Abingdon Away Day

I was sneaking out of house on my motorcycle early this morning, when a passer-by on a mountain-bike stopped and asked: "Are you not Blogging this morning then?"

I wondered if it was the motorbike that had given my identity away but it turned out that it was a local reader, Keith Smith, who had been introduced to Thanet Life by his neighbour, Barrie Smith. "I'm off to the Abingdon airshow", I replied, which is where I've been all day, staggering home again at 7PM after flying over there and back via Rochester for fuel, in Terry Brown's fabulous Stampe SV4 biplane.


With Terry Brown in the Stampe

Now with the registration G-BRXP, it started life as a French Stampe SV4A before being assigned to the Armee de L'Aire as a trainer. In 1955, it moved to St Yan (SFASA) a special aerobatics unit, with a distinctive red and yellow colour scheme in which it is painted today.

Between 1956, its first major overhaul and 1961, it served with the Patroille de France, St Yan touring airshow, and then found its way to the United States.

In 2001 it was bought by Terry Brown and shipped to the legendary Brian Mayo at Maypole Air in Kent for a total rebuild, which was carried out over a three year period.

At Abingdon, Terry and I managed to find ourselves "volunteered" to hold the plastic poles and a ribbon while Denny Dobson, an old friend and the UK's leading professional aerobatics pilot dove between us and cut it, almost parting my hair in the process. You can see the slideshow of our Abingdon day out HERE if you're interested in aircraft, with some rather nice action photos of the Extra 300 and the WW II Mustang.


Denny Dobson in action!
The official photo site of the Abingdon show is now available. This shows all the action from the day, including the wheel falling of the Chinook helicopter, more Denny Dobson photos and the Stampe landing at Airshows.org.

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