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INFO 19/06/2014

Glider Training!

The CMR has given us, Alexandre and I, the chance to meet the Poitiers club gliding and spend five days with an instructor who flew in from Grenoble for the summer season and to discover the gliding community. It is thanks to Serge, our president, who managed to get the agreements of model aircraft and gliding federations to do this internship of five flights.

The first day was full of excitement, a little anxiety, but mainly impatience and joy. Fredy, president of the Aero Club of Poitou, welcomed us warmly and introduced to the members. After the forms were all correctly filled and a short briefing was done, it was time to get these big white birds out of their hangars and to prepare them. All procedures were explained, pre-flight checks, mandatory parachute check, glider trimming, etc ... All the training was done on the school's F-21 ASK CVVP. Once "our" glider was aligned at the end of runway 03, it was time for me to don the parachute and I climbed aboard. The tension begins to rise when I close the canopy, the tow cable is hooked up and Guy, the tow pilot, is aligned with the runway and asking permission to take off. That's it, the Rallye tug at full power and I feel the wheel under me speeding up. We take off and are closely following the Rallye to the point of release. It's time to dump the cable, and the instructor turns the glider into a spiralling ascent.

He lets me take control and I apply or at least try, what we learned at the briefing. We climb higher and higher, I am more and more at ease with the glider and less stressed to make time for wonder. After reaching the limit, i.e. the maximum altitude below the clouds, Jean-Yves, the instructor suggested that I go over my house. Thus, for an hour, we hovered between Vouillé and Poitiers in local flight. It's time to give up my place to Alexandre, who waits his turn on the ground. We return to the facility, the instructor announced to the Tower at Poitiers our intention to land. We begin downwind, where we are parallel to the runway to lose altitude, followed by the turn and the final decent. In the final descent we adjusted the optimal approach speed, and we control the angle of descent with spoilers. At 1 metre above the ground, the instructor rounded off the final descent with a perfect "kiss-landing." I left the glider with stars in my eyes, and Alexandre was soon leaving. By late afternoon, it was time to put the glider away and clean it down.

We were in a hurry to come back the following day for our next flight. These five days were very full and it was fantastic to really experience what we are doing in aero modelling. I will always remember that flight, where the course of 15 minutes, I passed over two Ryanair Boeing 737 at 200m and an Alphajets air force trainer just a few tens of meters. I would like thank the members of the Aero Club of Poitou for their welcome and friendliness as well as the CMR, especially Serge, for giving us the chance to enjoy the pleasures of the world of flying.

Louis Flichot

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