Sunday, 21 April 2013

Lesson Number 10 - Windy!

Like any other day that I'm booked in to fly, it's always a waiting game to see if I actually will be going flying - 'The phonecall' is how I nickname it. Usually it comes about two hours before my scheduled ETD which was 13:00hrs this time around. 

I woke up to the sound of a ringing phone, legged it down the stairs, and answered it, "Hello, Jake, would you be able to come down to the club now for your flight as the weather is only forecast to get a lot worse..." Overjoyed that I would indeed be flying, I said yes, not like I'd ever say no or anything. Oh and by the way, this was at about 09:30hrs, not often I'm up that early!

The main concern that the club informed me of, was the wind, it was at 30-35 knots and gusting at 45, they said to come on down anyway and we'll go from there. I arrived at the club around an hour after the phone call, both excited and nervous as I'd never flown in such windy conditions.

My CFI, Michael, was still up flying when I arrived but would be back on the ground in about 15 minutes so my dad and I, sat in the lounge and spoke about what flying would be like in the windy conditions as well as flicking through the mass of aviation magazines available on the tables. 

Michael arrived back at the club and said to me, at first eye contact, "be ready for a challenge", I laughed, not really sure if he was joking or not... Turns out he wasn't, he told me that we would be doing circuits again like last time, and also that we would only be using one stage of flaps as well as an approach speed of 70 knots rather than 65 because we had such a strong headwind - So I headed out to the aircraft and carried out my internal and external checklists, including checking the fuel, tyre inflation, stall warning, antennas, etc, after completing the checklist, Michael made his way out and got himself into the cockpit in which I was all set to go, we closed the canopy, buckled up and begun taxing to the runway 15 hold while I gathered the airfield information. 

Michael explained to me while taxing that less right rudder would be needed on take off because of the strong crosswind but we would be taking off at a slightly higher speed than usual - 60 knots in this case. 

I taxied the aircraft to runway 15 for take off, lined up, made the radio call and we we went! I done just as Michael had said, and was climbing straight out, flaps up at 300ft, continue at 70 knots until 500ft, make a left turn still climbing to 1000ft almost 90 degrees to our runway heading, though it was more like 100 degrees to compensate for the cross wind.

(Runway 15 is located on the top right of this picture as it was once RWY 16)

Upon reaching 1000ft, I levelled the aircraft off, let the airspeed increase then brought RPM back to cruising speed. I then made a left turn upon passing the mark in which I use to remember to make the left turn, made the radio call, "Scrabo 68, downwind runway 15", and then proceeded to carry out my downwind checks which mainly consists of checking the fuel, mixture, altitude, engine T's & P's, canopy, harnesses, etc, once completed, I made another left turn, now adjacent to the runway , started to reduce the RPM but kept the nose the same attitude, I waited for the airspeed to reduce to below 97 knots then took the first stage of flaps just before turning onto finals in which I began to descend, making sure I cleared a police radio mast at 500ft, I lined up with the center line, carb heat in at 300ft and taking away the speed ever so slightly while I was at it... And that's all there is too it, I was down, applying the rudder, and pushing the throttle to full - I was away yet again.

I repeated the exercise about 4 times before we had to leave it for the day because the wind was simply getting to bad. I ain't gonna lie, it was tough, and it was a challenge, definitely the toughest flying conditions I've flown in, but I enjoyed it, in fact, I think I flown on of my best lessons this time around, I really enjoyed the tough conditions! It felt pretty weird when big gusts of wind hit the aircraft and it was all over the place, such a weird feeling, I guess you just need to experience it to know how it feels!

Just hope Michael's head it okay after hitting it off the canopy when coming in to land the last time around, a gust of about 45 knots hit us and we were all over the place, but I got us back on track and successfully landed - Both funny and fun!

We then had our de-brief in the club house and Michael explained that I'm pretty much ready to go solo, I just need to get my medical and do my air law exam, unfortunately I can't go solo until I'm 16 as well, which is in December, so a bit to wait yet!

Until next time! 

Lesson Number Nine - Circuits

T'was a nice day... Little cloud about, sunny, mild - Perfect flying conditions!

Today, I knew that I would be getting my first taste of the circuit, so I was looking forward to it, a lot of excitement.

I arrived at the club and was met by Kiwi who's been mentioned a bit in some of my previous posts, he immediately started a briefing with me on the circuit, he told me the sequence in which tasks had to be completed, how long I'd have to do them, when I need to turn, what altitude I should be at, speed for the circuit and also when each stage of the flaps should be implemented, etc.

