Due to a tendency to diminish participations in Hang Glider world wide, which is clearly reflected in World Championships in Male as well as Female championships. I would like to propose a radical change in FAI rules regarding Hang Glider championships. I love this sport and being a professional analyzer I want to propose a change in FAI regulations to improve the future of the sport, any ideas are welcome.
Last women championship was so low in participation that an alarm should rise to change this tendency. Now no bid for 2009 Hang Glider championship.
Advanced Hang Gliders are more difficult to fly.
They are heavy, hard to land and more difficult to fly. Due to increase in efficiency, Hang Gliders are becoming harder to land, each better wing with better glide requires better skills to calculate landing approach and flare timing. Accidents are more likely to happen, and accidents of advanced pilots discourage victims, students as well as other pilots.
Hang Gliders at advanced level have become extremely expensive.
I?ve been involved in competitions in other sports (kart & motorcycle racing) that have big challenges in order to grow up. International and Local organizations for each of those sports are aware that a limit to the costs brings more participants at all levels. Even the most expensive sport on earth, Formula one, has an 8 cylinder limit to the engines to bring down costs. America cup (sailing) has a limit to the amount to investment in the sailboats to keep competitors afloat. If boat sailing is out of scope, well there is Windsurfing in Olympic class, which regulates boards and sails for the very same reasons since 1984.
The proposal is a FAI HANG GLIDER standard with 2 main objectives:
- Price reduction
- Handling increase
The FAI HANG GLIDER regulation will keep out Hang Glider prototypes for the World Hang Glider Championships. All pilots should fly with retail wings. Those looking for XC records may still use a free Class I design.
The rules should be keep as simple parameters:
- Minimum hang glider flying speed for maximum hook in weight of around 36km/h.
- Maximum retailer price around $3,500 US.
- Maximum hang glider weight of 30 kilograms/66 pounds.
- Down bar shape and resistance to promote safety.
- Aspect ratio limit to 7.0.
- Easy to Fly (DHV 2 / USHPA Rating 3)
The reduce in efficiency due to a lower ?Minimum hang glider speed for maximum hook in weight? and ?Aspect ratio limit? will make the Hang Glider easier to fly, inviting all the amateur pilots to fly the same wing as the World Champion, thus bringing a safer wing to every body,
No ones wants to fly an under performance glider against any wing with higher performance, but it is very different if every body, even the top pilots fly the same kind.
A maximum retailer price will help to keep the sport affordable.
A maximum Hang Glider weight will make easier to launch and easier to land hang gliders, and will help to have a healthy pilot?s back.
Since the proposal changes will bring an easy to construct Hang Glider, all manufacturers will have a FAI HANG GLIDER COMPETITION wing. Manufacturers may keep a more efficient Hang Glider available (as today advanced wings) to those pilots looking for more, but they will not participate in any XC FAI event.
A standard Hang Glider will help reduce costs by forcing manufacturers to unite in some way, a recurring failure in the past.
Even with a 11:1 glide ratio Hang Gliders we will fly long tasks to generate great competition. Still the best pilot will win.
Many pilots (specially Top Pilots) may not agree, but something has to be done
to increase participation in this lovely sport.