Laurent Borella began flying in 2001 and very quickly afterwards changed his entire life to accomodate more free flight into his world. He is an instructor at Twistair in Switzerland and eleven years ago his passion for cross country and hike and fly lead him to create the VercoFly, an annual 4 day hike and fly race/adventure in the Wallis region of Switzerland that is simply brilliant. Using 8 mountain huts around Laurent’s home town of Vercorin the athletes hike and fly without a supporter and stay in the huts at night. There is no set course. The score is decided by the number of huts you reach combined with the number of kilometers you fly (scored on XContest). Each day the three longest flights accumulate so strategy becomes critically important. You have to reach all the huts, but you ALSO have to go big and try for FAI triangles for better scores! There are two categories- the Competition class for expert pilots and the Adventure class for lower hour pilots who want an awesome adventure with less pressure. At night you enjoy an excellent meal at a hut overlooking the wonders of the Swiss Alps and you get to enjoy the camaraderie of the other participants and the best of all- you don’t need to carry anything but a little water! This episode will inspire you to chase adventure but also has a ton of great information for newer pilots; how to fly safe and stay safe in the Alps; how to approach and minimize risk; listening to your inner voice and a lot more. Enjoy!
- Laurent recounts his history of flying since 2001 and the genesis of the Vercofly
- How the VercoFly works
- How to get into hike and fly
- Tips for being safe in hike and fly races
- Minimum ability level to have to participate in the VercoFly
- Laurent recommends some of the MANY hike and fly races in the Alps
- What to know before you go fly in the Alps for your first time
- 3 things newer pilots tend to screw up
- Want to be safe? Fly a lot!
- Listen to your inner self
- Advice for staying safe
- Laurent recounts his one accident
Mentioned in this episode:
Michael Witschi, Chrigel Maurer, Patrick Von Kanel, VercoFly, Laurent Borella, Jura Fly, Gruyere Fly, Millets Cup, Tom De Dorlodot, Honza Rejmanek, Pierre Carter
Watch Chrigel in the 2019 Vercofly- THIS IS AWESOME!!