What It Means For Sport Pilot

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Although there's an undeniable thread of showmanship to Coburn's feat, those involved in the fledgling Sport Pilot and LSA industries say there's an important lesson to be learned from the effort. "The national average for a Private Pilot's license [sic] is 72 hours and a lot of people are taking nearly a year to accumulate that much time," said Sportsplanes.com CEO Josh Foss. "Now someone can enjoy the freedom to fly in a week." (Which is a lot easier to fit into a vacation.) Foss said the quick training makes getting a Sport Pilot certificate affordable for just about anyone and that bodes well for aviation in general. "I have little doubt that people like Davin will continue to log hours and eventually upgrade to Private Pilot status and perhaps IFR," Foss said. "In that sense, the Sport Pilot license is a 'stepping stone' or entry level permit to learn that people in their early 20's can readily afford and accomplish in a short period of time." EAA spokesman Dick Knapinski said he believes stories like Coburn's could inspire those who thought their dreams of flying to be unattainable to investigate and perhaps pursue them. "It brings into focus what the opportunities and possibilities are."