Off with the birds:

11 Jan 2017 Benalla Ensign, Benalla VIC (General News) Up, up and away. The World Gliding Championships got under way on Sunday with the Opening Ceremony at the Botanic Gardens. More pictures on page 4 and 18. Sight to behold While the actual flying was delayed because of Mondays rain, the World Gliding Championships Opening Ceremony at the Botanic Gardens on Sunday was a sight to behold. Following the olympic tradition, all 27 countries were on parade carrying their nations flag, even Japan with just one competitor. The championships were officially opened by Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes and F d ration A ronautique Internationales Rick Sheppe. There was also an international gathering of past world gliding champions, team members and glider pilots from all over Australia. Caption Text: Fine sight: All 27 teams gather for the flag-raising ceremony. Royal wave: Members from team Great Britain. All systems go: Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes opens the championships. Lone pilot: Team Japan. Red, white and blue: Team USA and Team Australia. Licensed by Copyright Agency. You may only copy or communicate this work with a licence.