Some of Australia’s best radio-controlled pilots put their skills on show above Waging Airfield at the weekend, with more thanh 1500 spectators watching on. Among theh pilots was Aaron Garle.
The generosity towards the RFDS and what it does for the community is tremendous. Peter Bryner
Wagin Airfield lit up last weekend with remote-controlled planes taking to the sky for the 2017 Australian Scale Aerobatics Association National Championships.
From Friday to Sunday, 500 spectators walked through the gates of Wagin Airfield to witness the action of some of the best radio-controlled aircraft pilots showing off their skills.
Japan’s Inoue Junichi, who was sponsored by the Shire of Wagin to attend, won the freestyle event with his spectacular performance leaving the audience stunned.
Mark Easton from WA won the precision part of the competition at the Unlimited Class for the second year running.
Queenslander Aaron Garle placed second with his freestyle skills, and the ASAA awarded him the 2017 Pilot of the Year for his aerobatic performance and contributions over the year.
He is mentoring several younger pilots, who also performed at the competition.
“It was a really great atmosphere, quite laid back for our national championships,” Mr Garle said.
“It was a little bit on the cold side. We could notice it in the air with our aircraft, it performs slightly different in cold weather but, all up, it has been great.”
Mr Garle and Mr Easton are now both preparing to represent Australia at the next world championship event, to be held in the US.
Event director and secretary for Scale Aerobatics Western Australia, Peter Bryner, said spectators came from Albany, Margaret River, Perth and Geraldton.
“Many of the locals came, hearing the sound of aeroplanes at the airfield, which is only 2km from the centre of Wagin,” he said.
More than $1200 was raised in donations for the Royal Flying Doctor Service and more than 200 balsa wood chuck gliders were handed out to children at the event.
“The generosity towards the RFDS and what it does for the community is tremendous,” Mr Bryner said.
He said the Shire of Wagin had encouraged the association to make use of its airfield.
“Remote-controlled model aircraft and drones are usually prohibited within 5.5km of a full-size airfield,” he said.
“We’ve had a lot of assistance in getting this event organised, from Civil Aviation Safety Authority approval to Shire support and generous funding from the State Government.”
Aaron Garle and his remote-controlled aircraft.
Some of the remote-controlled planes lined up at Wagin Airfield.