7000 Hours | RV-8
Bob first flew solo in a glider at the age of 16 as an Air Cadet, then served in the Royal Air Force for 23 years on the Vulcan, Jet Provost, Hawk and VC10.
After this Bob flew commercially for 6 years on a Citation business jet (based in Lisbon) and finally on an Airbus A320/321 before joining a UK oil refinery as a Process Operator for 8 years.
In this last employment Bob built his Vans RV8 winner of the best UK Kit Aircraft award in 2012. Now retired, Bob flew his first full UK Handicapped Air Race season in 2015 becoming the British Air Race Champion with a narrow victory over the previous double winner - "the highlight of my aviation career".
Bob is supported by his wife Jill and together they have toured the aircraft around the UK, Portugal, Spain, France and Tangier (North Africa).
Bob is looking forward to taking part in all the different challenges of the ARC - Air Race Championship in Portugal, and hopes you will enjoy seeing the machine he spent 5 1/2 years building in his garage and entertain you with it over the race weekend. Further information can be found at www.rv-8.co.uk
1600 Hours | RV-6A
From Viseu, Portugal, Carlos Costa is a Civil Engineer, being the manager of his own engineering company specialized in Structural Design and Energy Performance of Buildings.
Carlos has been an enthusiastic pilot for over 20 years and is a Flight Instructor and Examiner at the "Aeroclube de Viseu". He had his initial aerobatic training at the Zlin Air School several years ago and has been enjoying aerobatics since then.
He has a passion for everything that flies, which led him to fly many aircraft models. He logged solo hours in C150, C152, C172, 7ECA, PA-28, PA-28RT, Zlin 142, RV-6, RV-6A, RV-7, RV-7A, RV-8A, RV-9, RV-9A, CRUZ, CT2K, DAL4, VEZE, ECHO, GOLF, SNX, WT9, ATEC Solo, Asso V-Xray, PIVI and Land Africa.
Carlos is also experienced in flying other aircraft models like Pitts S-1A, Pitts S-2B, Extra 300, EUPA and LNC2.
He was the Co-builder of the first Van's Kit in Portugal - a RV-6 registered as CS-XAO. He is a regular performer in many Airshows with the duo "Patrulha Fantasma" (http://pfantasma.blogspot.pt/) and was the 2008 Portuguese Sportsman Aerobatic Champion.
Carlos has logged over 1,600 hours flight time including 600 hours on Van’s RV6´s.
4000 Hours | RV-8
From Madrid, Spain, Javier del Cid was born in 1959. Javier joined the Air Force Academy in San Javier (Murcia) where he graduated as Lieutenant in 1982.
In 1983, after completing the Fighter Pilot course at the Badajoz Fighter School, he was posted as Fighter Instructor. In 1985, Javier was assigned to the 14th Wing, Albacete Air Base. During the years in Albacete Air Base, Javier performed the duties of Instructor Pilot in the 142 Tiger Squadron with a total of 1,400 hours flying the Mirage F-1.
In 1993, he was assigned to the 23rd Wing. He also flew over 1,700 hours in the F-5. Later on, from 2010 to 2013, he was appointed as the Commander of Albacete Air Base and the 14th Wing Commander. During his command in Albacete, the first batch of Eurofighter Typhoon EF2000 was delivered to 142 Squadron and in June 2013 the mighty Mirage F-1 were retired from duty after 37 years serving in the Spanish Air Force.
With over 3,300 hours flying fighter jets and more than 700 hours in military props. Some of the planes he flew in the Air Force are the Bonanza E-24, Aviocar T-12, Mentor T-34, Texan T-6, Casa 101, Northrop F-5, Mirage F-1 and occasionally in B-52, F-16, F-18 and Eurofighter.
Regarding his civilian aeronautical activities, Javier is a Private, Commercial, Instructor (FI) and Aerobatic Pilot since 1986 and was a Flight Instructor at Badajoz and Albacete flying clubs.
He was one of the first pilots to obtain a JAR pilot license and was appointed a Designated Pilot Examiner (SE, ME, IFR) when the new JAR legislation was implemented. He was also a synthetic simulator FNPT-II instructor in AEROTEC flight School in Madrid for Multi-Crew Coordination Course (MCC) as well as professor of Human Factors / Acts and Limitations. In 2007 Javier started to build a Vans RV-8 slow-kit and its first flight was on 25th of June 2012.
In 2013 Javier was designated by Fundación Aérea Comunidad Valenciana (FACV) as test pilot for Bleriot XI Project (Wing warping), having rolled the aircraft out on 13th of April 2014. He is married to Coco Ferrándiz and is father of Miriam, currently living and working in Munich, Germany where they fly their RV-8 at every opportunity .
