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Aviation business takes flight in Cottonwood

Kestrel Aviation Services provides new flight adventure options

Kestrel Aviation Services is announcing the May 20 opening of a new full-service aviation center focused on Light Sport Aircraft at the Cottonwood Municipal Airport. (Photo courtesy of Kestrel Aviation Services)

Kestrel Aviation Services is announcing the May 20 opening of a new full-service aviation center focused on Light Sport Aircraft at the Cottonwood Municipal Airport. (Photo courtesy of Kestrel Aviation Services)

COTTONWOOD – Kestrel Aviation Services is announcing the May 20 opening of a new full-service aviation center focused on Light Sport Aircraft at the Cottonwood Municipal Airport.

Opening day will feature an open house in their new hangar from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. located 668 Airpark Road, Hanger No. 3, and free hot dogs and beverages will be provided.

According to a press release from Kestrel Aviation Services, the FAA recently created a special category of aircraft and pilot licensure called Light Sport Aircraft (LSA). With this new category, pilots can purchase a brand new aircraft and obtain training for a Sport Pilot licenses for less than half of what traditional aviation costs, “opening up the thrill of flying to tens of thousands of new pilots. Existing pilots, who are no longer active, can now renew their love of aviation for a fraction of what it used to cost.”

Kestrel Aviation Services provides a “one-stop-shop” for LSA adventure, stated the release. Featured will be a full FAA LSA certified flight center, providing maintenance and condition inspections of all 3-axis and weight-shift LSA aircraft.

“They are also Factory Reps for Wild Sky Aircraft, manufacturers of the incredible new LSA heavy-duty “Goat” weight-shift adventure hike. And they partner with other LSA businesses to provide a complete LSA pilot experience,” the release explained.

Sid Lloyd, CEO of Kestrel Aviation Services, said, “We are so excited to bring a new type of affordable aviation to the Verde Valley area. And it’s fun!”

Light Sport Aircraft have been defined by the FAA as two-place aircraft weighing less than 1,320 pounds with a top speed of 120 mph, said the company, adding that their lower weight and lower design speed make them more affordable than traditional aircraft.

“The FAA worked with industry experts to develop a faster and more affordable certification process for LSA aircraft in order to accelerate development and cut cost. There are already more than 150 models of LSA aircraft on the market from which to choose,” stated the release.

Along with the new LSA category of aircraft comes a new type of pilot license: Sport Pilot. A Sport Pilot license requires passing an FAA knowledge test, and a minimum of only 15 hours of dual instruction plus 5 hours of supervised solo, said the company. This is half of what is currently required for a full Private Pilot license, the release stated.

“The limits for a Sport Pilot include no night flight, carrying only one passenger, and not flying higher than 10,000 feet. Since there are such limits, it is much easier to learn what you need to know to obtain a Sport Pilot license. And, you don’t need an expensive FAA medical certification. All you need is a valid driver’s license,” stated the release.

Total training cost for a typical Sport Pilot license is under $6,000, said the company. Existing Private Pilots can fly LSA aircraft as Sport Pilots without a medical certificate if they have not had their last medical revoked by the FAA, opening up aviation to thousands of existing “rusty” pilots, the release stated.

“Sid Lloyd started Kestrel Aviation Services after a successful executive career with Fortune 100 companies and was most recently CEO and President of a large non-profit based in Oklahoma. He shares his love of aviation with his wife who is also a pilot. They have lived in the Verde Valley for 10 years,” stated the release.

About Kestrel Aviation Services

Kestrel Aviation Services is a full-service Light Sport Aviation center focusing on Rotax equipped Light Sport Aircraft. They are located at 668 S. Airpark Rd, Hangar #3 at the Cottonwood Municipal Airport (P52) and can be contacted at www.kestrelaviationservices.com or 928-239-4101.

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