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The 2013 1-26 Association Championships


by Pete Vredenburg (483 BULLDOG)

The Overview

Planning has begun in earnest for this year's Champs which will occur at the beginning of a fourteen day slot from Tuesday, August 20th to Monday, September 2nd. The Champs will cohabit with a 13.5m Super Regional, a Vintage Sailplane Association Regatta, and the premier of the “1-26 Call Of The Champions Invitational”. That means you, as a 1-26er, will be able to participate in three events spanning all fourteen days, if you can handle that much Moriarty-class soaring. ☺

1-26 Champions, including the 2013 winner, are also invited to a one-day “Champion of Champions” race hosted by the Albuquerque Soaring Club (ASC) and Sundance Aviation. So, with luck, Champions may actually be able to fly in four unique events during one trip to Moriarty.

The VSA Regatta is currently slated for the Labor Day extended weekend, and is sponsored by the Southwest Soaring Museum.

For those 1-26ers and 13.5m hard-core types who just can't wait until August, starting in March there will be weekly Condor Soaring Simulator racing using the just-released Moriarty scenery, and exclusively reserved for the PW-5 sailplane (Condor still doesn't have a 1-26 model...). Scoring will be done using Association rules by the Champs scoring team.

The Details

The Champ's first practice day is on Tuesday, August 20th, and the race officially starts on Thursday, August 22nd, ending Thursday, August 29th, with the Awards Banquet early Friday morning, August 30th. I haven't recruited the Contest Director (CD) yet, but I'm aiming for a well-known contest pilot with 1-26 savvy, who will also guide the 13.5m Super Regional. Note the change from our tradition of having our first practice day on a Monday, to Tuesday. This has received a one-time approval by the Board, and is to accommodate harmonization of the events, the support staff, and to give us one more day past the end of the Monsoon period.

The 13.5m Super Regional will also practice on August 20-21, with us. The Super Regional will race from August 22th through August 30th; one more day than us. Note that a 1-26 is also a 13.5m class sailplane, and is eligible to race in the Super Regional, with a handicap of approximately 1.65. The basic contest entry fee covers this race – no extra charge (unless the SSA intervenes with some rule I have yet to understand...).

The VSA Regatta on Labor Day weekend is a separate event Sponsored by the Southwest Soaring Museum. I have yet to coordinate with the SSM, but will try to arrange for registration and entry fee coordination so you don't need to do redundant paperwork.

Moriarty Scenery PW-5 Condor racing will commence as soon as the new scenery is available. If you are already a Condor pilot, just keep an eye on the Condor website, , or for the new scenery file. There is no charge for participation, and there will be a small award to pilots who participate in at least five races and show up at Moriarty for the Champs. I plan to ask the Champs CD to call at least some of the Condor races, so we may get a “flavor” of what is to come. I will announce via the 1-26 Association website when the Condor racing is to begin, and where to log in. We owe a special thanks to David Regula, our scenery designer, for his hard work over the past year in creating this photo-realistic scenery. The picture at the top of this article is the opening screen for the Moriarty scenery.

Non-Flying Activities are still in the planning phase, but following is what I want to do. Almost all non-flying activities are fee-based, and their inclusion to the final plan is dependent on your support and early registration. Non-flying events are, in my mind, critical to the enjoyment of the Champs for pilots and crew alike. Crew, especially, are appreciative of the consideration afforded them for their support by having varied fun things to do. It is my wish to have this Champs long-remembered by all attendees as one of the most fun contests they've ever attended!

Cowboy and Cowgirl up! The theme for 2013.
The Sons of the Rio Grande quartet will perform their award-winning music for our Cowboy Up Night. Catered western-style food, story telling, dancing and members of the Single Action Shooting Society, in authentic period 1880's dress will mix with our gaggle for a fun night.

