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Krugersdorp Flying Club Fun Rally

By Andre Venter

After a week of rain and bad weather, it was great to see perfect flying weather for the annual Krugersdorp Flying Club Fun Rally. The morning got off to an early start with a briefing for all the participants and marshals in the clubhouse. Francois Tolmay gave the entrants a quick run-down of the rules and Charles Pratley gave a safety briefing under the watchful eye of representatives from the SACAA.

The route would take the aircraft to the North-west of Krugersdorp with a turning point at a place called “Oom Piet se plaas”, then to the South-west to the Tank Farm. From there the participants would make their way to the Silos South of FAKR and then on to a mine dump to the east. Once all these turning points had been navigated it was straight back to Krugersdorp.

The field of sixteen aircraft were divided up into six groups the first group was led off by Ricardo de Bonis in his Aircam followed by Johann Nel in a Jabiru SP-T and the last to leave was Stephan Hartman in his Alpi Aviation Pioneer 200.

The second group was led by John Shaw in a Cessna 177B Cardinal he was followed by Reyno Coetzee in his beautifully restored North American Navion, which incidentally made its first known flight in almost 40 years. Bring up the rear off this group was Micheal Berg in his beech Sundowner.

The next group consisted of Dewald Pienaar in a Cessna 182P Skylane and Chris Shaw in a Cessna 177B Cardinal.

Group four was also made up of two aircraft Francois Tolmay in a Beechcraft V35B Bonanza and Heinrich Gildenhuys in his Piper PA-32-300 Cherokee Six.

The fifth group was led by Louis Fourie in a Beechcraft Baron 58, second up was Dieter Bock in his very slick Lancair Legacy and the third was Graham Mc Carthy in his Beech Baron E55.

The final group was made up of Andries van Tonder in his stunning North American T6 Harvard, Steve George in his Ryan Navion and last but not least was Trevor Davids in his Vans RV12.

Each competitor had to complete two laps of the course and the speed was then worked out on a handicap system using an engine ratio to determine the winner. While the aircraft were out on the rally the airfield remained open to visitors and of course residents returning from the Sliver Creek Fly-in Breakfast which kept the spectators occupied while Francois Tolmay and Nandi Foxcroft calculated the results. Once they managed to get through all the calculations it was time for the prize-giving.

Dieter Bock managed to narrowly beat Louis Fourie for the overall win third place belonged to Graham McCarthy and a special Ratio prize was awarded to Johann Nel.

Once the event was officially closed Reyno Coetzer and Steve George took their Navions up for a few formation passes to test their new radio linked smoke systems. The smoke systems are connected via a radio link so when the lead aircraft starts its smoke the second aircraft will instantaneously also start its smoke.

Special thanks must go to the marshals, Obie Weeber, Rudie Nel, Gert de Beer, and the joker Rob Nelius for keeping order on the ground. Steve George did a sterling job when he took up ATC duties while he was not in his aircraft competing. The Krugersdorp Flying Club proved once again that they are a club of note with everyone pulling together to make the event the success it was.

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