HKRCSS The Hong Kong Radio Control Soaring Society

Main HK F3F League Typhoon Race Results and Records Rules Safety


 - HKRCSS F3F League - Rules and Contest Arrangements
 - FAI F3F Rules 2021 Edition
 - Unofficial F3F competitions

Rules and Contest Arrangements

Revision 8 / March 2022

1. League Schedule

1.1, Number of races
Hong Kong F3F League is an annual league starts in January and end in December of each year. The league consists of twelve races that are usually held on the first Sunday of each month. The actual league schedule is announced in advance for a two weeks consultation period prior to the start of the league. Once the schedule is set, change of a race date is not allowed unless it is found coinciding with International FAI F3F contests (Note 1) later and a new race date will be announced for consultation as soon as possible (Note 2).

1.2, Postponement or cancellation of a race
Competitions are usually scheduled on the first Sunday of each month. Due to unforeseen circumstances such as weather, CD is allowed to advance the competition to the Saturday before the scheduled Sunday, or postpone the competition to the following Saturday, Sunday or a public holiday within the month. There is no limitation on the number of date change. However, once a competition is started, the competition of the month is assumed executed and there shall be no more date change allowed no matter the competition is successful or not.

1.3, Incomplete races
A race is said to be incomplete if less than four rounds are successfully run on the race day. There will be no continuation race and all the scores for the completed rounds will be discarded and voided. Slope and personal best times will be kept as official record even the race is incomplete.

1.4, Minimum number of competitors
The number of competitors in each round of a race shall not be less than ten.

2, League Result

2.1, Scoring for the league
A minimum of one league race and a maximum of 12 league races should be conducted. Depending on the number of successful races held, there will be a corresponding number of discards for a pilot's worse scores according to the following table:

Number of successful races held Number of discards
1-3 0
4-6 1
7-9 2
10-12 3

All completed races after discarding the worse races according to the above table will be counted towards the ranking list. A pilot’s score in a race is computed by normalizing his own score by the best score of this race and multiplying the result with 1000 points. The computation is similar to F3F scoring.

2.2, Participation in International F3F contests
League results will be used to qualify pilots who can represent Hong Kong for International F3F contests (Note 1). For each International F3F contest, the 6 successfully held league races prior to the contest registration deadline will be used for the qualification. (The last race will usually be the one a few months before the contest deadline to account for the necessary working time. This will be announced for each International contest as soon as possible.) For each pilot, the best 5 races out of the 6 will be used as the personal result. Pilots have the highest score will be qualified for the International contest. In case if a qualified pilot relinquishes his right, the pilot next on the line will be qualified.

The qualification of each International F3F competition is independent to each other. This means a pilot qualified for one International contest will not automatically disqualify him from another International contest.

All qualified pilots must be local pilots who hold a Hong Kong ID card.

3. Race Rules

3.1, FAI rules
All races follow the current FAI F3F published rules. Please see the FAI F3F Rules.

3.1.1, About the models used
Model checking and registration are not necessarily to be carried out before each competition. However, the FAI requirements of model design must be strickly observed and the CD can check a model at any time during the competition if suspected.
Sharing of one model between two or more competitors is not allowed.

3.1.2, About practice flights before competitions
Unless otherwise agreed by the CD, no flying of any kind is allowed after the preparation team arrived the flying site and before the competition. Failed to follow the instruction of landing by the preparation team will be subject to penalty of 100 points from the day's final result.

3.2, Local rules
3.2.1, Launch failure
Whether the failure is caused by the pilot or the launcher, the pilot will get a 0 mark.

3.2.2, Landing failure
Landing failure means the model landed outside of the assigned landing zone. Unless landing in the landing zone becomes impossible or it could cause a safety issue due to circumstances that are out of the control of the competitor, duly witnessed by the official judges, landing failure will result in a 0 mark (DNF). Model crashed during a landing will not be considered as a landing failure, as long as it crashed in the landing zone.
Note: If a safety zone is assigned, landing in the safety zone will result in a penalty of 100 points according to FAI F3F rules edition 2019.

