Gliding: Uley ace wins silver at World Championships

Gliding: Uley ace wins silver at World Championships

Andy Davis (left) on the podium with his trophy. Picture by Andy Smart

Andy Davis in his glider. Picture by Andy Smart

Andy Davis in his glider. Picture by Andy Smart

Andy Davis in his glider. Picture by Andy Smart

First published in Sport Gazette Series: Photograph of the Author by , Sports editor covering the Thornbury, Dursley and Yate areas

TWO-TIME World Gliding champion Andy Davis, from Uley, won the silver medal in the Open Class at the World Gliding Championships at Leszno in Poland.

Flying his JS-1 glider, the 58-year-old flew 10 races totalling more than 3,100km over the two-week competition, finishing only one race outside the top six.

Going into the final race, Davis had a slim lead over the rest of the field but a sparkling performance from German pilot Michael Sommer put him into the gold medal spot.

Davis' second place finish wasn’t enough to maintain his overall lead and he had to settle for a silver medal to go with the gold medals he won in 1993 and 2003 before deciding to retire from international competition, a decision that he subsequently overturned).

His performance in the Open Class was part of an outstanding overall showing by the British team which resulted in the UK winning the World Team Cup.

These results are the latest in a long gliding career. As well as his World Championship successes, Davis has won more UK national titles than he can remember and is an active coach, both to UK teams and at Bristol & Gloucestershire Gliding Club based at Nympsfield.

In 2006 he was awarded the MBE for services to gliding.

Davis' crew at the championship was his wife, Pammi, who ensured that he was always prepared to championship standards, helped with the launch and generally ensured that the competition ran smoothly. He was cheered on from the UK by his son, Matt, who is following in his father’s footsteps and who will be defending his UK Junior title later this month.

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