May 8, 2014
By Alyssa J. Miller
Tumble through the sky and grunt through the Gs as airshow performer and Air Force Reserve Maj. Billy Werth takes you through an aerobatic performance at altitude, or enjoy a serene, 1-G barrel roll. Werth’s goal is to give passengers a thrill in his Pitts S2C, so that they walk away with a “smile on their face and an empty airsick bag.”
He’ll be offering 15- to 20-minute thrill rides for $225 during the AOPA Fly-In at Indianapolis Regional Airport on May 31.
Samantha Norton, a private pilot and customer service representative for IndyJet at Indianapolis Regional, got the chance to go for an aerobatic flight in the Pitts during a break in bad weather that had been plaguing the area this winter and spring. A day later, Norton was still grinning from ear to ear. That’s the reaction he said he hopes for, whether his passengers are 5 or 79—the youngest and oldest he’s taken for thrill rides.
Werth doesn’t spend much time on the ground. He’s been flying out of Indiana’s Grissom Air Reserve Base since 1994 and is as an instructor/pilot in the Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker. He’s flown for the Republic Airways family since 2001, co-founded Grayout Aerosports in 2006, and performs in airshows.
Pilots can get a taste of what it’s like to fly in his shoes: The week leading up to AOPA’s May 31 event, Werth will be offering unusual attitude/emergency recovery, aerobatic, and spin training. He’ll also provide military transition training for pilots heading into the Air Force flight training program. Werth teaches pilots how to fly military traffic patterns to help them feel more comfortable before entering the high-stress Air Force program. Werth said he will tailor each lesson to students’ needs. “You have to walk away from the airport with a smile on your face and a more competent pilot,” he said. Training costs are available on the Grayout Aerosports website.
Don't miss out on all of the activities at the AOPA Indianapolis Fly-In—educational seminars, an EAA pancake breakfast, free lunch for AOPA members and their immediate family (catered by the famous Edwards Drive-In), exhibits, and aircraft display!
RSVP today to let AOPA know you are coming and how many will be with you.
You can fly with aerobatic star Billy Werth at the AOPA Indianapolis Regional Fly In. You've got to see this guy's act - his brother chases him down the runway on a motorcycle.
AOPA Director of eMedia and Online Managing Editor Alyssa J. Miller has worked at AOPA since 2004 and is an active flight instructor.
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