The third volume of the gliding cult book by the British author Gerrard Dale in English language.
One of the great joys of gliding is that it is many things to many people. Whilst our first steps typically revolve around learning to fly the glider, we soon start to set ourselves ever more challenging goals. Whether that be flying our first cross-country flight or entering our first competition, to setting a new national record or winning an international medal. Put simply, gliding is far more than just a form of aviation. For many people, it is a high-performance sport.
Within any high-performance sport, you find great sports men and women
working alongside great coaches. But it is exceedingly rare to find someone who genuinely wears both these roles quite so comfortably as G Dale. G has been operating as a professional gliding coach for over 25 years, and racing gliders for over three decades! He is a multiple-time British National champion and current European silver medallist. I have been privileged in recent years to get to know G as a coach, a competitor, a teammate, and a friend. I have raced with him, and against him, and I can think of few people better qualified to educate others on the art of high-performance soaring.
In the first two volumes of The Soaring Engine, G explored the phenomenon of Thermal, Ridge, Wave and Convergence lift. Now, in this third volume, ‘High Performance Flying,’ G introduces us to the techniques and processes required to extract performance from the atmosphere. In other words, now we understand how the Soaring Engine works, we need to learn to drive it. Fast, consistently, and in all conditions. G will freely admit himself that he was not a natural born racing pilot. He has worked hard at developing his skills over a long period of time. But these are skills that you can learn, and that you can practice. With motivation, dedication, and armed with the right information and processes, you can achieve your goals.
This book will help you identify your own strengths and weaknesses and give you the ability to improve your own flying.
As anyone who has ever had the privilege of listening to one of G's lectures will know, he is incredibly passionate about his students and has an enviable ability to deliver key information precisely and eloquently. His coaching style is exciting and energetic, driven by a deep understanding after decades of asking himself ‘why things happen'. This latest book is no different. G has taken traditional theory and broken it down by way of simple, clear diagrams, and concise language. Throughout the book, you will find intriguing examples from
throughout G's international flying career, and he will suggest simple methods that you can use and practice.
Soaring pilots of all levels will be able to learn something from this book. From those embarking on their first badge flights, to pundits looking for that next international medal. I can certainly speak from personal experience of the benefit of G's coaching. It was only a few years ago that I was sat in the front of a two-seater as an early cross-country Junior pilot with THE G Dale!