4.20 LESSON 21 – FLYING FAST

Key points of attention:
  • The flight controls are very effective at a high speed
  • The pitch attitude is low (the horizon shows high in the canopy)
  • There is a lot of ambient noise

Before we will practice how to fly fast, it is important that you know the operating limitations of your glider. These limitations include the manoeuvring speed (the maximum airspeed at which you can still make a full flight control deflection without damaging the glider), the maximum speed for flying in rough air (turbulence in very strong thermals, turbulence in ridge lift, et cetera) and the airspeed you should never exceed. You instructor will explain the various airspeed limitations of your glider to you, but you can also find them yourself in the aircraft flight manual (see Chapter 1.10).

We will now practice how to fly fast. From a normal pitch attitude and airspeed, you gradually push the stick forward for a lower pitch attitude and the desired higher airspeed. You will notice that the horizon now appears higher in your canopy, and you will also notice that you can actually hear the increased amount of air that is passing by the glider clearly. Trim the glider at the desired pitch attitude and try to maintain the higher airspeed for a while. You will notice that the flight controls are very sensitive at a high speed; you will only need small control inputs to make corrections.