The basic rules of Judging - page 1

Every figure starts with a potential 'perfect' mark or grade of 10 points.

Each Judge deducts points (to the nearesti ½) from the starting 'bank' of 10 for errors seen, to arrive at his or her personal final mark for each figure. This is a fault driven process - you're not marking "goodness".

  • On the "A" or main box axis (into or out-of-wind) every figure MUST be flown in the correct direction relative to the official wind. Figures flown in the wrong direction MUST get a 'Hard Zero' mark.
  • On the "B" or cross box axis the direction of flight is not a judging criterion, the pilot can choose either way. At a restart after a break however the original direction of flight MUST be maintained.
  • Figures must start and end in erect or inverted level flight on the "A" or "B" axis. Powered aircraft must fly with a perfectly horizontal CGT, whilst gliders can fly with their CGT at a consistent angle of glide-slope to maintain speed.
  • The first figure of any sequence starts as the aircraft leaves horizontal flight. For all subsequent figures, the figure finishes as soon as the aircraft achieves horizontal flight. All flight thereafter belongs to the next figure.
  • For every 5° of yaw, pitch or roll by which the aircraft CGT or ZLA differs from what is required when starting, at all 'key' points and at the exit from each figure, you should deduct one point. A cumulative error in any figure of more than 45° must by definition result in a mark of 0.0

In the diagram above:     

Radii 'A' and 'E' need not be the same, but 'E' is flown much more slowly.  

Lines 'B' and 'D' must be the same length.

  • For a 2/1 ratio : deduct 2 marks
  • For a 3/1 ratio : deduct 3 marks
  • No line at all : deduct 4 marks

For example:

  • If the aircraft above starts the figure with 5° nose-up, no yaw and between 5° and 10° of bank
  • During the figure it is pitched OK but yawed 5° and rolled 10° off axis at a key point
  • It ends with 5° of yaw, between 0° and 5° nose-down and no bank angle

The result is: 10 points - 1 - 0 - 1.5 ... - 0 - 1 - 2 ... - 1 - 0.5 - 0  =  3 marks for that figure
A very important point to remember is that the whole aerobatic judging system:

  • Does NOT reward how "good" a figure looks - this would just be wow-factor judging
  • It DOES downgrade from a fixed "bank" (10) to penalise specific / observed errors by fixed amounts.