Southern Foot or Fly

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The Southern Hang Gliding Club proudly presents the Southern Foot or Fly Challenge 2014; the premier paragliding challenge in the south-east.

What is the Southern Foot and Fly Challenge 2014?

The challenge is a race around a defined course in the area of the beautiful South Downs in Sussex. If you want to get a flavour of what it's all about then have a look at this video link.

The aim is to complete a course linking 8 of the 9 SHGC sites in the shortest possible time, using only your glider, your feet or a combination of both. It is open to paraglider pilots from the SHGC with at least CP qualification, and pilots from other clubs with at least Pilot qualification and day membership of the SHGC. Pilots can enter in one of three categories according to their XC experience :

  • Hot-shot
  • XC Pilot
  • Novice

The emphasis is on learning, improving and fun, and one of the aims of the challenge is to help pilots develop XC skills in a safe and progressive way. SHGC coaches will be available to brief and advise entrants for each day’s flying at the chosen site(s). Daily briefings on weather and choice of site(s) will be available on the SHGC SFoF page.

While the challenge is a race round a course, the focus of each day may well be one or two legs for many pilots, but it is not the aim of the challenge to put constraints on days when longer flights may be possible. If the day is epic, fly far, and if you can take in an SFoF leg on the way, so much the better!

In order to reduce the reluctance of novice pilots to leave the hill, retrieve arrangements will be coordinated for each day’s flying to ensure that everyone gets back to where they need to be with the minimum trouble.

The challenge will be open during July and August 2014, but entrants are encouraged to practice before the event starts, to sort out any problems with instruments, recording, downloading and uploading track logs to the SFoF scoring system, etc.

Trying the challenge with friends and other pilots is a lot of the fun, and also a great way to learn from others. To assist the preparation for the challenge and the exchange of information and skills, the challenge uses a dedicated Facebook page to facilitate interaction between all involved without taking up space on the SHGC forums.

The detailed rules for the challenge are:

  1. Participants must be current members of the SHGC (full or day members)
  2. Participants must be current members of the BHPA
  3. Participants must be PG (Hill) rated
  4. SHGC participants must be at least CP rated
  5. Day memeber participants must be at least Pilot rated
  6. Organisers may participate and compete
  7. Club coaches may participate and compete
  8. Participants may enter in one of three categories:

    • Novice: Any pilot who had not completed a 10 km XC paraglider flight anywhere before 30 June 2014
    • XC Pilot: Any pilot who had not completed a 100 km XC paraglider flight anywhere before 30 June 2014
    • Hotshot: Any pilot not in Novice or XC Pilot categories

  9. The challenge will take place between 1st July and 31st August 2014, inclusive
  10. The 2014 challenge will open each day at sunrise at the chosen site, and close at local sunset

  11. Only free-flight certified (EN A-D or LTF 1-2/3) paragliders may be used by participants
  12. Only EN A or EN B paragliders may be used by CP participants
  13. Participants may not use a paraglider with an area of less than 19 m2

  14. The objective of the challenge is to complete the defined course in the shortest possible time
  15. The winner in each category will be decided by the greatest distance covered, or, if the same distance is covered by more than one participant, the shortest time for that distance
  16. Course legs may be completed by flying, walking or a combination of the two between turnpoints
  17. Participants must carry all equipment used to fly when walking
  18. The minimum equipment to be carried includes glider, harness, reserve, helmet, aeronautical chart and GPS
  19. No mode of transport other than paraglider or walking / running may be used between turnpoints
  20. Participants may be supported by helpers who may supply food, drink and medical supplies, but who may not assist in the transportation of the participant or equipment
  21. The course is a closed loop of eight turnpoints which must be taken in sequence without zig-zags
  22. The course may be started at any turnpoint
  23. The course may be followed either clockwise or anticlockwise
  24. A turnpoint may be claimed as achieved on an attempt if the participant shows evidence that their tracklog for that attempt penetrated a 400m radius cylinder, the centre of which coincides with the turnpoint location
  25. Each leg may be attempted as many times as the participant wishes, with the best time counting as the competition time for that leg
  26. A leg attempt must be completed within the open period (see T2) of one day; partially-completed legs may not be carried forward to subsequent days for completion

The Southern Foot or Fly Challenge 2014 is a result of the enthusiasm of pilots who have taken part in the Foot or Flybubble challenges of 2012 and 2013 to maintain the spirit of those events following Flybubble’s decision to withdraw from running the event in 2014. The SHGC recognizes the value of encouraging pilots to get away from crowded hills and enjoy the relative freedom of the open sky, not only from the point of view of reducing overcrowding, but also the benefits to the club of encouraging more club and national XC league entries. The members who have taken on the administration of the challenge firmly believe that it will assist entrants to take the small steps that will lead to big flights. They are indebted to Flybubble for developing the concept and generating so much enthusiasm.