Since this was my first proper go at circuits, I suppose I was a little nervous. I headed out to the aircraft carried out my checks, both internal and external, kiwi joined me about 5 minutes later and we got ourselves into the cockpit, closed the canopy and away we went. We were using runway 15 today because of the southerly winds, I lined up with the centerline, pushed throttle to full, and upon reaching 55 knots, I 'rotated' for takeoff and we were away.

Climbed straight out, and done all the mandatory things such as flaps up at 300ft, demonstrating airmanship, radio calls, etc. I was taking in a lot of details at this point because it was all new to me such as when to turn, at what altitude I should be at and what speed, kiwi helped me along with the the first go around the circuit as it was my first go and I was able to do the approach and landing all on my own, which was good, it made me feel confident.

I took off and just done the same as last time, expect, I done it all on my own, I didn't need much help at all really, just a little bit of guidance at some points which I suppose has to be expected, I got the aircraft down again on the runway and pulled up for our third circuit around the airfield. 

When I got to the downwind stage of the circuit this time around, when I used the first stage of flap, I seemed to let the aircraft climb a little, we should have been at 1000ft, but I was at 1200ft, kiwi let me continue with everything, I turned onto finals and made the decision to implement full flap to help lose some airspeed resulting in a gradual glide, a bit earlier than usual, to lose the extra height gained, I had to be careful not to fly too low as there is a police radio mast on the approach for runway 15 at 500ft, to avoid this, I had to fly slightly right of the centerline approach and then line the aircraft up after passing it along with the normal checks at 300ft just before landing, I got the aircraft down, just as normal.

The forth go at the circuit, everything was fine, until turning on to downwind, when the aircraft climbed again when I used the first stage of flap, we turned onto approach and we were simply too high to carry out a landing so we preformed a go-around and were now on our fifth circuit, I was hoping that I would get it right this time...

And I did, I handled the aircraft well, didn't let it climb, kept it at the right speed and altitude, and done a nice landing if I don't mind saying so myself, I taxied us back to the apron, and had a de-brief with my instructor, we just talked about how easy it is to let the aircraft climb at any point, so once everything was made clear about that, and I felt confident that I wouldn't let it happen again and if I did, I would know how to counteract it. We finished up the lesson and kiwi give me a checklist for the circuit to revise for next lesson.

Quite a day for mixed feelings, but an important day of my flight training, one which I will take many things away from.

Just have to wait and see how lesson number 10 pans out! 

Friday, 19 April 2013

Motivation, Determination & Dedication

Flying has it's highs and lows (pardon the pun) as does everything. The feeling one can have when they fail at something is remarkable, even worse when it's something they try hard to succeed in.  Life isn't easy, and shouldn't be taken day-by-day... Flying is no different.

When I first decided that I want to become a pilot, I posted on an online forum, asking for people's opinions and advice on how to go about it. I revived some great advice, help and support which I still have to this day. Unfortunately, on other occasions with some other people I know, the results haven't been as good. Especially online... People try to bring you down, they don't see you succeeding, they don't want to offer you advice or help, perhaps they are jealous of how ambitious you are, sometimes on those forums, people post negative comments to you telling you to, "Forget about it, you've no chance!" I can tell you: this isn't true. 

'Anything is possible, no matter how hard it seems'

I most certainly do not come from a wealthy or upperclass family , I'm just a normal kid, from a normal family, with the right attitude about getting what I want. Flying is for everyone, and is available for anyone, you just to be 'motivated, dedicated and determined' if you want to be a success, it really is that simple, and that is what I've learnt from the many aviators that I've met from across the globe.

Life isn't just about sitting back, taking each day as it comes, life is all about making the most of it and looking back in years to come and thinking, 'Blimey, what a life I've had!'

"We all have those days, weeks, months where overload prevails. I love it when in the heat of the schedule, life gets easy" (Karlene Pettit) and don't we all... Just think for one minute, close your eyes, picture yourself living the live you've longed for, a great salary, family, nice house and a good car... I hate to break it to you, but this doesn't just happen, there's a reason for it happening ~ Passion.

Anything is possible, but only with the right attitude.

Often you hear about people bring pregnant at 16, thieving, stabbing people, addicted to drugs and alcohol... These are just some of the temptations that today has to offer, it's like a pitfall trap, you do it once, then you can't stop, these people have their whole life in front of them and with a few bad mistakes... This can all change. 

It's important to remember how easy it is to let your life go, but also important to make the most of it, don't be stupid, be smart:

Plan ahead, see your future, live your success.

Stay motivated to achieving your dreams, remain determined to do so, but also be dedicated, remember, it doesn't just happen that easy, like all good things it require works, hard work.

At 15, I am a trainee pilot hoping to make it to the top, a prominent blogger and am individual who aims to inspire.

Who are you?

Thanks for reading, lessons 9 and 10 will hopefully be added over the weekend so lookout for them.

As always, get in touch via

Commenting below
Twitter: @JakeLewis23
Or Facebook: /jakelewis.14

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Welcome to my new blog!

Hi everyone, 

A lot of people reading this post won't have known me for very long, but I would just like to take this opportunity to say hello, and welcome. Previously, I ran a blog on a different host site, but due to interaction limitations I made the decision to change to blogger. That decision was made just two days ago, so I have been working flat out to transfer everything over to this site and customize it to my taste, etc. So thanks for stopping by, I would highly appreciate it if you could share this blog about with all your friends, and follow this blog as well. I hope you enjoy reading my stories and posts, thanks again!


Thursday, 11 April 2013

Lesson Number Eight

17th March 2013 - It's been well over 12 weeks since my last flight, why? Due to some technical engine problems with my aircraft, it was decided that it would be grounded until the problem was resolved... Of course! 

Many weeks ago, I booked Sunday the 17th to go flying in hope that the problems would be resolved by then, and by Thursday of that week I was certain that I wouldn't get flying, the problem wasn't fixed. That Sunday, around noon, I found out, well, I would be flying, music to my ears!


It was around 2:40pm when I arrived at the club after a lengthy break  both excited and anxious as to what the weather was planning for me, it was a day for all seasons in one, so I was crossing my fingers in hope that it would be good enough to get up flying.

I proceeded to enter the club, with my father, and met my instructor, Paul, who would be taking me up this time around, he explained that there was a cloud base of about 2,000ft so it might not allow up to have a go at stalling, but aside from that, he made me aware that this would be a mainly recapping lesson to get me back into the swing of things, so to round everything up, this lesson would involve:
Climbing, descending, turning while climbing, turning while descending, flying at a set altitude, then to finish of a first go at stalling.

I headed out to the aircraft and carried out all my checklists, both external and internal, and made sure everything was fine and ready to go, Paul joined me shortly after I had completed my checks, and I asked him about the fuel levels in the aircraft as they seemed slightly low, but he said that we would be okay, there's a few hours of flying until there's no fuel, other than at, everything else was no concern and we were all set to go. 

Quick call to Newtownards radio and we were taxing to the 22 hold, again ran through our checklists to make sure everyone was set for takeoff, lined up runway 22, throttle to full - and takeoff.

I picked a climbing speed of 70knots and climbed the aircraft to 1500ft while making a standard rate turn out of the circuit to the south-west, Paul handled the radios with Belfast City and I continued to fly towards Grey Abby whilst carrying out essential FREDA check, which stands for: Fuel, Radios, Engine, Direction, Altitude. Basically you're looking to make sure everything is what it should it be and that there is no problems with the instruments. 

I then climbed the aircraft to 2000ft, and Paul explained that we would do some exercises which would involve a full recap of turning, climbing, descending, etc. '"I have control", said Paul and he set the aircraft out of trim, descending, wrong RPM and I had to fix it, after doing do, he ran through another few exercises very similar to the last one, but instead of descending, perhaps it would be climbing, or turning for example. I really enjoy these types of things, they're really fun to do, and very helpful for your training. Paul then told me that he will do a stall just so I can see what it so like for my next lesson, "Is your harness on tight?", he said, then he lowered the airspeed, and raised the nose to maintain altitude... And we had entered a stall, the right wing dipped as well, but within a matter of seconds, we had recovered - interesting experience, felt like I had butterflies in my head!


Paul got me to head back towards Newtownards while he was making a few radio calls to a controller at Belfast City Airport, I couldn't really make out what they were saying to each other, but shortly after the radio call ended, Paul asked me if I wanted a quick tour of the city, I thought he meant Newtownards, but he actually meant Belfast (to my amazement!) I turned the aircraft to fly towards Comber, just South of Belfast, I could begin to make out some landmarks such as Cavehill, Harland and Wolff and even Belfast City Airport, I descended to 1200ft and flew right over the Airport, Paul then said that we were going to do a touch and go on runway 04 at BHD - really shocked, but full of excitement, I entered the circuit via the overhead, and began to descend to about 900ft, right over the harbour of Belfast, amazing views of the city, seriously, nothing like anything I'd ever seen before, Paul took control to line up with runway 04 and got us down to about 200ft, I joined back in and we controlled the aircraft to the ground, perfect landing, and straight back off again into the sky at a climbing speed of about 65knots this time, done the circuit of BHD and headed back towards Newtownards.

Will never forget that moment, and debatably,  I'm one of the youngest to have landed an aircraft at Belfast, if not, the youngest!

We passed Comber on our way back to Ards, and it wasn't long before we were joining the circuit to land on runway 22 at Newtownards, it wasn't long before we were on finals and shortly after we had touched down - then vacated the runway to the left to make way for another aircraft coming in to land, I taxied back to the apron and parked up for the aircraft to be refuelled for its last flight of the day.


This was a flight that will stay with me - forever

Lesson Number Seven

A great day for flying, the sun was out and in full force. After recapping on what to expect today, I was ready and roaring to go.

As per usual, I did all the normal things that I usually do on the ground, and before I knew it, we were up and flying over the peninsula at 3200ft above the cloud layer, amazing... I was flying above the cloud layer, as thin as it was, I was flying above it! It felt great. 

We went through the majority of the recap list for this lesson with no problems so we begun a bit of stalling, we picked out small islands in the peninsula and pretended they had runways, so we stalled the aircraft, then recovered and ran through the normal procedure for landing, took off, then done the same but with a different island. It was great fun, and helped me fly the aircraft looking out of the aircraft rather than using the instruments.

We routed back to Ards, I handled communications again, but this time we joined via the overhead to see what the wind conditions were like at the airport, we then joined the normal circuit at the normal altitude and were next in line for runway 04, on finals, and touchdown, my instructed then tells me to take off and we will do another circuit, just to build on the experience, so I done so, and we came in to land on runway 04 again, this time we taxiied back to the apron and had a debrief in the cockpit. 

This lesson was invaluable to me, I learned a lot of new tips and techniques and got a real sense of flying the circuit. How exciting, once again, until next time...

Lesson Number Six

Another afternoon flight today, last flight of 2012 actually, some cloud, but clear in most areas.

Different instructor today, primary reason for this is to experience different teaching methods of different people and to pick up more tips and techniques.

As always, I spoke to my instructor who briefed me on today's lesson, basically he wanted to just recap on some the first things I've learnt and then do a bit more on slow flight and possibly steep turns. 

So, got my headset, and headed out onto the apron, carried out my checklist, when it began to drizzle, so I took shelter under the wing of a gyro. My instructor shorted joined me and we got inside the Tecnam.

This time around, all the radio communications was me, including talking to Belfast Control, where many commercial flights would be in contact with,

We climbed straight out of Ards and requested 2500ft for cruising altitude, once we reached that altitude we begun recapping on the primary topics of flight, these included: Flying straight and level, climbing, descending, flying on to a different heading, you get the idea, primary reason of doing is just to reinforce all that I have learnt so far, and after we recapped we moved on to steep turning again, after a few goes, I had mastered it and confident in it now, we also touched on slow flight again on the way back to Ards, we really couldn't stay up there for much longer it was getting fairly dark, dark enough for the runway lights to be on, and soon we were taxiing to the apron were we were welcomed with one of the most amazing sunsets I have ever seen, just behind scrabo tower, absolutely amazing! 

Quick debrief and a list of things to revise for my next lesson for a full recap with one of the clubs CAA Examiners, until next time.

Lesson Number Five

This time around the weather was, well, okay, mostly cloudy, but not raining, so the weather itself, hadn't dampened my spirits (If you pardon the pun)

I arrived at the flying club at around 2:30PM for another afternoon flight. There was no holding about in the clubhouse, I just lifted my headset, spoke to 'Kiwi' about today's lesson, and headed out onto the apron and carried out the checklist. 

After engine start, to my amazement, 'Kiwi' handed the radios over to me, filled with nervousness but excitement I got straight on with it, okay, I gave the wrong QNH back to Newtownards radio, but come on, practice makes perfect, right? 

After a very short introduction to radios we lined up runway 22 and off we went. Headed over the peninsula at 2000ft and started a short recap to what was covered about turning last lesson, 'Kiwi' kept it sort, I had the skill to do it, so we moved on to 'steep turns' and, well, this was slightly more difficult, it was inevitable that this would take some time to master, but I gave it a shot, and managed well, quite amazing the amount of G-Force experienced, and the view from a different angle is spectacular. 

