There’s nothing like the atmosphere at a Pattern contest! This panorama picture was taken at the NSRCA
District 7 championship in Arvin (Bakersfield) CA in 2013.
the number of two-meter Pattern
airplanes on display! I think there were
approximately 25 pilots at that contest. I
had a chance to meet Jon Carter, current
president of the National Society of
Radio Control Aerobatics (NSRCA), the
RC Aerobatics Special Interest Group.
At the time, Jon was the vice president
for NSRCA District 7 and he welcomed
me to the addiction, introduced me to
people, and got me hooked up with
a “buddy” to ensure I understood the
contest. The experience was wonderful!
I not only met my goal in the first
round (having only one zero for a
flopped stall turn), but I managed to
place fourth out of five Sportsman
competitors. I was hooked.
A few weeks later, when I went to a
two-day contest that was three hours
away in Sacramento, I told myself that
this was probably as far as I would travel
to a contest, and I’d only occasionally go
to one. Who I was kidding?
I attended three out of four possible
contests in the closing months of the
Pattern season in 2011. In 2012, I
traveled with the “NorCal” Pattern
crowd across California. I think I
competed in at least 10 contests that
first full season of
my addiction, and
it has grown from
Why Fly Pattern?
When I started
Aerobatics, I was
a sport flier, as
most of us are,
with little or no
interest in competition (other than that
latent memory from 1989). I flew cool
airplanes and various foam Scale models.
I bored holes in the sky and crashed
quite a few airplanes in the process,
losing orientation or simply becoming
confused and plowing the aircraft into
the ground. I took off with only one
sense of purpose—to have some fun—
and I was getting bored. Sure, the Scale
airplanes looked neat, but fundamentally
they all flew the same and flying in
circles, even with the occasional loop
and roll, was becoming tiresome.
Flying Pattern transformed all
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