LOOKING BACK AT STEMME HORIZONS X GRAND PRIX 2022
This year we merged our Horizons tour with a new event - the Stemme Grand Prix 2022. The event took place early in September at the airport of St. Auban in France and was organised by the Stemme sales team. It was a lively get-together with our experienced instructor crew, the Stemme leadership CEO Benjamin de Broqueville and Koenraad Geurts - as well as our main shareholder and passionate pilot himself Olivier de Spoelberch.
To kick-off the week we used the first day for introduction flights, getting to know the area and the Stemme planes. At night a casual, but delicious BBQ was most welcome for interesting talks and stories. Thanks to our braai master Frank are in order at this stage – Frank did an amazing job with everything that landed on the grill that night!
STEMME GRAND PRIX
The next three days, Tuesday to Thursday, were dedicated to our own Stemme Grand Prix. Five Stemmes, ten pilots + plus a visitor were up in the air each day completing daily tasks. Engine time was allowed, but penalised.
Tuesday was the first competition day. Despite a rather tricky weather situation the pilots flew a task of 250km. West of our flight zone we had a large thunderstorm going down and still two teams managed to fly the whole task without any engine time at all. It’s astonishing how far you can fly, even with a grey and cloudy sky!
On Wednesday high clouds covered the area and we could only fly a minimal task. Turning points were airfields in the region to give everyone the chance for safe engine starts.
With the help of short engine times (both winners only needed two) the whole 200 km task was absolutely flyable for Stemme planes, proving the high flexibility and reliability of our motorgliders.
On Thursday we saw some waves in our area, but unfortunately the wind didn’t stick to the forecast and again we had to fight the clouds. Still some teams managed to fly all the way to the higher mountains and were rewarded with sunshine and breathtaking views. Frank was then air-shuttled to Fayance by Olivier - a very Stemme typical and comfortable way for him to still enjoy his last day of flying with us that week.
The winners of our Grand Prix were:
Daniel Shewmaker (left)
Reginald Watson (middle)
Frank Ulmer (not on picture)
All tasks and results can be found online (https://www.soaringspot.com/en/stemme-grand-prix-2022-chateau-arnoux-saint-auban-2022/) Congratulations to everyone!
On Friday the sun was shining and the good weather conditions returned. As we had our favorite photographer Simon Rainer with us this week we used Friday for photo shoots – both plane-to-plane and from Lure peak. The results are amazing and you’ll see them pop up on our social media channels in the upcoming weeks.
Once again, we saw just what a great region Provence is for flying. Even though the forecast for Wednesday and Thursday seemed impossible at first, we still managed to take off every single day and have a good time flying. Cheers to France, the Haute Provence and having the right plane.
We’re very happy to have had such a great event, thanks to all the participants and the Stemme community for following along.
Clare found some lovely words to sum up the week:
“It’s a holiday that I didn’t want to end and I’m really missing everyone”
Well, we do too and we’re looking forward to hosting further events just as great as this one in the future.
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If you wanna see more photos of this trip - check the gallery!
(All photos courtesy of Simon Rainer)