Miniglider BARCS record
1 hour 3 minutes 50 seconds

On Friday 22nd July 2005 Martin Godden flew his Mimic 3F6 for 1 hour 3 minutes 50 seconds at Stapleford Tawney, Essex. Congratulations Martin, I believe this is a BARCS All Time Record for Mini Glider.

Quoted from an e-mail by Martin:-
"I also feel yesterdays conditions were far from ideal (although the luck element you need seemed to be working for me :-) ). My feelings are you need Low wind (we had that), sun (not a lot of that) and clearly defined Cumulus clouds (not really). I think the DLG's ability to work very small light lift is what got me through. The other 30-40 minute flights I've done were a lot lot less like hard work, but I did not make it past the dip in conditions on these occasions (probably as I was flying solo with no other planes to spot from and no talker help except at Retford)

Lolo Trace

Martin added:-
"Thanks to Jef (for Lift spotting with his Blaster) and Pete (for talking me into a thermal) during that nasty low dip in the middle"


Jef Ott - taken, with thanks, from F3K UK Register

On Friday 22nd July, Martin Godden, Pete Mitchell, Dad and myself donated a day to doing both the Barcs Summer Postals and aiming to "Beat the Hour" with a DLG in a pure thermal flight.

We had been planning to have another crack at the BARCS records (to use, prove and publicise the versatility of the modern 1.5m MiniGlider) for a little while, and although we looked seriously at beating the All Time 'Thermal Goal and Return' and 'Point to Point' tasks we had been unable to locate a suitable site. "The Hour" had been eluding Martin despite several lone attempts, so this seemed like the obvious target.

With only one day of this year's holiday left unbooked, I decided (with gentle persuasion from Martin) that flying on the Friday of the July Postals would be as good a time as any to book off, otherwise it would be winter again with nothing achieved.

Conditions were not exactly inspiring (I think most of the country had cloud and rain). However, a couple of times the cloud broke sufficiently to get some thermal activity. While doing my postals at noon I managed to get away sufficiently in one flight to have a crack at the hour, but ended up 'making do' with a nineteen minute flight. Lift was really light and patchy, the wind varying from 0 to 5 mph. So I went back to doing the 3 minute max postal flights.

There were very few birds about to show us where the lift was, but using a bit of teamwork we managed to increase the average scores of the postal results. One guy launching and spotting the lift - another marking it while the spotter dived in for a relaunch and timed flight. It is surprising how far the good air moves during the time taken to do this - which explains why I have rarely been able to recontact good air, when I have been on my own (I have been aiming upwind of it). The conditions were however, very difficult to work effectively despite our collusion.

The afternoon was quite disappointing with little indication of improving again.

Martin and Peter had been flying their SLGs and DLGs since about 11.00, Dad and I had been flying the DLGs since 10.30. Bill Stock had stumbled across our secret liaison and had been flying his just repaired polyhedral Taboo for a couple of hours too.

When Bill left, it seemed very unlikely that any records would be achieved. : (

We persisted however, and at 4pm conditions were good enough for Martin to get to a decent height with his DLG, I had failed to keep with him in the same area of the field and landed and relaunched a few times, feeling rather unlucky, then moved to the upwind edge of the field and launched into good air.

After five minutes or so working that good air effectively, while watching my model, I saw that Martin's model was still up and we were in the same part of the sky (Martin's model being higher and further away, naturally). This was useful information for him - he knew he could safely move forward staying in good air, so I tracked towards and over the field, to see if I could find better air upwind, to aid him further. As my flight time approached 13 minutes, a light aircraft movement was close enough to my model to make me dive away from the good air and after it had flown through I was unable to locate the good air again.

I sat down and watched Martin fly for a bit, at about 25 minutes on Martin's clock, the conditions had dipped and the model dropped to about 100ft. Peter stood with him, talking him into the good air as I pinpointed the centre of a bubble of lift, which Martin used to get sufficient height to be "out of the woods".

We carried on talking him into obviously good areas until the model was specking out again with 48 minutes on the clock. It was plane sailing (I can't believe I wrote that) from there on and Martin was happy to fly from the comfort of his chair for the last quarter of an hour or so.

The plane landed at 1 hour 3 minutes and 50 seconds to a nicely applauded catch.

At the last Barcs AGM, Martin won the Eppler Trophy. Since then he has done the Barcs Committee (and membership) proud, by continuing to move the boundaries of r/c soaring.