A very ambitious 140 mile Cross Country to test the New Vittorazi Moster with EFI
Coast to Coast from one beach starting near Stuart, FL and landing at another beach in Venice, FL. The idea was first introduced to us by Tucker Gott, and we would like to first acknowledge his attempts with the Aviator PPG team that ultimately had them land 75 miles inland at the Arcadia Airport. Reese d’Aquin was the ground support crew for the pilots (Gillian W., Dave T., Tucker G., Ross G., and Judson G.), and he now attempts to help the next attempts. First they were going to attempt the trip from west to east on July 31, but upon arrival to the take off area, the team was greeted by an isolated storm just 3 miles off shore. Ultimately the team scrubbing the launch, they chose to fly a smaller cross country from Wachula to X07.
“This will be our third attempt at it,” Reese d’Aquin explains. “The attempts made previously were all loosely planed and the weather hasn’t been in our favor like it is today.” The forecast is projected to be 11mph gusting 15 consistently through out the day according to the windy app. The team plans to launch from a small neighborhood road at the edge of the intercostal waterways and ride the westerly winds 140 miles to the coast of Venice.
Pilots James P. and Neil W. prepare for the 4 hour journey the day before with a weather briefing from Reese along with a flight plan for the route that will take them north of Okeechobee along highway 70 and 72. “The winds are incredible, they are forecasted to blow directly tailwind the entire length of the cross country,” Reese explains. “James you’re on the Atom80 so expect to land out in these SOD farms here just past the lake.” Neil explains that he probably will also land with James to take a rest and bathroom break.
We are going to launch as early as legally possible to get the best jump on the day. Cameras have been prepped. Each pilot has a GoPro mounted to their heads and Neil who is piloting the EFI will have a 360 camera facing the EFI’s dashboard showing fuel burn, EGT temperatures, and most important the estimate time before empty. All of this data is made possible by the ingenuity of the Vittorazi EFI Moster. Before starting the motor the EFI requires the pilot to put the amount of fuel (in liters) into the dashboard. All the mechanics and software prepare the motor for flight while elegantly displaying the important information to the pilot.
The team at Aviator PPG has been hard at work testing this new technology to see first hand how efficient this motor actually is. After several test flights the team has determined that the EFI is more fuel efficient than the Atom 80, and nearly twice as efficient as the regular Moster. Their tests can be found on their YouTube channel (Linked here).
There are a special place in time when aviation takes major leaps to push the status quos. AND today we are eager to announce the two stroke EFI is here and ready to make a name for itself amongst the paramotor community. “We are very pleased at the work the team has done in Italy. To see the amount of effort that was put into this machine has been unreal.” Neil said when asked about the motors manufacturer Vittorazi. “They made it clear that this is the direction that they were going to go.” Just like this cross country, we hope to see the EFI go further than ever before and to elevate the sport of paramotoring to new heights.
A huge shout out to the Keter family who had put them up for the night, Reese’s in-laws were present for the Tucker Gott crossing as well and love to see the paramotor pilots re attempt the flight. The morning came quick as the team rose at 5a to get the van packed with their helmets. Debuting the SENA 50R on this cross country, the pilots were going to test the range, the quality, and the battery life. James flew Reese’s personal Team Wendy Helmet set up for VLOG purposes while Neil opted for his set up. The team drove the short distance to the take off site and prepped their motors and wings for the long journey ahead. The bugs were relentless as the night. Reese called ahead to inform the palm beach approach of their flight plans, and then it was off to the races. Frames were weighed before take off in attempts to measure the fuel burn of each motor.
The take off location was a single lane road that dead ended into the intercostal. The winds were nil at 6:15a. First to launch was Neil and the EFI boosted him into the air with ease. Next was James and for safety the team decided to launch the opposite direction of the forecasted winds because there was a bit more space. Winds absent, James revved his motor, took a deep breath, and took a small second before running. The wing shot into the air, the a’s were dropped, and the wing came down just as fast as the process seemed to begin it ended. Reese rushed out to help him reset the wing, and there was a second attempt shortly after. The wing shot into the air but this time the left side took a small collapse, and James made the right call to abort the launch. “I think the winds may have switched on us.” Reese said. James agreed with this observation and repositioned to the east. Once again the wing shot into the air. “Step right pull left” Reese shouts. The wing was heading right for the tree line. Reese holds his tongue. “You got it! You got it!” Reese exclaimed. “Power. Power!”
Two pilots head into the early morning with one goal. To fly from coast to coast. Reese followed suit with the chase van. “We had minimum communication from ground to air with the SENAs but the saving grace was the Gaggle app.” The crew had decent cell service along the route and was able to track each other using the GPS services on the paramotor app. “The app, and the SENAs were a great combo of tech that helped us stay together” said James after landing 4 hours later.
But before then he and Neil discussed their inflight emergencies. One was running low on fuel two hours into the XC and the other was holding in too much gas. They found their own landing spots, and one pilot got gassed up and the other… well, let some of his own gas out. That’s a poop joke. Right onwards. There flight path was free and clear of clouds and airspaces for 95% of the flight path. Coming into Venice, there is a municipal non towered airport right on the beach. “We had an Avband radio and I could hear the traffic in the patter, and it must have been 4 pilots practicing that morning,” Reese tells. “James was going around the airport to the North while Neil had chosen to go South. So I was making radio calls to the pilots in the pattern informing them of the PPG traffic and I could only do that because they were both using gaggle.” Luckily everyone was focused on safety and kept a good separation from all GA. The first to land was James, followed shortly after by Neil. Upon landing each of the pilots gave a holler and slapped hands. The 140 mile Tucker Gott crossing was completed! What a journey it was, and best yet the EFI motor had what seemed to be nearly half a tank of fuel left. We were all blown away, and laughed that if the Atom 80 makes gas, then the EFI refines it.
This is the ultimate XC machine and we all agree that the EFI is here and will make a huge impact on the sport of paramotoring.
The trip has been documented from several angles and will be put on our YouTube channel “Aviator Show” here in the next few weeks so please if you’re interested do us a solid and give us a sub, and a few comments on how you would test this new EFI system.
Blue Skies Aviators.