Freeflight online competitions: existing events and future developments
COVID-19 has forced many pilots to stay home and give up or temporarily reduce practising their favourite air sports. However, aeromodelling enthusiasts are luckier than others, as they can still work on model aircraft at home, or fly them in their backyards. Furthermore, despite the cancellation or postponement of hundreds of their events, in some countries they are able to compete online.
The Education Subcommittee of the FAI Aeromodelling Commission is currently working on a new online competition that would accept entries from pilots around the world. It would be a special Freeflight class event for children who would use simple electric gliders with capacitor engines in order to compete.
Junior project with catapult models
While no worldwide event exists at present, several online contests have already been running since well before the Coronavirus. In Sweden for example, MFK Gladiatorerna Tullinge has organised a Post Contest for many years.
MFK Gladiatorerna Post Contest’s profile
Who can participate in the Post Contest?
Anyone living in Scandinavia.
When does it take place?
There are two editions per year, a winter and a summer one. Both editions are flown over three months, with one contest every month.
What is the goal of the contest?
It is meant to broaden Freeflight and to allow the organisation of small contests.
What are the rules?
The rules are simple: it is a combination of international rules, as defined by the FAI Sporting Code and national Swedish rules.
Only introduction classes are flown, which means simpler models that those used at World and Continental Championships, and for a maximum of two minutes. Also flown are catapult models (small gliders started with a rubber bungy) and hand launch gliders (60cm span models started with hand launch), which pilots can fly for a maximum of 60 seconds.
How does the contest work?
Pilots simply post their scores online. A forum allow them to share their experience and post their pictures.
The overall winner is the pilot who scores the most points in the three-monthly contests of either the winter or the summer session.
When to register?
Pilots can enter the contest any time (ie, not only at the beginning).
How to register?
Top picture: Oskar Findahl with an F1H (introductory class) model aircraft