Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Young pilot has high hopes for record

By CLARE MELLOR 

 It’s not an average summer trip to the East Coast but Matthew Gougeon is not your average teenager.

The 16-year-old Ontario resident is hoping to set a record as the youngest pilot ever to fly a plane solo from Canada’s West Coast to the East Coast.

“I’m looking forward to it, ” says Gougeon, without a hint of nervousness about the upcoming adventure.

He will leave Tofino, B.C., around July 13 and land in Halifax around the 19th. He will be piloting his dad’s amphibious Cessna 182 airplane.

“At the start and end of the trip I’m going to try and land in each ocean, just as kind of a cool thing.”

“It’s a float plane but it is amphibious, which means the floats have wheels that come out of them, so I can land on runways, too.”

Gougeon lives in Collingwood, where he has just finished Grade 11 at Pretty River Academy, but spends his summers in Sudbury.

During his long solo flight, he expects to fly about six to nine hours a day, and will make overnight and refuelling stops in various cities across the country. His schedule is weather dependent.

“If there is weather or rain or anything like that, I can be grounded pretty easily,” he said.

Read more here:  http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/110996-young-pilot-has-high-hopes-for-record

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