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John Barresi

2019 WSIKF Quad Mega Fly Record

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Long Beach WA, Aug 19-25 2019, WSIKF

This event is in the very early stages of planning at WSIKF 2019 (kitefestival.com), we have already received approval from the event organizers and we’ll announce training / meeting / record attempt schedules for the week along with supporting information, videos, documents and discussion for participants.

Festival dates are August 19-25, 2019, in Long Beach WA USA... NOTE AGAIN, this is a 2019 (TWENTY NINETEEN) event but we’re planning and discussing one year ahead so everyone can plan more easily.

ALL types of “1.5” sized quad kites would be welcome regardless of brand, and there will be NO FEE to participate.

Event page on FB...


WSIKF info...


We’ve got great inertia so far. :) 🤙

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If you’ve not participated in one of these before, I’m here to tell you that it’s set up for everyone to succeed - there are always naturally some folks who drop out but the love and educational quality of the group should always make it a worthwhile experience.

Everything you’re going to read below will seem like quite a lot of data but I must impress upon you clearly, while it would be useful to naturally absorb as much of it as you can, it is NOT required to fully understand it in order to participate - the info needed will be rich and clear, most of it will already be in place to give a clearer picture of where things belong, and there will be a TON of love and help on the field both before and after the attempts, it’s just kite flying - this is serious fun. 😉

Break down...

Typically, I run these HUGE mega flies while standing 100’-200’ behind the group (NOT FLYING) while everyone has a standard FRS/GMRS walkie talkie and headset or ear buds, all tuned to my channel while my broadcast to the group is “always on”, I also carry a bullhorn for back up and short announcements if needed.

Next layer are what I’ve come to call my “lieutenants”, ideally one experienced non-flying team pilot and communicator that act as direct liaisons and physical runners between myself and each 1/4 of the grid if I need to issue “hands on” adjustments, as well as to guide recoveries after a tangle (always fixable), a total of 4 non-flying lieutenants.

Whenever possible, we also have a secondary FLYING captain at the top (upwind end) of each column of 10 to manage smaller details within their line, a total of 10 flying leaders aside from the main coordinator and the lieutenants.

Last component of the team is ground crew, lots of friends and loved ones to help sort out snafus on the ground.

To fly in a grid of 100 (also describable as 10x10), we’ll likely work in two rows on the ground and four groups of 5x5 for launch, then assemble the big square (10x10) in flight, it’s worked very well to keep things organized / manageable in the past.

What is a grid? 

It’s a concept conceived by Felix Mottram of the Decorators (UK), picture this....

A team of 16 shoulder to shoulder (also breaks down as four times four pilots)... Each group of four rotates BOTH bodies and kites into a column (lead kite kite at top, lead body on upwind end of the physical column), once tightened up a bit this makes one big square of 4x4 in the sky, at which point the odd # pilots (1 and 3 in each group of 4) take one step to the right so each column of bodies is at a slight zig zag while the kites are still in a straight column.

Maintaining this formula, the kites and bodies get closer to be cohesive both in the sky and on the ground.

Within the whole 4x4 now we have the odd-numbered kite columns (from the right: 1 and 3) and even-numbered columns (2 and 4), we also have  the odd and even rows (counting from the top), as well as a square of 4 kites in the center with the other 12 making a complete square around them. These are just some of the ways of organizing what we see in the sky, and almost every movement required is basically A to B and B to A travel, very little actually requires traditional “following skills”.

The main premise of the grid is that each kite has a single designated “home” position that they move toward and away from, AND with the emergency option for the main coordinator to call “BACK TO GRID”, and all kites “morph” slowly and smoothly back to their home spot in that grid.

Last time we did this we did single column practices (including bodywork), smaller grid practices and a whole lot of fun flying with our friends.

More data dump to come, feel free to ask questions. 🙂 

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I was in the 81 fly! 2nd column from the left, 2nd kite down from the top! Yes you fear being "the one" that brings down  the whole thing!! Fuggetaboudit!!!! It's kites!!! Nothing overly hard here, in fact, John purposely keeps things pretty simple for the fact there are so many in the sky at once! The fun stuff usually happens in the smaller grids, more daring!!! But really, the big grid does take attention and listening to instructions. Just come with an open mind ......

Plan on big fun!!!

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No longer tentative, I’m super excited to announce that we officially have a green light from the event organizers for a large dedicated quad field that I’ll be coordinating (with help) for the whole week — watch this event page for more information and daily festival schedule over the many months ahead before WSIKF in 2019, again that’s TWENTY-NINETEEN (next year) but plan early because lodging in town often fills up a full year in advance. 🤙🤙

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Just an update here...

Everything is proceeding as expected with a projected 130-170 quad fliers RSVP'd for WSIKF. ✌️

Ongoing discussion, tips, articles and references can be found here:


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