Episode 158- Kirsty Cameron and Stacking the Odds

Kirsty tackles the flats of the UK

Kirsty Cameron has been a member of the British team many times. She’s been flying high-end 2 line gliders for over 10 years and put a ton of energy and time into competition flying since she began flying in the late 90’s. This year with travel being difficult and her 4 year old son vying for more her time Kirsty decided to dedicate her flying time to chasing big distance at home in the UK. She nabbed a couple records this year (see below for the links) and has found a new, super fun outlet for getting her flying fix. It hasn’t all been a smooth ride for Kirsty and she’s been caught out a couple times by being a little too determined. When should we push and when should we give up? When should we step up…and down? How do you notice when you’re being complacent? When something isn’t right, what’s the solution? Kirsty has been at this game for a long time and we had a lot of fun talking about her remarkable journey. Enjoy.

The record flight Kirsty discusses in the show is here:

We didn’t talk about these, but Kirsty said she particularly enjoyed these two, one was a super fast 80k triangle, in exceptional conditions for the UK and the other was a magical flight down to the South Coast, ending with us picking up the end of the sea breeze convergence.

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Show Notes:

  • Kirsty discusses the British wins at the World Championships in Argentina
  • Breaking records at home
  • Doing distance in the UK- AIRSPACE!
  • The decision to step down from the Enzo to Zeno
  • Reserve toss in St Andre
  • Being a mom and flying and currency
  • Flying is selfish- how do we find the balance?
  • The best flights and what makes them the best
  • Mistakes and breaking it down
  • You’re a nutter!
  • That’s a launch?  What???
  • The good thing about getting the beat down
  • Dealing with getting crushed and sucking
  • How to compete and how to find a competitive edge
  • How deep should you dig?
  • Does free flight make other aspects of your life better or worse?

 

Mentioned in this episode:

Russ Ogden, Seb Ospina, Theo Warden, Robbie Whittall, Chrigel Maurer, Pepe Malecki, Guy Anderson, Adel Honti

 

May 9th- Elan To Ely



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Transcript

Speaker 1 (0s): Hi there everybody. Welcome to another episode of Cloudbase Mayhem, quick bit of housekeeping as we're getting into the holidays. First of all, happy Thanksgiving to those of you in the states, and we're coming up this Thursday, but also wanted to let you all know that now have the book available on the website. Unfortunately, only to those of you who are in the U S sorry, I shifted shipping thing, and we've got dealers that are tied to cross-country magazine all around the world. So it's much better for you to get your book from wherever you're from, if you're not in the states, but if you order the book on the website and you've got about 40 copies between now and Christmas and use the coupon code holiday and get you free shipping, and that will apply to anything else in your cart.

So if you need some Christmas gifts for yourself or for a loved one, and on over to Cloudbase, Mayhem dot com and line that up again, the coupon code is holiday. Now be good between now and Christmas, December 25th, I guess today is Kirsty Cameron. I was excited to get an email from a fan of the show and a good friend before acre, who connected me with Kirsty. I'd been flying with her in the last couple British opens down in Rolda Neil last few years.

I know Kirsty, but she's had some really cool flights, recently, a couple of records and long she's been racing paragliders for longer than I realized, and on the British team and member of the world's team, a number of times, and just has gotten after it. And we talk about a lot of her history and comp flying and difference between two liners and three liners and her recent move down to Xeno and why, and also how flying has changed for her with the recent addition of a little boy, she's got a four year old as I do.

So we talked a lot about risk and how that shapes, how you fly and how you, how it may change, how you fly and how you pursue it and how it can affect obviously, relationships, all these things that most of us have to deal with. So I really enjoyed this. We had a blast, and I think there's a little something here for everybody. So enjoy this talk, Kirsty, Cameron, Here's the it's, I'm so glad that Viv reached out and connected us.

I'm actually been meaning to get you on the show for ages. And that was just a great reminder. Congratulations to your, your countrymen, the double goal with Russ, just dominating and showing how skilled he is. Very light conditions. Yeah, they're fantastic. And I know you've been on that team many times, so that must have been fun to watch, but also kind of painful to not,

Speaker 2 (3m 0s): Yeah, it was difficult really. I mean, there's various reasons why I couldn't be that as time. Unfortunately, not least the fact that our boy four year old is just us school. So I've got a young family now, the other extra responsibilities these days, but yeah, I've been chatting to guide a little bit and, and they'd both been on the team. Yeah. We just say happy 15, but at the same time, you're left within that ourselves as well.

Speaker 1 (3m 31s): Yeah. Yeah. And like you said, guys been on it many times and, and so, well, it really looks like the, you know, the juniors program that, that the British have set up is, is paying great results. And yeah, I mean, I was, I was proud of them. I'm not even a Brit. They, they just, they just did really well. It was neat to see Theo flying so well and seven and everybody. So

Speaker 2 (3m 58s): They're all friends as well. And at the end of the day, it's just nice. It's just really good to see it happen, Ross. He is fantastic. Got the double gold. It's just brilliant for the whole team, but you know, at the end of the day, I just say,

Speaker 1 (4m 15s): Yeah. And I mean, he's been second, many, many times we, we actually talked about that on the show that he's, you know, he feels like he's kind of lacked that killer instinct instinct over his career and just been shy, you know, super final a couple of times. And so, yeah, it was nice to take on the big win.

Speaker 2 (4m 33s): Definitely. Definitely. He deserves it, you know, he say, does, he's been assigned gracious in defeat so many times that it's just, yeah, yeah.

Speaker 1 (4m 42s): And go to a better, better person or a better pilot. That was really terrific to see. Well, let's start there. You know, it's, it was the flip side for us. Yanks just got crushed. We had a really hard race. We had a, quite a few there that had just competed in their first world cup, you know, with COVID and everything selection was, was quite interesting. It was kind of weird this year, which I'm sure it was

Speaker 2 (5m 7s): For a minute.

Speaker 1 (5m 10s): Yeah. Which is great. You know, it's good to give them, you know, the, the chance of seeing what that's all about, but how have, you know, I've talked about this a bit with Robbie, you know, the, the Brits in the history of Free flight, you hang gliding and paragliding have just done incredibly well historically. And, you know, you don't come from a place that has great flying. I would say, you know, it has very interesting flying and there's been some awesome, you know, the north south cup and, you know, it's, it's a, it's a great place to fly, but it's, it doesn't have, you know, consistently banger conditions.

And, and I'm just wondering if that's the reason you guys have to chase it so hard or what it is you think the, you know, cause like, you know, you've, you have been on the time, the team many times and you know, you know, that game and flew the R 11, you've got a lot of records, which we're going to talk about here shortly, but I'm just wondering what you chalk it up to the, the British success.

Speaker 2 (6m 10s): Yeah. I mean, I hear it's often put out there that it's because we have to find such rubbish conditions, but yeah, we do the space. I mean, I think we have to fly in rubbish conditions all the time, more than interesting you get in the UK, at least we don't get a huge number of days each year that are really good days, you know? So we do get those really good days, but then sort of few and far between, but yeah, I think they're quite sort of determined that's for sure to get out on the really good days and make the most of it.

