The British Paramotoring Championships 2018 kicks off on 29 August – and is trialling a brand new format designed to maximise adventure, airtime and fun.
Competition director Barney Townsend explained: “Many pilots have stopped competing in paramotor competitions and we recognise that the reasons for this are many, varied, and valid.
“Most commonly cited are concerns about the danger of flying slaloms, too many interminable briefings going over arcane rules, and simply not enough hours spent in the air!
“So for these reasons we have designed the 2018 championship along completely different lines. The emphasis is on navigation and flight planning, maximising flying hours and the enjoyment of pilots, and the avoidance of extensive or complex rules, and a minimum of briefings after the first initial one.
“Our intention is to promote real pilots’ flying skills, both through in-flight decision making and through flight planning on the ground, and provide a competition that is fun, accessible, and inclusive to all UK pilots, with primarily, lots of airtime hours! There will be no slalom type tasks involved.
“Fundamentally, the competition is an extended, large-scale turnpoint hunt that takes place over a period of three days in a beautiful area of 4000 sq. km that extends from the Peak District in the east to the Welsh hills around Llangollen in the west.
“Pilots are permitted a maximum of five flying hours each day, that they can choose to take when they want within a longer flying window of 0700 to 2000.
“Pilots can gain extra points flying certain prescribed sections of the route accurately, which are based on the classic navigation tasks such as ‘snake’ and ‘constant speed’ navigation.
“The event will take place at an airfield just outside of Crewe (CW5 6DN) and we have landing+refuelling arrangements with additional airfields at Airways Airsports (50km to the east) and another farm a similar distance to the west. We will be posting marshals with pickup vehicles at each of these points who will be able to support any pilots landing out on their XC flights.
“There are two competition classes: Open Championship, in which pilots must navigate by OS map only, and Discovery class, in which pilots may use any GPS navigation aids they wish to. There are medals for both classes.”
All details are on the competition website at ppgcomps.co.uk