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Vintage Aerobatics World Championships

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Vintage Aerobatics World Championships

Old 3rd Sep 2017, 18:31
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Vintage Aerobatics World Championships

Just back from the Vintage Aerobatic World Championships held at Stauning in Denmark on August 10th – 12th. The annual KZ Rally was taking place there as well but the turnout was badly affected by poor weather on the Saturday morning. The KZ Club AGM was well attended and they had a couple of folk musicians to provide a bit of musical entertainment.

There were four elements to the contest –

’Looping the Loop’ – 45 degree down line, loop, chandelle, barrel roll, 180 degree turn.

’Dancing the Clover Leaf’ - 45 degree down line, loop, half cuban, four leaf clover, stall turn, slow roll, 180 degree turn.

’Rolling the Circle’ – One turn erect spin, half reverse cuban, roll off the top, goldfish down (half roll on second down), stall turn with quarter roll on down line with exit on Y axis, 270 degree rolling circle (in-out-in), 4 point roll.

’Performance’ – free sequence to competitors choice flown to music accompaniment if desired.

I was flying a borrowed Belgian built SV4B Stampe with the owner as ‘safety pilot’ as my UK PPL with DVLA fitness to fly/drive is not valid outside the UK. It was the heaviest Stampe I had ever flown having a starter, generator, vacuum pump and full blind flying instrumentation in both cockpits plus my brave passenger.. No back-up harness so it was brace yourself on the slow rolls. It was also probably the newest Stampe ever, having been built for the Belgian Air Force in 1955 and flew with them as V62 until 1976 before being released onto the civilian market with some 4435 hours on the clock. After being exhibited in a museum it was restored to flying condition from 1985 to 1987. It now resides in the superb KZ museum at Stauning and owned by Povl Toft.

Clive Davidson upheld the honour of the Tiger Moth by flying all the way up from Henstridge in G-APFU with the owner, who is learning to fly in it. He gave a sedate perambulation through the blue Danish sky littered with puffy Cu with loops, a spin and barrel rolls only to keep the immaculate under surface clear of oil. This was in the ‘performance’ section of the contest and the previous evening each competitor had ‘danced’ or spoken his way through his intended sequence. Hilarity ensued.

There were hordes of Jungmeisters, a couple of Jungmanns, a Steiglitz, a KZ8 and a couple of Chipmunks entered so the humble Tiger and Stampe did not stand much of a chance against the might of the Third Reich product. My theory of old age and treachery overcoming youth and skill failed for once. At 79 I was the oldest entrant by about 8 years and came 11th, half way up the final combined result with some 22 entrants. The overall winner was Benoit Dierickx from Belgium flying his Polish built replica Jungmeister powered by a Czech LOM !80hp 6 cylinder inline engine. A superb aircraft with an awesome performance potential. The chief judge was the former president of CIVA, Lars Görean Arvidsson. He has been the chief judge at most of the FAI/CIVA world aerobatic championships in recent years. The judging criteria were on the lines of those used in the ‘Lockheed International Aerobatic Trophy’ contests held in the UK around 60 years ago. A truly vintage evaluation standard for a vintage contest.

One notable visitor was that superb Beech D17 Staggerwing ‘ Red Rockette’ flown by the 83 year old William H Charney who hails from Reno and returns there in winter when he runs out of clean socks to do the laundry. In summer he is touring Europe and I do mean all Europe. A retired United Airlines captain and former USAF jet jockey on F84’s and F100 Super Sabres (the Hun) he takes great pleasure in squandering his children’s inheritance in a most enviable fashion. As his aircraft is a former winner of the ‘Concours d’Elegance’ at the Goodwood Revival he is returning this year for the 10th anniversary of the event.

It was a most enjoyable contest and we made friends from all over Scandinavia, Germany, Austria, Belgium and even a couple of intrepid flyers from New Zealand. My relatives, His Islamic Excellency the Sheikh Yasser Ferifat, whom Allah preserve and Captain Wyatt Werp USN (retd) both managed to secrete themselves in my bulging Samsonite travel bag to evade security and passport control in both the UK and Denmark.