And I suppose we do end up having to fly in. Yeah. I say less than classic conditions, I suppose. So I suppose that interestingly, I'm not actually that good at flying in really weak condition, but it's quite strong. So I don't fit the typical, typical UK ECC mode really. And I have sort of trained myself over the years to be more patient in UK conditions and slowing myself down at sort of impatient, really the conditions.

And when I first started doing competition, flying, flying broad, you know, Andre and absolutely loved it because they, you can, you can definitely fly more of a pace than you can in the UK. So yeah, I do know that it's entirely to do that. And you know, some of the, some of our team, you know, don't even live in the UK currently and say, yeah, so I don't know whether it's, it's, it's purely the, that we good in the week stuff sunny with, we sort of studied punch above our weight in terms of, if you think of a number of UK pilots, you know, quite a small population and we seem to do quite well.

Speaker 1 (8m 8s): Yeah. I mean, in, in talking to guy a while back, and I think it was rolled in EO a few years ago, he was talking about, you know, the kind of the juniors program. It seems very supportive and there's, it seems like a lot of energy is going into your younger pilots and kind of bringing them up and teaching them the ropes. And you know, here in the states, it's very much more cowboy or, you know, if you want to pursue that, you can, but you're on your own. You're not going to get any support from or, you know, it's, you have to fund it yourself and timing yourself.

I mean, I think, I think that really showed in Loma Bola in a sense, the conditions that, you know, you often have to fly in because I, I was down there for the world cup a year ago, I guess it was two years ago now and it's, you know, it's pretty light. And they were certainly had, you know, they had a lot of rain this time, a lot of cloud and sound like it was, it was the opposite of strong and it was just really patients, you know, won the day and, you know, kind of hanging back and not leading out much. And, you know, like Russ always says being very disciplined and it certainly paid off there.

And I think the, the Americans really struggled with that cause they, they like to go, they like to go hard. That's not the game there

Speaker 2 (9m 27s): The last two weeks. Anyway.

Speaker 1 (9m 30s): Well, tell me about you you've had some records or something. I don't know much about this. What's what's happened recently with some big flights.

Speaker 2 (9m 40s): Yeah. We've had some good flying flying in the UK this year. It's not been what I'm called a classic year in terms of, you know, lots and lots and lots of really good flying days, but the ones that have been good have been really quite good. We've had some this year, I decided that I wanted to sort of focus on the UK cross country as a sad young family. Now what were COVID and everything else going on. I thought this year, I'm just not going to, I'm not in travel time and they're getting into all of the testing and everything else.

Okay. That satchel, I just stay at home and just go out on the days that are good. I've got a job for the moment. It's reasonably flexible around, around my time in the sense that I can sort of get days off and blockers or fairly short notice, which is good to say. So I just thought, you know, I'm just going to throw myself into the UKC in this year and see life and get done so more than normal because the typical year I'm sort of sort of giving out quite a few days of holiday to going abroad, to do fly cop, like homes are selling, I'm doing the cat ones it's or two and a half weeks out of my holiday leave.

And then if I'm doing a couple of other tattoos as well, that's taking up quite a lot of my, my leave really say, so this year I thought, yeah, just pick the good days and take those off and see what can do. And it's been an interesting year because there's been a sort of a group of us that got together as a, as a team and sort of like us on the XC, not just in the app, you know, in the planning stages of deciding which sites to go to and frame up to signing the book pretty much had to travel anywhere in the UK within reason, not necessarily co-op as far as Scotland got has happened this year, but more sort of, you know, quite happy.

So travel three, four hours to get across to a good site, which I'm sure for, you sounds like two small distances, but it's quite a distance for us to go. Yeah. So we think teaming up with and flying a lot with him because he was back in the UK after he'd left gin. And so between looking for another job, he's, he's been out all the time. Cause his dad lives the moving Hills, which is a small set of Hills out to the west of where I live takes pretty much any interaction there and certainly think going there quite a bit and then further on to Wales as well.

So going back, what, three years? 2018, I think it was Richard Carter renowned UK pilot, especially for cross country. He, if you, the first 300 kilometers from the site, then suddenly whales playing right across there, right across England on the east coast. So we went out to site in may a couple of times to try and maybe try to replicate that, to do a couple flights in one day.

Yeah.

Speaker 1 (12m 46s): Yeah. That's crossing the whole island in it

Speaker 2 (12m 50s): Pretty much mean if you're doing 300, you definitely are always case to case saying, yeah,

Speaker 1 (12m 56s): That'd be awesome. Is there, is there, are you dealing with a lot of airspace when you're doing that?

Speaker 2 (13m 2s): Yeah. I mean, that's the other complication this country. So to do a big distance in this country is quite achievement because you're dealing with a lot of aspects as well say,

Speaker 1 (13m 11s): Yeah, you must get good at that. We don't deal with airspace at all here. So whenever I go to the XL ups, I'm always, that's the thing I worry about the most. It's just, oh God, the aerospace aerospace.

Speaker 2 (13m 20s): I think it helps with the loves, again, this ties in as well because the Brits, the Brits actually sort of let us respect as space, but they've actually flying and actually working with the Aspace, you know, and, and not being too much of a distraction because it is a distraction. And if you are actually doing offline and also happened to keep them on a few brain cells on the Aspace as well, because it can be distracting.

So

Speaker 1 (13m 51s): How do you, how do teach, teach the audience? You know, what are your steps to prepare for a flight that has a bunch of airspace or, you know, for, for me in the X ups, I use that side view on fly sky high. And that just has been so valuable once I learned how to use it. Cause you can see it, you can see it coming. Okay, well I've gotta be below there or above there, or, you know, create a, talked about it this year that he had to, you know, barely was able to fish through that pretty hard airspace going to Pittsburgh. And if without that side, yeah. That kind of thing's tricky.

Speaker 2 (14m 23s): I actually try and memorize it actually. Yeah. So I will actually, before, if I'm, if I know if I do a big flight like that, I will actually see if it's through an area that I'm less familiar with. I will actually go over that a few times in my head looking at the screen as well. One of my hate on the laptop, actually trying to remember Rocky, you know, what, what Aspace is going to be coming up. Because typically when I do these big flights, these downwind flights, then you're typically doing it out on a windy day. So we asked them to come on you quite, quite quickly, like the next day, you know, down with me and they can get to lake on it because you have thought that also you can start to make the flight quite difficult and it can put you on the ground because all of a sudden you're trying to, of crosswind in thermals around, you know, around a piece of Aspace, which is a lot more trickier.

Yeah. So it's best to try and avoid those situations, you know, and be sort of starting to crosswind earlier than you, than you, you know, as early as possible to try and getting up place the airspace in the first place. Cause Spock it's too late. Once you got with you guys today is put me down for an hour, perhaps try and really, really dramatically prospering not paying attention to the airspace yeah. Is at KSA. And in fact, we were doing that on this particular flight.

