Interesting conditions and fierce competition.
This year Blagoevo airfield (LBBL) and Aeroclub Ludogorie were again the hosts of the Bulgarian Gliding National Championship that took place between 13-th and 18-th of August.
The competition took place with interesting meteorological conditions varying between days of great instability to days with surprising overdevelopment and overcast.
The competition again was hard and there was a definitively a higher level shown for all competitors and organizers.
This year, again due to the low number of competitors, the competition was again held only in club class with handicapping based on FAI coefficients. Unlike last year, this year most of the competitors were on similar preforming planes. This made for an even more interesting and good competition.
4 valid tasks were flown and an additional 1 training task
The competition started with a modest 140 km task which proved a challenge due to the low cloudbase. Despite the difficulty however all competitors managed to complete the task successfully.
The first 2 competition days were cancelled due to bad rainy weather. The competitors used the time for maintenance and preparation for the upcoming task days. The key word in the rainy days was “polishing” 🙂 .
16-th was the first taskable day. A 170km race to goal “sand clock” task was set. The cloudbase was arround 2300 m ASL, but the increasing NW winds were making the thermals broken and difficult to work with. With 4 pilots finishing the task and 1 outlanding the day was still succesfull.
On the 17-th the task was a 160 km triangle. Day was fairly easy with strong and consistent conditions despite the fairly strong NW wind.
The 3-rd task was again a “sand clock” with a total length of 154 km. The task started with strong and fast conditions S of the home airfield but the last 2 points to the N proved a challenge due to localized stabilization of the airmass and overcast. Despite the difficulties however all competitors finished the task successfully.
The last competition task was again marked by strong conditions and plot twists. Again there was the “sand clock” with a total length of 125 km anticipating an early finish for all pilots. The high cloudbase lured the first pilots into a sensation of false security and not long after some people were looking for a low save around 2-nd turnpoint. Most pilots finished the task with similar times and average speeds of around 70 kph. After finishing the task Ivelin Kalushkov decided to take advantage of the still open start window. He went for a second lap in the much stronger afternoon conditions which gave him an average speed on the second lap of 90 kph. This little trick gave him the first place for the day as well.
In the overall ranking Ivelin was holding the first place for a second year in a row. The fight however for 2-nd, 3-rd places was till the end.
The overall ranking defined the Bulgarian National Champions for 2022 as:
1 – Ivelin Kalushkov – SkyNomad/Avium
2 – Todor Simeonov – Ludogorie
3 – Samuil Kazakov – SkyNomad/Avium
The official results can be found on the Soaring Spot page of the comp.
For a second year Aeroclub Ludogorie and Blagoevo Airfield proved a high level of organization abilities. The competition received excelent coverage due to the local OGN station which helped for an exciting view of the comp area in real-time by guests and organizers. Support and maintenance of the local OGN network was a dedicated effort form the competition director – Ventsislav Petrov. Being a first time director Venci also did an amazing job in organizing and managing the competition and competitors.
Official sponsors of the competition were the Bulgarian National Aero Club, Meteoblue and Aeroclub Ludogorie.
We are waiting with excitement to the competition season in 2023.