Someone new is sporting the GBA solo shirt today and making it look good….Max Gratrix soloed at KRTS, runway 26 in N670CS!! The conditions were ideal this morning for CFI Danny Britson to kick another one out of the nest. They flew to Stead, Max very willingly let Danny hop out, and off he went to fly his first solo laps like he had done it a million times! Even greased that landing back into KRNO. This is just one more thing to add to Max’s already impressive resume. He is an area Physician, Veteran, tolerates Danny and still smiles, and now a solo student pilot!! Huge congratulations to both Max and Danny!!
Why would someone want to be at the airport at 6am when they could be sleeping in? Beside the air being cool and calm, less traffic at the neighboring airports, and an awesome way to start the day, it is also an incredible time to solo!! That is exactly what Jaclyn McBride did this morning. Jaclyn and her instructor Sean Torbett took off for Stead bright and early this morning. After a couple laps in the pattern, he hopped out and there went Jaclyn logging her first entries in that PIC column. Jaclyn flew N37JA on runway 26 and commented on how much better the performance is without an instructor ‘weighing’ the passenger side down :) She has been a busy lady…Jaclyn is a local med school student who had a little break this month and decided to get to that solo point. She gave herself the month to do it, and she did! Awesome job Jaclyn!! A huge congratulations to her and Sean on this milestone.
After the rain comes the rainbows or in Kristian’s case, comes the CFI certificate! Yes, that is right, ground instructor Kristian Timmons is now a Certified Flight Instructor!! Kristian, a C-130 pilot and avid fly fisherman, has been working toward sharing his love of aviation with new students. Today, he earned the official certificate to do so! Huge congratulations to him and his instructor Danny Britson. Kris will be on the CFI side of FSP soon so be on the lookout.
"Helping one person might not change the whole world, but it could change the world for one person.” That is exactly what CFI Richard Brong did today. Out of the respect for the family we won’t go into too many details, but Richard was there to help a family look for an older missing person who was reported lost several days ago out in rural Nevada. Talk about a needle in a haystack….a vehicle that blends into the landscape, no phone reception, medical issues, no food or water, and the possibility of hundreds of miles where the missing person could be. Richard hopped in N37JA with a family member, worked with law enforcement officials and the family, and with his previous training, was able to locate the man’s vehicle. Law enforcement used the coordinates to go get him, and he is now recovering in an area medical facility with his super relieved and grateful family close by. Lots of watery eyes this evening. Goes to show that aviation isn’t just about going places, but also truly helping people. Along your aviation journey, look for ways you can use your skills to help others. There are some incredible organizations that look for aviation help. Let us know if you want to help out and we will see what GBA can do to support you. In the meantime, we are so happy for the family who today was reunited with their loved one who, with some medical attention, will bounce back. We are also so proud of GBA’s Richard Brong and his selflessness and strategic abilities. This calls for the fancy wine!
Strong finish to the week…This afternoon at KRTS Wilson Liang completed his first solo flight in blustery, thermally, but not-too-wild-and-crazy conditions on runway 14 in N328ME. He had to work his way through the pattern with several other airplanes coming in to land, depart and another training Cessna from a different area chasing him through the pattern. When Wilson made a radio call to his instructor Sean Torbett, the other instructor realized it was a student solo in progress and actually complimented Wilson on his excellent radio work calling out his positions in the pattern. Awesome job Wilson!! Those sweet landings and great radio calls will be necessary when you are landing jets on a carrier one day. Congratulations as well to his instructor Sean!
This is a great post for me to write. Today Hailey Bogle soloed N752DW at KRTS with style and flair (or is that flare?). Hailey is one of the wonderful people that works the counter at Atlantic Aviation. She has had an insatiable passion for aviation since she was a child inspired by her aviator father. Her stories of seeing the planes fly at the Reno Air Races are a constant source of inspiration. Her dedication, drive, and respect to make her dream of flight her reality came true this morning. The best part for me: Hailey was one of my Chemistry students when she was in high school several years back. She is now a student pilot and the first I have soloed at Great Basin Aviation. Semper excelsius, Hailey Bogle! ~Richard
Today saw another great success story from Great Basin Aviation as Will Levin earned license to fly people and products for hire! Another Commercial Pilot takes to the sky. Will definitely did not choose the easy path this morning and flew in winds and turbulence that would have kept many on the ground. It’s an extra special rating when you see a pilot go from zero time on through the ratings like we have seen in Will. Nice work and keep on going! We heard rumor that the flight instructor certification will be next. Congrats to his instructor Sean Torbett for taking this student to the check ride!
Today Seth Freedman-Peel achieved another major milestone in his aviation journey by earning the privilege to fly in the soup. In other words: Congratulations, Seth! You’re an instrument rated pilot!! Seth has worked as hard as ever on this rating taking advantage of every opportunity for additional experience. I guess you can say he’s graduated from the little pony up to the American Quarter Horse! Good job, Seth. Next stop: The Commercial Pilot’s License.
Nose wheel….Leah doesn’t need no stinkin’ nose wheel...Congratulations to Leah Ochs who earned her tailwheel endorsement this morning is N16RG. This awesome aviatrix is the perfect example of a pilot not settling for the status quo. She is constantly learning and exploring opportunities to enhance her piloting skills and passing on her knowledge, experience, and passion to other pilots. Here is one more thing she can add to her list of aviation accomplishments. Awesome job Leah!!
All posts are either written by Great Basin Aviation's owners Denny Prins and Jenn Fonda, or shared articles from other aviation sites. Source will be referenced in post.