My proposal for the flight in the ‘Performance’ element of the contest. Unfortunately I was not selected to be one of those who flew this programme. But I enjoyed ‘dancing’, or rather talking, through it the previous evening.

Description – Downwind start with 45 degree downline, roll off the top, three reversals of a falling leaf, avalanche, wing slide (half stall turn to 90 degrees, then hold knife edge for three seconds to allow slide, then complete stall turn to vertical), barrel roll, half Cuban eight, four point roll, stall turn, slow roll, chandelle with a single positive snap roll at the apex. All flown to the music accompaniment of Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Air on a G string” re-titled “Air over a Stampe’s wing” and played by that English classical guitar virtuoso, John Williams.

For this element of the contest the judges included all of the competitors as well as the two famous FAI/CIVA judges. The sequences had two marks, one for artistic merit and the other for scope and accuracy. We all held up our cards to show the scorer our assessment of the performance. It gave a special feel to the judging process.

Barry Tempest FRAeS
Armageddon Associates
Introduction - www.generalaviation-aero.co.uk
Vice President – Historic Aircraft Association

Barry Tempest – a 79 year old veteran with a 19 year old attitude to life in retirement from the CAA and General Aviation as a career. 63 years as a pilot, 55 as an airshow pilot, 39 as an instructor/examiner and over 13,200 flying hours in single and multi engine light aeroplanes, gliders, balloons, airships and gyroplanes. Over 350 types and variants in all. A surplus of two in takeoffs versus landings at airshows so a lucky pilot too. Entered his first aerobatic contest in 1959 in the ’Esso Tiger Trophy’ at Sywell, some 58 years ago. A founder member of the BaeA. Still flying the Steen Skybolt G-KEST he owns with his son John and based at Leicester plus gliders with the Welland Gliding Club at Lyveden.

Aerobatics exist in the present and has a wonderful future. It also has a golden past stretching back over a century. This contest enables those of us from around the world who love aerobatics in vintage aeroplanes to meet and compete at a level to suit both pilot and aircraft in a friendly atmosphere and at a great venue.
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Old 3rd Sep 2017, 22:51
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Barry,

I was going to ask, pilots or aeroplanes? Delighted to hear youngsters like you are showing the modern lot what a well-flown vintage biplane can do in the hands of the experts.

Very best regards!
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Old 3rd Sep 2017, 23:36
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Next year (DV) I will be the first octogenarian ever to compete in any world aerobatic championship and am looking forward to it immensely. What is that apt saying - "I am not as good as once I was.... but I am as good once as ever I was.....!!!!". I think it was originally coined to apply to other than aerobatic activities but still involved unusual positions. I have yet to decide which of my many relations will accompany me to Stauning next year. The Sheikh and the US Navy retired pilot have enthralled the others in my wardrobe with tales of their experiences in 2017.
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Old 4th Sep 2017, 06:24
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There's a copy of this report from Barry on the British Aerobatic Association's web site along with a couple of photos.
This site is an excellent resource for all those interested in the sport of aerobatics.

Thanks, Barry.

TOO
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Old 4th Sep 2017, 15:31
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The VAWC website is at www.vintageaerobatic.com
Details are there of the 2016 and 2017 contests which should give an indication of the different levels of aerobatic skill and aircraft potential required.
How about it all you UK vintage aerobatic enthusiasts, enjoy the 2018 VAWC at Stauning next year. They would love to see you dance the skies of Denmark.
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Old 5th Sep 2017, 13:15
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Barry, thank you for reporting about the Vintage Aerobatic World Championship
VINTAGE AEROBATIC WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP 2017

Here is some pictures of the winning Inline Jungmeister
Benoit
Attached Images
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Old 6th Sep 2017, 16:15
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Here is a picture with the smiles of all organisers, judges and pilots of the VAWC 2017
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 08:41
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Great stuff!
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 09:11
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Thanks Sam. You might think of organising a mass vintage aerobatic aircraft expedition to Stauning for the VAWC next August. Not one of your extreme destinations but a hugely enjoyable and affordable one.
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 09:16
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You know what, that's a great idea! I'll ping you an email...
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