A story we need to share

1 8At the conclusion of October’s Copperstate Fly-In, held at Casa Grande Municipal Airport (CGZ) in Arizona, I attended the annual awards banquet. As luck would have it, I sat at a great table. Seated with me was Chris Christiansen (and his parents), designer/builder of the award-winning Savor, Dave Edwards from Las Vegas, who turned me on to a resolution making its way through the Nevada Legislature to make sure North Las Vegas Airport remains open to experimental aircraft , and Bill Harrelson, a retired airline pilot and efficiency expert from Fredericksburg, Virginia.

What a table. Great conversation and some amazing stories. I learned that Bill came to the Copperstate Fly-In to compete in the FuelVenture 400 efficiency race. (He won his class, by the way). He and his flying partner ducked out early, as they were hoping to make a non-stop flight home the next morning, and needed to get some rest. A few days later, I received the following e-mail, which tells the story of the potential of that fuel efficiency much better than I could. Enjoy.

“It was nice to meet you at the awards banquet. We might have mentioned we were going to try to make it home from Casa Grande to Fredericksburg the next morning. Here are some brief facts of the flight home. Unfortunately we landed 40 miles short of home at Orange, Virginia, for a shot of gas.

Great Circle distance: 1,700 nm; Route flown: 1,749 nm; Yahoo Map driving distance: 2,353 miles; Time to Orange: 9 hrs, 40 minutes; Total time: 10 hrs, 15 minutes; Total fuel burn: 51 gallons; Number of people: 2; Payload: 380; Cost: Less than $100 each

This was a pretty remarkable flight any way you look at it, but when you compare this flight to driving a car or commercial airline service, you really get an appreciation for the Lancair 320 and GA in general.

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