May 17, 2010
By Alton K. Marsh
Helicopter pilot Mark Young of Montrose, Colo., set eight world helicopter records last year that were recently ratified by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, including speed records and a landing on Pikes Peak.
The records were set in a Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter. He set five new records and broke three that had been in place for 50 years. The speed records range from 90 knots to 116 knots, while the altitude records were at 11,056 feet and 14,111 feet. Young’s landing on Pike’s Peak earned him the “Most Memorable Aviation Record of 2009” by the National Aeronautical Association.
Young is an ATP in helicopters and single-engine fixed-wing aircraft. He works as a pilot for Colorado Vertical and gives tours, supports videography, and performs aerial thermography. He has been flying since 1982, mostly in the Rocky Mountains. Young also instructs corporate pilots in mountain flying and has more than 1,200 landings above 10,000 feet.
Young also flies search and rescue missions for Civil Air Patrol and local search and rescue teams and has more than 20 saves to his credit.
“I love the challenge of search and rescue,” Young said. “Sometimes it is finding a needle in the haystack, but it is so rewarding when you find that needle.”
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
The Flying Physicians Association (FPA) has become the latest group to lend support to third-class medical reform and urge government officials to speed up their review of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). The NPRM would expand the number of pilots who could fly without needing to obtain a third-class medical certificate, a standard that has been successfully used by sport pilots for a decade.
California pilot Christopher Braun has created a revamped version of the cleco plier that is said to be lighter and more ergonomic.
There is no shortage of pilots in eastern Washington, but there does seem to be a scarcity of clubs in that part of the country.
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