Beyond gliding distance - stepping out of your comfort zone
Author:  Flavio Formosa
English Language
Paperback, dozens of medium quality, full color photos, many illustrations and tables, 212 pages, Copyright 2008
Dimensions: 6.26 x 9.37 x 0.47 inches (159 x 238 x 12 mm)

Table of Contents (PDF)

Introduction by the Author

I can’t help being surprised, time and again, by the considerable number of gliding enthusiasts who end up leaving the sport, after having invested large amounts of time and energy learning to fly. Most of them quit without an apparent reason, while still declaring their love for flying. I strongly suspect that this happens because they fail, more or less consciously, to make the transition from glider to soaring pilots, something which mostly comes through the practice of cross-country flight. This book doesn’t pretend to introduce any revolutionary technique, nor will it unveil the great and jealously hidden secret of accomplished cross-country pilots, simply because it doesn’t exist. It aims rather to be a collection, as logical, complete and up to date as possible, of the many small tricks which form the knowledge base of pilots who practice soaring flight with utter satisfaction. It deliberately addresses pilots who are still building on their experience, and therefore covers at length a few subjects which are normally part of the basic flying course. This is done with the explicit goal of helping newcomers to develop the self-trust which plays a very important role in stimulating the first steps into the big unknown. Your first personal achievements in cross-country flight, and a good deal of fun, are closer than you might believe. If these pages will ever help readers make their transition towards being competent and safe soaring pilots, their goal will be more than fulfilled.

About the Author

Flavio Formosa, born in 1962, has been a Sail Designer for more than twenty-five years.  His first glider flight was in 1992, and since then he has clocked about 1200 hours, and earned all FAI badges.  A flight instructor since 2000, he is a member of the Instructors' and Safety boards of the Italian Soaring Federation.

Overview by Paul Remde
The Table of Contents gives a very good overview of the topics covered in the book.  It has many sections which are unique to this book.  The target audience is soaring pilots that are just beginning to do cross-country flights, but the book includes many insights that any soaring pilot will find useful.

Note: I'm very flattered that the cover photo used for the book was taken by myself (Paul Remde).  It is of Tom Kelley's Schleicher ASG 29.  The photo was taken as Tom crossed the finish line at the 2007 U.S. 18 m Nationals in Albert Lea, Minnesota.

Review by Julian Fack of the U.K.

"I have been reading Flavio Formosa's new book, Beyond Gliding Distance, and I think it is excellent, how he manages to cover so much with so few words is amazing. ...I really think it should be in everyone's flight bag, the first modern gliding book I have seen." - Julian Fack, U.K.

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Beyond gliding distance

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