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EAA Members Win in the Caribbean

June 16, 2016 - The 1953 prestigious Governor General’s Cup was awarded to The Little Yellow Bird team of Jonathan Apfelbaum, EAA 222561, and Julia Kirchenbauer, EAA 1048520, from Parker, Colorado (KFTG), flying a 2004 Stoddard Hamilton Glastar built by Apfelbaum over a five-year period. Apfelbaum is an emergency medicine physician, and has been a pilot for 30 years, while Kirchenbauer, a recently certified pilot, is currently serving in the U.S. Navy Reserve, and is a full-time bioengineering college student. Both are passionate about aerobatics and avid aviation photographers.

The Caribbean Air Rally is not a race. Pilots of different calibers join every year. Airplanes range from LSAs to Pilatus PC-12s. The armada of 30 aircraft is divided into three squadrons according to speed, each supervised by two Air Rally team leaders. Participants originate from the USA, Canada, Europe, and Latin America. The mix of yearly returning and new aviation enthusiasts makes this event the perfect meeting place for people to share a passion and create lasting friendships.

Pilots are confronted with questions about safety, navigation, and air transport regulations. The Rally aims to: increase awareness and familiarize pilots with international flying procedures. Ground competitions related to culture and history are a good opportunity to bring forward the particulars of the countries they visit.

The Caribbean Air Rally is a unique opportunity to explore the diversity and the beauty of the Caribbean islands. Pilots increase their capacity and confidence to travel beyond their present boundaries to explore new territories. This year, the air rally took place April 11-24 and was hosted by the islands of Turks and Caicos, St. Croix, Martinique, Antigua, Tortola, and Haiti.

The umbrella organization of the Caribbean Air Rally is the International Air Rally, leader of the most important air rallies since 2001. The Caribbean Air Rally is a fundraising event supporting education. This event creates an opportunity for three young pilots to fly the entire Rally all expenses paid by Rally sponsors.

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