Tense and technical are probably the two best words to describe today’s 107km task.
At the start, the top of the inversion was 2200m which made plans to go north round the volcano over a high pass seem like mission impossible.
However, once the pilots got to the corridor section of the task, away from the mountains, the thermals were surprisingly good.
At the end of the corridor the pilots were over higher terrain. The wind was stronger, and a few pilots landed in this remote part of the course.
There were clouds on the mountains which enticed a group to pull away and start climbing to get over the pass. However, they all came together (about forty pilots) at the last turn point.
Initially, there were good thermals as they flew down the last valley towards End of Speed. They were so high and long glides were possible, with the thermals going high up.
However, as they came out into the main valley heading towards ESS, they hit a head wind, which very few expected. It was 16h and very little was working.
For South African racing car driver, Stef Juncker, it was time to trade in the Ferrari for the Fiat, slow down to play it safe to make goal.
For all but the leaders it was just a question of making it, getting high, forgetting about racing.
For a day that had seemed would be a one glide day, from the first thermal to the landing field below launch, it was instead an incredible day.
In the words of Pal Takats, one of the greatest pilots our sport has ever known: Never underestimate the World Cup crew.
The first 32 pilots made goal, and thus all flew the same distance, and gained the same distance points. Today’s winner is therefore the one with a combination of the best speed/time points and lead out points.
Top 3 speed point winners – the fastest pilots round the course:
3:42:15 Antun LOVREC flying at an average speed of 27.8km/h
3:42:33 Martin JOVANOSKI
3:42:47 Gleb SUKHOTSKIY
Top 3 leading point baggers – those who were in the lead the most:
127.6 Gleb SUKHOTSKIY
126.5 Martin JOVANOSKI
123.7 Antun LOVREC and Thomas GURY
Top 3 overall
1st Gleb SUKHOTSKIY
1st Martin JOVANOSKI
3rd Antun LOVREC
Top 3 ladies
1st Daria KRASNOVA
2nd Violeta JIMENEZ
3rd Adel HONTI
Top 3 teams
2nd Kortel Design
3rd Air Vuisa
Best newcomer: Mustafa AZTEKIN, Mohsen Mansouri, Meghdad Shahraki
Just a reminder to pilots to turn their phones and tablets horizontal to read the extra information in the live leaderboard on live.pwca.org
All the results are available here: https://live.pwca.org/scores.php?comp=29