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Hosted by British Aerobatics (BA), The Tony Ayre Blade 2017 was RAFFCA’s 3rd annual Aerobatic Competition. Open to service flying club members with little or no previous aerobatic flying experience, the aim of the competition is to offer an introduction to the sport of competitive aerobatic flying and also to develop the flying skills of any pilot that may wish to be considered for selection to the RAF Flying Clubs’ Association Aerobatic Squad (RAFFCAAS).
RAFFCA is extremely grateful to British Aerobatics for its continued support, guidance and expertise, without which an event such as the Tony Ayre Blade could not happen.
The format of the competition will require each of the 16 competitors to undertake a training flight with a qualified instructor during which they will learn a basic sequence of aerobatic manoeuvres. After a short period to rest, reenergise and consolidate their training, each flyer will then repeat their aerobatic manoeuvres as a sequence in front of a BA panel of judges.
A score for each manoeuvre flown will be awarded and then the scores tallied to form an individual total. A number of factors are considered when awarding a score, including the technical difficulty of the manoeuvre and the accuracy with which it is flown. It is no secret that competitive aerobatic flying is an extremely demanding sport from both the mental and physical perspectives...each point scored will certainly be a point well earned!
Each of our aerobatic flyers will practice a short sequence comprising 6 basic aerobatic manoeuvres. They will then perform their sequence in front of a panel of British Aerobatics (BA) judges who will assess the accuracy of each manoeuvre flown, taking into consideration the assessed difficulty of the manoeuvre and similar influencing factors.
In Sistema Aresti, first published in 1960, José Luis de Aresti laid out a simple and efficient means by which to describe aerobatic flight and manoeuvres. Aresti’s fundamental insight was that almost any aerobatic figure can be broken down into a sequence of lines and curves. Today, Aerobatic Sequences are represented visually using Aresti Diagrams.
The 2017 Tony Ayre Blade sequence is described in the Aresti Diagram below with each manoeuvre numbered and described in written format also. Comparing the diagrams with the written format should make sense! The sequence begins and ends with wing rocks by the pilot.