Jet Powered Glider???
Some of you remember ASC's Bob Carlton, and his fantastic nighttime aerobatic and fireworks show he put on for us at a previous Moriarty Champs, as well as his equally amazing stable of jet powered sailplanes. I haven't asked him yet, but with a little encouragement..... ☺

A Night in the Park
One of our previous Champs had a picnic at the Moriarty Park. It was heavily attended and offered a leisurely, unstructured evening “just for us”, with impromptu singing, strumming, horseshoes, burnt offerings, and lots of reminiscing. Let me know your thoughts on having another one!

The Southwest Soaring Museum
Of course, we will most likely be invited to use the Museum's facilities for pilot briefings, as well as informal time, perhaps with a catered dinner and a tour.

The Commemorative Air Force
The CAF (formally the Confederate Air Force) has a very active restoration facility at the field, and they also have a burger burn every Saturday noon for a five buck donation.

A Day at the Ranch
Founders Ranch, home of the World Championships of Cowboy Action Shooting will at our request set up a half-day cowboy action shooting session. Certified Cowboy Action Shooting Range Officers will be available for instruction and safety monitoring. Guns from the Old West and modern working replicas will be provided. Shoot the famous Colt Peacemaker, the Winchester Rifle, and a short, double barreled coach shotgun! A small range fee and ammunition costs are the price of admission. Let me know if you or your faithful crew are inclined to saunter over!

Dinner at Wildlife West Nature Park
This is another favorite activity from Champs of the past. The Park can be reserved just for us on a weeknight, with a chuck-wagon style dinner. Let me know what you think!

Burger and Steak Burns
ASC has a “thing” for informal cookouts. The club will make available its cookout equipment and kitchen area for semi-impromptu cookouts at the field. We will also be happy to stock the fridge with steaks, hamburgs, hotdogs, etc. as needed, with a few days notice. There will be some kind of system of payment that is honor based, and at cost.

Soaring Support Services

Part of the rationale for the dates we picked for this year concerned support personnel availability. The Moriarty soaring community has a full slate of events this soaring season, and a relatively small number of “doers” that make it happen. Fortunately, we also have three CAP squadrons that have a full range of cadets that are ready to provide almost any crew service, including licensed drivers (first come, first served for these senior Cadets). Let me know what you may need. There will be no shortage of very willing, disciplined, and well supervised cadets.

There are always requests for hangar space.... We will have some hangars available, on a first come, first served basis. Fees are between you and the hangar owner. I'm the matchmaker.

Moriarty Airport is a major soaring center, with several sailplane repair providers, an oxygen systems representative, ASC, and Sundance Aviation. If you can't get it here, you probably don't need it!

Speaking of oxygen, yes, you must have a reliable inflight oxygen system. I'm sucking the juice on the runway before tow. On an average late summer day, the runway density altitude can easily be above 10,000 ft. Just off tow means 12,000 density altitude, and any sensible pilot should already be saturated by prebreathing. Max allowable contest altitude is 17,500 indicated altitude, which could actually be well over 20,000 density altitude. Remember-- density altitude is what your body actually works on.

Sundance Aviation has an O2 cart that will make the rounds each flying day. There is a fill charge based in part on the size and starting pressure of your tank. Mark Mocho, owner of MM Fabrication represents Mountain High Equipment & Supply, manufacturer of their very popular pulse demand O2 system. He can probably help you through a small parts emergency for this equipment.

Water is life in the desert, and it is almost impossible to over hydrate. We will have bottled water available at no charge throughout the contests. You are responsible for drinking it and having a disposal system that works well in the cockpit. Remember, more is better, both in and out.

The Hype

If you've flown at Moriarty, you know it is one of the very best soaring locations in North America. 1-26er's have set all-time speed and distance Championship records here with averages over 60 mph on 100+ mile tasks. An average summer soaring day sees thermals with better than 500 fpm average lift and frequent lift over 1000 fpm. Cloud base is usually over 18,000 MSL (11,000 AGL) during the summer, and almost never lower than 5,000 AGL. Weather is dynamic, to put it diplomatically, so be sure your restraint system will keep your head off the canopy! Flying a race at Moriarty can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your soaring career. Hope to see you here this August!