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G-AMSV Returns to Coventry

An old friend returned to Coventry yesterday when G-AMSV, in her striking Indian Air force livery, landed here for extensive maintenance by our engineers. Sierra Victor was part of the Air Altantique fleet here for many years. She'll...

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Baginton Air Pageant

The initial details for the Baginton Air Pageant are up on the website! As we don't have the space for a full-on air show attracting 20,000 or so people, we're aiming for low-key, themed days like this. A couple of thousand people,...

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Newquay Pleasure flights

We promised we'd be back to fly in Cornwall, and here we are. We'll be heading south with a Rapide and Chipmunk to spend a week at Newquay from 25th July, with a further visit planned in August. The flights are bookable in the normal...

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New Dakota Book

Geoff Jones just told me that his new book on the DC-3, released to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Dak's appearance, is now available. The cover sports a lovely shot of G-ANAF, shot by Simon Westwood before her radome goiter was...

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Nimrod Engine Run

We've just confirmed plans by NPT to run all four of the Nimrod's Rolls-Royce Speys on Saturday 9th May. We expect the thunder to start just after lunchtime. Come along and enjoy some audio power - and please dip into your pockets...

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Become a member of the Classic Air Force

Born from a second world war design, the Chipmunk was still a competitive aerobat well into the eighties. Here's your chance to experience at first hand what makes it a favourite of pilots the world over.

Strap into G-APLO's snug, vintage cockpit for the ride of your life.

Book an aerobatic flight  Buy a Gift Voucher

time to start the Chipmunk aerobatics Chipmunk rear cockpit

Your Office is Ready

You're going to remember today.

After a full and friendly briefing from your pilot you'll be kitted out with flying suit and intercom headset. Now it's time for the walk out to your aircraft.

A few butterflies are to be expected as you approach the Chippie; there's a WW2 fighter aspect to the way she sits on the apron, long nose pointed skywards.

Strapped in, and canopy closed, you start the climb to a safe height. Your pilot puts in a few tight turns on the way to get you used to g-force, and you take the opportunity to look down along the wing at the ground rotating gently below.

"OK, we're there, now we'll do our HASELL checks." The voice in your headset brings you back to the present and you try to remember the HASELL acronym from your briefing. As you hear the pilot confirming each item the headings check off in your mind.

Height The standard is to ensure that we can complete our manoeuvre with 1,000ft of altitude still in hand. We usually allow another 1,000ft extra safety margin.
Airframe Are flaps, trim and airbrakes in the correct configuration?
Security Are your straps tight? Have all loose items in the cockpit been secured?
Engine Are power settings, carb heat, mixture etc correct?
Location Are we clear of high objects and cloud? Are we in a permitted area for aerobatics?


Is the sky clear of other aircraft, all around, above and below? The pilot will probably make a couple of clearing manoeuvres to get a really good look

"Everything's ready, are you happy to go?"

You hesitate for a moment. Part of the briefing was to reassure you that you're completely free not to go through with the loop. But, hey, that's what you're here for, "Yep, I'm happy."

There's a brief tickle in your stomach as the nose goes down, and you're into a steep dive. Speed builds rapidly, and then the pull-up begins. You sink into your seat and your feel your chin being pushed into your chest. You pull your head up against four gravities to see the horizon drop below the nose and the windscreen is full of sky. You look out along the wing to see you're climbing vertically.

Chipmunk loopingOver we go! You feel the pressure relax as the pilot eases off over the top and you have a moment's anxiety as you think there's nothing between you and the ground but your straps and a perspex canopy. Your mind jumps back to the briefing: "You'll feel as if you're hanging from your straps, but actually you're still being pushed into your seat - it's impossible to fall out." Reassured, you look through the canopy above you. There, a mile above your head, is the world. Whooping loudly at this point is positively encouraged.

We're diving again and your forward view is all fields. The pull-out is more gentle this time and you feel your shoulders relax.

"What did you think of that, then?" asks the pilot and you realise you've reached the design limits of the English language.

It's an experience to savour and remember. Click the button below to create a memory.

Book an aerobatic flight  Buy a Gift Voucher