The West Coast Big Jolt started mid-afternoon Thursday when the big rig RVs started rolling in. Vendors and pilots staged their spots in the overnight camping area and vendors set up their booths in the assigned spaces. All went smoothly and registration opened bright and early at 7:30 a.m. Friday morning. By mid-day, 14 vendors had staged their booths in the horse shoe shaped vendor area facing the flight line.
Pilots who arrived early grabbed the neat asphalt pits with imbedded tie downs for their canopies. The pit area had been extended into graded soil and fortunately accommodated all 85 pilots and 156 aircraft. Open flying Friday opened at 8:30am with sessions blocked out for 3D and helicopters.The helicopter count was low and may be excluded next year to allocate more time to open flying. Aerobatic aircraft flew in the open session but were not able to hover block the race track pattern. This worked out well and during their specific 3D window, they could hover and do all the other cool maneuvers that they demonstrate.
Friday night ended with a successful pilot mixer with Buffalo wings, Johnson Brats, and French fries made in the hangar. About 60 pilots, wives, crews and significant others enjoyed the aviation atmosphere in the hangar at the Chino airport. Our host were Sam Wright, Gordon Truax, and Ken Wagner. Ken or Wag’s owns the beautiful P-51 lady Alice.
Saturday went off on time with the national anthem and the same schedule spotlighted by the noon airshow featuring an EDF Jet speed run with speeds over 225 mph recorded. That awesome demonstration was followed by the PR-1 Pogo pylon racer from horizon. This is a new electric spec class in the NMPRA. These little hot rods screamed around two pylons 400’apart at 95 to 115 mph.
Saturday evening was again in the hangar only with sit down tables and table cloths for a great BBQ Beef, Pork, and Chicken dinner, with baked beans, salads and rolls. Of course the soft drinks and cold beer flowed throughout the evening. The evening was topped off with a super auction and the top item was a ride in the lady Alice P-51.
Sunday started early, and a nice touch was some soft Christian music followed by the national anthem and open flying. Around 2:30 we pulled raffle items and awarded the pilots the awards. The awards were based on the type of the aircraft and popularity.
Model Airplane News, ZAP Adhesives, Hobby People and Horizon were major sponsors and really supported the event and the growth of the electric flight aspects of this great hobby. The weather cooperated with 7 to the mid 80s with plenty of sun. Soft breezes came up around 2:30 but were right down the runway as always.
A few things we tried that were very successful was the addition of the halontronic-1 Halonfire extinguishers on the flight line and our newly constructed AC and DC charging station with Lipo sacks provided by Xtreme power Systems. We also had a 5 gallon salt waterbucket that claimed about 6 battery packs for the entire 3 day event.
Over all the pilots seemed to understand the care of Lipo batteries and all flew well with only two minor mid airs between some foam aircraft.
We learned a lot this year and Phil Goodwine, myself the CD, and the rest of the Big Jolt crew in those green vests will fine tune the event for 2011. Next year we anticipate over 100 plus pilots and will have a refined form of online registration and that also will qualify for an assigned pit number on a first come first serve basis. On behalf of the president and entire membership of the Pomona Valley Model Airplane Club, offers a special thank you and gratitude is extended to all the pilots and vendors that supported our first year effort for a West Coast Electric RC Experience.
Lastly, a hats off to the tremendous support of all of our sponsors who provided products and event sponsorship. Without your support, this event would not be possible.
Sam Wright, Big Jolt Contest Director