We have just arrived home after the first contest of the year in Perry, South Carolina. We were able to fly 3 of 6 contest days and I also flew two practice days. I finished 2nd in the 18 m class behind Jerzy.
For me, this contest was a chance to fly the new glider and learn the systems and equipment. With all the time I have in ASW-27's (Thanks Walter!) the transition to the 29 was a non-issue for me. The flying characteristics of the 29 and 27 are so close that after the first flight I was completely at home in the new F1.
The instrumentation is also new to me, but it seems to be working properly and the varios are well compensated using the factory TE probe. The only instrument issue I had was a misinterpretation of the computer read-out on final glide. I had set the computer to navigate to the edge of the finish cylinder, but then continued to fly as if it was navigating to the center of the cylinder. This caused me to "finish" 1 mile before crossing the real finish line and cost me 15-20 secs each day as I had slowed down and turned to join the circuit before actually crossing the line. But - that is why the contest was a learning event.
Perry is the best attended regionals in the US. There were 65 pilots flying in 4 classes and we had 11 Canadians at the contest. The airport is privately owned by Al and Rhonda Tyler and they have been running this contest for over 10 years now - literally in their back yard. Great people, great food and good weather made it a fun event.