Sky Sailing Inc Warner Springs is home to the Sailplane Magic Air Show Team. We are a family oriented air show and have been professional performers in Airshows since 1979. It is family affair, with Karen towing or running the ground operations, Bret flying the night show and narrating for Boyd and Garret who will be flying the day shows.
Sailplane Magic is a German made Grob G-103 Acro sailplane. It has two seats and is our handicapped trainer. As a rental ship, Magic is the pride of our fleet. Wingspan: 57.4 ft and weighs 900 pounds. We do many VIP and press rides at air shows.
Our routine is a great audience pleaser since it contrasts with the loud and fast maneuvers of most air show acts.
The Sailplane is towed aloft by our Cessna 180, usually flown by Karen call sign Mom. Upon completion of the act before ours, the Air Boss signals to our announcer to begin explaining to the audience to look high to the sky above and learn about Soaring.
We open the show with an introduction into soaring and use graceful circles for spacing with the sun and the audience. We narrate about sailplanes, their use and about the sport of soaring, the attempt is to inspire people to learn to fly. At approximately one to one and a half minutes, I release from tow 4,300 AGL (above ground level) and start one Orange tail smoke grenade.
Until the next music starts I do big, slow, graceful circles to lull the spectators into thinking that this is all that a sailplane can do.
At 3,900 AGL, new music starts as the wing tip grenades start (white or orange). I start the aerobatics with a loop into a roll, etc. The aerobatics are very graceful, smooth and gives a feeling of freedom. I start the last tail smoke (white) so that it will taper off on landing.
The last series are loops with the music changing to very lively and exciting for the final downwind pass with the wing tip smoke changed to red and blue (white tail is still burning) as the new music starts. The last loop begins at 300 AGL and finishes on the deck for a downwind pass at over 130 mph only feet above the ground. Garret and Boyd will finish their last loop at 800ft and continue into a steep dive for the same downwind pass. I thank the audience and pull up and land a little long or short, depending on the show line. We roll to a stop within inches of a cone or the announcer!
The Sailplane Magic Night show is very unique. The backseat becomes home to batteries and 5 high beam automotive lights. Each Wing has projector lamps pointing toward the fuselage and numerous pyrotechnics! The tail has both pyro and projector lamps lighting the tail. Projector lamps on the gear also light up the wings and fuselage. All pyro and lighting is controlled to give different effects which are radioed from the ground. As with all the shows, Bret listens to the music and maneuvers to the beat!
With over 120 different pyrotechnics on board, Magic lights up the sky!
Garret and Boyd can inspire youth into aviation by telling of their solo flights. On Garret's 14th birthday he soloed 18 different planes. Two days later started on a solo cross country in a single seat Baby Grob painted similar to Sailplane Magic. The cross country over the next three days ended in New Mexico. Mom (Karen) flew the Cessna 180 and Dad (Bret) flew a French built sailplane. Imagine at the age of 14 flying cross country in a single seat sailplane! And yes he did make few world records. On Boyd's 14th Birthday he was set to beat his brothers record and soloed 23 different sailplanes. Then two days later set out in a Schempp-Hirth Discus with Garret in his Discus 2 and set out on the same Cross-Country attempting to get to Hobbs NM, the home of the Soaring Society of America. This record shld stand for many years to come, or at least until Garret's daughters turn 14.
Garret soloed all our towplanes: 2 PA18-180 Cubs, 1 Callair, and our Cessna 180. And on the same day, he earned his Private Pilot Glider rating, so he could now carry passengers. At 18, he bought a Cessna 140 which was built in 1947. The wings have been completely recovered (by Garret). Garret flew to El Cajon to go to Grossmont Junior College for a few years then transferred to Emery Riddle College. His little airplane will give him the flexibility to build his hours. On his 18th Birthday he earned not only his Commercial Glider rating, which means he can carry passengers for hire, he earned his Certified Flight Instructor rating.
On Boydâ€™s 16th Birthday he soloed the Cessna 140, Cessna 180, PA-18-180, and 2 PA-25's. And on the same day, he earned his Private Pilot Glider rating. He also rebuilt the Cessna 140 engine and continued to build hours in it. On his 18th Birthday he earned his Commercial Glider rating and Certified Flight Instructor. Garret is now 34. Graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has accumulated over 8,500 hours and has been a 5 time member of the United States Soaring Team. Was the 2009, 2014, 2015 US Nationals Champion. Currently is the US Junior Coach. He has two daughters, Leena (8) and Nadeen (5).
Boyd Willat is an airline pilot at the age of 24, with over 7000 hours of pilot time and 500 parachute jumps. Boyd has been repeatedly US National Junior Champion and is a member of the USA Junior Soaring team. He will be competing in the Junior World Gliding Championships in Australia this winter.
Looking for a great story: The Flying Willats: Sailplane Magic Airshow Team.
We have hi-resolution images and video available please call or email for dropbox link.