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AETC flying team wins national competition thanks to 'outstanding support'

  • Published
  • By Ray Bowden
  • U.S. Air Force Academy Public Affairs
The Academy Flying Team won a top-level national flying competition for the 28th year in a row, scoring first in overall school rankings, school flight events and school ground events.

Once the dust settled on the flightline here, the Academy took home 870 points at the National Intercollegiate Flying Association Regional Safety and Flight Evaluation Conference, Oct. 14. Metro State University Denver placed a distant second with 471 points.

The team also received the Sportsmanship Award, as voted by the other competing schools, and Cadet 1st Class Dillon Garvin took home the Top Pilot award.

"We can all be very proud of the performance of the team," said Bert Boyce, Flying Team coach. "The cadets excelled in flying and ground testing, finishing first in seven of the nine events and winning the regional championship."

Flyers were judged in nine categories: navigation, power-off landing, short field approach and landing, message drop, computer accuracy, aircraft recognition, ground trainer, simulated comprehensive aircraft navigation and aircraft preflight inspection.    

"Our success would not have been possible without the outstanding support the flying team receives from a host of Academy and Air Education and Training Command personnel but most specifically, the 557th Flying Training Squadron here," Boyce said. "The 557th FTS staff spent countless hours training and mentoring the cadets on the flying team and providing logistical support. A huge thank you to all who support our flying team - You made our victory possible."      

Academy breakdown
· Cadet 1 Class George Antoniou placed sixth in navigation.
· Antoniou placed first, Cadet 1st Class James Gehring second, Dillon Garvin third, Cadet 1st Class Traverse Garvin fourth and Cadet 1st Class Robert Larson fifth, in power-off landing.
· Traverse Garvin placed first, Antoniou second, Larson third, Dillon Garvin eighth and Cadet 2nd Class Brett Meyer 14th, in short field approach and landing.
· Traverse Garvin placed first, Cadet 1st Class Nathan Dicky fourth, Cadet 1st Class Britney Petrina sixth, Antoniou ninth and Dillon Garvin 11th, in message drop.
· Larson placed first, Antoniou second, Cadet 2nd Class Max Umland third, Cadet 1st Class Garrett Ellis fourth and Meyer seventh, in computer accuracy.
· Cadet 2nd Class Scott Lafferty placed first, Cadet 2nd Class Jonathan Hart second, Cadet 3rd Class Elliot Bucki third, Dicky fourth and Cadet 3rd Class Mark Gruschka fifth, in aircraft recognition.
· Dillon Garvin placed first, Umland third and Cadet 3rd Class Christopher Beck fifth, in ground trainer.
· Traverse Garvin placed first, Dillon Garvin second, Cadet 2nd Class Jacob Wulfson third, Cadet 2nd Class Staci Colbachinni sixth and Cadet 1st Class James Gehring ninth, in simulated comprehensive aircraft navigation.
· Cadet 1st Class Douglas Cole placed fourth, Lafferty fifth and Beck 10th, in aircraft preflight inspection.
· Top pilot award went to Dillon Garvin. Antoniou placed second in this category, Larson third, Traverse Garvin fourth and Gehring ninth.