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British Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association

British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association

Skywings News

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Skywings News - all non archived years

Deployment bags for reserve parachutes

Independence Paragliding have issued a safety notice regarding a batch of Deployment bags for reserve parachutes where there is concern that the seam-line of the isolated upper loop, which is used to attach the deployment handle, could possibly cause a material weakening of factory delivered deployment bags.

This seam-line, if properly processed, has to be able to bear a load of 70 daN. Yet it was proven that a lower strength of this component can occur.

Owners are strongly advised to download the full Independence Paragliding safety notice for guidance on identifying if their deployment bag is part of the batch causing concern, and if it is, what action must be taken.

Posted: 26 February 2018
By: Paul Dancey

Icarus Trophy

Icarus Trophy 2018Run three times in the US and billed as the 'world's only long-distance paramotor race', this year the Icarus Trophy will be flown over South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Zambia.

The race, over roughly 1,000 miles, begins just north of Johannesburg on July 25th. Pilots select their own routes to finish near Victoria Falls in Zambia, having flown over some of southern Africa's most iconic landscapes.

Pilots carry their own food, clothes, sleeping gear (hotels are just fine, however), tools and spare parts, while the organisers provide weather reports and tracking. The Icarus Trophy is 50% X-Alps and 50% motorcycling's Iron Butt rally. No-one who enters will ever be the same again!

Smaller related events are planned in other countries including a UK round on June 29th - July 1st. Details can be found on the Icarus Trophy website.

Posted: 3 February 2018
By: Paul Dancey

World Paramotor League Cup

After four qualifying events, a Thai team narrowly beat France and Poland to take the 2017 FAI World Paramotor League Cup.

The four contributing events were the 3rd FAI Asia-Oceania Paramotor Championships in Thailand in May, the Czech Open in June, the paramotor event at the World Games in Poland in July, and the European Paramotor Championships in the Czech Republic in August.

Thai teamster Kittiphop Phrommat triumphed in the individual competition with a four-point lead over France's Alex Mateos and Slovakia's Ivan Pestun in joint second place. Highest placed female pilot was Marie Mateos, joint ninth.

Brits Paul Martin (North), Mark Morgan and Paul Martin (South) finished 19th and joint 55th respectively having contested one round only, leaving the Brits in a creditable 10th place. Thailand hosts the FAI World Paramotor Championships in May this year.

Posted: 3 February 2018
By: Paul Dancey

Brits down under

British pilot Ollie ChittyIn early January another exceptional Forbes Flatlands comp in Australia saw seven consecutive tasks, with Rory Duncan beating seven-times winner Jonny Durand into second place by just one point.

The extraordinary career of Ollie Chity continues. Unfazed by finishing 44th on the third task after coming second and fifth on the first two, Ollie bounced back to win the fourth task, a mammoth 388km - another Forbes world record - and the fifth, a mere 153km.

Eventually Ollie had to settle for 7th place with Gordon Rigg - third in 2015 - not far adrift in 11th. Alexandra Serebrennikova took first place in the woman's task just ahead of Yoko Sano.

Posted: 3 February 2018
By: Paul Dancey

Parafest 2018

Parafest 2018Parafest, set for July 27th - 29th, now has a spectacular new home at the huge ex-military airfield at Llanbedr, between Barmouth and Porthmadog on the edge of Snowdonia National Park.

Parafest's combination of a flying event and trade exhibition with a music festival is unique in the UK. Paraglider and hang glider pilots will be within easy driving distance of many great sites, and power pilots, including SSDRs, can fly out of the airfield and explore the coastline and the local mountains and valleys.

Manufacturers, dealers, and schools for all aircraft types will be exhibiting, alongside many non-flying stalls and sideshows including a kids' zone, a variety of food caterers and a licensed bar with real ales and cocktails. Parafest will also host the British Vintage Hang Gliding, last seen in the Lakes in 2016.

Professional acts will perform on the main stage on Friday and Saturday until midnight; details can be found on the festival's Facebook page. Those that like to party on can head to the Asbo Disco, far from the camping fields, for DJ sets till the early hours. Full details and ticket sales can be found on the Parafest website. Keep updated on developments by visiting the Parafest Facebook page.

Parafest isn't just a fly-in, it's a festival that you can fly at!

Posted: 3 February 2018
By: Paul Dancey


The BHPA's 2018 Annual General Meeting will be held on Saturday February 17th at Nottingham's Belfry Hotel (adjacent to Junction 26 of the M1). The event will take place in tandem with the BGA AGM and trade exhibition.

The meeting will include the election of officers to the BHPA Executive Committee, officers' reports and a members' discussion forum. A 2018 AGM pack is available for download on this web site. The pack includes formal notice of the meeting, details of members standing for election, and a proxy voting form.

Posted: 16 January 2018
By: Paul Dancey

Dragon hike-and-fly 2018

Following the success of the first South East Wales Hike-and-Fly Race last year (see October Skywings), with the kind permission of SEWHGPGC, Alistair Andrews of Team Evol Paragliding will be organising a second event to be held on the weekend of July 14th and 15th 2018. To register your interest please contact alistair@goteamevol.com.

Posted: 4 January 2018
By: Paul Dancey

Gradient and Swing UK

From this month Gareth Aston's V12 Outdoor at Llanberis will take on the UK distribution of Swing and Gradient paragliders. Brad Nicholas of Snowdon Gliders, current UK distributor for both brands, says, "I'm delighted to have made this step forward; the promotion of Swing's new RAST system in particular will benefit from V12 Outdoor's investment."

Gareth is already well known within the UK paragliding scene as a vol-biv explorer and BPCup Meet Director. He will bring fresh ideas and energy to Swing and Gradient distribution, while Snowdon Gliders will continue to offer paragliding instruction in the mountains and be a fan of both brands.

Brad, who has been involved in UK paraglider distribution for more than 20 years, says, "It makes complete sense for V12 to take over as they have a high street showroom, a web-shop (www.v12outdoor.com) and a large customer base - a perfect launch pad for the new enterprise." Contact Gareth at V12 Outdoor, The Old Baptist Chapel, High Street, Llanberis LL55 4EN, tel 01286 871534, e-mail: shop@v12outdoor.com.

Posted: 4 January 2018
By: Paul Dancey

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last updated: 5 August 2022

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