SAC 2020 National Aerobatic Championships, New Tempe

By Ricky Fouchť

The National Championships was, once again, held at New Tempe Airfield from 29th September 2020 to 3rd October 2020. It seems to be the norm for the weather to act up when an aviation event is held in Bloemfontein. The 29th was a practice day and we had reasonably good weather. All contestants had the opportunity to practice their known programs and also to get to know the aerobatic box with its reference points in and around it.

Tempe's Aerobatic Box from the air. Picture Credit Jason Beamish at SA Nationals 2018

The 30th was the first competition day and a briefing was held at 13:00 where radio calls, take-off and landing procedures, holding areas and various other topics were discussed.

At 14:30 the competition kicked off with Jurie Steyn being the first in the box. Jurie was flying in the "Intermediate" class and his aircraft was the trusted Zlin 50L registration ZS-WWK.

Leading the pack for the "Advanced" Class was Andrew Fletcher, also in a Zlin 50L registration ZU-ZLN.

Nigel Hopkins then lead out the "Unlimited" class in his Extra 330 SC registration ZS-XSC.

Fortunately, all the contestants in the Intermediate, Advanced and Unlimited classes could complete their first programs on Wednesday as the next two days would bring low clouds and winds that only let up a few times during those days.

During Thursday and Friday, they managed to get the RV Class and Sportsman classes to complete their first programs, the second program of the whole Intermediate class and some of the Advanced class.

Saturday morning the weather was ideal for aerobatics with nothing but blue skies and very light wind.

Judges setting up their position on Saturday morning

With the weather being perfect, it meant that Saturday was going to be a very busy day for everybody (Including myself as Rookie Videographer for the judges).

The remainder of the Advanced class completed their second program with Jason Beamish being the first one in the box.

During the day, the RV, Sportsman, Advanced and Unlimited classes completed their second programs which meant that there would be official results for all classes. The minimum requirement to call it a competition is that each class needs to complete at least two programs.

After program 2 it was time for the third round of programs. Sportsman, Intermediate, Advanced and Unlimited could all complete their programs and it all ended with a prize giving function that was held at Bains Game Lodge later in the evening.

Participants were (In class order and flight order of first programs)
Name Aircraft Registration
1. Dave Thomas RV7 ZU-JUR
2. Dane Laing RV4 ZU-RVY
3. Johan Van Zyl RV7 ZU-VZJ
4. Ian Beaton RV7 ZU-FSG
5. Martyn Redelinghuys RV7 ZU-JUR

1. Wian Du Plessis RV7 ZU-WMW
2. Jonty Esser Zlin 50 ZS-WWJ
3. Warren Eva Yak 52 ZU-AMC
4. Jaco Van Zyl RV7 ZU-JCO
5. Tristan Eales Extra 200 ZS-EDB
6. Quentin Taylor Decathlon N199SA
7. Philip Eloff Extra 300L ZS-BDE
8. Machiel Du Plessis RV7 ZU-WMW
9. Ingmar Besuidenhout Yak 52 ZU-BSK

1. Jurie Steyn Zlin 50 ZS-WWK
2. Andrew Blackwood-Murray Extra 300L ZS-AEC
3. Roger Deare Extra 300L ZS-OLR
4. Alewyn Burger Zlin 50 ZS-WWK
5. Trevor Warner Extra 200 ZS-EDB
6. Markku Torppa Zlin 50 ZS-WWK
7. Conrad Botha Slick 360 ZU-JSS

1. Andrew Fletcher Zlin 50 ZU-ZLN
2. Pierre Du Plooy Giles 202 ZU-ZOZ
3. Cliff Lotter Yak 55 ZU-EHZ
4. Glen Warden Slick 360 ZU-MDA
5. Jason Beamish Extra 330LX ZS-EXT

1. Nigel Hopkins Extra 330SC ZS-XSC
2. Eugene Du Preez Extra 330SC ZS-THS
3. Gary Glasson Pitts Falcon ZU-FTP
4. Barrie Eales Extra 330SC ZS-XSC

Contest results:
Pos Name Overall %
1. Dane Laing 77.017
2. Johan Van Zyl 75.814
3. Ian Beaton 70.804
4. Dave Thomas 69.189
5. Martyn Redelinghuys 65.462

1. Tristan Eales 80.788
2. Wian Du Plessis 79.889
3. Machiel Du Plessis 78.316
4. Jaco Van Zyl 77.053
5. Warren Eva 76.838
6. Philip Eloff 76.270
7. Quentin Taylor 75.267
8. Jonty Esser 75.158
9. Ingmar Besuidenhout 67.455

1. Andrew Blackwood-Murray 74.135
2. Markku Torppa 72.135
3. Alewyn Burger 71.055
4. Jurie Steyn 66.691
5. Trevor Warner 66.086
6. Conrad Botha 62.710
7. Roger Deare 58.280

1. Pierre Du Plooy 78.304
2. Glen Warden 75.407
3. Jason Beamish 68.831
4. Cliff Lotter 59.919
5. Andrew Fletcher 44.838

1. Nigel Hopkins 80.108
2. Barrie Eales 76.877
3. Gary Glasson 72.500
4. Eugene Du Preez 64.490

Congratulations to all for completing the competition in some very trying conditions and well done to all the winners.

Event Officials
Event Organiser Conrad Botha
Contest Director Mark Hensman
Contest Chief Judge John Gaillard
Scoring Director Natalie Stark

John Gaillard
Quintin Hawthorn
Lazlo Lizkay
Helmut Ludwig
Johnie Smith
Kelly McAuley
Cindy Weber

Air Traffic Controllers:
Rouvierre Roux
Roelof van Vuren

Paramedics on standby:


A big thank you to all the competition sponsors. Without your sponsorship these events will not be possible.
W Z Beton
H&L Hardware
Blazecor Crushers
EAA 1503 Bloemfontein
Human Auto Ford
Salleys Yamaha
Woodland Hills Checkers
Protein 2 Go

Hangar space were also provided by various persons and companies such as:

Walter Goodrich of GT Drilling and Blasting
Conrad Botha
Tobie Kock
Westline Aviation

Your hanger space kept these very special machines safe in bad weather conditions.

All in all, it was a great week and I would like to, personally, thank Quitin Hawthorne, Johnie Smith, Conrad Botha and Andrew Balckwood-Murray for all the assistance they gave me.

See you all at the next nearby event - here is some of my other pics from the event.

Winners' aircraft:

Various other Snaps from the 5 days I spent at Tempe airport.

and subscribe to our YouTube channel

Events 2020
Sport Aerobatics

Copyright © 2024 Pilot's Post PTY Ltd
The information, views and opinions by the authors contributing to Pilotís Post are not necessarily those of the editor or other writers at Pilotís Post.