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Starters in the Darwin to Adelaide commemorative flight

When the idea of having the ‘race’ from England to Australia was abandoned we decided to examine the idea of a  commemorative flight to arrive at Adelaide on the weekend of 21-22 March 2020. This decision was reinforced when Michael Coates (Australian Pipistrel agent) abandoned his idea of flying he England – Australia section.

Michael is keen on flying the Darwin to Adelaide route in a high-tech Pipistrel Virus SW with at least one accpmpanying aircraft. We also have interest in participating for the whole journey from two owners of Piper Commanches, a Searey amphibian and a few others, and this is a very early stage.

We are gradually contacting points en route and discussing the project and the responses are generally enthusiastic. It is a huge project: distance is around 3250 MN. We are looking at maybe a ten-day journey to Adelaide, beginning 10 March, with at least 22 landings en route. We hope the longest daily stage will be Tindal to Mt Isa, 627 NM with four en route stops. We are working on a cruise speed of 120MN, But this is at a very early stage yet, and if you want to fly a slow aircraft, be in touch: we have an idea how you can participate in the whole event. And, of course, all aircraft are welcome to take part in a section or two of the flight or even just to visit an airfield at which the commemorative flight will stop.

Pipistrel aircraft dealer Michael Coates


Flight from England to Australia is back on!

Michael Smith (appropriate surname!) is hoping to fly from England to Darwin, arriving 10 December. (Michael is a very experienced long distance aviatior – see his website http://www.southernsun.voyage/  ) He is buying a new state of the art 'Sea Bear amphibian as pictured. Full details can be found on http://www.seabearaircraft.com/aircraft/  and hopes to arrive in Darwin on 10 December, then fly south. 

Plans to conduct a 'race' of high-tech aircraft from England to Australia were abandoned in April of this year, and more recetly Amanda Harrison, a highly skilled commercial pilot had to abandon her attempt to fly to Australia in a Tiger Moth. A compelling reason for the abandonment of both attempts is the political sitiuation along the traditional route. which meant that it is very difficult for short-range aircraft.

Michael's aircraft has a listed range is 1350 NM (1500+ miles) at a speed of 120 knots which gives him a good range of options through the troubled areas and to deal with weather. This opens up wonderful possibilities for safe routes, and the project could well be very successful. More news as it becomes available!