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  1. Junior World Champs Report #6

Junior World Champs Report #6
From: Bob Stalick

The usual protocol for the Junior World Champs is to set aside the last day for making up rounds in case of poor weather and/or to provide time for early morning flyoffs. This year none of that was needed as the flying conditions on all three competition days was excellent. Every day was warm (into the high 80’s at least) and although sometimes the wind picked up more than might be comfortable, it was always flyable. Wind direction was tricky all three days, and the variability gave the contestants and officials some problems. Mostly, it was a great meet, well run on a really nice free flight field.

So, since we didn’t have the possible flyoff rounds on friday, the US team took advantage of the unexpected free time, and, thanks to Carol Ulm, we took a 30 mile trip to the city of Plovdiv. Plovdiv is the site of significant Roman ruins, some just recently discovered, some not so recent.  It is also Bulgaria’s cultural center. This guided walking tour covered not only the Roman period but every historic period since. We walked among the ruins and got pictures of the team and the supporters.  We sat on the Colosseum steps right where the emperor would have sat 2000 years ago. I’ve posted some pix from our trip on the Facebook/Freeflight page. After lunch and gelato we were on our way back to Pazardczik to cleanup for the closing ceremony, which took place at the same location as the opening ceremony–a city park just down the street from our hotel.

After the obligatory speeches, the trophy awards began. The practice is to award the individual award in an event first, then to follow it with the team award.

Here are the official placings for the event:
First event is F1A- 46 contestants entered and put in official flights.Third place was; Igor Butsnevich of Russia (1320 sec.); second was Karl Mannik from Estonia (1605); and first was Kalle Korpela from Finland (1680).
US Team members scores were: Joel Yori for ninth place (1286); Adelaide Ulm for 20th place (1201), and Roman Stalick (1105) for 32nd place

The team awards in F1A went to: Russia for third place; France for second; and Israel for first. The USA team placed seventh

The second event was F1B – 29 contestants entered and put in official flights.  Third place went to Yuvai Sarig of Israel (1807); second place went to Kyle Gerspacher of the USA (2019) and first place went to Karl Mannik of Estonia (2160). US Team member Joel Yori placed 21st.

The team awards in F1B went to: Germany for third place; Latvia for second and Russia for first. The shorthanded USA team placed ninth.

Third event is F1P -16 contestants entered and put in official flights. Third place went to Vladislav Lipov of Russia (1505); second to Hayden Ashworth of the USA (1755) and first place went to Gert Nulk of Estonia ((1846).
Te team awards in F1P went to: Estonia for third place; Poland for second and Russia for first. Our one member team placed fifth.

The final awards go to the overall high point teams: Russia took first with 11090; Estonia took second with 10723; Poland took third with 10472. Interestingly, our short handed team placed fourth overall with 7411.
It was also announced at the end of the event that the 2020 Junior World Championships would be held once again in Romania (as it was in 2016).

After the ceremony, it was time for the end of contest dinner at the Hotel Trakia (our home hotel for the week). All of the teams were there, at least to start. When it was apparent after an hour that the food would be late in being served, several of the contestants started making the rounds trading for pins, decals, shirts, caps and jackets. This part of the event is always a fun activity to watch, spoiled for me this year by the very loud music playing in the venue, and making it difficult to carry on a conversation without yelling. Didn’t seem to bother the youngsters, though. When the main course finally arrived at the two hour mark, I finished mine and headed upstairs for a more quiet and restful evening.

I’ll do a wrap up of the entire event in tomorrow’s final report. Look for my opinions, thoughts and suggestions plus some observations on what I see as trends. Check with SEN tomorrow.