18 Metre Nationals 2008, Bicester
8:45am We've had our early morning meeting, and have set a task. The weather window will be a little later in the day than yesterday, but we have our fingers crossed. More details after briefing.
10:30 The tasks have been set, with first launch at 12:00 or later
Task A Bicester East - Didcot - Bedford - Bicester A/F 159.6km
Task B Calvert - Bedford - Didcot - Westcott - Bicester A/F 166.5km
The distances are similar, we are just trying to send them off into the more suitable weather at the moment we decide to launch.
11:50 The sniffer is up and reports cloudbase as 2700'. Let's hope things improve a bit. The sky is actually looking acceptable in the task area, but over-development is a possible problem.
12:10 First launch has been pushed back to not before 12:45
13:15 We considered sacking the sniffer when he landed back, but no-one else would do the job, so he's up back again, reporting 2 knot thermals and 2600' cloudbase.
14:30 First launch in ten minutes.
15:41 First starter is SH, with 900 at 15:44
15:49 sees DW set off, and one minute later 370 and 68 went, with 630 two minutes later
15:54 A small gaggle formed and left in a steady stream for the next 4 mins, about 20 of them together.
So many starting together, I'm updating just the above start times page.
16:12 ish Later starters are KBS (16:10), 7A (16:12), 42 and JA (16:13) X17 (16:09), X4 (16:17) and some others. Only six others still to go now.
16:25 After a relight, CC has started.
17:16 KV is 10km out (non-comp), as is CB and 25.
676 is down near Woburn Abbey, 325 near Winslow, SH near Compton, Z12 at Thame A/F, 660, 24, KBS and 584 are also down somewhere.
17:40 It seems that dud weather short of Bedford has forced several to come back, so the turbo equipped ones might be braver and push on. No finishers so far.
18:20 Still no finishers, lots of trailers have left, and just as many gliders seem to have returned minus Bedford. It's looking brighter in that direction, so perhaps the more patient ones may make it back. Fingers crossed. (But a few more have just called non-comp finishes.)
Alistair Nunn and Afandi Darlington are looking for two strong men for an evening's fun in a field... (Words fail me.)
19:00 Scores starting to appear online now.
19:13 Just heard that Bruce Cooper in 68 has landed 10km short of the airfield.
21:00 Jan McCoshim (161) is currently leading - will it be girls on top by morning?
21:44 Ah - Bruce Cooper (68) has climbed over Jan and looks like he'll come first.
23:15 We have done all the loggers now except for one who's still on the way home. As airspace has still to be checked, we'll do the last update on Friday morning, and add the overalls then as well. I.E. we need a rest tonight.
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Kindly donated one of the overall prizes - a copy of their excellent task-setting software.
Kindly donated a case of wine for the overall prizes