CIVA VP Alan Cassidy Awarded the MBE

Twice a year, at the time of the Queen's official birthday and at the end of December, the British Government publishes a list of those citizens whose dedicated service to the nation is to be officially recognised. In the New Years Honours List for 2010, British Aerobatic Association Chairman Alan Cassidy was created a Member of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his services to aerobatics. The medal that accompanies the award will be presented at a ceremony at one of the Royal Palaces at some time during the early part of 2010. This is the first time that anyone specifically involved in aerobatics has been so honoured and is a significant step forward in terms of the sport's official recognition. Alan, born in 1949, learned to fly in June 1967 following the award of a Flying Scholarship from the Royal Air Force. In 1970, when a third-year undergraduate at Trinity College, he was chosen to represent Cambridge University Air Squadron in the annual aerobatic competition against Oxford, Nottingham and East Midlands Universities and this clearly set an idea in Alan's head that only came to fruition many years later. Alan was commissioned into the Engineering Branch of the Royal Air Force in 1971 and remained in the RAF until January 1990, at which time he was a Wing Commander on the Directing Staff at the Royal Military College of Science. He then qualified as a commercial pilot, but his commercial flying career came to an abrupt halt in 1991 when the first Gulf War forced thousands of redundancies among newly qualified civil pilots in the UK. In response to this setback, Alan decided to work for himself and started an aerobatic training business, based within the West London Aero Club at the wartime ATA airfield of White Waltham, near his home in Maidenhead, England. This is now the leading aerobatic training establishment in the UK, preparing many new pilots for competition flying each year. Alan joined the British Aerobatic Association in 1983, while serving on the Harrier Operational Conversion Unit at RAF Wittering, near Stamford in Lincolnshire. He flew his first civilian aerobatic competition in 1984 in a CAP-10B from the flying club at Cranwell, the RAF College. In 1989 he became the Head of Contest Organisation for the BAeA, and in 2006 was elected Chairman by his fellow Directors. Alan has represented the UK regularly in International Aerobatic Championships since 1995, winning three Team Medals, and has been the British Unlimited Aerobatic Champion on four occasions. Alan has been the UK Delegate to CIVA since the mid-1990s and currently holds posts in its Bureau, Rules and Catalogue Sub-Committees. He is the author of the Aresti Software system for computerizing aerobatic sequence notation and of an aerobatic text book, "Better Aerobatics" published in 2003. In 2009, Alan led the BAeA organisational effort for the World Aerobatic Championships held at Silverstone Circuit, which was also instrumental in raising a significant sum for Charity in the form of the Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance - a service funded solely from private donations. The Order of the British Empire recognises distinguished service to the arts and sciences, public services outside the Civil Service and work with charitable and welfare organisations of all kinds. It was created during the First World War in 1917 by George V. The King recognised the need for a new award of honour which could be more widely awarded, in recognition of the large numbers of people in the British Isles and other parts of the Empire who were helping the war effort both as combatants and as civilians on the home front. For the first time, women were included in an order of chivalry, and it was decided that the Order should also include foreigners who had helped the British war effort. From 1918 onwards there were Military and Civil Divisions, as George V also intended that after the war the Order should be used to reward services to the State in a much wider sense. Today the Order of the British Empire is the order of chivalry of British democracy. Valuable service is the only criterion for the award, and the Order is now used to reward service in a wide range of useful activities. Citizens from other countries may also receive an honorary award, for services rendered to the United Kingdom and its people. There are more than 100,000 living members of the Order throughout the world. Other notable sports people created Members of the Order alongside Alan are Jensen Button, the Formula 1 World Champion racing driver and 2009 World Champion gymnast Beth Tweddle. One aspect of the award that should be emphasised is that there was initially a lot if reluctance from the award authorities to acknowledge aerobatics in the Sport category. Although previously many motor sport practitioners have been recognised, especially in Car and Bike racing (Sir Stirling Moss and Sir Jackie Stewart plus at least 2 others). With the World Aerobatic Championships held in the United Kingdom last year, recognition of aerobatics as a sport became much easier and this honors all the participants as well.

CIVA Judges List for 2010

At the 2009 plenary meeting in Oshkosh, CIVA approved new nominations to the FAI International Judges List for Aerobatics. FAI Aerobatic Championships scheduled this year include the World Advanced Aerobatic Championships (Power), a combined World Advanced Glider and European Glider Championships, and the European Aerobatic Championships (Unlimited Power). This schedule, along with special and national events, will keep many of these Judges occupied this year and our thanks to the new ones who have volunteered to serve FAI and CIVA. The new list is attached below.

New FAI Secretary General Appointed

Stéphane Desprez, former Competition Director of the 2008 Rugby World Cup in France, has been appointed as the new Secretary General of the FAI – the World Air Sports Federation. He will formally take up his appointment in Lausanne, Switzerland, on 1st February 2010.


