News and Updates - Glider Teams at Worlds

DONATE News and Updates | Pilot Bios 

2023 U.S. Aerobatic Glider Teams



July 26, 2023

Contest report from the U.S. Advanced Aerobatic Glider Team - the first official contest day, July 27, is in the books for the World Advanced Glider Aerobatic Championships in Torun, Poland.

The opening ceremonies were last night (July 26), which were attended by all contest competitors, FAI & contest officials, and local leaders.

All team members were able to complete their free/known programs. Results were mixed but overall, very positive. Patience was the name of the game today as low clouds were a problem in the box throughout the day.

Figure selection was completed for tomorrows first of 5 potential unknowns and the Unknown 1 was published by the contest jury. These contests are a marathon, not a sprint, and team USA is feeling strong and prepared.

Team members right are: (L to R) Mallory Lynch, Shad Coulson, Andrew Dever and Joe Gerner.

See more photos and updates on the Facebook page: is external)



July 26, 2023

Contest Report - today is the last practice day. Opening briefing and ceremonies are this afternoon along with figure selection for the first of five unknowns. The team is fully assembled and has spent the last few days acclimating to the new time zone, practicing, and taking in some of the local sights/cuisine.

First contest flights begin tomorrow, July 27th. Team USA is grateful for the hospitality shown to us and for the graciousness of the Polish team to loan us an MDM Fox to compete in.



















June 30, 2023

Team members Mallory Lynch and Shad Coulson just completed a 3-day training camp in preparation for the 2023 WAGAC.

Big thanks to our main tow pilot Nate and Williams Soaring Center for the tow support. Big thanks also to Dave Watson for the coaching. Preparations continue and we’re excited for the trip to Toruń, Poland and for the opportunity to represent the U.S. on the world stage.



















May 8, 2023 

by Shad Coulson, IAC 440759

Each year, the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI), which serves as the World Air Sports Governing Body, sanctions the World Advanced Glider Aerobatic Championships (WAGAC). This event allows nations to compete as teams and individuals in the amazing sport of glider aerobatics.

The WAGAC is being held in Torun, Poland July 20th - August 5th.

  For the first time in History, we are fielding a team of five pilots to compete at the WAGAC. We are extremely proud of the team we have fielded and are working hard to ensure we are prepared to represent the U.S. well. Your 2023 Team USA members are:

Shad Coulson
Mallory Lynch
Joe Gerner
Jared Bachman
Andrew Dever
Although young, our team collectively has decades of national and international competition experience. We are also receiving coaching from some of the top glider and powered aerobatic competitors in the U.S. and abroad.
We will provide regular reports on the team's preparations, including training camps, practice sessions, and participation in regional contests leading up to the WAGAC. Additionally, we are providing daily summaries of the team's results and activities during WAGAC. You can follow the team on this page and on social media;










February 16-19, 2023

Maricopa, Arizona

For the second time in modern history, the U.S. National Aerobatic Championships for the Unlimited and Advanced glider competitors was held in conjunction with the Estrella Classic, a regional contest for Primary through Sportsman categories.

The location in Maricopa continues to be a big draw for glider pilots from around the country. The climate, facilities and personnel at Arizona Soaring lend their expertise and time making sure the contest goes off smoothly. Special thanks goes out to Jason Stephens, who is the owner operator of the flight school located on the field and his right-hand man, Shad Coulson who does double duty as the contest director and head flight instructor.

This year's championship saw another record - 12 competitors in the Advanced category! The majority of the group were from the U.S, Air Force Academy, who had moved up from the Intermediate category. According to coach Mark "Matty" Matticola the aerobatic demonstration team wanted to show their commitment to engaging in ever more challenging sequences. The three civilian glider pilots were experienced competitors: Shad Coulson, Joseph Gerner and Mallory Lynch.

Congratulations to Jason Stephens on regaining his U.S. National Unlimited Glider Aerobatic Championship title for the seventh time! Jason previously won the title in 2006-2008, 2012-2013 and 2018.


1st Place: Shad Coulson
2nd place: Jospeh Gerner
3rd place: Mallory Lynch
1st place Jason Stephens
2nd place: Jim Bourke
3rd place: Sasa Marvin


The scores from the U.S. National Unlimited/Advanced Glider Aerobatic Championships, which took place at the Estrella Classic contest can be found in the scoring database here: