SAFA Skysailor Magazine

9 November | December 2023 SKY SAILOR own child it’s like teaching them to drive… He was well over-cooked by the time he went solo at 45 hours. On the first solo flight day (3 June 2023), the weather was good and not many aircraft were in the air and circuit. After perfect radio calls and a good flight circuit, Robert completed his solo and re- turned to the hangar. A little ho-hum that it was so easy and light to fly. In May, before his first solo, we clocked up over 25 hours in a week-long cross-country trike flying trip from Shellharbour to Benalla, Swan Hill and return. Exposed to a much varied amount of weather and, of course, the 100 plus forced landing practices for me, just to keep him on his toes. At the time of writing this article, Robert has 60 hours and three hours solo. He is hoping to have his Microlight Pilot Licence at age 15. Robert would like to pursue flying as a hobby and maybe even a career. He is looking forward to father and son flying in different aircraft at the same time. The young are the future of our sport and people pursuing our sports at a young age is key to secure this future. Our generation mostly learned to fly in our 20s when we could afford it. In reflection, as a father-son achievement, so far it has been a great moment in time. Not only do I get to fly with Robert, I get to watch him grow from a boy to a man. Wouldn’t most of us have given our right arm to be able to get into our form of aviation at 15? Another day bashing the circuit at Shellharbour airport Robert flying from the front seat All photos: Tony Dennis

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