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Dan Johnson's
Light-Sport Aircraft

Date: January 29, 2016

World Record Claims Are
Putting Gyroplanes on the Map

by Ira McComic

Several recent long distance flights within the US and elsewhere are putting gyroplanes on the map and helping people appreciate that these aircraft arenít just for flying around the patch.

John Craparo and Dayton Dabbs, a duo from Texas, set out in October to establish three world records for speed over a defined course. And Dr. Paul Salmon has made claims to several world records for other courses.

These flights werenít simply a case of hopping in an aircraft, flying somewhere, and bragging about it; in other words, the kind of flying I most enjoy. All of these flights were made purposely with the intention of establishing world records that would be officially recognized by the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI), the world governing body of air sports. For recognition by the FAI, a flight must be made and documented according to that organizationís strict requirements.

For John and Dayton, their claims are based upon a three-flight circuit: the first flight from Dallas to Los Angeles; the second, a transcontinental west-to-east flight from Los Angeles to New York; and the third, a return to Dallas from New York. Earlier, in August, Dr. Paul Salmon made three claims for speed records over a defined course for flights between points in Florida and California. And, more recently, Dr. Salmon filed claims for flights between Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and El Paso, Texas.

John and Dayton made their flights in Johnís Magni M-16 gyroplane and Dr. Salmon made his flights in an M-22. All of these claims have been submitted to the National Aeronautic Association (NAA), the US organization representing the FAI in this country and that officially vouches record claims for the US. For record-keeping purposes, the Magni M-16s are classified ďE-3aĒ; the FAI designation for autogyros with a take-off weight of under 500 kilograms (1,102 pounds). John reports that he and Daytonís flights have been recognized by the NAA and forwarded to the FAI. Approval by the NAA normally means a rubber-stamp approval from the FAI and thereís no reason to believe that any of these claims, including Dr. Salmonís, will be rejected. When approved by the FAI, these flights will officially establish first-time world records for these courses and for gyroplanes of this class.

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