In recent weeks Lachie has been focused on his bread and butter. Not in the sandwich or toast sense, but in the flying sense.
One thing about flying long distances and particularly with something as audacious as flying around the world, is the need for experience, for hours in the air. When you’re just 17, 18 or event 19 for that matter it presents as the biggest challenge.
To that end Lachie has spent plenty of time in the cockpit with a determined focus on earning his Instrument Rating.
To the uninitiated, the Instrument Rating allows you to fly under the IFR (Instrument Flight Rules), which essentially means you can fly by reference only to flight instruments and you don’t need to see outside the aircraft.
It basically allows you to fly in the dark, fly in cloud and provides the ability to fly further and at more flexible times. Basically the world becomes your oyster, which, as Lachie explains, is what is needed for Wings Around The World.
“IFR is really important for my trip because I will be flying in the dark at various stage and through cloud at some stage over the 10 weeks,” Lachie said.
“Without this rating I wouldn’t be allowed to do that. It’ll also allow me to fly in minimal visibility.
“There is a lot more to it than following a GPS path and letting the aircraft fly itself on autopilot. You must be able to fly by hand and do different types of approaches from different navigation aids (both ground based and space based).
“There are also some new radio calls introduced because when you are flying under the IFR you get looked after better from Air Traffic Services. You are given separation from other IFR traffic within controlled airspace and advised of other IFR traffic whilst you are outside controlled airspace.”
Training for the Instrument Rating begins with the theoretical side that Lachie completed privately (a lot of students do it through a course), then on to simulator work, followed by actual time in the aircraft. And plenty of it.
Once these three steps are successfully completed there is a flight test in which the pilot is tested on everything from holding patterns to approaches to flying with limited instruments.
For Lachie the experience gained has been immeasurable and takes him one step closer to take-off in Wings Around The World journey.
“Overall, flying under the IFR is a lot more technical than flying VFR (Visual Flight Rules) however it is a lot less restricted and you do get looked after better,” Lachie said.
“I have probably three or four more practical flights to go before I take my test and then hopefully I can move on to the next stage of training for the trip.
“I’ve really enjoyed the concentrated training that I’ve been doing and with the team around me continuing to work hard on planning and sponsorship I have been able to really knuckle down to safe flying which is our number one focus.
“We’ve still got a way to go when it comes to financing the trip but I hope potential partners can see the effort we are putting in to giving me every skill possible to successfully complete the trip and prove huge achievements should not be restricted by age.”
Partnership opportunities with Wings Around The World range from financial contributions, through to partnering the team for events to take place throughout the preparation and conclusion of the trip, while the chance to assist with in-kind goods and services is also present.
With each partnership option comes the chance for individuals or organisations to integrate themselves with a truly global challenge that will generate publicity at each of the stops around the world, while maintaining a presence domestically in Australia, throughout this world circumnavigation odyssey.
For further information about WATW partnership opportunities contact Phil Harrip – firstname.lastname@example.org.