Having operated a sport plane for a few months now, I have seen a very mixed reaction from the majority of GA pilots. There is a tendency among the Piper and Cessna crowd to look down distastefully on light sport aircraft, which they view in much the same light as your average tube and fabric experimental. In reality, light sport aircraft can outperform the fully certified competition in many areas. For those unfamiliar, the Sport Pilot license was created by the FAA to make aviation more accessible, and the hour requirement has been reduced to 20 hours of flight time instead of the typical 40 hours for a Private rating. Instead of going through the stringent FAA medical process, a driver’s license can be used as a medical. While sport pilots can’t fly at night, they are not limited in distance and can enjoy most of the freedoms available with the more costly (in time and money) Private Pilot license. There are now over 90 light sport aircraft models available, and with major manufacturers like Cessna on board, there is no question that light sport is here to stay.
Posts Tagged Sport Pilot