13 Apr 2022

PG PanAm 2022 Tasks 4 and 5: Struggling through the blue zone

Day four of the 4th FAI World Paragliding championships was considered by some of the pilots one of the most difficult tasks. A triangular task of 95 km race to goal was set across the river valley. The goal was a 200 cm cylinder which facing-optimized-route border was "protected" by wide ridge-like hill. You could enter it in any direction but you need to be high enough to get over the hill. The part of the optimized route also crossed the "blue" that made pilots search for alternative solutions.The winning tactics turned out to take a longer route but follow the cloud line. And of course, getting high enough, in the end, to get over the hill. 92 pilots in goal. The overall was totally taken by Brazil  with Saladini, Barros, and Oliveira, while in female Violetta Jimenez from USA managed to get to the second place with Marcella Uchoa in the first and Isabella Sales in the third.

Day 5th brought even more challenges. Similar weather conditions and 101 km zigzag task in the valley. The goal was the same as in task 4, so had that natural obstacle pushing pilots to arrive rather high. After the first turnpoint, the pilots split into 2 groups - one tried going with the wind another relied on the conversion line. It turn out that the conversion line won and the "windsurfers" had to join the first group but were a bit behind. The last leg of the task was most difficult as they had to fly through the blue thermic zone. And they needed to arrive rather high to get over the hill that was just in front of the goal line. 96 pilots in goal - the first one being Gilberto Raposo BRA, the second Caio Buzzarello BRA and the third Nick Greece from USA. In the female category, the leaders are Marcella Uchoa BRA, Galen Kirkpatrick USA and Voletta Jimenez USA. The national rank stayed same Brazil - USA - Argentina.

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