XC Media

Cross Country

Cross Country October 2018

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Cross Country is the world’s leading voice for hang gliding, paragliding and paramotoring pilots. Ten times a year, our magazine content reflects our obsession with flying, and we express it by packing each issue with the most imaginative, inspirational photography and writing we can lay our hands on.

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United Kingdom
XC Media
10 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
help and encouragement

“And you must be…” “Theo’s Dad.” A few years ago I was invited to the Nova Team Pilots’ annual get together in the Austrian Alps. It’s a weekend when the company, Nova, invite all their team pilots from across the world to come and join them to celebrate another year in free flight. Stories are told, knowledge is shared, the odd award is handed out and then, if the weather allows, everyone goes flying. It’s a friendly event, with a friendly bunch of people. Theo Warden was there. Just 16 and already with 200km under his belt he had been welcomed into the Nova Juniors the year before. Alongside him, brimming with quiet pride, was “Theo’s Dad”, whose real name is John. I was reminded of that when Theo won the European Paragliding Championships in…

1 min.

Dr Matt Wilkes is back with a second in-depth report from his fascinating Free Flight Physiology Project. This time he’s looking at hands, and what we should be doing to protect them when we fly. Matt’s last article appeared in XC187, and was all about heart rates. Put your gloves on starting on p48 Jim Mallinson has been flying since the mid-1990s. A Sanskrit scholar, he has combined his twin passions of India and paragliding for almost 20 years. A pioneer pilot in Bir, India, where he owns a house, this issue he writes about somewhere much closer to home. All aboard the magic carpet, p82 Michael Nesler first flew a paraglider in the Dolomites more than 30 years ago. Having founded the first paragliding school in the area he is still…

1 min.
in the core

Theo Warden At just 19 years old Theo Warden blasted onto the international competition scene in July – winning gold at the FAI European Paragliding Championships in Montalegre, Portugal, and then going on to win the British Paragliding Championships in Macedonia, too. The young British pilot was racing against some of the best pilots in the world in Portugal, and beat them all. For sure, the margin was tight – just two points separated him and silver medalist Torsten Siegel (DE) – but that just highlighted the skills even more. Afterwards he was remarkably chilled about becoming one of the youngest ever winners of an FAI Cat 1 competition. “I can’t really believe it. I don’t really feel like I’m ready to be winning a comp,” he said. “I feel very new to…

2 min.
flying face to face with africa

South Africa’s Alard Hufner won the Icarus Trophy in July, a transnational paramotor race from Johannesburg in South Africa to Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe. “It was a very exciting trip!” Alard, 43, said afterwards. “I flew just under 1,200km in nine flights. My longest flights were two flights of 240km each.” Alard was one of only four pilots in the Race Division to fly the complete 1,200km, and was literally days ahead of the pilots taking part in the Adventure Division. In the Icarus Trophy, Race pilots must fly unsupported and compete on time; Adventure pilots can be supported and take their time to fl the route. “We started just north of Jo’burg, then flew pretty much straight north up to the border with Botswana. Then, in a highlight of the trip, we…

1 min.
flow and niviuk rfc

Gleb Sukhotskiy (Ozone Enzo 3) from Russia won the Paragliding World Cup in Sopot, Bulgaria in August. The competition saw six tasks over the week (78km, 106km, 96km, 83km, 119km, 119km) and some great racing. Méryl Delferrière (FR, Ozone Enzo 3) won the Women’s class with a clean sweep – she was first woman in every race, and finished 10th overall. Gleb won Task 5 after taking a lifty line at the end of the 119km race, which allowed him to straight-line it on bar to take the task win. His consistency throughout the rest of the week saw him come out top, just 15 points ahead of Jurij Vidic (SI, Enzo 3) in second and 21 points ahead of Rafael Barros (BR, Enzo 3) in third. It’s tight up there…

1 min.
in brief

Nova s New Boss Nova Paragliders has a new managing director. Sissi Eisi, 33, has taken over the reins for day-to-day management of the company from co-founder Wolfi Lechner, 59. Wolfi is going into semi-retirement but will still be responsible for running Nova in Austria. Sissi has been working at Nova for a year. Wolfi said: “We have a great deal of confidence in Sissi. She is extremely organised and structures her work very well, she is an excellent communicator and she is respected by colleagues and clients alike. We are confident she will do a very good job.” Nova.eu Ozone Krushevo Open Norway’s Gaute Hvidsten (Skywalk Cayenne 5) won the inaugural Ozone Krushevo Open at the end of July. Josh Sanderson (GB, Supair Taska) was second. Kanan Thakur (IN, Gin Sprint 3) was…