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2022 World Ringmaster Day - Full Report

Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye fellow model airplane aviators. The 15th Annual Worldwide Ringmaster Fly-A-Thon is over and what a blast! 
The final numbers are in and as of October 14, 2022:  15 Nations worldwide submitted a total of 10,481 flights logged by 605 pilots.  A whopping 2,154 flights more than last year's record setting 8,327 flights logged by 553 pilots! 
For the Stetson Flyers Club it was the 4th consecutive year participating in this event.
Mother Nature graced us with a good weather weekend. 
Stetson Flyers Club’s previous Fly-A-Thon records were surpassed: 15(14) pilots flying 12(5) variants of the "Ringmaster" logged a total of 241(66) flights over the course of the two days. Interest in control line (C/L) is definitely on the upswing. Piloting the model aircraft were new, very lapsed (i.e. decades), budding and veteran C/L pilots.

Our 2022 event participants and model aircraft are shown in the above photo: Left to Right: Dwayne Donnelly - Ringmaster S1, Christopher Simon - Baby Ringmaster, Wayne Karperien – Ringmaster Imperial, Mark Winstanley - Ringmaster SD, John Weekes - Ringmaster SD & Baby Ringmaster, Charlie Colwell - Ringmaster S1, Tony Garbish - Beginner Ringmaster, Peter Wakefield - Ringmaster S1 and Brian Pepin – Ringmaster Junior.  Missing from the photo are one Baby Ringmaster, one Beginner Ringmaster and the intrepid pilots: Elckar Monsalve, Robert Covell, Fred Zufelt, Juergen Weichert, Greg Oliver and David Janashvili. 

Some Statistics:
Flights logged by pilot:

PILOT #FLIGHTS   PILOT #FLIGHTS
Charlie Colwell 136   Wayne Karperien 5
Peter Wakefield 30   Elckar Monsalve 2
John Weekes 14   Christopher Simon 2
Brian Pepin 12   David Janashvili 2
Mark Winstanley 12   Fred Zufelt(guest) 1
Robert Covell 11   Juergen Weichert 1
Tony Garbish 7   Greg Oliver 1
Dwayne Donnelly(guest) 5   TOTAL FLIGHTS 241

Some Statistics

RINGMASTER VARIANT NUMBER # FLIGHTS
Ringmaster S1 3 164
Ringmaster SD 2 12
Ringmaster Imperial 1 1
Ringmaster Junior 1 4
Baby Ringmaster 3 18
Beginner Ringmaster 2 42
TOTALS 12 241

We’d like to note: As of October 14, 2022 the Stetson Flyers submission of  241 flights logged during the two-day event placed our club 12th in the World.  There were 128 submissions from 15 Nations.

Highlights:

At full throttle,Charlie Colwell’s ‘Hotrod’ Ringmaster S1 fitted with a OS .25 FX engine and a MACS tuned pipe, cranked out 3-second laps at 138 km/h. We normally fly a lap time of 5.5 - 6.0 seconds (73 – 69 km/h) for aerobatics.

Wayne Karperien, after completing 5 laps with his .049 powered Baby Ringmaster, added a featherlite touch-and-go because it just so happened the conditions were perfect and then continued for an additional 2-1/2 laps.  Let's see if anyone can match this manoeuver without an engine throttle control!

Elckar Monsalve, only his 2nd time ever flying C/L, incorporated 2 well- executed loops and a wingover with the Beginner Ringmaster.  Afterwards, we heard via the grapevine Elckar may soon be adding an airframe to his hangar  that will require two cables and a handle attached for pitch control?!?

Dwayne Donnelly was the pilot who impressed us all with his skill flying the official C/L aerobatic competition sequence with his Ringmaster S1 but later turned a Beginner Ringmaster into a lawn dart trying to push the limits of the .049 powered airframe. Honorable mention goes out to Dwayne and Debbie Donnelly, who drove in from Kingston, ON to participate in this event with us.

David Janashvili, first time C/Liner, after completing 5 laps, felt it was necessary to lie down until the spinning motion subsided.  David was the sole recipient of the "It's OK to Lie Down Afterwards" trophy.

Robert Covell has almost abandoned R/C because he’s now hooked on C/L flying which he did about 50 years ago. His words, "I didn't  think I could do this now at my ripe old age....I really like it and need to build one of these!"

