Episode 88- Rob Sporrer and building community, risk awareness and focus on fundamentals

This conversation covers a lot of ground- we discuss risk management; the importance of working on the fundamentals no matter where you are in your progression as a pilot; where the sport typically bites and how you can beat the odds; how you can and should develop mental checklists; how to build a thriving flying community; how to support those who support you; the difference in SIV and the real world and a ton more.

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Episode 86- Annalena Hinestroza and managing a passion for flight

In this wide-ranging episode we discuss women in the sport, the importance of getting solid foundational skills, gear and why people choose the wrong equipment for their skill level, how to get into comps and how to be an efficient pilot, why learning slowly is so important, and why flying a more reasonable glider well is about the most rewarding thing you can do. We recorded this episode live in Colombia- enjoy!

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Episode 85- Mark Watts and letting your subconscious do the work

Mark Watts is one of only a very few UK pilots to have won the British Championships, a PWC, the UK X-Contest League, AND held the open distance record (at 275 km, which held until 2017). He has been on the British team many times, currently shares the out and back record in the UK with Hugh Miller and has been competing for over 25 years. Relentlessly fast, tactical, and consistent whenever Mark shows up at a comp you’ve got a formidable opponent. Mark has been one of the most-requested guests we’ve had because he avoids the spotlight, so while his flying resume speaks for itself not much is known about what makes him tick.

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Episode 84- Adrian Garza and Chasing thin Air

After getting his novice sign-off in Mexico (30 flights) under the instruction of 2019 Red Bull X-Alps pilot and recent podcast guest Marko Hrgetic Hrga, for his very first solo flight (flight 31) Adrian Garza hiked up one of the highest volcanoes in North America and flew off. And it’s been all volcanoes since.

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Episode 83- Ziad Bassil and Dust of the Universe

Ziad Bassil is someone most pilots who have gear questions already know. His blog the “Dust of the Universe” is probably (definitely?) the most comprehensive independent gear testing site on Earth. He does it solely for pleasure and is PROLIFIC. If it flies, he flies it and then gives his many, many followers his opinions.

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Episode 82- Mark “Forger” Stucky and becoming a Rocket Man

On December 13th, 2018 test pilot Mark “Forger” Stucky piloted SpaceShipTwo, Virgin Galactic’s tourism spaceship into space for the first time after years and years of testing and many set backs. He and his co-pilot Rick “CJ” Sturckow had a “long burn” and reached 51 miles above the Earth (over 270,000′), and reached mach 2.9.

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Want to Learn Acro? Start with the right kit.

In summary- if you’re like me and keen to learn some of the more technical acro moves and also like me and have a limited playground, do yourself a favor and get the right kit. It’s sexy getting a bad ass acro wing, but you’ll pay the price trying to tame it. Everyone I’ve spoken with who has helis dialed says it takes hundreds and hundreds of attempts just to get close. You can get lucky every once in awhile, but to really nail it you’ve got to have a lot of time, a lot of patience and the right tool. 

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Episode 74- Theo Warden and Winning BIG

Theo Warden is only 19 years old and just took home two wins that would be truly amazing in a career of competition flying, let alone from someone who’s just getting seriously into the game. Theo took home gold at the Europeans in Portugal in August, then chalked up another win immediately afterwards at the British Nationals in Krushevo, Macedonia.  Two of the toughest comps in the world, two back to back wins. How in the world did he do it?

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Episode 69- Armin Harich and Sending Flatlands and Flying accident free

Armin Harich is the co-founder of Skywalk Paragliders, started flying in 1989 and has never had an accident, and is the first person to fly over 300km in Germany, and he did it on a EN B wing (the Skywalk Tequila). I was told by many people before speaking to Armin that he’s a flatlands “SkyGod” so we focused much of this show on flatlands flying techniques and how people started flying the flatlands, dealing with airspace, how to assess weather in advance of a potentially good day, and a lot more.

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Episode 68- Nik Hawks and weighing the risks

Nik Hawks returns to the Mayhem to share two pretty scary incidents that ended well, but came with a LOT of lessons that every pilot can learn from including: coming back from “fear injuries”  by using the big 4, time, building exposure, and pattern recognition; how to get better at self-assessment (wingovers, exit from 360, exiting and entering spirals cleanly, avoiding and handling collapses, etc.); how to ask older/better pilots for help and the best way to approach mentors; when a pilot is really ready to go XC and what risks that involves; what groundhandling can…and maybe can’t help with…

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