It was quite financially cause they got about Ooh, probably a hundred times back flight. And the first flight was incredibly quick. We did it. We did the fast, a hundred kilometers in about two hours, which is a great festival. And we kind of thought, okay, that day really did have that kind of speed.

Initially, unfortunately then slowed up and we had a session where there was a lot of sort of decay, trial streets ready and all that. Or they would do nice providing lift and not quite sort of just series underneath it. And then the whole lot was in shadow on the ground. So eventually he ends up scrambling around in the shadow, trying to find Clines for a while is definitely one of the crosses of half-life and then it all switched back on again. And then we go into an area called the Cambridge flats, which is, as I said, as I say, it just completely flattens the area list really well.

And you get out to the area and it's kind of like game on again. So things are getting much better clients again, say, how would you help that day? What else can we say was, say about a hundred Ks bath night ruined radio and everyone's mapping was dropping out. I think Jared lost all of his screen entirely guided. And they were, as long as it was just typical guy, the way I described it, the way it was a bit behind at this point, we were waiting to catch up you to wait for that.

Cause I used to have my nephew and they are literally, they were coming up to the bed and going Aspace and God's coming on and going cuss you out. We go, what's the say that I'm not in that shade, greedy that if no one's got mapping, all of a sudden you'll complete your blind flight. And then later now flight, I think we dropped, we dropped Joan and then it was down to me guy and another guy and another guy called ducky.

And both of them were on PBS. By the time we got charged and ready to care, I think they both went over 200 K for the first time as well and was a PPE for me that day as well. It was a good day out.

Speaker 1 (18m 29s): Yeah. That's a great day out. And what were you flying on? The Enzo?

Speaker 2 (18m 33s): I was on the XenApp. I've been on the scene now for the last two, three years. Say

Speaker 1 (18m 38s): I was going to say that gut like me, you've got a four year old. We both have four year olds. Is that, is that a, is that a kid decision or is that a hours decision to just you're you're not getting the time 11 for a long time. And obviously

Speaker 2 (18m 56s): I went on spin Orlando in 2011, the course exempt plan the same year, and then ended up going into the basketball of seven or eight years. I was on those high-end guiders and caught across kind of instance, Andre on the MSA to know was any time of demonstrating.

Myra was that quite high, about 2,200 meters that start gate about literally a bit less than a minute to go to the start. And it was pretty rowdy up that fence and Andre,

Speaker 1 (19m 44s): I flew in there, but back when I was really early and I've, you know, we've kind of skimmed through there on a couple of the X outs. Not really, but you know, I, I, I had kind of an eventful flight there, but when there was, I've never flown a comp or anything there let's put it that way. But yeah. I mean, I know it can get rowdy.

Speaker 2 (20m 2s): Yeah. I mean, I say I probably fed more comps there than anywhere else. I've learned competitions because Brits has been there a lot for us to get to you and we can jump on EasyJet and be down for two hours. So yeah. The favorite venue for the British to go to, I've been for awhile. Yeah. I loved it. And I saying at the beginning of the chat, that I'm fast on my feet and I just knocked the pace because I would feel that it's a bit like if you go up designed paragliding you, so it's kind of like escape the current lighting and flying the cassette.

Tell us about you any direction.

Speaker 1 (20m 54s): Yeah. I hear a lot about the, that it, you know, from that there's a lot of really full bar racing right on the terrain that it's, it sounds like, you know what, especially first timers when they go, they're always a little bit like, I mean, if you don't do that, you're, you're, you're going to lose the gaggle. You, you got to do it and it sounds, it sounds like it can be a little spicy.

Speaker 2 (21m 16s): Yeah. Yeah. There was a degree of thing that I think on the good day, good day, you can get off the train a bit more jail, free cards as an entree to get a little bit behind. You can just point a region, you know, you'll get there and there'll be a 60 to climb on the Ridge. I quite like that because you know, you took a bit behind and you just go back there to that Ridge and his big climbs that, I mean, I think that they want to talk to my son, Andre doesn't lock as if it's windy.

If it's windy, if it's windy as well, it just becomes a bit of a washing machine. But shaping that task feeling on, you know, decent days when it's what to do, then it's good solid clients. It's not their strong plans, but they're not tiny difficult course. You know, like that I think is a good place to, I was going to say the start gate, 30 seconds to go. It was particularly Riley that is going back to three years and it be very dry then we'll season.

And we tend to fly that towards the end of the season in July or August. Anyway, it was particularly punchy this year and I'm up there on 30 seconds to go and the wig just went, I just compete. I think I was a little bit tight. You know, that classic thing, it was pretty rowdy up there. This is something that's coming out from the SIV a lot, you know, Just a little bit too overactive, a little bit tight.

And I knew that was bumpy. It felt pretty horrendous up there. It just went completely. And I think I just, I think I just held it back just for a split second too long. And then it just went bang down in front of me and I literally nose down. This is all the course, the whole, you know, it's like when he's flat is it sounds like that since they mentioned, but this is all happening over the course of probably less than the second. And the flight is pretty title irritation.

And I just, I just it's the fact is the fast, many times I was like, this Gladys was just completely spontaneous that there wasn't even any kind of conscious. It was just, it was just, it was just out instantly. I just knew it was beyond my control, I guess say. Yeah. So to say after came and I was high and I drifted them way and I came down the main reinflated, but I think this is something that's not getting discussed too much with these high-end greens is one of the ones I think reinflate, it was downplaying horrendous and I thought it was going to win worse than it did.

Luckily I came down to hot. I didn't break anything or anything, but that was, yeah, that was a bit kind of like, okay,

Speaker 1 (24m 30s): Just a little wake up call,

Speaker 2 (24m 32s): But listen to the wake up call. And I just, I wanted to find the rest of the call. He had to, he seen everything. So this specific now, and as you know, just come out with these, this is 2080, and you said I could borrow that for the rest of the call. I wanted to talk to flow in any way until this bike. So I threw that for the rest of the call. I just loved it.

So I decided to buy one and ask what I've been flying for the last few years said for sure that instant was, was definite via kickstart me stepping down slightly. I think really? And I just really liked flying the wing. It's just, it's just, it's just a bit easier, a bit easier on the ground. I like to find as you on the ground. I mean, it's always the case with wings. Isn't there, how they behave on the ground is going to be a real good indicator. It's just a lovely, cohesive wing on the ground that bring us translates to how

Speaker 1 (25m 38s): And it's proven itself over the years as well. I mean, we saw when we saw it, a ton of people jump onto it. I think the initial thought was these folks don't have the hours to fly a two liner, but it's really, you know, it doesn't seem to surprise. I mean, still paragliding, there's still accidents of course, on every wing, but it seems to be quite a gentle one if, you know, if people move to that from a three-line or it seems to be quite a nice move for most people. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (26m 7s): I mean, as you say, you still have to give these wings, respect the show expected a little bit more benign when it does go Michelle.

Speaker 1 (26m 20s): Yeah, yeah. A little bit easier to get back than a, than an Enzo.

Speaker 2 (26m 24s): Yeah, I think so. I've not had, yeah. Nice, good way. I mean, it's often the case, as you say, people jumped onto these wings because the new thing, and often when they're industry reviewed, everyone says, you know, it's the best thing since sliced bread and you start getting the stories, but I think, yeah, generally speaking, I don't think anyone's really sort of come back and said that the ZMA is a bad thing.

Speaker 1 (27m 13s): Yeah. It's going to held up and held up over time for sure. You know, like the ends of three it's it's been out for awhile now and it's still, you know, people are still loving it.

Speaker 2 (27m 23s): Yeah. I was saying to rusty, he needs to get that from Argentina and go to such fun.

Speaker 1 (27m 34s): It's coming. Okay. I I'd love to hear more about your son and being a mom and flying cause that that's not a topic we've, we've discussed with too many moms on, on the show. And, you know, because I'm asked that all the time and what what's changed with your, you know, risk tolerance and how you approach the sport. And I'd love to just hear if there's been a shift

Speaker 2 (28m 4s): That has been, I mean, I think, I don't think, especially, I should say this in a shift because I don't want to take risks and all that kind of stuff. If I'm brutally honest, that's not the main reason. The main reason is around. Well, I suppose there is a risk element and that stems from the fact of finding this out.

Speaker 1 (28m 25s): Definitely. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (28m 28s): And I think that I'm sort of taking more risks. I'd be taking more risk if I was flying and in Zillow, the time setting abroad, you know, being around and stolen because I do think these wings are exponential in the way they behave. You know, I think I'll be fine flying and then say three in the UK. I didn't think that'd be a problem. The tool that I think when you take wings into, into the ramp up quicker on, on the higher end wings, that's my experience. Anyway, things get amplified quicker.

So I think getting them, or as I'm doing, it's just a bit more, that's a bit safer and has been more relaxed creating as well, flying slightly less, but still with enough performance to, to generally cut it. I mean, I noticed that the tattoos like fly into breaths, for example, that they want to see, you know, it's not really too much of a disadvantage, but you get to PWC or you get into a cat one and you're a major disadvantage.

And I just sat in the lost world if it was in Macedonia, which is phenomenal competition and tasks. Those two things go on there when I was in particular race fit really had only done a couple of columns that year before I went to my stadium in August, which didn't help. I think by the end of the second week, I was just about race fit

Speaker 1 (29m 59s): Really

Speaker 2 (30m 3s): Genuinely, really I think. So is that thing along and you just, you just lose out on the long glides and stuff. You're just, you're just a disadvantage compared to being on the inside. Sure.

Speaker 1 (30m 17s): Yeah. I mean, I think when you see it, you see the old, when we had Chalan this year, you know, it was pretty hard, you know, on the downwind tasks, know the L penis would be right with us. You know, you don't want to really see these huge jumps and until you're flying triangles and there's no wind, you know, when there's, or you're flying triangles and you're going to wind, then you know, then it's really okay. And that's where you really start noticing. I think it's mostly a Nick reset. And once that I, I really appreciated this, that you just have more options on, you know, it gives you, you know, you have to be, you have to be a much better pilot if you're flying a lower end wing to keep up because you're, you're just gonna, you're gonna come in a hundred meters, higher, 200 meters out every time and just have more time to fiddle around to find that sweet spot.

Whereas,

Speaker 2 (31m 7s): Ah, in relation to the UK season this year, I would get dressed. Cause it was, it was quite interesting, but just sticking to the, to the, sort of the question you asked me about being a mum and everything, but yeah. I mean, I think, yeah, so, so that's, I think that that's the main reason festival stepping down in terms of wings. Cause I just not just not doing the hours really justify flying that level of weight and guests, you then do come on stuff when you get to the big comms kind of nice part.

I think, I think just being on a slightly lower spec, but yeah. Still able to go out on a big cross country day or go to a cat to competition, sort of my, I wouldn't want to be on anything less than it was, you know, really no different wild really. So yeah, nothing's really changed massively. Other than the fact, we have less, less time to commit to selfish sport that is paragliding

Speaker 1 (32m 12s): Because it

Speaker 2 (32m 12s): Is

Speaker 1 (32m 15s): Quite time consuming. Isn't it

Speaker 2 (32m 17s): It's time consuming and it's not, it's not a particularly, you know, it's not particularly exciting sport for full of family. I mean there no lights coming out and watching you fly on the, on the hill and so on and so forth, but once I'm up and in the ad then

Speaker 1 (32m 35s): Yeah, mom we'll see her for dinner maybe

Speaker 2 (32m 40s): Quite exactly. So it's like, you know, yeah. Quite selfish in that respect as well. Really. So yeah.

Speaker 1 (32m 49s): Yeah. Has that been more, is this something you struggled with in the sport before you had your son?

Speaker 2 (32m 59s): Yeah, I think say, yeah. I think even in been around a relationship as well, it's, it's an, even with friends, you know, relationship with friends and stuff, you have to be able to say, you have to keep your options open in the side. You'd have to be, to not make any commitments to anybody about anything. If it's a really good flying day, you need to put to go flying. And, and if you did make, it sounds awful to say, but you're looking at the sky and you know, you're doing, because you're out for me and friends and Nepal or something, and you're flying, which is awful way to these people, you know, really say, so I have always struggled with that over the years.

And I, I know it has cost me probably some, some friendships and stuff at time, not a falling out with people, but just cause I don't see them enough.

Speaker 1 (33m 52s): Yeah, sure. I mean eventually in a while I'm not going to invest a lot of time and Kirsty and she's just going to go paragliding. I've also struggled with this, especially lately more so than before. And I don't think that as much, maybe it does with my daughter, but I, I have wondered this, that it doesn't in a, this might be totally erroneous, but I'd like to get your thoughts on it, but I've, I've often thought that that doesn't strike the Swiss and the French and maybe Germans as much as it does us.

And let me explain that. I, I think because it's really seen as a very legitimate undertaking, this is, you know, for the French and you know, you can make money doing it. You, this can be your job. And I've often found that, you know, like when we go through the fundraising aspect of the X Alps, I just can't stand it. I can't stand asking people for money to send me paragliding. It just doesn't seem bright. Even though you asked those people, they said, well, you're, it's incredibly inspiring and it's, I love watching it.

And it's awesome. And you know, I, I think this is a real personal issue I need to get over. But what do you think about that? I mean, you w you know, if you're Maxine, peanut, this is your job, this is what you do. It's legitimate, you know, Charles Cazo, this is what you do.

