his skills rapidly improved.
When he was 13, Dillon went to
South Africa for the 2012 F3J World
Championship. Although he flew well
throughout the event, he didn’t have
the success we had hoped for, partly
because of the crazy wind conditions,
with ballast sometimes at 100% of the
model’s weight. These were not the
conditions we had practiced in. He
displayed his skills in many rounds, but
the wind took its toll. The experience
was excellent and bode well for
Dillon’s future campaigns.
Dillon flew in another F3J Team
Selection event and made the 2014 US
Junior Team to compete in Slovakia.
He excelled in Slovakia in a huge field
of Juniors and led the pack in great
conditions for much of the contest.
Dillon made the flyoffs, but failed
to complete the job—missing his time
in fickle conditions. Because of an
excellent all-around team performance
and a great fourth-place finish by
Dominic Lewis, the US Juniors
managed to capture the bronze team
Dillon’s experience at these two
world championships has helped
him learn how to handle defeat and
remain focused. As I wrote this, he was
practicing hard for the back-to-back
F3K and F3B World Championships in
July 2015. I am sure Dillon’s name will
be at the top of the leader board.
A few things have made a big
difference in Dillon’s development, and
are something that you could also do at
• First, he was identified as a Junior
prospect and recruited.
• A clear path with achievable goals
was laid out for him.
• He was introduced to a couple of
mentors who were willing to train and
Having supportive parents was also
important. I have great expectations of
Dillon’s imminent success on the world
stage. He has developed into a Soaring
pilot who is as good as anyone in this
country and probably the world. He is
hard to beat at any Soaring contest.
There are many Junior pilots out
there with crazy good thumbs flying
helicopters, multirotors, and 3-D
aircraft. Who could you identify as
a Soaring prospect and encourage to
accept the challenge? We must keep
working to bring these young pilots in
if our sport is to survive. Give it a try.
The rewards are simply amazing.
Go downwind and soar.
Team USA F3J
Team USA F3K
Team USA F3B
Gator F3B West
Rocky Mountain Soaring Association
97 Model Aviation SEP TEMBER 2015 www.ModelAviation.com