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Vanilla Skies Over Manilla

Allan Barnes in his glider

Manilla local, Allan Barnes (owner of Ambleside Bed & Breakfast on the Rushes Creek Road) has won the NSW State Gliding Championships. The Championships this year were held locally at the Lake Keepit Soaring Club. Allan was happy to win the Sports Class event with 6062 points, over 1000 points clear of his nearest competitor, Paul Dickson from Hunter Valley.

The event attracted 24 pilots from around the state, who competed in seven straight days and in perfect gliding conditions. Each task was a race of several hundred km, lasting between two and four hours, with turnpoints as far away as Moree and Tambar Springs. Also successful was Allanís clubmate Bruce Taylor, from Kentucky who won the Open Class with 6182 points, just 267 points clear of Mak Ichikawa, also from Hunter Valley.

The Lake Keepit Soaring Club offers joyflights for everybody and training for anyone wishing to learn gliding, as well as providing launching opportunities for existing pilots who like to experience the excellent cross-country gliding conditions that the region has to offer. People around the world come to our area, known to offer amongst the best flying conditions of the southern hemisphere.

The local gliding club can be contacted at, or on 02 6769 7514. Everybody is also welcome to pop in for a coffee and to have a look around.

Photos: Top Allan in his glider. Above from left to right: Paul Dickson, Allan Barnes and Bruce Taylor.