It is now widely recognised just how wide the EN B class is. At the top end there are some impressive gliders for sure, but looking at the descriptions of the EN B standard, it is clear that some gliders getting the grade B don't really fit.
|U-Turn - Blacklight - EN B|
|Swing Mistral 7 - EN B|
|Niviuk Artik 3 - "Sport" and EN C|
I am not criticising the two EN B gliders pictured. I flew them for reviews for Cross County Magazine and had wonderful XC flying on both; it is just that their behaviour in some circumstances has more in common with wonderful "sport" gliders like the Artik 3. I once heard a pilot saying: I am going to buy a **** because I want the extra safety of an EN B; I was tempted to say "what extra safety?" I am glad that there are intentions to realign EN B during the next revision of EN standards (in 2014).
So what did the pilot I mentioned at the start of this article decide? He is aiming for a mid EN B and has got a demo glider on order ready for when the latest Atlantic storm has moved away!