NSWHPA December 2018 eNewsletter

NSWHPA December 2018 eNewsletter

Had a near miss incident?  

Treat it as an opportunity to share your knowledge and experience with your flying community and take the opportunity to debrief in a supportive club environment. The HGFA website and social media allows us to disseminate (anonymously if desired) this knowledge to a wider audience, as we are all too aware, we will not live long enough to make all the same mistakes ourselves.

Returning to flying after a break? 

All NSW Clubs are encouraged to remind pilots of their sites' flying characteristics in different winds and weather. Pilots please use the wealth of knowledge available from your Site Safety Officers and senior pilots particularly for launches and landings. Ultimately it is the responsibility of each pilot to comprehensively re-acquaint themselves with the inherent hazards of each site across all weather conditions.

Sadly some of our very best pilots and beautiful human beings have paid the price. At this time of year remember that a fatal accident not only affects you, but your loved ones left behind.

Office of Sports Funding Grants

On a lighter note NSWHPA invites all NSW clubs to consider improving their programs, clinics, facilities and infrastructure with government sponsored (Office of Sport) sporting and infrastructure grants.

You never know what can be achieved, for example, the Forrester's Beach weather station has been modified (see picture below) to increase accuracy and prevent damage by birds due to a determined effort by a club member with an idea.

A number of Clubs have already submitted grant applications for significant launch site development, female participation and water rescue initiatives.

The Office of Sport funding application window is only open for limited periods. We often don’t get much advance notice. We ask that you put on your thinking caps for ideas that you would like to improve your flying sites. 

Grant submissions for a project need to be based on a comprehensive proposal to have a chance of being approved by the Office of Sport (or such body). Practically this needs to be done ahead of time so that we are ready for when the grant window opens.

We don't mind if your idea is a little sketchy on detail to start with, as long as it is something we can work with.  We will work with you to get all the information together.

NSWHPA December 2018 eNewsletter

NSWHPA December 2018 eNewsletter

Welcome to an exciting new season of summer flying!

HGFA Membership

Due to a lower than expected NSW HGFA membership renewals, all club executives and Site Safety Officers are encouraged to check that pilots at their respective flying sites are financial members. Pilots are requested to carry their HGFA membership card at all times. Remember, your support in this matter directly contributes to the longevity of our sport, the financial support and clinic subsidies the NSWHPA can continue to provide and the number of sites we can secure through landowner agreements resulting in pilots flying for free at Club sites throughout NSW. 

Competition Pilot Support

NSWHPA provides financial support to elite NSW pilots competing outside of Australia. The limits of our funding across an impressive number of world competitions means this support will only be available to NSW pilots nominated by the HGFA Competition Committee as an Australian representative team member.

Exciting XC Clinics over Summer

The HGFA generously provided funds for the NSWHPA to support various clubs organising five XC clinics this season. The program was launched by a successful XC Development Clinic run at Forbes over the October long weekend that attracted 12 NSW pilots  (& one from the ACT) who flew 2 days out of the 4 available days. Their achievements included completing an FAI triangle, two XC tasks plus studying theory on their non-fly days. Stand-by for the announcement of more XC clinics being planned over this summer.

Pilot Safety

Due to the inherent risks associated with the air sports we love, the threat of injury is a very real possibility. Further training in emergency procedures can assist with harm minimisation in specific circumstances. 

A great article in the May/June 2018 issue of HGFA Skysailor reviewed the effectiveness of Personal Locator Beacons in offering a last line of defence to mortal injury. Such devices can save valuable time in a Search and Rescue scenario, by promptly identifying the pilot’s location in an otherwise expansive search area, possibly reducing the severity of illness or injury to the accident victim while mitigating hazards to the rescuers and costs to the tax payer.

Helping in an emergency? 

While being the first on site can make the world of difference to an accident victim, the NSWHPA would like to remind pilots coming to the aid, and/or providing initial assistance in an emergency that they are required by law to abide by instructions given to them by emergency and rescue personnel as soon as they arrive at the scene.

Forbes world record competition flying


In January 2018 nearly 70 pilots competed in the Forbes Flatlands HangGliding competition in Forbes NSW.

The weather was good and the competition was fierce. Many pilots flew for 10 days straight with flying happening every day of the 8 day comp and the 2 days of practise before the competition. One of the highlights was the setting and competition of the world's longest competition hang gliding task. In 2016 the competition set a competition world record distance of 368 km and in 2018 a new record was set with a distance of 388.8km and 16 pilots making the distance with 14 new personal bests amongst the pilots - great flying indeed.

There was a changing of the guard on the winners podium with young gun Rory Duncan taking out the honours by just one point from Jonny Durand followed by Josh woods in 3rd place.

Sasha Serbrennikova took out the womens division whilst in the sports class Peter Garrone took the honours followed by Leon Brown and Scott Ireland. Sasha Serbrennikova not only took out the womens division she also managed to break 3 world records including a new world record triangle and longest distance.

The overall competition unfortunately was saddened by the loss of Emma Martin, and the flying community were devastated but managed to pull together to fly on as Emma would have liked us to. We hope she was watching from the clouds above.

The competition was run amazingly well as always with Vicki Cain leading the charge with a huge list of volunteers who helped out. The NSWHPA, always keen to see more competitions were proud sponsors of the event and were happy to see some records being smashed at this amazing world-class event. For more information on the results head to  https://www.forbesflatlands.com/results/results-2018

As I was one of the lucky competing pilots and one who made the new competition world record distance thanks to everyone and I hope you come and join us for next years competition.



Nils Vesk

Strong clubs secure the future of our sport.

At the nswhpa we are often helping clubs secure and fund landing and takeoff options. This is crucial to maintaining our ability to fly in places where landing options are at a minimum due to increasing development issues.

I've recently been flying in California at Crestline and am bowled over by their landing facilities at the Andy Jackson aipark Which is a purpose built landing platform that also doubles as a training hill, complete with a clubhouse and storage facility for gliders, not to mention a shuttle service to take people up to launch.

The site itself is leased from  The California water resources service, but was jointly developed with the club to secure the flying Landing site for perpetuity.

I know we all want go flying, yet it's worth considering the sites you are flying from and landing at. If you need help securing those sites feel free to contact the Nswhpa as we are here to help and have lots of experience amongst our executive team who have secured several landowner agreements and agreements with national parks.

Safe flying. 



Nils Vesk