Friday, 20 July 2012


At last the weather is beginning to change, the Jet Stream is moving north and a high presume is moving in.  Maybe it will even stop raining for a while.  Redhill Airport has been having problems with it's Runways being waterlogged and as I went to Redhill today I didn’t know if I could fly or not.  Just to complicate things even further, the Olympics restricted zone was in operation which prevented flying training without spending at least 30 mins flying out of the zone.  The Olympic restrictions were just too complicated so I elected to fly circuits.  I couldn't fly solo due to the restrictions but I was more than happy to fly with an Instructor.  The grass areas at Redhill were soggy and wet and only one Runway, 26R was open – this is the shortest Runway at Redhill and I was flying circuits.  Typical.

After usual checks I requested clearance for circuits which was approved.  I could hear others on the Radio trying to get approval for ATC to fly in the Olympic zone and having problems.  Circuits where the sensible thing to do.

Taxi out and power checks then on to take-off and into the circuit.  Instructor seemed happy with my flying and got me to do a “go-around”, a flapless approach and a glide approach.  On my first glide approach I ended up too far along the runway to enable a safe landing and take-off so I did another “go-around” (well it was a short runway).  Next time I got it bang on. 

Another interesting experience was the flapless approach.  Without flaps the approach is flatter and faster so I touched down at approx 60kts.  Instructor then applied one stage of flap for take-off and the take-off speed with one stage of flap is 50kts.  This meant I was already above take-off speed so the aircraft when straight back up into the air.  I think that was my shortest landing ever and I only got two out of three wheels actually on the ground.

On the debriefing Instructor said my flying was very good with only a few minor points to watch.  He also said the same to the Chief Flying Instructor (who will be my examiner when I take my test)

I have booked another lesson during the Olympic period and will probably do circuits again.  Anything else will need to wait for the restrictions to be lifted post Olympics.

9 circuits, 7 landings – of which one was flapless and one was glide – and two “go-arounds”

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