The Vintage & Classic Glider Club of New Zealand Inc


Ka6CR and Lee Middleton

Mike Smith with his Dart 15

Ka6CR of John Currie

Rally  Photos

Vintage Kiwi National Rally Taupo 2014

Taupo was the site of the original VK National Rally.

Once again there was a very good turn out of aircraft with members staying for the full seven days.  Gliders represented included a number of Ka6s, Standard Libelles, one Open H301 Libelle, a Briegleb BG12-16, a Slingsby Dart 15, and a Slingsby Dart 17R, an Schemp Hirth Discus, and of cause a Schleicher K8.

Next year there has been a promise of yet another K8 and a Silent (in name not in sound) self-launcher.  Several more members arrived later in the week to check out the action.

We flew four days out of the seven. The thermal conditions were at times trying.  Although cloud base was at a good height, the thermals did not always develop well enough to give an easy and consistent climb,  but we all persevered and were rewarded with some good flights.  This year it was decided to have some turn points set up so our aircraft could ‘stretch their legs a little’ as the days allowed. The team certainly gave them all a good going-over during the flying week. Such was the appetite that two more turn points were added later in the week, which took us over some of the Bigger Country about Taupo.  Every morning we would hold a briefing fronted by the Taupo C.F.I Bill Kendall, or their Club Manager Tom Anderson, and also listen attentively to Malcolm Wright, our in-house and highly technical weatherman, who would give us a wonderful presentation of what to expect. Considering that he only got fired twice, but got reinstated three times indicated his performance was in the plus category most of the time.  Well-done Malcolm.


On the Monday morning after briefing a Foker DV11 and a Foker Triplane full size replica’s arrived on route from the Tauranga Air show for refueling before departing on their long journey south to their home base in Masterton. What fabulous aircraft they were.  Authentic in every detail except for their self-starting motors.  After a refueling and group photograph they were on their way.  Fabulous…

    Last year everyone enjoyed the mid week Lake Taupo cruises, so this year, Tom Anderson once again organized another lake cruise.  High-light of the evening cruise was the playing of a Pocket Trumpet by Kevin Clark (Open Libelle OS).  The melodies were such that it dragged in some other boats that were also out on the lake to enjoy the music on the water.  It really was a great night.

The camp evenings were filled with either impromptu safety presentations, classic archived gliding films from the 1950s to 1970s, or just good old gliding gossip.

Taupo can be a windy place during the night at times with both the lake breezes and the land cooling down. But with winds gusting to 30knots we had a number out late one evening, and once again in the early hours, checking and re-securing our pride and joys as required.  No damage – all good but a number of rather tired pilots arrived at briefing the following morning I have to say.  Two tents got bowled by the winds.

V.K member Greg Douglas (Slingsby Dart 17R) enjoyed a very happy belated birthday dinner out at a Taupo restaurant, with most of the camp attending.  Why cook when it can be cooked for you, seemed to be the thought, and it also gave Greg a birthday to remember.  I believe we were the last people to leave the premises that night.

Our Club host organized a BBQ dinner on the last night, followed by a mini karaoke session, but the highlight of the night had to be an impromptu jazz session, not by the Dave Clark Five, but by the Kevin Clark One.  Playing the piano with one hand and playing his Pocket Trumpet with the other, he gave a spectacular display of Jazz / Blues duets to finish another great night, but also another very successful Vintage Kiwi Rally at Taupo.

Our thanks to our host club, The Taupo Gliding Club for allowing us once again to hold our V.K rally on their patch. They have proved again to be good friends and great hosts to this organization.

Roger Brown VK Chairman