What is a gliding competition?

In simple terms a gliding competition is a series of time trails spread over nine days. Each glider competes to go the fastest (or fly the furthest) round a fixed course for the day that is designed to optimise the soaring conditions.
Competing gliders carry a secure GPS logger that is downloaded after flight that shows when they crossed the start and finish line and also that they successfully flew in to all the control points at the corners.

Types of competition

There are several types of competition recognised in the UK:

  1. Local inter-club competitions
    These are informal competitions held at most clubs throughout the country.
  2. Regional (handicapped)
    The gliders are all rated on their performance, meaning all gliders can fly against each other.
  3. National (un-handicapped)
    The gliders are divided into international classes ( see the gliders). Lower performance gliders can enter in a higher class, but not a more restrictive one.
  4. Club Class
    This is handicapped National competition for older glider designs. The class is recognised internationally but has certain restrictions such as fixed ballast (other classes permit gliders to carry variable amounts of water ballast).