CIVA Publishes Known Sequences for 2010

The Known/Q compulsory sequences for the 2010 contest season are now available. Pending their publication elsewhere on this website, they are available below as downloads in PDF. The Glider Advanced, Glider Unlimited, Power Advanced, Power Unlimited, and YAK 52 Known sequences were approved by CIVA at its plenary meeting in Oshkosh, Wisconsin USA on 17-18 October. The PDF's contain the Form B only with a table of Catalogue numbers and K-factors for the sequence. VSD files and PDF's with all the contest forms will be published later.

CIVA Publishes New List of Judges

At the 2009 plenary meeting of CIVA, new Judges for the FAI International List of Judges for Aerobatics were approved and inactive Judges were deleted. During this past contest season, more time was demanded of our contest officials than any time in CIVA's history. The 2010 season will not be quite as intense, however, the World Advanced and European Glider Aerobatic Championships (Finland), the European Aerobatic Championships (Czech Republic), and the World Advanced Aerobatic Championships (Poland) are all scheduled to take place in 2010. Panels of 10 Judges each will needed in addition to the Chief Judges, Assistants, and other personnel on the judging line. The new 2009-2010 list of Judges is available below as a download in PDF. It can also be found at the tab at the top of this page.

CIVA Meets in Oshkosh

The FAI Aerobatics Commission (CIVA) met in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA on 16-18 October 2009 and discussed a broad range of issues, considered proposals for 2010, and accepted bids from contest organizers for next year. CIVA President Mike Heuer will be writing about the meeting shortly on his blog and the Minutes of the meeting will be published here as soon as possible. The CIVA meeting started with rides in the EAA's Ford Trimotor on Friday, 16 October, informal discussions, and then the Sport Aviation Hall of Fame ceremonies in the Eagle Hangar of the Museum. Famed test pilot and airshow performer Bob Hoover was inducted into the Aerobatics Hall of Fame and had the opportunity to meet many of the CIVA Delegates. Details on the decisions taken at the CIVA meeting will be coming shortly.

Known Proposals for 2010 Up for Comments

The package of Known sequence proposals for the 2010 FAI Aerobatic Championships season is now available. The Knowns (also called "Programme Q" in Power) will be flown at the Power and Glider competitions that are scheduled next year. On the calendar are the European Aerobatic Championships (Unlimited Power), the World Advanced Aerobatic Championships (Power), the very first World Advanced Glider Aerobatic Championships, and the European Glider Aerobatic Championships. No YAK 52 Championships is scheduled for 2010 though a sequence proposal does appear in the package. The package can be downloaded by clicking on the attachment tab below. Comments regarding these proposals should be made directly to your national CIVA Delegate. The list of Delegates can be found on this website by clicking on "Delegates" above.

CIVA to Meet in Oshkosh

EAA Aviation CenterCIVA will hold its annual plenary meeting this year in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, USA -- the home of the Experimental Aircraft Association and the largest aviation event in the world, EAA AirVenture. The meeting will take place on 17-18 October 2009. The meeting will be preceded by the Sport Aviation Hall of Fame dinner and induction ceremonies on Friday night, 16 October. Delegations to CIVA are invited to attend. This year's Aerobatics Hall of Fame inductee will be Bob Hoover, famous airshow and test pilot who was known for his performances in the P-51 "Mustang" and Shrike Commander. Bob's aerobatic flying career dates back to World War II. He will be the featured speaker at the ceremonies which will also induct other sport aviation notables. The plenary will be held in the new "Founder's Wing" at the EAA Aviation Center in Oshkosh. Agenda packages for the meeting can be found at www.fai.org/aerobatics/meetings/2009. The meeting will discuss rules changes for 2010, bids for future Championships, and will review reports from this year's competition season.

Ecalle, Klimovich, and the French Team Win at WAC

Renaud Ecalle swept to victory at WAC in Silverstone and is the new 2009 World Aerobatic Champion. The classical competition was declared complete tonight with no time left to fly remaining programmes. Elena Klimovich won the Women's World Champion title. Team winner is France. Full details can be found on the President's Page.

WAC Updates

To read the daily updates and news from the 25th FAI World Aerobatic Championships in Silverstone, United Kingdom, see the "The President's Page". These news items will be kept active for several months for those who wish to read about the WAC and the events that took place at Silverstone. Final results are available at www.civa-results.com.

EAAC Finishes and Daniel Ryfa new Champion

Daniel Ryfa - 2009 European Advanced ChampionThe 6th European Advanced Aerobatic Championships finished today in Radom, Poland and the new European Advanced Champion is Daniel Ryfa of Sweden. Daniel flew a YAK-55M to final victory in the competition. In second place was Anton Berkutov of Russia (SP-55) and third place winner was Simon Fick of France. 17 countries participated in the event including Sweden, Russia, France, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Great Britain, Germany, Belgium, Poland, Finland, Belarus, Italy, Portugal, Austria, Romania, and Slovakia - some of these for the first time. Daniel Ryfa in his YAK 55MTeam Champions were (1) France, (2) Russia, and (3) Czech Republic. 46 pilots and 1 independent flew in the event which started on August 6th. Congratulations to the winners! Results are attached here in PDF. Full results can be viewed at www.civa-results.com