Trev's Jet Provost Flight
Monday, 29 Aug 2011
Yesterday Sunday 28th August i was on Volunteer Fire fighter duty at Sandtoft & was out on the Airfield on the tractor cutting the Grass when one of the Airfield owners Shaun Eagle, came out to me & asked me to come back to the Club house as he wanted to check on what flying was left to do today. There were no Training or Trial Flights left to do so i was asked if i wanted a trip in his Jet Provost Mk4 G-BXLO!!! I was asked the night before in some cryptic emails from him, to bring my Flying suit & boots in to work with me for a Helmet try out, to see if one of the spare helmets fitted me, NOW i knew what it was for my heart started to race a bit!!! Phil Gleaden, the fire fighter i was on duty with then started to refuel the Jet Provost with Jet A1, i also had a bit of an audience as several Member & friends were there & after we moved the aircraft to a safe area to start up away from other aircraft & the Hanger i was helped to strap in. This was pretty daunting being strapped into a LIVE ejector seat!! I was given a briefing on what everything did on the seat & what the command would be in the unlikely event of an emergency.Strapped in the seat & with leg restraints on felt like some Kinky bondage session!!! Helmet on & coms on could hear myself breathing through the system but was surprised at how clear i could communicate with Shaun, i have heard the Military & also Neil (Shaft) McCarthy on my scanner talking through these masks before & had to REALLY Listen to understand what they were saying. Shaun started up the engine & ran through his checks, we then taxied out to runway 23 at Sandtoft EGCF. Lined up then Shaun moved the Throttle forward to full power (I Think) then not even half way down the runway the Jet Provost lifted off, it was airborne quicker than a Cessna 172 i flew last weekend!!!. We climbed away from the circuit to 1500 feet under Doncasters Class D airspace & Shaun passed control over to me & started to talk to Humberside, within minutes we were over Trent Falls which takes a good 15 mins in a C172, Shaun then told me we were cleared to 5000 feet so i eased back the stick & climbed, WOW!! everything was much quicker & more responsive than i thought!! Within a couple of minutes we had flown around some dense cloud & were at 5000 feet at 200 knots, i did a series of turns gentle then with more bank to get the feel of the aircraft, we weren't allowed to do any aerobatics as this aircraft has a 3 G limit, after a little play we set course to Bridlington & out over the sea above clouds at 6500 feet it was time to turn back & head for Sandtoft. Although we were above the cloud & i am IMC rated as is Shaun, we were still VRF as it was broken cloud today. I started to descend to 2000 feet gently as we were 30 miles to run to Sandtoft, we were just over Trent falls at 2000 feet when Shaun informed Humberside we were Visual with Sandtoft, Shaun changed Frequencies to Sandtoft & asked if anything was in Circuit, no was the reply, so he told Nikki that we will be coming in for a low approach & go around. Now lined up with the Runway from 8 miles out & descending at 200 knots & i was still flying i knew what the Military Pilots feel when the fly at Higher speeds & lower level than this sometimes at Air shows & when Training for Combat manoeuvres. We flew down the runway & Shaun took the controls at the half way point to easy back & convert Speed to Height so we could slow down & set up for downwind checks & landing. WOW!! Zoom climb & wing over, this was BRILLIANT!! we turned finals to land & came over the threshold at 100 knots & Shaun cut the throttle & we touched down nice & stopped about three quarters down the Runway. We taxied back & parked & shut down. That was IT!! Flight over, 40 minutes of flying & half a tonne of fuel burnt off. I sat Talking to Shaun for five minutes in the Cockpit as he was explaining Speeds & the difference to flying this & General Aviation. He shook my hand & said welcome to the Jet Set. That was a dream come true for me to Fly in a Jet other than commercial airliners, also being strapped in to an Ejector seat, now i know how a Formula 1 Driver feels being strapped in by his crew at the start of a race. Many thanks to Shaun Eagle for making a dream come true for me & also for an excellent flight which he let me fly 90% of.
Contribute to UKGA:
Do you have more up-to-date information about
Register with UKGA
Registration is quick and easy, and FREE!
Registered users received the following benefits:
- Remembers "Favourites" Aerodromes
- Automatic email of new Notams (if desired)
- Automatic email of relevant events
- Log Book
- ... and more!
Follow UKGA on twitter here