By Jonty Esser
On the 18th of September 2010 a fun filled flying competition took place at Pietersburg Civil Airport, with competitors coming from as far as Gauteng and Hoedspruit.
These fun rallies are hosted by SAPFA (South African Powered Flight Association) and are held monthly at different venues. These fun rallies has been an innovative and genius format derived from the FAI (Fédération Aéronautique Internationale – The World Air Sports Federation) rally rules by SAPFA members, to introduce the sport to keen aviators, making it not only fun but competitive also focusing on enhancing pilot skills and constantly recruiting Pilots for the National team to compete in the World Championships.
The day started with the formalities of the highly important and comprehensive safety briefing presented by the safety officer of the day Mr. Leon de Villiers, followed by the Pilot’s and Navigator briefings presented by our Local Springbok, National Team member and Competition Director for this rally, Mr. Jonty Esser.
The navigators and pilots received their clue sheets and necessary blank maps, and immediately set off to work as the first take off was to be at exactly 11:00:00. Many of the competitors were first time rally pilots and navigators so help was at hand from the Competition Director. The route was setup to ease the new teams in up until check point 5 thereafter the degree of difficulty was increased. The route took the competitors from Pietersburg Civil Airport to Dalmada, then onto the University of the North from there out to the north then back to the Steven Lumber Mills, then back out to the Ebenezer Dam Wall, there after the climb for the Highest point in the Wolkberg Reserve flying down the mountain range to Chuniespoort and back to Pietersburg Civil Airport.