After spending a fair bit of time on steep turning and the rest of the topic of turning we moved on to slow flight, we done the majority of this en route back to Ards, we preformed slow flight both with and without flaps, which was also a pretty odd thing to experience, but after a few attempts at getting it right, I eventually had it, though, more practice will need to be done to just prefect it.

Before I knew it we were entering the circuit, again, I done some of the radio communications, and we were on base leg, soon on final approach, we set the aircraft up, put the flaps down fully, and glided in to Newtownards, back to realty. 

I had a lengthy de-brief with 'Kiwi' as there was a lot covered in the lesson, we done a few questions about steep turns and slow flight, then practised radios, he was booked for another flight, so of course I couldn't stay all day, a quick goodbye and off I went.

Lesson Number Four

Glorious - One word to describe the weather this time around. Not a cloud in sight.

Booked in for a morning flight this time, so it was up early, rise and shine to get ready for my flight along with a quick recap on what the last lesson covered and what I should expect to be covering this time. 

Upon arrival to the aerodrome my father and I were around 20 minutes early, so we were able to sit back for a bit and take in the strong scent of aviation fuel and listen the noise of propellers spinning at 1000 RPM on the apron, something that has always managed to excite me.

We then strolled into the reception, and spoke to Margret, the flying clubs longest serving member who didn't even need to tell me whether or not flying would be going ahead due to the fact that the weather was almost fairy-tale like.

I was flying with 'Kiwi' today who handed me a hit-set and told me to go and prepare G-UFCL. That's 'Golf-Uniform, Foxtrot, Charlie, Lima' for you who are familiar with the phonetic alphabet.

I ran through the (External Checklist) and just about finished when 'Kiwi' got the aircraft. We jumped in, again, ran trough the checklist, obviously the (Internal) Checklist this time around, closed the canopy and we got going!

Once we had reached our altitude, we got straight on with it... 

The medium-level turn is what we were focusing on today,
 but primarily the whole topic relating to turning. Today's lesson was really the introductory lesson to turning, and as there is a lot to it, we wanted to spend a good amount of time on the factors that matter in this topic.

Kiwi ran through a demonstration of the medium-level turn, and then I copied, simple really, this is really the easiest of the turning, and we had a few goes at it, just to prefect the method that is used when turning, we then touched briefly on turning whilst climbing, and turning while descending, we mainly done this on the way back 
to Ards especially when entering the circuit, which what we did, we had no aircraft in front so it was straight forward getting to the apron again after landing, we then ran through our checks again, and shut down the aircraft...

Lesson Number Three - Inc. First Landing

Today I was excited, really excited. 

I woke up to the blistering sunshine coming through the blinds in my bedroom - A smile bigger than the moon shook my face,

It was an afternoon flight today, so I was able to take more of a relaxed approach to the day, and think about what I would be doing in the sky today!

It's not a particularly short journey to Newtownards from my house, so I was able to sit back and relax on my way to the aerodrome and embrace what was to be a great lesson, that's if the weather was anything to go by!

I arrived at the flying club, it was fairly busy, the apron was extremely busy, so much so that a number of aircraft where parked up on the grass. 

I would be flying with Kiwi again today, something I was looking forward to. After our quick brief regarding what we would be covering in the lesson - He sent me out to do the aircraft walk-around.

I left the building and make the relatively short journey out to the apron, after locating my aircraft, I reached in to the cockpit and got out the 'Tecnam P2002JF - Checklist' and started at the beginning of the list with the 'Pre-Flight Inspection' basically at this point I'm 
looking for a clean undamaged aricraft, along with the right tyre pressures, fuel quantity and the fuel drain. It doesn't take too long to get through the checklist and prior to me finished, kiwi makes his way out to the aircraft and gets into the cockpit while I finish off the walk-around.

I then get myself into the captains seat, bring the seat forward and put on my seat harness. 

We continue with the (Internal) Pre-flight inspection, with a bit of help from kiwi, I think I managed quite well! We start the engine, and run through the checks that accompany doing just that. 

After all that, we taxy to the 22 hold and wait for a Cessna to land and clear the runway, seconds later, we are next in line for the runway and we take off from a somewhat busy airfield.

I could hear a few of the pilots in the area requesting a VFR  to Darby, Blackpool and I think I can recall one of them heading back to the Isle of Man.

