The Winter social season got into its stride with a bang this month when Richard Carter came to talk us through his amazing record-breaking 300+km flight this summer. Richard needs no introduction to any pilot who has been around in the last 30 years; right from the beginnings of the sport in the UK, he stood out as having something a bit special. Regularly featuring near the top of the table, he was the first to do 100km, then 200km and finally 300 km in the UK, as well as holding the distance record several times in between.
The planning and preparation for this flight were meticulous – Richard revealed that he had been scouting out the Elan Valley as a launch point for such a flight for years. On the weekend that all the forecasts came together he was there early, fully stoked with a big breakfast with only one other pilot on the hill. After a tentative start in light morning conditions, the sky got better and better. Passing Doncaster, his major problem was staying low to squeak under the airspace there, but once passed he had the freedom to climb to over 7000’ and even to squeeze in a few extra km past his goal cylinder.
8 ½ hours, 306 km and stuck in a field on a Sunday night! Fortunately Scarborough was down the road and a hot, sticky hotel room awaited.
Thank you Richard for such an entertaining evening, giving us fascinating insights into what it takes to achieve such amazing flights