Speaker 2 (35m 11s): Yes, yes. I mean, there is a very different setup for them. Isn't it? I mean, I can relate to that in other ways as well. Cause I think, I guess I can found in all of that, but in terms of the us having access to sites in the UK is all private land and ship. You have to fly on their sites and no some do begrudgingly, others will kick you off. If you know, the slightest thing happens. There's some, the slight, the wrong place. You know, I do feel that we're very much begrudgingly accepted as some kind of wacky sport.

You know, you go to France and it's literally got in members of the French cabinet. You fly carbo is, as you say, it's a very much a different demographic. Isn't very much a different sort of, as you saying, exceptions, and it's much more integrated into the culture than it is. So I think that definitely how many P how many can fly horrified is in the states? You know,

Speaker 1 (36m 14s): I've heard the same thing since I started 20 years, almost 20 years ago. And now it's about 6,000. Yeah. I mean, can you, I mean, that's just, yeah. I mean, they say, they say you can with the hang gliding and paragliding, it's 10, but I've heard a lot. So, yeah, but that really depends on how you count, you know, are they just renewing their license and never even flying? But the, the number I hear a lot of 6,000, I mean, it's just, it's pathetic. It's Literally, I mean, most people, even in a place that has flying, if you say that you're, you're a paraglider, they say, oh yeah, I've done that in Cancun, behind a boat, you know, they're talking about parasailing.

They literally don't know what it is. It's just not, you know, you don't even see it like you do on the Alps. So yeah, it's, it's definitely not considered, you know, if, if, if I told somebody, this is what I do for a living, which I don't, but I mean, if I did, they would go, wait, what? This is a job.

Speaker 2 (37m 14s): It is interesting actually, because Bible was sometimes fairly stupid to say it such a British thing. I think that like, there's a side quite close to me, so I can get out to flying sites out my nearest sites, which just under an hour, I can get to other sites, local sites and sort of an hour 20 minutes, that kind of thing.

It's pretty close, but I've got one site of between 40 minutes away and then fly away often because it's, it's kind of under, Aspace Heathrow, right? Under the airspace, you can flap sort of 2000 feet, but there's much better sanction because he can't find a distance from it because the direction, when you just take your shapes was he threatened them to and say, you can't go back. But it's quite an interesting little site. There's a, there's a particular flight. I was going to deepen that flight on the if call back. And it just, just a really nice seating flight.

And I now have the conditions I have to do it. And this year I finally managed to do it and really good conditions. It was great fun and their distance involved. It was just pretty fabulous blank. Anyway, that the day I liked that, but the, I literally walked onto the evening, the trees that you take off, it's a cup of bench status in the middle of summer and does anything. But there was like a couple of groups of people at that. And there's this guy sat on the bench with some other friends or family, and he says, you know, you don't want to, you don't want to jump off of that.

Now, are you going jump off of that? We're going to say, just like it wasn't, it was no interest at all. It was just like your NASA scientists pathic take off. And they took off and I went straight out to two, two and a half grand and fantastic conditions. And I saw how you might see it in a slightly different light. Now that I've done that before,

Speaker 1 (39m 25s): You're still, you're still a complete Nutter, which I guess we all are to some extent. So you're, you, you just gave away at my next question was going to be, where are you from? Where do you live in the, in the UK? Sounds like you're in the south, down by London. And then, and how did you, how did you get into this? What was the most, the catalyst, yeah.

Speaker 2 (39m 43s): Years ago, my uncle used to fly gliders. We used to go ahead and watch him every day. He doesn't know the country, but when we visit and stuff like that, sometimes we go out and watching flag. So that was my first introduction to it. And that really got me interested and yes, when I was off seeing the old and then say, and now I live down south south Wales for awhile, but I've been living down south Newark and the last 20 odd years, and we live kind of 20 miles west of London.

Just ask that question and then I can get out to sites. So west of here, north of here, so I can go to Wales as well, reasonably easily, not to, to not too huge, a distance. So there's a lot of flying sites, but they're all, I mean, I'm sure I'm used to that, that tiny, tiny, that, that all you need is somewhere where you can get off and kind of climb. And once you're off in the cell and it's, you know, in that sense sort of tentacles and sort of a launch paths, really, and there's a site roughly this year, which is kind of just north of London, going up tools, this solution, which is there's another app there.

And the site is under a space where you take off it's three and a half thousand feet, but you find west from, to launch. And eventually you end up in the less Aspace restriction. And it's not a site, I guess, playing that often, but it really is literally a lot of patterns that way, but you'd be amazed pilots from Mason, UK that you take off in pretty much a frat field that I genuinely mean pretty much, very, very slight slope to the bit where you take off and you take off and you just flop into this diligent to pick your feet up, go over a couple of bushes and flop into this tiny bowl, which I, again, genuinely RJ can, if you, if you through, you could fly to the bottom in about 10 seconds.

And, but the back of this is kind of like some huge big trees, which kind of almost double the height of the hill really hit these traits and you can keep it fun.

Speaker 1 (42m 13s): Oh my gosh, we wouldn't even look at that as a place. I mean, you know, we're always talking about, well, you don't have that much room to work with 2000 feet. You know, you, you're talking about you've got less than the truth.

Speaker 2 (42m 27s): Yeah. I mean, bitch. Yeah. The whole height, the hill is probably three or four times three or four,

Speaker 1 (42m 34s): I guess this is why the Brits are so good at, you know, low Sage. You're not for you. You're not even low for us. Oh my God. Right. In the deck for you. Well, we're way above launch Heights.

Speaker 2 (42m 46s): That's right. I mean, one of the things that get said is what do you take off your, your first climate is your first, let's say the day.

Speaker 1 (42m 53s): That's great. So you're, you said your, your, your uncle was a hang glider and he kind of got you into how long ago was that? How long have you been flying?

Speaker 2 (43m 2s): So I, I can fly in, I kind of led sort of at the end of the nineties, but I've kind of been sort of properly into it. So from sort of about 2005, 2006, I did my first comp out in Naranja, which is not too far from Suriname Jane when they first sort of started the ACE and chaperone in France. I think it was second year that I've been that's my first co-op and having the bathroom, this kind of, so that was that comp and I think I finished, I finished top women back in the days of the one, two, I first I second the DHB volunteer class and that most of the gliders really?

Yeah. So that was like, okay, let's see. Back to shabby. Say the following year I did the Brits, first time I did a competition in an open MPH, a heater, and then opening some Andre 2007. So yeah, that whole 15, 16 years now I've been okay.

Speaker 1 (44m 10s): And his comps been the most is most of your focus gone into comp sounds like lately it's been more kind of, you know, distance and kind of fun stuff. And you got a nice group of people there. You can go hunt down big distance with it, but it's most of your time been cops,

Speaker 2 (44m 28s): To be honest. Yeah. Yeah. I've always done a quad. I always try to do is not a Baxi now to have the chance I had this age, really just focus just on the XC. I've always, you know, sounded reasonable, but yeah. I mean, there's a lot more homes, you know, I'm doing at the moment for sure. Yeah. two or three courses.