Anyway, we reached our selected altitude and recapped on the things I covered last lesson, we begun to have another, more in-depth look at using trim, we talked about the primary reasons why trim is important and how we can combat it, he set the trim, and then made me correct it. I got the hang of it quickly - If the aircraft wants to go up, well then trim down and if the aircraft wants to go down, then trim up, simple really.

We then moved on to climbing and descending - A really important part of learning to fly, luckily, it wasn't too hard to manage.

Near to the end of the lesson we begun to cover flying straight and level, the weather was great, there was a good horizon, and I coped fairly well. Unfortunately the lesson was coming to an end so we didn't get to spend too much time on flying straight and level.

We headed back to Ards, and if I had to choose one bad thing about flying the Tecnam, it's the length of time it takes to descend. The moment we turned around to head back to Ards, we immediately had to begin our descent. 

Upon getting to Ards, I still had full control of the aircraft. Kiwi got me to turn onto finals after reaching base, fly the approach, and to my shock, I landed the aircraft. I was amazed. Kiwi turned around to me, and shook my hand, "Congratulations on your first landing, well done" he said. I couldn't stop smiling.

NB: You can see that landing, entitled, 'My First Landing' right here!

Lesson Number Two

It was another fairly early start for me, well before noon anyway - This time I think I may have been just that tad more excited than what I was on my first lesson, mainly due to the fact that, I had been familiarized with the club instructors, members and staff and of course all the nerves from lesson number one has disappeared into the mist.

The weather this time around was much the same as last, typical, it was British summertime as well, so I suppose that was expected anyway. 

When I arrived at the club, I was informed that I would be flying with a different instructor than of last time with kiwi, I would be flying with Michael - Your typical Northern Irishman, a great guy all round. 

After the quick brief in the radio room, we headed out onto the apron, this time around I was a bit cautious about what we would be doing in the air this lesson.

We quickly ran through our checklist as required and minutes later we were climbing out of Newtownards aerodrome and ready to contact Belfast Control on 128.4 and let them know that we are out of the circuit. I haven't touched radios at this point, so I just listened in. 

We reached our selected altitude, accompanied by the
 spectacular views of the Ards Peninsula to our left and the Mourne mountains to our right.

We got straight into the lesson by talking about each of the main flight controls and what effect they have on flight, we then spent about 15 minutes going through this and actually demonstrating and getting used to their effects. We also touched on pitching, rolling and yawing, but that sort of stuff is pretty self explanatory anyway so there was no need to spend a lot of time on this! That also tied in with using the elevator, ailerons and rudder. 

Before routing back to Ards we had a little go at using 
trim, a little hard to comprehend at  first, but I got used to it fairly quickly, though, I'm certainly not a professional at it!

We were almost ready to turn on to finals for runway 04, the wind wasn't to bad, I flew the approach with the aid of Michael and got the aircraft to the ground before shooting back up, Michael finished the job off, and we taxyed back to the apron and parted Charlie Mike up and set the parking brake.

Lesson Number One

It was approximately 11:30am - The weather was fair, a shower here and there, nothing extravagant though. I arrived at the flying club, not really sure what to expect, the simplicity of the club made the whole experience ten times better. 

My father headed straight for the cafe and grabbed a quick cup o' coffee while I got my self introduced to the main guys that I would come across over the next while - Not forgetting my kiwi instructor, hard to understand at first, but with time, it got easier!

Once introduced to my instructor, we headed out to the apron and on to the aircraft. Bigger than what I was expecting but then again, I'd only saw this aircraft once or twice and even so, she was flying at around 1000ft overhead!

Moving on, we got in to the compact cockpit, ran through the checklists and ran through the walk around that we just completed, then we contacted Newtownards radio with our callsign and requested the airfield information. - We were on our way, we quickly lined up with runway 22 and pushed throttle to full, upon reaching 65knts, I heard my instructor say, 'Rotate' which I knew meant, pull up for takeoff, so I did just that - A great feeling, and a few butterflies in the stomach

I'll not spend too much time talking about what we done up in the air, it was more of an introductory lesson that anything, so we focused on maintaining the yaw, roll and pitch along with checking out the great scenery out the window. After an hour, we were ready to come in for landing, 'Kiwi' managed the radios and I flew as much of the approach as I could, there was a crosswind so on this occasion, I left it to him to land the aircraft, nonetheless, it still felt great.

A moment, I'll never forget.