Today I collected my UK IR(R) restricted instrument rating from the CAA at Gatwick. I’m pleased to say I achieved 100% in the theoretical knowledge test, and performed well during my instrument skills test. This new rating will give me a greater safety margin when flying, gives me the confidence to fly in less than perfect weather, and will help me get home if the weather deteriorates while en route.
I’m obviously eager to get back in the air with the video cameras rolling, but India Zulu is in the hangar having the annual inspection by the maintenance team, and being fitted with new radio and navigation equipment. I hope to be able to fly, and produce a new video before Christmas.
I trained for the IR(R) rating at Headcorn Aerodrome, which gave me more experience flying from an uncontrolled airport, and more practice using a grass runway. Soft field take offs and landings were the norm during the course, and most of my training was conducted in real IMC (real cloud and poor visibility), except for the day of the test, when the skies were clear and the wind virtually non-existent!
For the next few videos, I am planning to combine my love of flying, with my job of reporting the news. This is because one of my most successful flying videos on my YouTube channel was my flight featuring “Operation Stack”, where one of the UKs major motorways has to be closed to park lorries. I will be looking to feature interesting events or news stories, explaining recent events, or touching on historical, environmental or cultural matters. Obviously, this will be best served if the features involve something that is enhanced by a view from the air. If you have any ideas for future features, please comment on this post below. I look forward to your input!