Tiffany Maddox WTVM
Aviation students train in aerobatics at Columbus Regional Airport
April 28, 2022
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  • It’s the familiar sound some may hear around 6 pm near the Columbus Regional Airport. 

    The sound of airplanes zipping and zooming at lower altitudes. 

    “We stay away from any of the airspace that the airlines would be landing or taking off,” said Columbus aerobatic pilot and trainer Marty Flournoy. 

    Future pilots training in the art of aerobatics. The evening hours to stay away from commercial air traffic. 

    Although altitudes in this flight style aren’t used in typical passenger type flights, learning it is vital to a pilot. Helping them manage aircraft in an emergency. 

    “In a thunderstorm, being put on its back. They’ll immediately know how to correct that,” said Flournoy. “If they’re coming in for landing and they get a gust or a downburst from a thunderstorm, piolets who’ve been trained in aerobatics are much better capable of dealing with that emergency.” 

    But there’s also some fun. 

    Flournoy and aviation students from Middle Georgia State University will head to Florida this weekend to compete in an International Aerobatic Club competition. 

    “So, we have roll angles of 90 degrees and inverted to 180 degrees, and combinations where it’s being judged on the conformity of correct angles and the correct roll elements,” said Flournoy. 

    Meaning lot’s of dips, rolls and turns inside a tight ride. 

    “If you like roller coasters this is definitely the kind of flying that correlate to those new roller coasters with rolls and twist in them,” said Flournoy. 

    Flournoy told News Leader Nine he plans to continue training throughout the summer hopefully earning a spot in the national competition this September. 

    If you’d like to learn more information on aerobatic flying you can contact the International Aerobatic Club.