Two cadets from 1181 (Syston) Squadron are flying into the New Year after both have completed their Gliding Scholarship with 643 VGS at RAF Syerston near Newark.
Cadet Corporals Dan Garlick and Charlotte Wilkinson-Burnett completed the scholarships syllabus, with Corporal Garlick flying solo in January of this year and being awarded Silver Wings for his achievement. Corporal Wilkinson-Burnett gained her Blue Wings for completing the nine exercise syllabus in November of last year.
Corporal Garlick (front) with his instructor in one of the gliders used to complete his Gliding Scholarship at 643 VGS.
The two cadets were taught by experienced instructors at the Gliding Squadron, being taught a variety of skills needed to fly the glider including launch failures, how to approach and land, and also how to recover from stalls. Both cadets were allocated 40 winch launches to complete their syllabus with Corporal Garlick being allocated an extra five launches to gain a standard suitable for solo flying.
After completing his first solo flight Corporal Garlick said ‘The adrenaline kicked in the minute the canopy closed and I could see the slack of the cable going. After climbing to 1000 feet I then released to start my circuit. It seemed strange as I was not loosing height due to the weight being considerably less and therefore took the necessary procedures to compensate for this. The landing was said to be textbook and it was a relief to know I’d landed!’
High Flyers – Corporal Dan Garlick, Flight Lieutenant Mat Faulkner (OC 1181) Sqn and Corporal Charlotte Wilkinson-Burnett.
The cadets were not the only members of the Squadron flying high, Officer Commanding, Flight Lieutenant Mat Faulkner also flew solo in a glider at Four Counties Gliding Club at RAF Wittering. Flight Lieutenant Faulkner completed his solo at the end of 2008.
By Cpl Dan Garlick – 1181 (Syston) Squadron