It's a wrap!
Congratulations to the contest organizers of the Estrella Classic Glider Aerobatic Championship and the Snowbird Classic - IAC Open Championship East for two successful contests completed on the last weekend of March.
"It started off sour with IFR and low ceilings the week before the contest. Severe weather surrounded Florida with strong tornadic weather creating unparalleled damage and flooding in the southeast," Hector Ramirez Assistant Contest Director reported to IAC Chapter 89 members prior to their first pre-contest practice day. " To my surprise there was a last-minute change in the forecast which heralded the parting of the clouds - becoming severe Clear and Unlimited Visibility (CAVU) weather! Optimal weather for the practice days and the entire contest! Sweet!"
Twenty competitors from Primary through the Advanced category got in all three flights for each category. For a complete recap go to: the Southeast Regional Update.
The Estrella Classic (glider only contest) had some pre-contest weather of its own. On the official practice day light rain and heavy winds (up to 40mph) had the pilots standing down. Fortunately by the morning of the first contest day the skies had cleared and the wind was managable. The US Air Force Academy cadets and officers were out in full force including six in Sportsman, six in Intermediate and three in Advanced.
Winds continued to plague the contest throughout, but were not high enough to discontue the flying. Temperatures ranged from below seasonal average on March 25 to above seasonal average on Sunday, March 28 (85 degrees F). All categories flew their three flights. For a complete wrap up go to the Southwest Regional Update.