The venue for this year's Wakefield Cup contest was Brienne Le Chateau, France. This year again the Wakefield Cup event would go it alone, without Power, and Glider. The World Championships format was just too expensive for any nation to sponsor this year. This would also be the last time the Wakefield Cup event would be held annually. From now on the rubber (F1B) contest would be held in the combined format with Power (F1C), and Glider (F1A), every other year in the "World Championships". The editor of Aeromodeller, Ron Moulton, is quoted in "Scatter" a Southern California Aero Team news letter, No33, in December 1991, as saying in a 1969 paper he gave concerning the FAI/CIAM 1957 rules changes "...as far as we Englishmen were concerned, because when we gave the Wakefield Trophy for World Championship administration by the FAI, one of the original conditions was that the trophy for that particular meeting should be held annually. Clearly this condition was being ignored. The situation became so acute that a proposition was mooted and put through all the states of the SMAE committee sessions; but eventually defeated at SMAE Council level. The proposition being: "That the Wakefield Cup be withdrawn". This proposal was withdrawn. See 1957 for details.
Only twenty-two nations showed up this year, so the entries were down from last year's high of 61 contestants. Team USA was there including Joe Bilgri, who was on the 1952 Team, Herb Kothe who was on the 1955, 1956, and 1958 Team, with them was a new kid Bob Hatschek. The Teams were now limited to three members, in an effort by the FAI/CIAM to conserve expenses. Team UK included R Monks, G L Roberts, and R J North, all new members. The Australian Team included Alan King, the 1954 Wakefield Champion, and Bond Baker, the 1958 reigning Wakefield Champion here to defend his Title. They had with them the Wakefield of Jim Fullarton, to be flown by The Proxy Team. Team Czechoslovakia included, L Munzy who was second in 1955, R Cizek, who was on the 1958 team, and F Dvorak, back again this year. Team Hungary was back this year, including G Benedek who for awhile last year threatened to win it all, G Krizma, who was 19th last year, and L Azor who was 9th last year, this is the Team that won the Alphonse Penaud Cup last year.
This contest would not have taken place had it not been for the efforts of Mark Cheurlot of France, and the United States Air Force, who jointly agreed to manage the 1959 Wakefield Contest. The standards set last year at Cranfield were not as high at this meeting, but had it not been for the last minute intervention, there would not have been a 1959 Wakefield International Cup contest at all. Team USA came without a Team Manager, but Heinz Denzin, editor of the German magazine "Modell", stepped up and volunteered to manage the team. You may remember that in 1952 Lanfranchi, of Switzerland, volunteered to manage the UK Team, and proxy fly Wheelers FAI Power aeromodel? Lanfranchi won the FAI Power event for Wheeler, and the UK that year. Wakefield Day was Sunday, July 19, 1959.
ROUND 1: Flying was delayed until 9:30am, because no one could locate the official stop watches! The round ended with three National Teams scoring 180 second maximums:
Team Canada: J McGillivray, D MacKinzie, D Sugden
Team Italy: G Fea, Scardicchio, Taberna
Team USA: J Bilgri, R Hatschek, R Kothe
ROUND 2: Began with a notable increase in lift, and consequently many more 180 second maximums. Team USA was now in the lead for the Penaud Cup, and three different Nations made perfect rounds:
Team Finland: Hyvarinen, Hamalainen, Anito
Team Hungary: Azor, Benedek, Krizsma
Team Switzerland: Meyer, Suter, Kaufmann
ROUND 3: Teams USA, Canada, and Australia all had maximums in this round. As the ambient temperature rose so did rubber motor breakage. After shattering his propeller, Joe Bilgri began using a round shield to protect the front end of his Wakefield, this caught on then and is a device still used to the present day. As this round ended the leader board showed thirteen perfect scores.
ROUND 4: Team USA and Canada had perfect scores to lead in team points 2133 to 2057. Team Italy scored a perfect round also, but they still trailed Finland by 53 seconds. The Eastern Block, so formidable in 1958, were now sinking down the Leader board, and no longer were a challenge to take the contest. As the round ended there were nine contestants who had perfect scores for four rounds of flying.
ROUND 5: The weather continued to be good, and the lift was still there for those who were careful and patient enough to wait for it. Only seven of the nine still had perfect scores. Alan King, the 1955 Wakefield Champion, missed the lift, and was down in only 97 seconds. Joe Bilgri was also out of the contest with only 163 seconds. Now there would be fly-off rounds until a Champion wins, there could be no ties, and only seven had a chance.
ROUND 6: The first, and last fly-off round, there would be no time limit, and this would only be a formality for one contestant. Within five minutes of the horn announcing the opening of the round, all of the seven had wound up and launched. Now for some reason the lift held, but it was getting late: 7:00pm, and it was becoming more difficult to track the aeromodels beyond 180 seconds. As each of the seven contestants was clocked down, their final scores went up onto the Leader board Team USA had won the Penaud Cup, with 2656 seconds!
|Place||Name||Country||Round l-5||Round 6||Total|
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Model Aircraft, June 1959, "No Power Champs"
Model Aircraft, Sept 1959, "Here and There", "Whew what a Wakefield"
M.A.N. Nov 1959, World Wakefield Championships
Music: "Tom Dooley"; Literature: "The Naked Lunch", "La Dolce Vita"; Arch: The Guggenheim opens