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July news

BHPA office to move

The BHPA’s lease on its Leicester office will end in September. Exec members and staff have been exploring all options for new premises in the area, including the pros and cons of purchasing office space. There is also a possibility of sharing office space with the British Gliding Association, also Leicester based and looking for new premises. There are some economies of scale to be gained from such a set-up, plus further potential cost savings in the integration of services such as phones, copiers, meeting space and car parking. All options remain open at the time of writing but decisions will have to be taken soon. Next month we will publish details of the way forward that will by then have been agreed by the BHPA Exec.

Idris scorches earth!

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BHPA member Idris Birch was on a roll in June with three good paraglider XC flights on three consecutive days. June 15th saw him follow Steve Parsons, Kai Coleman and Martin Knight away from Corndon but get left for dead. Nevertheless Idris slogged on for a personal best of 86km, overflying a downed Steve Parsons in the process. On the same day Judith Mole set a personal best of 123km, narrowly failing to bag Judy Leden's 2004 women's UK record. The following day, in less ideal conditions, Idris got away from Corndon again to post 47km, his fourth best-ever distance. “I was a bit gutted that 300m downwind of my landing a tractor was mowing a field. On a day when there weren't many clouds, it seemed that all possible triggers and sources worked.” On June 17th, at Corndon again, XC League leader Kai Coleman had already left when Idris got going with Steve Parsons, Simon Burnell and partner Kath and Martin Knight to land near Builth Wells for 55km “It feels like the first good year there's been for paragliding since I started in 2007,” reports Idris. “The XC League is full of pilots and flights and the last three days have been awesome. Three flights from the same site; the conditions have varied so much yet on all three days I pretty much followed the same route.” A total of 190km in three days on an eight-year-old Gin Oasis. We are going to hear a lot more from Idris, who is just 19 at present.

Ozone’s Delta

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The M size of Ozone’s new EN C Delta, incorporating Baby HPP and R10 technology, is now certificated and in production. Ozone say that they expect the Delta to redefine the EN C class, and claim it has “unprecedented” glide performance and 33% less drag than the Addict 2, itself Ozone’s “cutting edge” EN C wing. Yet it is also said to have a totally comfortable and stable feel in XC conditions. The 58-cell wing has an aspect ratio of 5.85:1. Five sizes are planned covering weight a weight range from 55 - 130kg. The Delta is available through all good paragliding dealers. More information is available from UK based Ozone Gliders Ltd, e-mail:, URL:

Stolen paragliders

Stolen from Airways Airsports at Darley Moor at the end of May: an Ozone Element S (stripes from front: maroon, white, scarlet), serial number K24E-001; an Ozone Element M (stripes from front: dark green, white, light green), serial number K25A-001; and a Woody Valley Bix tandem paragliding harness (dark grey and black) with Apco Mayday Bi tandem reserve. If anyone is offered a cheap paraglider or harness matching these descriptions, please get in touch with Airways on 01335 344308 or 07751 297951. note that the Bix harness is extremely rare in the UK and is distinctive because of its wide seat plate.

Paraglider speed records

Flying a Mac Magus, France’s Stephan Drouin clocked a 200km paragliding speed mark of 25.8km/h in May, beating Klaus Heimhofer’s 2000 record of 23.50km/h. Also in May, Italy‘s Nicole Fedele clocked a female paragliding 100km out-and-return speed record from Tolmin in Slovenia, crossing the Italian border and flying to Gemona before returning. Her average speed on her Airwave FR4 was 27.17km/h, a new previously-unset record. Both flights are of course subject to FAI homologation.

200km triangle

Nova Team pilot Michael Pohl completed a 200km triangle flight from Austria’s Greifenburg on April 28th, pushing his Triton for over eight hours to achieve 200.27km.

Class 2 speed record ratified

Jacques Bott’s Class 2 hang glider out-and-return distance record of 337.4km, set in January from Burgsdorf in Namibia aboard an Aeriane Swift Light, has been ratified as a World Record. Jaques’ flight eclipses James Neff’s 1998 mark of 330.6km.
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