3.2.3, Re-flight procedure
No airborne reflight is allowed. All re-flight must be carried out after a proper landing according to the instruction of the Contest Director (CD). If the landing failed, the re-flight will be cancelled. The resulting score and penalty will refer to 3.2.2.

3.2.4, Flight interruption
If the flight cannot be carried out or due to safety issues, duly witnessed by the official judges, the CD can interrupt the flight before the competitor finished the timed flight. If the cause of the interruption is non-avoidable, the competitor is eligible for a re-flight. Otherwise he will get a 0 mark (DNF).

Some examples, but not limited to:
a, The condition becomes too weak that the flight in progress is obviously not possible to continue.
b, The flying area is not clear or the model is damaged that could cause a safety issue.
c, Timing errors that must do a re-flight.

3.2.5, Announcement of a re-flight
If the competitor is eligible for a re-flight (see 5.8.5, Volume 3, Section 4 of FAI sporting code), he/she will be acknowledged by the CD the reflight option. The competitor has to decide immediately if he would accept the re-flight or not.

If it is judge errors could cause an advantage to the result, the result will be discard and the competitor must carry out a re-flight. (Usually in this case the CD can interrupt the flight before it is completed.)

Some examples, but not limited to:
a, Finish line late buzzer - Competitor can choose to do a re-flight or not.
b, Finish line early buzzer - Must do a re-flight.

Time records made in un-favourable conditions to the competitors (for example, example a above) are official.

4. Contest Arrangements

4.1, Contest administration team
A team composed of a CD, a co-CD and one or two helpers is assigned to handle and run a scheduled race. There will be a roster on the league race timetable, and the members of a team for each race day will be announced before the league started. This team is solely responsible for setting up the contest equipment, running the contest and recording the timings. All team members must arrive at the flying site at least half an hour before the official start time of the contest in order to prepare for the site, setting up the poles, running the cables, testing the timer, and etc. The designated CD, co-CD and helper can also participate in the contest. During the CD’s own F3F run, the co-CD is in charge and via versa. Only the CD (or co-CD during CD's own run) is allowed to judge and give penalty. CD, co-CD and helper do not need to serve as line judges. The arrangement of line judges follows the workable scheduling policy we already have in previous years. Helpers, onlookers and other pilots must keep quiet during a pilot's run in order to minimize disturbance to the contesting pilot. CD has the power to expel or disqualify anyone who breaks this regulation after giving repeated warnings.

4.2, Contest duration
The official start time of the contest is normally at 8:00am, unless otherwise specified by the CD according to the flying site selected and weather condition. Pilots who arrived late is allowed to join the race at the end of the current running round. There shall be no make up for the missed rounds. The last round is usually the one running at 4:30pm, however, it is dependent on the flying site, wind condition and number of contestants. CD should announce the end time prior to start the contest.

4.3, Contest fee
A contest fee of HK$40 for HKRCSS members and HK$60 for non-members for each race will be charged. Pilot who has not entered the league before will not be charged for his first race. This fee is subject to change after annual review by HKRCSS, however, it will be based on a balanced budget principle according to the average number of contestants in the league.

4.4, Awards
4.4.1, Shields for each race
There will be shields awarded for the champion, 1st runner-up, 2nd runner-up and the fastest time in each monthly race. The CD for that race is responsible for purchasing/making the shields and brings them to the flying site. The budget for the shields should not be more than half of the total contest fee collected for that race. Remaining will be saved and then contribute to the making of the year-end trophies and equipment maintenance.

4.4.2, Year-end awards for the league
There will be trophies of decent quality (or equivalent) or certificate awarded for 1st to 8th places of individual, and 1st to 3rd places of team, and the fastest time in the league result table. Each pilot who has participated in the league races will receive a certification of appreciation.

To promote F3F sport, a “Top of New Blood Award” will be presented to a new F3F pilot who can fulfill the following requirements: i, has not joint more than half of the successfully held races in the previous leagues, and ii, average score of 900 or above, and iii, highest score among the other new bloods.

1, "International F3F contests" refer to those that have limitation on the number of participants of each country. This includes Typhoon race, Viking Race and FAI F3F World Championship.

