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Monday, September 1, 2008

Rotorcraft Report: A109s Grand Crew Claims World Record

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AgustaWestland Grand pilots Scott Kasprowicz and Steve Sheik landed at New York’s LaGuardia Airport Aug. 18, claiming a world record for a flight around the world in a helicopter.

Kasprowicz, who owns the A109S with the distinctive registration N1US, and copilot Sheik completed the flight in 11 days, 7 hr, 2 min. In doing so, they broke the record held by Rotor & Wing contributor Ron Bower by almost six days, with an average speed of 74 kt, including stops. Their average speed airborne was calculated at 150 kt. Bower joined the crew on one of their final legs and will report on the record flight in a future issue.

The record claim must be verified by the National Aeronautic Assn, the U.S. branch of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, which is the world’s official arbiter of aeronautical records.

In their flight, Kasporwicz and Sheik crossed 18 countries and 24 time zones and made 78 fuel stops. They traversed almost 21,000 nm in less than 12 days and set a speed record for a New York-London helicopter flight.

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