It was another exciting day at the Jack Taylor Airfield on Saturday 17 May 2014 when the Krugersdorp Flying Club hosted its annual navigation rally named after Sheila Taylor, the wife of Jack Taylor who established the airfield more than 60 years ago.
21 teams entered and the safety briefing led by the club's safety officer Chris Kyle started a 9AM. A fantastic breakfast was served throughout the morning so there was no reason why pilots and navigators had to start their day on an empty stomach.
The route starting point was between Krugersdorp and Randfontein and zigzagged south all the way down to the heart of the Johannesburg General Flying Area. From there the route took a westerly direction to just north of Fochville, back east again to Glenharvie, west to Carletonville with the last 3 legs north back to the finish point in Tarleton. The planning was a huge effort, especially for the amateurs like me.
My daughter Luzanne navigated for me and we were very happy with our navigation around the route. The problem was the photographs which we had to identify & verify and our most penalty points came from this discipline.
With a wind gust of 35 knots at times the conditions were extremely challenging. Of course this affects the track when the wind comes from the side but it is quite a scary when it comes from behind as 35 knots lower than the nominated air speed for some may border on dangerous flying. Never the less, everyone had a smile after completing the route. Well, maybe I should rather say most!!
A Nav Rally is lots of fun but some have fun while being serious and that goes for the winners of the event, Mary de Klerk and Thys van der Merwe how returned with a mere 40 penalty points.
The trophies for the best Krugersdorp Flying Club team was won by Peter Roodt and Charlie Gradidge.
A nav rally will never be a nav rally without Frank and Cally Eckard at the helm of the planning and scoring. They have perfected these events and we were once again honoured to have them on board to ensure that the route is exciting, well planned, documented well, and still a lot of fun.
To the Krugersdorp Flying Club team, thank you for another superb event. We will certainly see you again next year!!