Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sarasota and Miami Demo Flights

I flew over to Sarasota to fly with Marc out of the North Manatee Airport, a nice little grass strip just north of Sarasota. We flew with the short tips first, heading over to the Benson Gyrocopter Days at Wachula. There were about 75 autogyros in the middle of a spot landing contest. It was pretty cool. Then we did some soaring (yep, with the short tips) and explored the quick roll rate of the Phoenix with a 36 foot span before heading back to North Manatee. After answering some questions by local pilots, we were off again with the long tips. We didn't have to go far to hit the first thermal, and then we were off and running to Seminole Lake Gliderport, 50 miles away.
A couple of days later found me at the Tamiami airport to fly with David. We shut down the engine and soared across Florida (granted only 35 miles across at this point) completely overflying the Everglades! We were within easy glide of the Gulf Coast when we cranked back up and flew to Tamiami.

David is 6'5", so far the tallest pilot to fly the Phoenix. He looked cramped to me, but lasted throughout a couple hour flight. I'll line up a few more inches of leg room for him.

I departed Tamiami to the southeast just to fly over the beautiful water.

Then it was northbound over Miami at 9000'. It was a cool flight over the coast all of the way back to Melbourne.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Phoenix Wins Outstanding LSA Award

One of the Sun n Fun judges dropped by to give us an invitation to the awards ceremony. He asked if we knew what we had won, so I asked, "A lollypop?"
The awards ceremony was held in the museum. Practically all of the aircraft in the museum would now qualify as light sport aircraft if they were built today.

We received this nice plaque!

Sleep tight, Phoenix, you worked hard, and deserve the accolades. We'll take you flying again tomorrow.

Sun n Fun: After the Storm

The Sun n Fun volunteers and exhibitors went to work and cleaned up all of the limbs, trees, trash, and broken tents and aircraft. Something like 50 airplanes were damaged, and we felt bad for those who lost their precious planes. My daughter Rachel takes a break from all of the hard work. She is 16 years old, has 16 hours in LSA's, and can make unassisted take-offs and landings. Rachel, what say we go take in some of the show?
Rachel displays her precision positioning for the Blue Angels.

Put in your earplugs!

The announcer said they were 18 inches wingtip to canopy!

We love it when the wives want to try on the Phoenix too.

The young crowd really likes the modern looks of the Phoenix.

Kathy Lee handing out Phoenix literature.

Everyday following the storm was a perfect uncloudy day.