2, Due to the different natures of International F3F contests, say the span of the contest and the time required for travelling and preparation, for flexibility we tend not to precisely state the method of choosing a new day. Anyhow, we will try to choose a day that is acceptable by the league contestants as a principle, and we believe that there should be enough time (usually over half a year) for the contestants to adjust their schedule for the new day.

Revision 8.0 / March 6, 2022
1.2, Revised the competition date change, allowed for more than one date change and competitions can be held on Saturdays or public holidays.

Revision 7.0 / January 1, 2019
1.1, Change race schedule to 12 dates, on the first Sunday of each month.
1.2, Due to weather factor, allow postpone of a competition.
1.4, The minimum number of competitors in a race is ten. 3.2.2, 100 penalty if landed on safety zone.
3.2.3, Cancelled "result in a 0 mark (DNF)." 0 score or additional 100 penalty shall be refer to 3.2.3.
4.1, Included helper who can race and does not need to help as line judge.
4.2, State clearly that there is no make up for the missed rounds for those who come late.

Revision 6.2 / December 10, 2017
1.1, Change race schedule to 18 dates in two sessions.

Revision 6.1 / December 24, 2016
3.2.5, Cancelled wind condition related reflight arrangement, that the reflight is now compulsory in 2017 code.

Revision 6.0 / December 20, 2016
3.1.2, Add details about the penalty of practice flight before competitions.

Revision 5.0 / February 2014
1.1, 12 matches out of 15 scheduled days (Same as 2012).
3.1.1, Add details of model requirements.
3.2.5, Cancel the requirement the a reflight must be preceded by a completed flight.
Cancel the limitation that the competitor cannot have the time result before the reflight decision.
Time records are still accepted if condition is not good.
Some wordings update.

Revision 4.0 / February 2014
1.1, Cancelled 12 out of 15 competitions.
1.2, Revised directives of race cancellation. Added guid lines for cancellation.
4.1, Allow 2 helpers.
4.4.2, Trophies / Certificates for places 1 to 8 at final.

Revision 3.0 / February 2013
3.2, Local rules updated.
4.3, "Re-flight" canceled because the updated local rules covered the details of the re-flight handling. 4.3 becomes "Contest fee" and so on.

Revision 2.0 / December 2012
1.1, Change of race schedule (12 out of 15 scheduled races)
1.2, Decision on race cancellation or change of flying site.

Revision 1.2 / August 2011
1.3, Amendment: Change "Fastest time" to "Slope best time".
Note 1, World Championship is not provisional.

Revision 1.1 / June 2011
1.1, Add note 2.
1.3, Personal best and site record will be kept as official even the race is incomplete.

FAI F3F Rules 2021 Edition

FAI Sporting Code
Section 4 – Aeromodelling
Volume F3
Radio Control Soaring Model Aircraft
2021 Edition


5.8.1. Definition: This contest is a speed event for radio controlled slope gliders.

5.8.2. Characteristics of Radio Controlled Slope Gliders

Paragraph B.3.1 a) of Section 4B (Builder of the Model) is not applicable to class F3F.

Maximum surface area .................................... 150 dm2
Maximum flying mass . ...................................... 5 kg
Loading ............................................................ less than 75 g/dm2

The use of any onboard-sensed data to automatically move the control surfaces or to modify the aircraft geometry is prohibited.

Minimum radius of fuselage nose 7.5 mm in all orientations (see template below).

The radio shall be able to operate simultaneously with other equipment at the normally used spacing in the allocated R/C bands (i.e. 35 MHz : 10 kHz).

The competitor may use three models in the contest. The competitor may combine the parts of the models between the rounds provided the resulting model used for flight conforms to the rules and that the parts have been checked before the start of the contest. Addition of ballast (which must be located internally in the model) and/or change of angles of setting are allowed. Variation of geometry or area is allowed only if it is actuated at distance by radio control.

Any technological device used to aid in supplying data of the air’s condition or direct feedback of the model’s flight status is prohibited during the flight. These devices include any transmission or receiving devices not used to directly control the model. Telemetry of signal strength at the aircraft receiver and state of the receiver battery is permitted. The usage of corrective eyeglasses and sunglasses is permitted. If an infringement of this rule occurs, the pilot will be disqualified from the contest.

