It's nice when things work out.
You prep your airplane
well, do your homework on the course, lay out your turn waypoints, check the wind forecasts and apply that to the course,
and then determine your strategy for the race, and what tactics you will use to effect the strategy (and you thought all we
did was kick the tires, light the fires and fly off to Glory!).
This race, it all came together for Race 26.
The first screen shot taken from my data tracker shows my tactic for the start. My strategy based on the forecast
winds was to go high to turns 1 and 2. The winds were South at the surface, but turned Southeast at 3,000 feet
- a better tailwind for those two legs.
Since I wanted to get high on the first leg, I opted to takeoff and rather than
accelerate in ground effect as I would if the first leg was to be flown low, I climbed to the maximum altitude briefed for
the start and accelerated level at that height, so after crossing the start line I would not have so far to climb to my planned
leg 1 altitude, bleeding off speed.
This screen shot taken of Turn Two reveals my strategy
of dropping low on the headwind legs, and how I used the decent to keep my speed up in a rather sharp turn. Since I was coming
into the turn high and wanted to leave low, I pulled a little harder than I normally would on a turn but had plenty
of bottom rudder in to make up for the G-induced bleed of speed. This worked well and I left the turn at a faster
IAS then I had coming in.
Here was Turn 4 which we had to add at the last minute to make the
The use of the islands as a turn point cause a little confusion and some discontent among the troops, but
the decision was made and briefed and it actually "turned" out well.