VMPRA Race Report
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The third event on the VMPRA 2007 calendar was held at the Warrnambool Model Aircraft Club’s field in Warrnambool on 21 and 22 April 2007. The event was well attended and there some new models on the flightline.
The club had done a fantastic job preparing the field - with manicured grass runways. This was especially challenging considering the drought conditions that are affecting the State. On the drive along the Hamilton Highway you could see how bad conditions were in some areas – with cows and sheep searching to find a blade of grass to eat.
Following the usual practice – QM and Q500 were flown on Saturday with FA1 and F400 being flown on Sunday. Each event was flown over 10 ˝ laps. Seven rounds were flown each day.
Saturday was cool with a steady wind off the ocean. QM attracted 10 entries and it proved to be good day’s racing. Andrew Davies posted some fast times, with the events best of 61.43. He finished in first place with a score of 376.4. Brian Steele had pieced together a new engine since the last event and took second with a score of 414.0. Keith Harvey finished in third place with a score of 459.4.
Q500 drew 6 entries, including some old and new faces. Tom Wetherill finished in first place with a score of 506.0 and fast time of 81.71. Bill Gleeson finished second with 671.0 points. Danny Martin finished in third place with 680.4 points. Mark French had problems with his engine and was unable to complete a round – spoiling his return.
Sunday’s weather was also cool – peaking at about 17oC. The wind was at about 19 kts, gusting to 25 kts. FA1 attracted a very healthy 11 entries and there was some intense competition and very good racing. The old bull, Barry Murphy, was on form and took the win with a score of 380.9 points. He also posted the fastest time of 62.02. He was closely followed by the young bull, Leigh Hocken, who finished in second with a score of 383.1. Terry O’Connor was showing good speed and finished third with a score of 402.0. Danny Martin, a newcomer to FAI, finished in fourth with 436.9 points. He was flying one of Barry’s old models. Andrew Davies and Gary Davidson both lost models – in separate incidents - when rounding pylon 3.
F400 attracted three entries and Jim Orenshaw finished in first place with a score of 474.5 points. He also set the fast time of 76.41. Danny Martin, who had his hands full by running two classes, finished a distant second with 721.5 points. Marcus Guss had a bad day with his engine cutting out each round. Unfortunately his Polecat was destroyed after coming into contact with a pylon when landing.
The VMPRA would like to extend its thanks to the Warrnambool club for hosting the event, providing course workers, and for providing great food throughout the weekend. The next event will be held at the Wagga Model Aero Club in Wagga NSW on 5 - 6 May 2007.
Report by Tom Wetherill.