Originally designated as a training day, Friday was relegated to a day of arrivals. Once again, the pilots showed up with warm embraces, catching up with each other after not seeing each other for some time. Particularly special was the reunion with pilot Joan Company who, after an emergency ditching at the Mediterranean sea that same morning, arrived at Alguaire with renewed strength, ready to compete.
With the appearance of rain, the apron remained calm, forcing the changing of the program and the rescheduling of the flights set for competition. By the end of Friday, there remained the absence of some pilots who could not arrive due to bad weather.
Saturday morning was grey at the airport. Again, low ceiling and threatening clouds that broke with force during the morning. The briefing was postponed until midday, when Alguaire opened a window to go up to the sky and compete. They began the ranking of the Q1 programs, although without unlimited pilots Cástor Fantoba and Anselmo Gámez, who awaited a clearing in Madrid that never came.
A new dance in the sky began, with some new faces and the highest hopes in each movement, where what counts is enjoying flying and caressing the sky with each figure in a more perfect way.
In a somewhat frenzied rhythm, the Q1 rounds of all the sequences and the Free programs of the Advanced category concluded. They began to breathe the air of competition, and began again to create this kind of special link that appears when the pilots are together: a mixture of enthusiasm, effort, and desire to overcome, which from a distance, I can't help but admire.
Sunday the forecast was better. Even so, the usual low clouds did not allow for competition in the morning. The program was again altered, pushing the Q2 and Free flights to begin at noon. The Unknown flights for Advanced and Unlimited categories were ultimately cancelled due to lack of time.
The final rankings are:
Victory to Eric Milà and second place to Willem Dekker in the Elemental Category, a category which officially didn't count because of not having the minimum of three participants.Victory to Ernest 'Tuckie,' second place to Joan Company, and third place to Fabio Velasquez in the Sportsman Category.
Victory to Juan Socías, second place to Bob de Haan, and third place to Carles Algué in the Intermediate Category. Ranking that would be slightly altered as one of the participants was not of Spanish nationality, which had the effect officially of putting Carles Algué in second place at the Championship level.
Victory to Àlex Balcells, second place to Jorge Macías, and third place to David Membrives in the Advanced Category. The accident caused a technical tie for the first time between the first two pilots in Q1, which would determine the Free flight as qualifying, Àlex Balcells obtaining the final victory.
Victory to Anselmo Gámez, second place to Juan Velarde, and third place to Cástor Fantoba in the Unlimited Category, who for the first time competed in an Extra 330SC, being unable to bring their Sukhois due to bad weather.
In the trophy presentation, there was an additional trophy given for the best flight of the Championship, which as an exception was not awarded to a flight in the competition but rather to Joan Company's flight, the skill of which allowed Company to land with success, be present, and compete.
With the airport quiet again, I have to say that again I take away many things. I take away a better aeronautical understanding, derived from improvised chat at every corner. And above all, my luggage full of values: the values of teamwork, the longing to overcome, the hope of going further; and above all, this kind of force that pilots transmit upon touching the sky, caressing the clouds - and through the dance that will never cease to amaze me - merging fully with it.