Winners of the Can-Am Challenge, from left: Mel Lyne, Don McKay, Buzz Wilson, Greg Davis. All photos by Roberta Martin.

Canadian American Diesel Combat Challenge

June 30, 2012, Arlington, Wash.

By Buzz Wilson

Nine flyers showed up under a threatening sky at Arlington Washington to fly Diesel Combat. The sky did not disappoint and provided the rain showers. For those who live in parts of the country where you experience drought, forget rain dances and cloud seeding, put on a Diesel Combat Contest and the rain will come.

The nine flyers consisted of four Americans, four Canadians, and one Transborderite. We decided that the Americans would fly the Canadians, this left us with a problem -- what do you do with a Transborderite.

Judging would include one Canadian and one American. The Canadian would judge the American flyer and the American would judge the Canadian. Any disputes would be resolved by the CD using the judges in a game of Whack a Mole.

Initially the contest was run using NW Diesel Rules with one exception. Prior to beginning the engine starting period, pilots were allowed to warm their engine. Ten matches were flown prior to the best part of the contest -- Roberta's Lunch. In a previous C-Cup, report I talked about Roberta's catered lunches. Each lunch gets bigger and better. A few of the items were Buffalo Wings, Kielbasa, Potato salad, veggie and cheese tray, deviled eggs, and for desert fresh carrot cake cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.

Photo: Roberta's fabulous lunch.

After lunch, we adjusted the starting process. Both pilots got to start and tune their engines; then the planes were launched. The CD started the match clock and started combat. I will be proposing to make this part of the NW rules. There were many good matches going the full time limit with multiple cuts. Many matches had cut counts of 3-2.

Greg and Kelly entertained the crowd by having their planes mate at the top of the circle. It was a violent mating and any off spring will be ugly. Not even Mel could put them back in the air with one of his famous tape wraps. This was the only significant midair.

There were a large number of push rod failures when the plane hit the ground.

At the Regionals, Gene and I showed Mel the GSUMP lines that we were using in Half A. Mel picked up some 015 and used them for the D-Bat contest. He was pleased with them.

At the end of four rounds, Mel was 4-0, Buzz 3-1, and four flyers 2-2. The four flyers were Don McKay, Robert Smith, Greg Davis, and Kelly Crozier. There would be a fly off for the two final slots. Robert lost to Don and Kelly lost to Greg.

The finals would be Mel, Gregg, Don, and Buzz. Since I had not flown Mel, he and I flew the first semifinal with me losing. Greg flew Don with Don prevailing. Greg and I flew for third and fourth. Don and Mel flew for first and second. When it was all over with Mel was first, Don second, Buzz third, and Greg fourth.

Here are the results (Northwest standings points in parentheses):

Mel Lyne, Garibaldi Highlands, B.C (9)
2. Don McKay, Redmond, Wash. (8)
3. Buzz Wilson, Belfair, Wash. (7)
4. Greg Davis, Port Coquitlam, B.C. (6)
5. Kelly Crozier, B.C.
Robert Smith, Roy, Wash.
7. Jeff Rein, Covington, Wash.
Ken Burdick, Kent, Wash.
Barrie Hobkirk, B.C.

From left: Buzz and Roberta; The Canadian Contingent, Mel Lyne, Kelly Crozier, Greg Davis, Barrie Hobkirk; Mel, Greg and Barrie in the pits.

From left: Val Smith; Bob and Don; Barrie, Bob, Mel, Greg, Kelly, Buzz and Don.

From left: Mel, Bob, Barrie, Greg, Val, Kelly, Roberta, Buzz; Greg Davis carrying plane; Ken.

From left: Bob; Buzz and Ken celebrate; Bob and Mel in action.

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