us that the model we would be building would not be disclosed until the morning, and

until then the type of aircraft was kept secret. So our planned preparations could

not take place and the morning start was really rough! He also explained to us the

system of changing team members, using breaks and meetings. Each team member

was allocated a total of 12 hours to be spent on individual tasks. Monitoring the exact

time spent on said tasks was done using chips, so it was impossible to overstay one’s


Saturday morning was dominated by a healthy nervousness and anticipation

of the disclosure of the build topic. At 8:30, it was clear that the model for 2023

was the Wildcat from Eduard. Since the goal was to score as highly as possible, it

was appropriate to dress it up as much as possible. So we went with the range of

accessories that were available – Brassin cockpit, 3D printed engine and gun bays,

etched flaps, undercarriage bay, machine gun barrels, undercarriage wheels and

bronze undercarriage legs.

Our strategy was that the more capable members of the team would deal with the

preparation of additional parts for the build, gluing and prepping for the handover to

the buttoning up of the fuselage crew. They had 4–5 hours to do this, and Miloš and

I set off for a local tradition.

An obligatory part of Iron Bunny is the so-called “Bublavský bahňák” (can be

translated as Bublava’s Muddy Boy because of the years the competition was held

in autumn). This is an orientation “run” with four checkpoints. By conquering each

station, you receive a component or a sprue from the competition kit. All in all, it was

an about 11 km pleasant walk with time left over for a cold beer at a pub that was

conveniently located along the route.

After making the grade and acquiring the required missing parts from the kit, it

was time for a short rest before taking our shift. I have to once again praise Robert

and Honza for what they both managed during their initial building phase. Even though

we were always working with the feeling that we were not keeping up, we had to pay

attention to every detail as well as cleanliness and geometry of the build, which have

a profound impact on the final score. Time flew by at a frantic pace, and looking at the

surrounding tables, I sometimes wondered if we were falling too far behind. During

the night, the organizers also prepared a blackout, or a simulated power outage, and

spraying had to be done with a head mounted flashlight. Fortunately, this didn’t last

too long and the lights were soon back on. After finishing my last shift at 4:30 in the

morning, I barely crawled into bed with the resolution that I would definitely be up to

finish the model and kept my fingers crossed for the boys. Unfortunately I woke up at

about 11:30. So the only thing I checked on the phone was whether or not we had time

to hand over the finished model. After making sure, I rolled over onto my other side

and didn’t wake up until lunchtime. After lunch, the room with the models and their

score sheets was made available. To our great delight, our Wildcat took first place with

a score of 81.5 points (out of 100), which is a great result for a 24-hour build. According

to the organizers, we even got the most points ever. So the euphoria was certainly

there. With the results announcement, we had a reason to be even more happy, namely

that Luboš Kuna decided to give the contest another chance and that the competition

will take place next year and we will have the opportunity to participate in it again.

And I am already gearing up for participating and our goal will be to enjoy it as

much as we did this year. The entire organization of the competition was top-notch.

The Iron Bunny team who looked after us, cooked for us, entertained us and were with

us the whole time deserve real credit! Everything was perfect and I would like to thank

them all once again. Thanks also must go out to our colleagues from other teams and

also to Vladimír Šulc, all of Eduard and the judges, without whom this competition

would not be the adrenaline rush it is! And that is something that is the exact opposite

of normal plastic modeling. So thanks again everyone and see you in a year!

July 2023

INFO Eduard