Speaker 1 (44m 58s): When you look back at those 15 years of flying comps, was there any kind of aha moment breakthrough moment where, you know, like Russ talks about discipline, is there been any kind of a mantra or something that's really clicked for you in those years where you've gone? Okay. I've got this at least somewhat figured out.

Speaker 2 (45m 22s): Hmm. Wow. So if I feel see it, that was insane. The very first time we did the Brits in PAG heater, I did terribly, I mean, absolutely mean as you know, it was a proper kind of, kind of tough me up. I stay because there's a real level, Nebula

Speaker 1 (45m 40s): Just, just took your ego and shook it around and stomped it on the ground and walk away

Speaker 2 (45m 45s): Into that competition competition. And I've been doing some quite good distance flying as well. And I think I, yeah, the beginning of that year, I'd gone out to Australia. I was on a project which might leave. And then the next minute they are saying, well, you still with work. So I've made a bargain with them that finish this project. Can I just take all my leave in one day? So I took six weeks of leave and just went out to Australia and flying.

I went to Manila and Kay, and just, yeah, have a great time with all of that. And then I came back and I went off to this competition and forget your heater in the summer. So that was reasonably okay. I suppose. And I did, she just bombed every single day. I just couldn't get the mesh with place. It's a particular type of place of why anyway. And yeah. And of course it's a place for doing quite big distance as well. So you get all these pilots, I'd be back at the bar, you know, at like one in the afternoon, they they'll come back.

They don't say 150. It was starting to normalizing.

Speaker 1 (47m 6s): Do you think, do you think some of that was a, when you look back at that, do you think some of that was expectations? I mean, was it, was it that you literally went in thinking, yeah, I can. I think I can do pretty well here. And it just didn't have your eyes wide open.

Speaker 2 (47m 18s): Yeah. I think say, I think I certainly wasn't aware of, I think that had been at a reasonable degree of trying to chase pilots going on then anyway. So I think that was set in case of trying to sort of keep up with the Joneses, everything and just failing and then falling out the bottom uplines and then being stuck on a vigil, all that kind of stuff. So yeah, I think that that didn't help tool, but I sort of pick myself up from that and went to San Andre and necessarily do run really enjoyed it.

There a much better time set up. That was an early lesson in how to be, how to sort of control, delete, reset yourself, carry on

Speaker 1 (48m 2s): Before you leave that. Can you dig into that a little bit more? Because I think that's something most have experienced. I had a similar thing where I had some real beginners luck and thought, wow, I actually know what I'm doing here. And then I learned, I really didn't and my ego just got floored and, and it's also not that fun. It kinda sucks going to a conference socking. It's pretty hard. It's just like, God, I gotta do this again. And, oh, there I go again. I suck. And so

Speaker 2 (48m 34s): One of the sort of traits in me that he really likes is the fact that I have myself back up and carry on because it does wreck pilots. I'm fine. It's just can't deal with that. There'll be an up and coming in terms of the actual flight, when it comes into that kind of comp check environment, they just can't. And at the end of the day, any one person wins and everyone else loses. So You think about the world, you've got 150 pilots, seven Russ one, and you know, you've got people that are weighed on that competition, you know, that they're there and they're competing in there to help you make that competition what it is ultimately.

Yeah. But yeah, you do have to have a certain like any sport, isn't it as mental, once you get flying itself in terms of your skill, the rest of it is just a head game, right? So you have to, you've got to learn to deal with defeat, have to learn to deal with his feet and competitions to progress really because you will, you will fail if Phoenix

Speaker 1 (49m 50s): Yeah. Have you, have you kind of identified any type of mental place and I'm not articulating this very well, but you know, a Headspace, a particular Headspace, you try to take into a comp. So you're, you know, let's, let's imagine it's February, you're, you're getting ready to leave the UK to go down to the Brits and roll in Neo or the world cup or whatever, you know, you pick it. And is there, is there some kind of a place you try to get to before you arrive?

Speaker 2 (50m 24s): I think say, I think, I think it's to try and be humble about situation as she age, to realize that at the end of the day, you're just doing in a literary activity that most people never even get on a path and stuff and competitions and so forth, you know, say I try and sort of semi, if I'm, if I had a bad day, that's the kind of place I'll take myself to. And I've always enjoyed the calls for the sort of the bus being that other people being in a different country, you know, the same, much snare tape from a competition.

And as much as if you're trying to be competitive, you have to try and keep the competitive edge. And it's not just about being on a leisure holiday, but I think I'm on vacation. I've done bad for you to not that evening off. So I'll have a chat and ask me to treat you in housing to eat, enjoy where I'm at. You know, somewhere like when you're in here, it's just a great place to just hang out, listen to say, but just try and just go into that, into that kind of a space radiant and just, just be mindful of things that I feel like you have that helps.

That definitely helps me get to a better place rather than being offset and cross about the fact I've had a bad day at the end of the day. Doesn't be mad. Yeah. I think that's something I did a talk recently somewhere local club and just to touch on it more, but get some time constraints that whole thing about in flying, especially in competition flying.

And you know, like if you're, if you're kind of gave a test and you're getting off types are losing, you know, and I mean, she had a few baffles and the ball was at the core. That's not going to kitty kitty, you know, and I think there's even that just as some cross country blind as well, because I'm jumping around a bit now, but big flights, people say that you've done a baseline of, you know, 5,000 feet the whole day cruising along.

It's not like that at all because you always got low moments in a big flight, maybe one or two, maybe three, same somewhere. You've got a date deep. And it's that whole sort of thing about how deep do you dig before either. You might literally be the south Metro transit to say it, but literally bringing your own grain because you can't roll on a property. It can unravel alarm and you quit. I think that's something I've got your fears as well. You can be literally within, you know, a few seconds.

You can put yourself in a really bad space, not careful, and I'm not house call me. Cool. You know, I've had a couple of, couple of instances. I have actually had myself because myself to get too stubborn to determined, no Russell said to me, oh, you're good because you're, you know, you're stuff and you don't give up, you know, nothing of not giving up, but there was a certain point where you have to give up because if you don't, you're probably going to hurt yourself.

So how did I get onto that?

Speaker 1 (53m 55s): Yeah. I mean, I, I think that that's a high, it's certainly a topic that comes up a lot too. Is it, you know, I think it's a, it's a, it's a funny thing to try to not teach, but just, you know, I always worry about, you know, people getting into the sport because I remember that time and you know, it's, it's one of these weird ones where like any sport, you name it, you have to make mistakes to get good, but our mistakes hurt.

And yeah, I mean, I don't know if you side, I just did this article for XC mag about why this was my last X Alps. And it was really totally, I mean, there's a lot of reasons, but at the time and the commitment and the money and all those things, but the, the big one is just that you can't compete. You can't be even remotely competitive in that race, unless you're constantly pushing way farther than you ever should. These are not things that we're normally doing. I don't even think those people that are winning are normally doing that, just going now, it would be, it would be terrifying and it would be wrong.

