Didn’t want to miss out on sharing some great videos from Sardinia three weeks ago with us three pilots Thomas Leiber (“The Leibertinger”), Felix Haas (“The Haasinger”) and myself (=”The Seifertinger) in Thomas’ plane, a beautiful Diamond D-40.
Yep, that’s The Leibertinger, just after heroically landing in San Teodoro (Sardinia) on a short grass field. If you listen to the sound, you would hear the flight director in its robot-like voice repeat: “Warning! Terrain-Terrain!”. That’s because the Garmin GPS system doesn’t know about such small airfields and believes that you’re just about to ram the aircraft straight into the ground. But it went better than that :-)
For take-off we had done lots of calculation if the length of the runway would be sufficient based on our weight, temperature and height of the grass and even defined a point to abort the take-off if we had not reached at least 50 knots. Here The Haasinger was Pilot-in-Command and did a phenomenal job in accelerating the plane, lifting it off effectively using the ground effect, accelerating further before assuming a stable climb.
This one, however, is by far my favourite. The Leibertinger again in command, me sitting to his right side (but all credit & glory to him, he did it all). This was a small airstrip some 800 meters above mean sea level in the mountains of Sardinia, no living soul around. It was clear to us that the length of the runway could be just enough for landing, but not way to get the plane up in the air, especially due to the trees just at the end of the runway. Still, we didn’t want to miss out on that one, so we did a thing in between called “touch & go”.
Kudos. The trees below, the plane above. Exactly how it should be, and never mind the margin between the two.