The Central Texas College aviation team captured the National Intercollegiate Flying Association Region IV Safety and Flight Evaluation Conference (SAFECON) championship last month at Texas State Technical College in Waco. CTC captured first place in the overall team flying events and second place in the ground events to win the regional championship. CTC now qualifies for the national SAFECON flying competition to be held at Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, May 6-11.
The SAFECON competition tests a broad variety of aviation skills, both on the ground and in the air, including short-field landings, power-off landings and navigation — all demanding tests of piloting skills. Ground events include tests measuring a pilot’s knowledge of regulations, weather and their ability to do aviation math without electronic aids. CTC scored a total of 481 points to win the flight events competition over second place Le Tourneau University (272 points) and TSTC (225 points). CTC took second in the ground events with 215 points.
More than 100 student pilots from seven colleges participated in the regional event. Competing schools were CTC, Delta State University (Mississippi), Hinds Community College (Mississippi), Louisiana Tech, University of Louisiana at Monroe, LeTourneau University (Longview) and Texas State Technical College (Waco).
Bryan Glover earned Top Pilot honors in the regional event. Also finishing among the top 11 pilots in the event were Robert Mazyrack in fourth place; Max Wiener in fifth place; Austin Boney in sixth place; Mason Ross in 10th place; and Michael Steele in 11th place.
CTC team members were Boney (captain), Killian Brooks, Glover, Alex Grzelecki, Robert Lewis, Mazyrack, Aaron Miller, Redi Nezeri, Ross, David Smith, Steele, Wiener, Michael Hutyra (advisor) and David Peters (advisor).
The team results were:
- Navigation (contestants are evaluated by comparing actual flight data with estimated planned data submitted by the student for a 70-120 nautical mile cross-country flight) — Wiener (pilot) and Ross (observer), fourth place; Glover (pilot) and Boney (observer), fifth place; and Robert Mazyrack (pilot) and Michael Steele (observer), sixth place.
- Short Field Approach and Landing (test the pilot’s skill at maneuvering and manipulating the aircraft when attempting to land on a target line) — Boney, first place; Ross, second place; Mazyrack, fourth place; Glover, seventh place; and Wiener, 13th place.
- Power-off Landing (same as short field landing only with the aircraft engine on idle during the downward leg abeam of the target line) — Boney, first place; Glover, second place; Steele, third place; Wiener, eighth place; and Mazyrack, 14th place.
- Message Drop (a two-person crew attempts to hit a target on the ground with a message container dropped from the aircraft) — Lewis (drop master)/Ross (pilot), second place; Grzelecki (drop master)/Brooks (pilot), fifth place; Glover (drop master)/Boney (pilot), sixth place; Smith (drop master)/Nezeri (pilot), seventh place; Miller (drop master)/Steele (pilot), eighth place.
- Aircraft Pre-Flight Inspection (students are given 15 minutes to inspect a common training aircraft that has been “bugged” with multiple problems and identify the problems) — Mazyrack, second place; Wiener, fifth place.
- Computer Accuracy (written examination based on problem solving using one or more manual flight computers) — Glover, fifth place; Wiener, sixth place; Mazyrack, seventh place; Boney, ninth place; Steele, 11th place.
- Aircraft Recognition (students are given three seconds to identify the manufacturer, common name and model number of aircraft from all over the world, both past and present) — Ross, sixth place; Miller, 11th place; Wiener, 12th place; Brooks, 19th place; Boney, 23rd place.
- Ground Trainer (designed to test the competency and skill of students using a flight training device measuring proficiency in altitude, heading and airspeed control) — Glover, second place; Boney, third place.
- Simulated Comprehensive Aircraft Navigation (written exam with problems that reference a simulated cross-country flight over a given route) — Wiener, eighth place; Mazyrack, ninth place; Glover 13th place; Ross, 15th place; and Boney, 20th place.
CTC also won the Team Safety Award, which is presented to the team demonstrating the safest practices during the regional SAFECON event and the past year.