You can't do that all the time and it's yeah. You know, you know, I think there's, it's a good thing every once in a while to pull back, get some perspective on that. So tell me about the, some of the accidents you've had, but you, you talked about your reserves toss in St. Andre, but I don't know what happened to you.

Speaker 2 (55m 25s): Yes. And they've all been in competitions. It's the same one. And I think they've all been in competitions because of that, that belovedness, and that not wanting to give up a couple of them have ended up asking me. So I had to, so I had one instance, well, who's not into a competition. So I have a student actually kill me.

I fractured my back in that lack of structure. I, I basically have the wing up with knots in my lines and then went out and got a collapsed on me by fortunately the operator get a team, which I'm sure I'll say it helped save my life. And I came all the others I've been in competition.

I've had two, two major instance. One was in Portugal. Now take this. And then these classic examples where you look back at it, and with the hindsight of all the things going on on that launch, it's easy to see all of what was happening, but we had Dusty's and back wind and all of those kinds of things going on in the launch. So it was obvious that there was things to be aware of that day.

And I took off and we've been talking about flight to come back and I went on this Ridge and I was sinking out and I just went through really horrible, which one I should attend out. I'm going to ask the bunny, but people will sing, hung out with you back in the valley. So it turns out like back along the Ridge again, and I connected wider with the same piece of arrow and another piece of I, which completely did it a piece of involuntary SIB on the, on the glider.

So that ends in one and had literally done SIB on the blind and from what people said, and it went into, I caught it and then they went into twist. So I ended up with three or four twists on the glider ascending, and I managed to land on a very right. Crashed, right. Very steep hill. And I didn't actually break anything.

Speaker 1 (58m 18s): You weren't, you were, you were trying to just, you, you were like, okay, I'm beyond the possibility of a reserve. I'm just going to try to pilot this in.

Speaker 2 (58m 26s): I mean, it's like, I've been punished. It was that bad. And so by the time I had sort of mentioned, you come around from being punched. I was like, got off the ground. Yeah. But the grounds now coming up so quickly, I just got buried wide to my brakes and just hit the ground. So that was, that was that incident, which could have been avoided if I be more reflective about what was going on on the, on the site.

Cause I imagine I have to do for a dusty and yeah. So I should have been more aware of that and I should have just bled out into the valley and taken my chances. I think that's why.

Speaker 1 (59m 14s): Sure. And like you said, at the end of the day, who cares?

Speaker 2 (59m 18s): Yeah. So that was incident. And then I, then I say, I says, I have enrolled her in 2015. So going into the last task and I was like second place behind Staker. So I think a very good position after two weeks of right. Competitive flying. And I took off and I had a knot in my knots again in my off a brake cascade.

And it meant that every time I try to the, it was flyable, but didn't really have too much control of appetite claps in that side of the building. So I can basically fly full bar and even flying one half box having to sort of weight shift, try and keep it like a straight normal situation. You just got mad that in a classic situation, on, in a good position competition, I just want to have to land business.

So I haven't, the thing with that situation is I'd actually further away from takeoff by class, some distance before you noticed there was a problem. The stockades typically there are way away from launch competition. So before I didn't notice the situation now about 20 minutes full stop and the stop hanging up, I went nickels and I stopped being involved. So I carried on racing basically, and I ended up getting fed and fed behind.

Cause I couldn't be competitive on both basically. And then I ended up back on the task and then I ended up in a sort of scrubby area off to the east, slightly off track now. So I was trying to work. And again, I wasn't really fixing on the day they go on that particular task. The last day, of course I was, all I was thinking about was my position. The fact that I was miles behind in this house, Nope.

Properly taken account of the fact that the sky had changed and the conditions what grade anyway. And if I've been thinking about that for you already realize that, you know, maybe cut us, wouldn't be able to go. And of course, I'm trying to stay up in this little scrappy area and I'm like paying tuition. I happened to stay, but I was crabbing along the small Ridge about land on it said that they switched off and the light just went on me completely. Then what happened? And I landed on my back, fractured my back. I, I don't imagine it was again, it was to do with the configuration of lines and everything.

A not in that. Maybe don't ask that they didn't depend what either. And again, you know, another example of, yeah, shouldn't have been doing it.

Speaker 1 (1h 2m 22s): Did Kirsty, have you had any the, those incidents or in St. Andre, has there been any kind of fear injury that's gone with any of those? Is there been any kind of, cause I know that we often talk about that. It's not so scary if you totally know what happened, you know, if you can kind of relive it through your brain and you know, you were in flow and I saw, you know, it all happened really in slow motion versus what the hell just happened, what happened there? And it sounds like that second one was that one you just discussing this kind of like that

Speaker 2 (1h 2m 51s): The one in, in, in Boulder, I don't really know what happened about the bladder wasn't in its proper configuration. That's what happened, but I didn't actually know. And no one else's dad, would you to cut 20 feet off the ground? Yeah, yeah. Instance like that should, should have, should have changed me that I should stop.

I, and when you dwell on that, you kind of think I must, I must be a NASA, the CRC, because I think a lot of people in a lot of whoops are like, you know, they think pop out in these completely bonkers in of itself, even though these things have happened to me, I don't know that I either shares I'm mad or it shows that the school is just so addictive and such a compelling thing to do that, that trumps everything else.

And I think that's probably it really, I just, I just love,

Speaker 1 (1h 4m 12s): I think we're all a little bit Nutter for sure. Kirsty, just, I want to be mindful of your time here. I know it's getting a bit later. You're part of the world, but I I'd love to ask you a few, just kind of quick questions, but you don't have to answer them quickly, but just kind of fire some, some random stuff at you here.

Speaker 2 (1h 4m 34s): No

Speaker 1 (1h 4m 34s): Tangents are great to dive as much as you want. So what's the funniest thing you've ever seen in flying recently. Yeah. You're a Brit and you all have great humor.

Speaker 2 (1h 4m 48s): Yeah. I can think of something that's quite weird that she, that, that just like just own believable. Okay. Which is the very first one I did was in, in Mexico inviting. And I was, that was my first Catlin team. Ross was that and there was another pilot.

Yeah. He's kind of retired from private in these days, but he's such a character and to be quite low key, but just always having stitches. And he stood in the, the queue via these have the red bull arch and you know, it was a bit like a, to trust chicken. And when you got your gear on and everything, you know, and they were, they were, so the last thing you want to do is what you want to do is exit the key.

It is like you just literally went there and then I was like,

Speaker 1 (1h 6m 17s): That's right in front of you. That's fantastic. That's quite hard to hide. Exactly. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (1h 6m 32s): That was funny.

Speaker 1 (1h 6m 35s): What would you like to see more of in our sport?

Speaker 2 (1h 6m 40s): I would like to see more. I would love to see, well, I mean, it's the fact that either I'm bad to say this, but I would love to see more women competing. Yeah. I think, I think actually I like the fact that we all compete together. You know, there's not like in other sports like tennis where all the men compete together. I think having everyone can be together is a good thing. I think that Ashley sent me when I first started doing cat ones and I'll see flying, not just with a few other women, but with a lot of other people or mainly men help me improve my skills.

