Helmut Reichmann

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Professor Dr. Helmut Reichmann (1941–March 10, 1992) was a German glider pilot, thrice Gliding World Champion and co-founder, with millionaire Barron Hilton, of the Barron Hilton Cup. He was an arts teacher and a professor of industrial design in his native Saarbrücken in Germany.

Reichmann earned his glider pilot license in 1958 and soon achieved prominence as one of the most successful and influential people in the history of gliding:

Reichmann retired from contest flying after his third world championship, wishing to dedicate more time to flight instruction in cross-country and competition soaring. He taught gliding at the Sports Studies Institute at the University of Saarbrücken, but eventually moved to its Faculty of Fine Arts where he taught experimental sculpture and design.

Reichmann was the author of two books on soaring:

  • Streckensegelflug. Also available in English as Cross-Country Soaring and in Spanish as Vuelo Sin Motor - Técnicas Avanzadas. It is still a primary reference on soaring.
  • Segelfliegen - Die praktische Ausbildung. Also available in English as Flying sailplanes - A Practical Training Manual and in Spanish as Vuelo Sin Motor - Enseñanza Practica. This provides more basic information.

Reichmann died in the French Alps in 1992 when his Discus collided with an LS4 flown by Lars Gölz. Reichmann had been leading four members of a German squad at the time.


  • Reichmann, H. Streckensegelflug. Motorbuch Vlg., Stuttgart, 1975. English translation as Cross-Country Soaring published in 1978 by the Soaring Society of America, ISBN 1-883813-01-8.
  • Reichmann, H. Segelfliegen - Die praktische Ausbildung. Motorbuch Vlg., Stuttgart. English translation as Flying sailplanes - A Practical Training Manual Thompson Publications 1980, ASIN B0006E1VSK.