The 2008, Tenth Annual Kathy Jaffe Challenge is one for the books. We had weather so perfect that nobody even had to think of putting their plane in a hangar. Every day was full of flying in calm breezes, dry air, and moderate temparatures. Pictures. Contest announcement. Results.
The banquet on Saturday night highlighted ten years of contributions on the part of Ron Chadwick and Stephen Seidel. Ron Saglimbene lead a roast of our ten year contest director, and we dedicated a new chapter trophy as, "The Ron Chadwick Chapter Supremacy Award at the Kathy Jaffe Challenge." Ron recognized Hall of Fame Inductee Bill Finagin with a very fine impersonation. Everyone got to meet Kathy's two sons, who got to see the fun, laughter, sport, and comraderie that Kathy loved, that continues in Kathy's name.
Ron produced a magazine for the Tenth Annual Kathy Jaffe Challenge that contains many photographs of Kathy, supplied by her sons, with Bob Hoover, Sean D. Tucker, Harrison Ford and Patty Wagstaff, with Stephen Seidel and with Ron. Sean Jaffe and Harley Carnes wrote touching tributes in the magazine to their spirited Mother and Friend, Kathy Jaffe.
The Flood family-- older brother Joe and younger brother Jason --sponsored by their father, expert airplane finisher, the senior Joe, flew expertly and went home with a turtle-deck full of awards. Joe the younger won first place in Primary in his Pitts S-2A. He did so by racking-up a third-place 518 points on the first flight and first place 520 points on the second. Little brother Jason made first place in Sportsman, with a first place first flight and second place second flight. Flying his beatifully finished blue S-1S, Jason also won the Grass Roots medal for highest scoring 180hp or less. His 82.69% overall performance was the highest at the contest, winning him a free parachute repack from sponsor, National Parachute.
Following the Floods were Jay Tesauro and Scott Jordan in Primary, and Will Morey and Paul Russo in Sportsman. Jay won the best scoring American Champion award for his 80.62% performance in his Super Decathlon. Scott Jordan has been taking his Vans RV-8 in for chinks and wood. We're still working-out how his two second place flights add up to third place overall. If you're a close fourth, and a far-ahead first, as Jay Tesauro was, you can pull ahead in the overall standings. Will Morey has been trading first place for Sportsman with Jason Flood throughout the year. This time Jason edged him by seven points, just a quarter percent.
Best first time Sportsman went to Anthony Catanese, one of many starting competitors brought to us by Marc Nathanson of Executive Flyers, based at Hanscom in Beford, Massachusetts.
The Intermediate category had a solid field, including veteran competitors Larry Bashore, Wes Liu, Jim Wells, Adam Cope, and Bill Gordon. Larry perennially took first place. He did so by remaining tighly in the top five, then pulling-away on the Unknown flight a full 100 points ahead of the next pilot. The newest pilot in the field was Kirill Barsukov. Introduced to the sport by Stephen Seidel, now a protege of Sergey Polagayev, Kirill took a page from Larry Bashore by staying tightly among the top in the field and pulling ahead on the Unknown for an overall second place.
The star of Candlewood lake, Rob Marsicano made a good show in Intermediate winning the Free program and flying second place on the Known. John Fellenzer flew first place on the Known. Bill Gordon was third on the Known, Doug Lovell third on the Free, and Jim Wells third on the Unknown. The Intermediate category is clearly on fire this year with many contenders.
In Advanced, Sergey Prolagayev returned from the World competition to soundly trounce all comers. His first place standing on all three flights left him almost 350 points ahead of Bill Finagin in the overall standings. Bill took second overall and second on the Known and Unknown. Third was Scott Francis, also third on the Known and Unknown, second on the Free. Bill Finagin did not place on the Free, but was close enough behind third place Mark Stewart to maintain his overall standing.
The Unlimited category had Steven Grohsmeyer, Hans Bok, and Dennie Thompson. The three competitors flew for the three places pretty consistently in that order. Steven flew better than Hans, Hans flew better than Dennie, except Dennie did better than Hans keeping the Unknown sequence on track to place second.
Photographer Laurie Zaleski from ArtZ Graphics made superb portraits of the pilots presented in portrait plaques to the first, second, and third place overall winners of each category. These were excellent photographs of the pilots with their planes that the winners will enjoy displaying for many years to come on their hard earned walls of fame.
The overall award for best chapter at the contest, The Ron Chadwick Chapter Supremacy Award based on pilot rankings, went to Chapter 52. We're not stacking the judging line: decidedly not. We're stacking the categories with top flyers.
The Unlimited category requires 2464 points this year to qualify on the known (70% of 3520 possible). Only Steven Grohsmeyer qualified with 2575.63 points, and Steven did not declare a chapter affiliation. He's up for grabs there, Chapter 11!
The Advanced category requires 1799 points or better on the Known, achieved by only the top placing three of the six Advanced pilots, ranked in order, Sergey Prolagayev (52), Bill Finagin (11), and Scott Francis (11). Now if Steven signs up for Chapter 11 (go for it, guys) that gives that chapter three out of the four needed. If Charlie improves his known performance in Advanced they will have the required four. As it stands in 2008, they have two; but keep an eye on the chapter of Hall of Famer, Bill Finagin.
Contention fell to the Intermediate Category where Chapter 52 is shining. All but one of the pilots qualified with the minimum 1428 points on the Known. Larry Bashore in first place added one to the count for Chapter 58. Wes Liu in third added one to the count for Chapter 35. Kirill Barsukov, Jim Wells, and Rob Marsicano in second, fourth, and fifth added to Sergey Prolagayev's placement to win the title for Chapter 52.