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‘Chalkie’ Unofficially Breaks 70-year-old Aviation Record

Chalkie Stobbart

May 11, 2009 — EAA salutes Charles “Chalkie” Stobbart, EAA 273568, of Johannesburg, South Africa, who according to his website landed safely at Cape Town, South Africa, at 1422 Zulu Monday, after flying to London and back in (unofficial) record-breaking fashion. In “The Henshaw Challenge,” Chalkie flew an Osprey GP 4 homebuilt airplane for 3 days, 15 hours, 17 minutes - some 20,000 km (12,427 statute miles) - to break the 70-year-old aviation record set in 1939 by Alex Henshaw (1912-2007).

The final entry on the team website’s News Ticker reads simply: “2009-05-11 14h22 GMT And he's landed!!!”

Henshaw’s 70-year-old record - set flying flight in a modified Percival Mew Gull from London-to-Cape-Town-and-back - was 4 days, 10 hours, 16 minutes.

The record will become official when verified by the Federation Aeronautique Internationale, which sanctions world aviation records.

(Stobbart flew from Johannesburg to the Oshkosh convention in 1992 in a Fairchild F24 Argus. Eleven years later, he flew his RV-6 homebuilt to EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2003 and back to celebrate the Centennial of Powered Flight.)

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