GNZ Newsletter

April 2021

From the president

Welcome to the April GNZ newsletter.

Believe it or not we are into the second month of Autumn already and I would not call the soaring season over yet. Things are still looking a bit dry, leaves are falling and the days are definitely getting shorter but the great soaring weather just keeps on keeping on.

Students are back at school and working folk are back at work but it is Easter break, starting tomorrow! So no excuses needed, it's a long weekend of gliding!

The weather forecast is looking pretty ka pai too, with wave in the south and thermals in the north.

Time to get into it before the wet and cold sets in.

See you up there.

Steve Wallace

GNZ President



1st winch solo and single seat conversion


For the new tattoo! You know you are dedicated to the sport when it's time to get ink done.


For breaking the US speed over a 300km triangle record flying from Omarama. 171kph


First flight in a single seater.


Glider tow rating done!

Trailer Weight Distribution

Why is too much weight in the back of your glider trailer a bad thing? Check out the video below to find out why!

Air Space

New Airspace Committee

The GNZ Airspace Committee has had a refresh, but before I introduce the new, I must say thank you and express my gratitude on behalf of all GNZ members to the following retiring committee members. All have worked tirelessly in the background over many years to ensure gliding has had a voice and that as much access as possible to the ever diminishing amount of airspace in which we can fly is maintained.

So a big thanks to:

Chairman: Trevor Mollard

Northern Region Member: Russell Thorne

Central Region Member: Tony Passmore

New committee members are:

Chairman: CJ McCaw

Northern Region Member: Tim Bromhead

Central Region Member: Ben Wilson

Unchanged is the Souther Region Member: Kevin Bethwaite

Special thanks also goes to Tim Hughes who has been providing invaluable specialist consultation.

For a sample of the quality of work this committee produces please check out the Waikato Airspace Proposal that is currently out for consultation before (fingers crossed) being approved.

To see how constrained by airspace we are check out the below image produced by Tim Bromhead of a seasons worth of competition flying from Taupo and Matamata.

GNZ AGM - June 12 - 13

Due to COVID ruining our plans to get the AGM out to the regions, for now we have fled back to the safety and ease of Wellington. Put these dates in your diary now! There will be much to discuss as always (teaser below).

Update on medical requirements for over 70's

Important to note

Regards the change to the medical requirements effective 1 October 2021. Last newsletter I wrote,

If you are over 70, you will need a DL9 medical. It should be noted that a DL9 is only required for those pilots over 70 who wish to exercise the privileges of a passenger or instructor rating. All others can continue on as per normal using their OPS 01 medical.

Also note, you do not have to look for and bring with you a DL9. Doctors already have these forms because they routinely do examinations for driver licences.

If you wear driving glasses don't forget to take these with you as you will need them for the eyesight test.

Give the completed form (or a copy) to your CFI.  (Those using the form for a PPL need to send a copy to CAA.)

Student: "How was that?"

Instructor: "Yes"

New Brochure

From the membership development team, clubs now have access to a new glossy brochure that can be given out at the field, events or membership drives. The brochure is about A4 in size and folded into thirds with a front and back as can be seen below. There is a blank square where you can place (probably best as a sticker) all you club contact details.

Orders for the brochure can be placed with Brian Sharpe by email:

Fancy a flight with Terry Delore?

Terry is easily one of the worlds greatest distance, wave, record and adventure flyers.

2 days of soaring with Terry

The Canterbury Gliding Club is raising funds for a new glider and in exchange for the right amount of $$ you could spend 2 days soaring with one of the world's best in the mountains of the South Island.

All you need to do is make a bid by sending an email with your bid to:

  • Only the highest successful silent bidder's donation goes towards Canterbury Gliding Club fundraising for new training glider
  • To be used before end of 2021
  • Two days soaring with min goal of 500km along the Southern Alps from Springfield.¬†Open to any soaring enthusiast in New Zealand.
  • Some conditions apply, including... maximum weight 95kg, must not suffer from air sickness, flights to be claimed buy the end of 2021
  • Can get in touch with for any further info required.

Incident Reports

From the desk of the NOO (National Operations Officer)

Brief Review of Incident Reports for February to March 2021

  • very-near mid-air collision - glider joining a thermal did not give way to glider in thermal
  • near mid-air head-on, single seater took avoiding action, not seen by other glider (2-seater)
  • radio request to lower undercarriage in late stages of final approach - better to say nothing
  • struck in the face by winch cable after starting tow-out, weak link broke, no serious injury
  • airbrakes open on ground roll, microlight tug, radio call not heard, rudder waggle not given
  • glider on final flew low over launch queue, other options were available but not taken
  • heavy landing to avoid 2 youngsters running along path across centre of runway (Raglan)
  • contest outlanding, downwind + downhill, ground loop to avoid end fence, minor damage
  • drinking water leaked onto avionics battery terminal behind pilot, caused sparking
  • undercarriage collapse on winch launch after bump on ground roll, launch proceeded okay
  • undercarriage collapsed on landing, possibly not locked down or fault with lock mechanism
  • wheel brake grabbed when applied on landing causing undercarriage to collapse
  • tow upset behind microlight, circling under thermal cloud, both aircraft released rope
  • unintentional ground loop after landing in long grass, no damage
  • unintentional breach of airspace protocols after losing more height in wing-drop stall
  • tug and glider on different frequencies when operating in controlled airspace

For more detail you can access the full report and all back copies of the Ops Team Talking newsletter. These have now been placed on the Gliding NZ web site under News > Safety Bulletins A link to the GNZ incident reporting form (OPS 10) can be found in the very top menu bar on the GNZ homepage, just to the right of the 'Classified Adverts'. You can now fill this form out on your phone at the airfield so no excuses.

OPS 10 link:

Thanks for reading

All contributions, pics, videos and opinions welcome