Today I met Jörg (‘George’) Stobel and his partner Faten at Foxbat HQ in Tyabb Airport.
Jörg has been involved with Aeroprakt since the early days in the mid-1990’s. Originally based in the UAE (where he still has a home) he is now taking on the role as Aeroprakt agent for Thailand. Jörg also has a home in Phuket (life’s tough isn’t it?) and his demonstrator A22 is kept an an airfield near Pattaya, just south east of Bangkok. I’ve seen pictures taken during his flights between the two locations and they are straight out of a travel brochure – deep blue-green sea, little islets with trees down to the water and tiny secluded beaches.
Anyway, I took each of them for a short trip in the skies over the Mornington Peninsula here in Victoria. It was a lovely day, if a bit hazy, but I guess the views can’t really compete with those between Phuket and Pattaya…although both remarked on how green the countryside looks at the moment.
Jörg and his partner – who works with Etihad Airlines – are in Australia for a few days to ‘relax, unwind and chill out’.
It was great to sit and chat with them over a coffee about the early days of Aeroprakt and hear about the times while they were working to get the business going. But that’s over 20 years ago now and Aeroprakt is close to manufacturing their 1,000th aircraft. I will be offering spares and other service back up & support to Jörg while he is building his business in Thailand, and wish him every success.
At the weekend, Jörg and Faten are flying from Melbourne to Sydney to visit friends but we’re hoping to get a couple more flights in before then – maybe up around the top of Port Philip Bay to have a closer look at Melbourne and the bayside.