5.8.3. Competitor and Helper: The competitor must operate his radio equipment personally. Each competitor is normally permitted one (1) helper. This helper is only to assist and advise the competitor until the model is passing Base A for the first time in the direction to Base B and after the scored flight is completed. An additional helper for launching might be permitted by the CD in case of strong wind and/or difficult terrain.

5.8.4. Definition of an Attempt: There is an attempt when the model has left the hands of the competitor or his helper.

5.8.5. Number of Attempts: The competitor has one (1) attempt on each flight. An attempt can be repeated if:
  1. the launching attempt is impeded, hindered or aborted by circumstances beyond the control of the competitor, duly witnessed by the official judges;
  2. his model collides with another model in flight or other impediment and the competitor is not to blame on that account;
  3. the flight was not judged by the fault of the judges.
  4. any part of the model fails to pass above a horizontal plane, level with the starting area, within five (5) seconds of exiting the course, due to circumstances beyond the control of the competitor, duly witnessed by the official judges.
The repeated flight (“re-flight”) shall happen as soon as possible considering the local conditions.
If a pilot announces a protest against the result of his flight and this protest for a “re-flight” cannot be decided by the jury before the end of the running round, the pilot will obtain a “provisional re-flight” (with all consequences regarding penalties) in order to achieve a countable score. The jury will then decide whether the original score or the score of the “provisional re-flight” will count. After carrying out the “provisional re-flight”, the protest cannot be withdrawn.

5.8.6. Cancellation of a Flight: A flight is official when an attempt is carried out, whatever result is obtained.
A flight is official but gets a zero score if:
  1. the competitor used a model not conforming to FAI rules;
  2. the model loses any part while airborne;
  3. the helper advises the competitor during the timed flight;
  4. the model is controlled by anyone other than the competitor;
  5. the flight is not carried through;
  6. the model lands outside the assigned landing area;
  7. the model is not launched within 30 seconds from the moment the starting order is given.
  8. any part of the model fails to pass above a horizontal plane, level with the starting area, within five seconds of exiting the course.
  9. the model is not seen entering the course by the Judge at Base A.
5.8.7. Organisation of Starts: The flights are to be performed round by round. The starting order is settled by draw in accordance with the radio frequencies used.

The competitor is entitled to three (3) minutes of preparation time from the moment he is called to the ready box.

After the three (3) minutes have elapsed, the starter may give the order to start. After the starter has given the order to start, the competitor or his helper must launch the model within thirty (30) seconds by hand from the starting area indicated by the organiser.

If possible, the starting area, including the audio system, shall be situated in the middle of the course (equal distance from Base A and Base B).

The time from launch to the moment the model enters the speed course must not exceed thirty (30) seconds.

If the model has not entered the speed course (i.e. first crossing of Base A in the direction of Base B) within the thirty (30) seconds, the scored flight will commence at the moment the thirty (30) seconds expire. If the model has not entered the speed course within the thirty (30) seconds, this is to be announced.

5.8.8. Task: The task is to fly ten (10) legs on a closed speed course of one hundred (100) metres in the shortest possible time from the moment the model first crosses Base A in the direction of Base B. If some irremovable obstacles do not allow one hundred (100) metres the course may be shorter but not less than eighty (80) metres. This exception does not apply for world or continental championships.

The competitor’s model must be visible to the appropriate judge on the turns at Bases A and B.

5.8.9. The Speed Course: The speed course is laid out along the edge of the slope and is marked Base A and Base B with two (2) clearly visible flags. The organiser must ensure that the two (2) turning planes are mutually parallel and perpendicular to the slope.

Base A is the official starting plane. At Base A and Base B, an Official announces the passing of any part of the intact model in flight with a sound signal when the model is flying out of the speed course. Furthermore, a signal announces the first time the model is crossing Base A in the direction of Base B.

5.8.10. Safety:
The sighting device used for judging the turns must be placed in a safe position.

The organiser must clearly mark a safety line representing a vertical plane which separates the speed course for the timed flight (from leaving the hand until completing the scored flight) from the area where judges, other officials, competitors and spectators stay. Crossing the safety plane by any part of the intact model in direction to the safety area during the timed flight will be penalised by 100 points each. The organiser must appoint one (1) judge to observe, using an optical sighting device, any crossing of the safety plane.