So I asked quite a mix in that sense. And I love the fact that in Parabon competitions, again, you're not, you're not flying in kind of like a different leaks. You actually were flying together in that competition as well, because then, you know, suits you like me, you know, when you first start doing a competition is like, you might be there with, you know, someone likes a Kriegel or Russell, whoever, you know, how do you get to actually do that?

So I think it would be lucky to have more women flying in the sport, especially in the UK. I mean, the depths of women competing in competitions in the UK is credibly less. So yeah, that's happened as to wines, less women fine. But that's how long a conversation

Speaker 1 (1h 8m 10s): Do you have a, I mean, we have, well, I had a great conversation with a Dell about this a few years back and she had some great thoughts. Do, do you want, do you want to touch on that for a bit? Is it is

Speaker 2 (1h 8m 22s): Yeah, I kind of do. Yeah. Something like an ask lots of times obviously, but why? I mean, I think it is his day, but I think most women are operating in a different level of risk really. So I think a lot of women don't get into the sport because just the act of paragliding itself is considered too dangerous. I think, I think there's an element of that.

I think men typically here pads take a lot more risks. I think, I think risk is quite different that doesn't really to that. But I think the women that Duquesne, I mean, there's absolutely no reason really, apart from some of the, you know, physical constraints, wrappings, winks slices and stuff, there's actually no reason why, why women can't compete at the same level as men that I think this IQ actually getting into the sport in the first place, that it is hard for that to get and get translated into into when I'm doing big things in the sport.

Speaker 1 (1h 9m 29s): Yeah. And I mean, I think it's, it's, it's really proven itself out in the last few years as well that, you know, you, you do have radically smaller numbers and yet, so you can't expect, you know, huge numbers of big comps, but you know, you've seen Seiko and Laurie and Munis in this world, Gil was 18th or 19th overall. I mean she's tiny and Laurie were well, they were crushing in the XL, not worthy.

Did they both? Did you know, which is an incredibly physical endeavor. Yeah. There's, there's definitely this huge disadvantage with the weight thing. And you know, with Bruce doing this weightless cops is awesome idea. And I really hope that gets more teeth, but it becomes a lot more popular. Cause it's, it's there really truly, isn't a massive disadvantage there that we don't need to get into and it's been documented a million times, but what's great about paragliding is it doesn't require much different physical ability at all.

It's

Speaker 2 (1h 10m 38s): Like you said that

Speaker 1 (1h 10m 41s): Word.

Speaker 2 (1h 10m 42s): Yeah. It's actually, I mean, that's one of the reasons why you can sort of compete together really because on a sort of purely physical level, other than have to sit under a smaller ring, you know, there's nothing really going on that, you know, you can't do as a one same as a man. Maybe you go up a hill and he'll pull some strings, you know, saying, yeah, it's just getting more women into in the past. Grace. I mean, not the reasons I didn't ask sometimes wonder if it's a social thing. I mean, I know flying competitions in, in of itself is quite social, but the actual act itself is quite a bit, it's not a team sport in our sense at all, but when you're actually doing it as a solo effort, isn't it?

That comes into that as well. Sometimes. Maybe. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (1h 11m 39s): Does your partner fly?

Speaker 2 (1h 11m 41s): She has flame and she didn't fly before I met her and didn't fly and she she'd bought from house. How they, when I, when we started going out that wasn't for me, I really don't feel that, you know, your PA has to do what you say, but she decided she wanted to have a go and she did get qualified, but she never, she never got the bar. She never really got bitten by it. Something she absolutely wants you to do. So I do think that she, I think probably with Emma as well, I think it's two degrees that whole, not this a lonely sport, but you have to be very self confident.

I think that it actually coming back to the whole thing about mental side of things as well. I think honestly, in my, even in myself, sometimes he quite a, quite a thing to go onto a hill and south wheel kit, which again, you're doing on your own, essentially making sure all of your stuff is going to work for you. There's no one else to check it radius and then getting into the app and then making decisions about what you're going to do there. It's quite, it's quite a thing in a way. And I think it's not, that's not for everyone to say saying

Speaker 1 (1h 12m 59s): The two of you handle your obsession. Ha how does that work in a relationship? That's that's one that has a question I get from a lot of people navigate this. Yeah. I mean, like you said, it's, it takes a lot of time.

Speaker 2 (1h 13m 15s): It does. We talked about it anyone a bit and yeah, it's definitely use that phrase a bit in contention, but I think it is to a degree, especially when you've got a young family to say, do you mind if I just disappear for the day, I'm just gone. You know? I mean, that's, you know, say, you know, her interests as well, obviously, but not ones that take up that degree of, you know, it's bit like if you play tennis, she might say, well, can I just go and play tennis for a couple of hours?

You know, that's very different than saying I'm going to go. Yeah, well actually I want to go on a holiday two and a half weeks. Yeah, it does. It does come into play. Of course it does. As much as them, I still do it. You know, I am conscious of the fact that it's a bit one-sided and that

Speaker 1 (1h 14m 16s): Let's let's end on this last one that you've kind of answered this, but I think it's still, I think it's still be an interesting one to ask you, does Free flight make other aspects of your life better or worse?

Speaker 2 (1h 14m 31s): Oh, that's an interesting question. Does it make I, well, I would just touch on anyone. I think it's aspects it's made it less, you know, I think in of friendships and so on, I definitely, for some friendships not happening or I probably would have had more, so more friendships outside of flying. You know, a lot of my friendships are in flying for obvious reasons really say it, but I think I just can't ever imagine it not having been a major part of my, a lot of my life.

I just, it just, just as me, like, yeah, I can't think of anything better to do. I mean, I've done other sports as well. None of them, none of them have quite paragliding fast because again, it sounds a bit blip again, but it is to be an artist to Vinci's dream. Isn't it literally, if you're imagining when he was like, you know, several hundred years ago, you kind of thought about these concepts, like the idea that we can now do it in a way that's even more incredible than he even sort of imagined it's insane.

Now these new guide is now, you know, you can actually get hold of the lower line set and sort of in one thing, it's like nothing. And that holds you up, you know, all with your weight. And that's pretty amazing technology that can do that and you can apply like that and then put it back in the back and train, get a

Speaker 1 (1h 16m 21s): Kirsty. What a joy I been, I've been smiling for an hour and a half and my face is getting exhausted so much. It's great to connect with you. And next time we'll have to do this in person enrolled in you or someplace where you find yourself in the world. But thanks for sharing your thoughts and time and good luck raising a little one. That's that's quite a time.

Speaker 2 (1h 16m 51s): Yeah, but you say, Hey, can we come meet up and pass against

Speaker 1 (1h 16m 54s): It sounds great. Thank you very much.

Speaker 2 (1h 16m 56s): Wonderful.

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