total of 1,100km, while Tom Payne recorded the second-highest scoring flight of the year with a 105km FAI triangle and also won the tandem class.
Brendan Reid dominated the Fun class (DHV 2 and below), with the longest flight (a 111km out-and-return), second position overall and the longest open-distance flight, all completed during two weeks in early May.
Between them the three collected over 600 euros worth of prizes to the dismay of the local French pilots!
Brett's top-ten finish
Brett Janaway of xTc Paragliding finished 7th in the Slovenian XC League at his first attempt this year, despite entering with only five months of the 07/08 season to go.
Missing the deadline for his final (116km!) flight entry by 48 hours meant 7th place instead of 4th, but he has made an excellent start in the 08/09 season by scoring the first 100km flight of the season, propelling him into 1st place.
The 07/08 Slovenian XC League had 321 entrants from a total population of about 2 million. The 2008 UK XC League currently had 127 entries for a population of, er, 60 million? These Slovenians clearly know something we don't!
Downed paraglider false alarm
An emergency operation to find a paraglider in distress was called off near Whitby, North Yorks in September after the subject of the search turned out to be a paper lantern.
Police, fire crews, an SAR team, the coastguard and the RAF were all called in after a member of the public reported seeing a paraglider in difficulty land south of Whitby. After searching for nearly three hours, North Yorkshire Police found fresh ashes and the remains of a Chinese-style paper lantern in a hedgerow near Fylingthorpe.
Meanwhile in Norfolk a series of similar lanterns released from a party sparked a fortnight-long UFO panic. You couldn‘t make it up!