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La Muela F3F

2 - 3 April 2010


Standing: Kev Newton, Vic Eldridge. Kneeling: Mike Shellim, Mike Evans, Stefan Bertschi

Another cracking two weeks

After nine years of pilgrimage, La Muela has almost become a spiritual home, offering a sublime mix of F3F, sport flying and Spanish hospitality, all in a glorious setting. If anything was different this year, it was that we spent more time on the hill and less in our nearby base of Guadalajara (partly because we had fewer hangovers!).

As is usual, the F3F competition took place over Good Friday and Saturday. The 38 entrants were fewer than usual, due at least in part to the event not counting towards the Eurotour league.

My thanks to my companions for another great holiday, and to our Spanish friends for their usual fantastic hospitality - ¡gracias a nuestros amigos, nos vemos el año proximo!

Results (top 10):

1 Pierre Rondel   4663
2 Andoni Gorriñobeascoa   4529
3 Iñaki Elizondo   4385
4 Lombardo Laurent   4379
5 Fernando Moro   4359
6 Sergio Sánchez   4325
7 Daniel Portella   4319
8 Carlas Aymat   4279
9 Mike Shellim   4254
10   Miguel A Gutiérrez   4240

1. Journey to La Muela

The cast of Brits was the same as last year - Kevin Newton, Vic and Sylvia Eldridge, and myself. As usual we took our fully loaded cars across to Spain on the P&O Pride of Bilbao. From Bilbao it was a pleasant six hour drive to the hill where we were later joined by Mike and Liz Evans, and Stefan Bertschi from Switzerland.

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2 Before the competition

Roberto Montiel demonstrated his FPV, based on the Robbe Arcus.

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3 The Competition

Lift conditions were rather variable on the first day, and at the end of the first round I was surprised to find myself at the top of the leader board, eventually finishing up just inside the top ten after six rounds (only one round was flown on the second day).

The winner was Pierre Rondel, after some superb flying. It was his third La Muela crown. In contrast Kevin, Mike and Vic were destined not to shine in the decidedly variable conditions.

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4 Relaxing

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5 The rest

This year I finally achieved an ambition to photograph the petrol station at Humanes - at dawn! Yep I know it sounds a little crazy, but that petrol station has a special place in my memories of our trips to La Moo. I also took a walk along the northwest DS ridge, which provides its own distinct perspective of the main hill and the Henares river.

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Most of the images were shot with a Pentax K-x using three lenses- a DA 55-300 for the flying shots, DA21 for anything indoors, and a Sigma 17-70 for the rest.

Hi-res images

Available in my Smugmug gallery