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Flying 1900 km unsupported – Icarus Trophy on the Viper

December 16, 2016

Most of our flights are in the backyard in a known environment.  Doesn‘t it get a little boring after a while? And suddenly a bunch of pilots decide to strap the sleeping bag onto the paramotor and leave for the unknown and accepted the challenge of the Icarus Trophy – the toughest paramotor race. Miroslav Svec paramotor pilot from Slovakia and owner of well known paramotor brand Scout took part in the latest Icarus Trophy and finished the adventure on his Ozone Viper 3.

During more than a week Miroslav flew unsupported over 1900 kilometers, flying from glaciers at the border with Canada, high elevated desert, volcanoes, enormous lava fields, the Great Salt Lake, swamps and salt flats, high elevation mountain passes, deep unforgiving canyons, arches, rock reefs, … all the way to the desserts at Las Vegas.
Miroslav reports: “We had to fly in different weather conditions, start in snow, hail and sub-zero temperatures in Montana over to Idaho and tropical temperatures in Arizona and Nevada just a week later.  Flying unsupported, you had to take all the gear with you: additional fuel, 4 liters of 2T oil, camping gear, spare clothes, water, some food, cameras, charges, batteries. Only start and finish point are given. We had to plan all route, search for fuel stops, analyze the weather, adapt your route, find shelter for the night … make good decisions and accept the consequences of the bad ones! I chose to fly Viper 3 22 for this race and I think my choice was pretty close to perfect! There are a few things that are crucial for this kind of adventure and there are a few that are beneficial to make a glider the ultimate cross country weapon: inflation, takeoff and landing speed, stability in turbulence, fuel efficiency and speed. Viper 3 tick in all boxes! It is very easy to inflate, I believe Viper 3 has significantly lower takeoff and landing speed than other gliders similar class and size. In mild turbulence Viper 3 is a very “nervous” glider, it moves all the time and at first it feels like require steering all the time. But soon, I learnt that it remains super solid and I have never had a single collapse! Efficiency of the Viper 3 is just superb.  I had the same fuel efficiency at slow and at full speed. Its unbelievable. Obviously the consumption per hour increases, but in pretty much the same rate as speed, giving me almost the same range for given fuel amount. Speed – I would love to have a bit more. Most of the pilots were flying smaller sizes… I had a ton of fun and adventure on this trip and I am planning to test Viper 4 to use it in the next long cross country adventure”.

Congratulation from all Ozone Team!

Read the full story with plenty breathtaking pictures here

Icarus Trophy web page here