Additionally, the organiser must clearly mark the boundary between the landing area and the safety area assigned for other activities. After release of the model from the hand of the competitor or helper, any contact of the model with any object (earth, car, stick, plant, etc) within the safety area will be penalised by 100 points. Contact with a person within the safety area will be penalised by 1000 points. The number of contacts does not matter (maximum one penalty).

If there was an additional penalty of 100 points because of crossing the safety plane only 1000 points will be deducted. The penalty will be a deduction of 100 or 1000 points from the competitor’s final score and shall be listed on the score sheet of the round in which the penalty was applied.

5.8.11. Judging: The flights are judged by two judges who do not have to be the same for all competitors.

The judges' task is to control that the flights are performed according to the rules, to be time keepers and to ensure that the right distance is flown.

5.8.12. Scoring: The result of the flight is stated as the time in seconds and hundredths of seconds obtained by each competitor. For the purpose of calculating the result of the round or group the competitor's result is converted this way:

Ri = 1000 x Tw / Ti

where Ti = time of the competitor and
Tw = time of the winner in the related group.

5.8.13. Classification: A minimum of four (4) rounds must be flown for the competition to be valid. In this case the lowest round score of each competitor will be discarded. If more than fourteen (14) rounds were flown, the two (2) lowest round scores will be discarded. The remaining results are added to obtain the final score which will determine the position of the pilot in the final classification.

To avoid ties in the classification concerning the five best scores, "classification rounds" are flown until the ties are broken. If this is not possible, the result of the discarded round will determine each competitor's position in the final classification.

5.8.14. Team Classification: To establish the ranking for international team classification, add the final individual scores of three best members of the team. Teams are ranked according to the highest numerical score to lowest. In the case of a national team tie, the team with the lower sum of place numbers, given in order from the top, wins. If still equal, the best individual placing decides.

5.8.15. Organisation of the Contest: The competition must be held at a site which is suitable for slope soaring.

When marking the starting and landing areas and the turning planes, the organiser must take into account the configuration of the terrain and the wind direction.

5.8.16. Changes: Any changes of the flight and landing areas may be made only between rounds or between groups.

5.8.17. Weather Conditions and interruptions: A round in progress must be interrupted if:-
  1. the wind speed is below three (3) m/sec or more than twenty five (25) m/sec for at least twenty (20) seconds.
  2. ) the direction of the wind deviates more than 45º from a line perpendicular to the main direction of the speed course for at least twenty (20) seconds.
  3. The wind speed and wind direction is measured with the equipment of the organiser at a representative position and height chosen from the experience of the organiser.
  4. In the case of rain.
  5. no more than thirty (30) minutes after sunset.
If these conditions arise during the flight the contest director must interrupt the contest and the competitor is entitled to a re-flight.

The whole group must be divided into groups of equal size (+-one (1) competitor) with a minimum number of competitors in one group of ten (10) before the round starts.

If the weather is stable during the whole round only one group is evaluated; if the competition must be interrupted more than thirty (30) minutes, then the interrupted group must start from the beginning and the results are evaluated for each group (see paragraph 5.8.12).

5.8.18. Site: The diagram of recommended F3F Flying Field Layout.


Unofficial F3F competitions

Revision 2 / June 2017

Besides the official HKRCSS F3F league race, pilots can also organized F3F competitions by themselves. These "unofficial F3F competitions", if properly conducted and fulfill the following requirements, the result, personal best and site record made will be recognized by HKRCSS.

1, The organizer shall announce the F3F competition through widely known Hong Kong F3F media (for example, 1 day prior to the event, and submit the results after the competition.
2, The F3F competition must be approved by F3F group leaders prior to the announcement of the event.
3, The F3F competition has at least 10 competitors
4, The F3F competition is conducted according to FAI F3F (*) and HKRCSS F3F local rules.

(*) Except the lower limit of wind condition and rain. These will be determined by the CD according to the specific condition of the flying site.

Original revision
See for causes of updates to rev.2.