1300 Hours | RV-6
From Ware in Hertfordshire, England, James Stringer, is both owner and pilot of Vans RV-6 G-JSRV – Race 46. James is relatively new to flying, having started in 2002 after being seduced by a heli-skiing trip in Canada. On returning home he immediately started flying lessons, receiving his PPL in California only two and a half weeks later. Ever since he has flown over 1,300 hours in the US, Canada, Australia and throughout Europe. James built his aircraft in just one year, flying it for the first time in May 2006. He has toured extensively throughout Europe, going as far as Sweden, Morocco and Tenerife. James started formation flying in late 2008 and now displays in UK airshows as part of a 3 ship team of RV’s. When not flying, James’ other main sports passions are rugby and skiing. Having started at the age of 10, he is now in his 40th (and last!) rugby season playing as scrum half for Hertford RFC. He is also a very experienced ski-mountaineer. After spending 3 ski seasons as both instructor and guide, James can now be found each winter enjoying the steepest and deepest powder in the Alps, often involving hours of trekking and climbing to get to some of the most spectacular off-piste descents in Europe. James still competes in the Murren Inferno Downhill race in Switzerland every year.
1100 Hours | RV-7
Born and raised in Ribadumia, Spain, José Carlos, will be racing with the superb Vans RV-7 – “Memphis”. José has always been interested in aviation. At the age of 16 he began practicing model aircraft in the form of free-flying gliders, moving then to U-control line models and later to radio-controlled slope soaring. José soon began practicing micro light flying, later earning an instructor rating. Although José has a degree in law, working for the of Public Health Administration, he has always been connected to the world of aviation. At the moment José is a private pilot, having accumulated over 1,100 flight hours in several aircraft. José enjoys any kind of air activities, including aerobatic flying, gliding and skydiving. Always interested in amateur building since his days as model airplane maker, he built in 2001 a Jodel D-92, a low-wing wood and fabric airplane, which he has been flying since then using it for cross country flying. At the moment he’s building a metal airplane, a Colomban MC-100 “Ban-bi”.
2500 Hours | RV-6A
Having grown up in south-west London, Peter had no real links with aviation and does not know where his love for airplanes and flying comes from, all he knows is that aviation has been at the centre of his life for the past 35+ years.
He first flew solo in a glider when he was 16 and has now over 2,500 flying hours. He holds a display authorization for powered airplanes with approvals for formation displays and aerobatics, and is also a gliding instructor and glider racing pilot.
Before he left school, Peter decided he did not want to be a professional pilot and that a career in aircraft engineering would be much more rewarding. He joined British Aerospace at Kingston-upon-Thames, where the Harrier and Hawk were designed and built. After studying for a degree in Aeronautical Engineering he trained to be an aerodynamicist specializing in aircraft handling qualities and flight testing.
A spell in the Royal Navy followed as an Engineering Officer in the Fleet Air Arm, including 4 years at the Aeroplane and Armament Experimental Establishment at Boscombe Down.
After leaving the RN he led the avionics and weapon systems architecture design team for the Harrier GR9 aircraft and was then selected to join the Joint Strike Fighter design team in Fort Worth, Texas. Due to the decline in the UK aerospace industry Peter moved into submarine systems design when he returned to the UK. He is now a Chartered Engineer and Engineering Manager at a composite aircraft and sailplane servicing & repair company, Southern Sailplanes, in Berkshire.
Peter will be racing in his RV-6A ‘Casper’ which he has owned since 2002. As well as flying all around Europe with his wife Diana in Casper, he has trained in formation flying at the UK RV formation flying school – which he set up with other RV owners – and has competed in aerobatic competitions flying an Extra 300 and more recently a DR107 ‘One Design’. Casper has been through a few modification programmes in his lifetime with a few more go-faster changes in progress for ARC.
9000 Hours | RV-8A
From Belgium, Pierre has accumulated over 9,000 flight hours. Pierre started gliding at the age of 16 with the Belgian Air Cadets and really enjoyed the feeling of silent ﬂying. A few years later, he started ﬂying in the Belgian Air Force as student pilot on Siai Marchetti SF260 and in July 2000 graduated on the Alpha Jet. After this, he joined the transport squadron ﬂying the C-130 Hercules. In 2006, he returned to the basic ﬂight training on SF260 as an Instructor and Examiner. From 2009, Pierre started a civilian career ﬂying for TNT Airways, then Cargolux on Boeing 747 freighter. In his spare times he also enjoys flying in several single engine aircraft, teaching the art of aerobatic flying and flight discipline to young pilots. Pierre is married and has two children. When he is not flying, Pierre loves to spend time with his family and 2 dogs.
1100 Hours | RV-7
From Brighton, on the South coast of England, Stephen’s love for flying started at a young age after flying with his Father growing up on a farm in Cambridgeshire. The airstrip on the farm was used by a skydiving club and he started his flying career jumping out of planes rather than piloting them. Stephen got his Private Pilot's Licence in 1996 and soon started flying a Startduster open cockpit biplane in which he started teaching himself aerobatics. The limited aerobatic capabilities of the Starduster soon became apparent and Stephen moved on to a Pitts Special. Over the years Stephen has flown all the different models of Pitts; S1C, S1S, S1T, S2A, S2B, S2C along with many other types of aircraft including a 1946 Globe Swift which he Imported from the USA. He currently flies an Extra 230 and a Vans RV7. Stephen has flown competition Aerobatics for the last 12 years and in 2014 represented Team GB in South Africa.