After flying 6 sets of 5 laps Charlie taxied his Ringmaster S1 fitted with an R/C throttle controlled engine to the C/L pit area. Engine at idle, the pit crew  safely and successfully re-fueled the tank without flooding the engine. Charlie prompted the S1 back into the air and completed another 6 sets of 5 laps.

Eight year old Christopher Simon, only his 2nd time ever flying C/L, was able to complete a full 3-minute flight on the Cox Golden Bee .049 powered Beginner Ringmaster.  A little wobbly after the landing, Christopher remained standing with a big grin on his face and said, "Now I’m ready to do a couple of loops, Ok?"  He made mention of a C/Liner parked in the hangar at home!?

We had two great days of flying, catching up with old friends and making new friends as well.  Each year our event grows with new pilots promising to return next year with a Ringmaster of their own. Thank you to everyone involved, pilots and organizers for making this a very special weekend.  And of course a big thank you goes out to Charlie Colwell, who once again donated his ‘little’ Beginner Ringmaster for two days of absolute unmitigated torture at the hands of some ruthless control line trainees. Well done to all! See you soon at the Stetson's Control Line Circle!


For those interested to know more about the Ringmaster here are a couple of links:

We leave you with a few moments captured during the event.
Charlie, Peter, Brian on behalf of the Stetson Flyers Control Line Pilots


CLICK on photos to enlarge

Youngest participant 8-year-old Christopher S. focuses on the upcoming flight while pitman Wayne K. prepares Beginner Ringmaster for engine start.


Tony G. enjoying his first flight of the Fly-A-Thon


Charlie C. in the zone. Control line handle in the right hand for pitch control and an R/C transmitter in the left hand for R/C throttle control. His Ringmaster S1 on 60-foot lines traveled at speeds up to 138 Km/h during this flight.


The Ringmaster S1 fueled. Pitman John W. at the ready while Charlie C. prepares for engine start.


After flying his Ringmaster S1 the required 5 laps, Charlie C. landed and taxied the model to a complete stop and then took-off for another 5 laps.


Pitman Wayne K. about to hand-launch Peter W.’s brand new Beginner Ringmaster


Mark W. preparing his copper/blue Ringmaster SD. Pitman is Charlie C.


SANTA ‘Robert’ C. taking a break from regular seasonal duties and after 5 decades is ready to take control of a Beginner Ringmaster. Charlie C. is ready to hand-launch.


SANTA ‘Robert’ C. settles right in and is heard saying, “Nothing to it, this is easier than controlling a bunch of reindeer!”


Variants of the Ringmaster parked in the staging area.


Mark W. takes-off his Ringmaster SD with precision.


Wayne K. and his beautiful Ringmaster Imperial built from a short kit c/w an electric power system.


An action shot of Wayne K.’s second flight with the Ringmaster Imperial since the maiden earlier this year.


Peter W. looks very comfortable at circle center while taking one of his many Ringmasters for a spin.


Peter W. and his immaculate Ringmaster S1.


Dwayne D. taking a bow after planting the Beginner Ringmaster. Dwayne impressed us all with his skill flying the official C/L aerobatic competition sequence with his Ringmaster S1.


David J., first time in the C/L circle, takes instruction from Wayne K. prior to flight.


David J. in sole control, Wayne K. down on the deck. Take note of the airplane silhouette one-third of the way down the left side of the photo just above the tree-line.


David J. completed his flight but had to lie down for a few seconds to stop the World from spinning.


Club guest Fred Z. flew the Beginner Ringmaster with authority and a big smile.


(L to R) Peter Wakefield, Wayne Karperien, Dwayne and Debbie Donnelly – guests who drove in from Kingston, ON to participate with us in the Ringmaster event, MAAC Zone G Interim Director – John Weekes and of course the participating Ringmasters lined up in the staging area.

Our 2022 event participants and model aircraft are shown in the above photo: Left to Right:

  • Dwayne Donnelly - Ringmaster S1,
  • Christopher Simon - Baby Ringmaster,
  • Wayne Karperien – Ringmaster Imperial,
  • Mark Winstanley - Ringmaster SD,
  • John Weekes - Ringmaster SD & Baby Ringmaster,
  • Charlie Colwell - Ringmaster S1,
  • Tony Garbish - Beginner Ringmaster,
  • Peter Wakefield - Ringmaster S1
  • Brian Pepin – Ringmaster Junior.
Missing from the photo are one Baby Ringmaster, one Beginner Ringmaster and the intrepid pilots: Elckar Monsalve, Robert Covell, Fred Zufelt, Juergen Weichert, Greg Oliver and David Janashvili.
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