Two “Lookie what we can do!” stories – one accomplished, one getting under way this week. *** Avweb reports two chommies (Afrikaans for friends) expect to fly their modified D6 Sling light sport airplane around the world! These adventurous lads modified their South Africa-produced, metal LSA (not ASTM certified in the US) to carry up to 118 gallons in each wing for long legs. Long, as in more than 2,000 nautical miles over water. Holy Lucky Lindy, Batman! And people think I’m nuts flying a hang glider. *** Mike Blyth and James Pitman are the pilots. They hope to launch from Johannesburg this Thursday and make a stop at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. I’ll try to snag a shot of them. Bon voyage, guys! *** To follow the adventure Click here. *** NEXT UP in the Let’s Rock LSA Dept. comes from my next-issue column, Light Sport Chronicles. *** The short tell: Two enterprising pilots showed off the long-reach viability of LSA by flying from Florida to California – in one day! *** In June, Jessica Scharle and Matt Hansen flew a lovely Peregrine FA-04 (German-designed carbon fiber low-winger) 1,813 nautical miles, setting a transcontinental speed record in the process. Since The National Aeronautical Assn. doesn’t have a category for LSA records yet, the pair applied to Guinness World Records for recognition. *** Total time including five fuel stops was 19 hours 21 minutes. Average groundspeed: 110 knots. Purpose of the flight: demonstrate LSA’s long legs potential, and promote a nonprofit that gives free flight training to people with physical disabilities. *** Hansen Air Group supplied the FA-04. Able Flight sponsored the flight. It offers scholarships to disabled people who are new to flight, returning pilots, or want to fly but are not seeking a license.
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