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Tuesday, 26 August 2014 09:27

Brazil holds the National Aerobatic Championship

Written by  Plinio D.Lins
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The Brazilian National Aerobatic Championship took place from 30th July to August the 2nd at the facilities of the Brazilian Air Force Academy (AFA).

This is the first time that a civilian championship is held in this military installation, home of the Brazilian Air Force Aerobatic Demonstration Team - “Esquadrilha da Fumaça” (Smoke Squadron), and also home of the squadrons responsible for the early instruction of Air Force’s young cadets. The partnership between CBA (Brazilian Committee for Aerial Competitions and Aerobatics) and officers of the Brazilian Air Force made it possible. We should mention Brigadier Carlos Eduardo and Colonel Fernandes - Air Force Academy Command– and Lt. Colonel Gobett, current Leader of “Esquadrilha da Fumaça” and also an enthusiast of precision aerobatics.

Aerial view of all participants and their aircrafts. 

The competitor’s aircrafts were hangared together with the new aircraft from “Esquadrilha da Fumaça”: Embraer’s EMB-314 Super Tucano (designated A-29 in the Brazilian Air Force). The Academy's regular operations were not affected by the event thanks to the effort of the enthusiastic volunteers, who were responsible for all ground activities, and also the great work of ATC crew.

Every competition day started holding a briefing that covered instructions for all participants and it allowed pilots bring up their ideas, suggestions and critics. During the initial briefing, it was emphasized that during an aerobatic competition, the pilot does not fly against the others, whereas he flies against himself and his limitations, managing the airplane and the natural forces. Therefore, despite the natural rivalry caused by an official competition, a friendly atmosphere endured during the event. All the flights were assessed, allowing revision of the scores if requested.

 The briefings covered the main instructions of the daily flights

Fifteen brave pilots fought for the first place in the 'Sportsman Category', which was clearly the fiercest one. Eduardo Haupt should be pointed out as he flew the Sportsman program in a 1943 Boeing Stearman without inverted flight fuel and oil systems. The skills of the pilots were crucial to perform energy management during the maneuvers provoking praise in the form of applause from the other competitors. According to John Gaillard, Haupt showed that even though it is common for people to worry about the “machine”, in the end, what really matters is the “human factor”.

Some remarkable facts that have to be mentioned are the presence of South African John Gaillard, who had been Chief Judge of WAC 2013. The involvement of such an experienced judge improved the level of local judges and his scores were also used as a tiebreaker. Also, it was the first time that a CEA-309 Mehari took part in such a competition. The aircraft was designed by the Federal University of Minas Gerais, under the supervision of Paul Iscold.

Francis Barros won the national championship with a Sukhoi Su-31. It is remarkable that he achieved the highest score in the most difficult category (Unlimited).

Click here to check the results http://www.agflier.com/cba2014/resultadosCBA2014.htm)

On the last day all competitors had a celebration and a very special moment when they all gathered for the official photo. The harmonious collaboration between civilian and military aviators made the competition a great success.

All the aircrafts were grouped with an A-29 from the host team Esquadrilha da Fumaça and three other iconic models from the Brazilian Aerobatic history: Bücker Bü-131 Jungmann, Fairchild PT-19 Cornell and North American T-6 Texan.

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"Aerobatics is the hidden rythm of our soul..."