Brief flight history: I started flying gliders at age 13, soloed at 14, got my private license at 17, commercial license at 20, airline transport rating at 26 when I became captain on a commuter airline and got hired by Southwest Airlines in 1993, becoming a captain 4 years later. Having a hankering for low and slow, I got my helicopter license in 1998, buying an Enstrom F-28A Helicopter later that year. Then paramotoring started in 1999. It became the best answer to low and slow, soom taking over my recreational flying as I dove in hook, line and sinker.
After a few years of flying and feeling my oats, I felt the urge to compete. That’s strange for me because I’ve never been that competitive in other areas of my life but flying this thing had become such a passion. So, with the help of Eric Dufour and others, we started official competition with the US Powered Paragliding Association using a system modeled loosely on European scoring. And I’ve competed in every one of them since and a few others. The USUA also ran a nationals but, sadly, there were only 3 paramotor pilots, one who was brand new and the other (besides me) was from Canada.
In 2009 we got to put the U.S. on the international competition map thanks to Roy Beisswenger who ran a qualifier for the World Air Games. This was an incredible opportunity; pilots from around the world tried out, flying the same tasks, and the top 22 were chosen for a paid trip to the Olympics of Airsports in Turin, Italy — the World Air Games. That was an incredible experience and I managed to not only qualify, but won the qualifier and the following year placed 6th in the world. Needless to say, I was ecstatic.
2014, 1st place overall USPPA National Competition after which I “retired” from competition.
2013, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition
2012, 3rd place overall USPPA National Competition, didn’t compete at largest event due to serving as Competition Director.
2011, 1st place overall USPPA National Competition
2010, Did not compete, served as Competition Director
2009, 6th place FAI World Air Games, Turin, Italy
2008, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition (1st was Stan Kasica).
2007, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition (1st was Stan Kasica).
2006, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition (1st was Eric Dufour).
2005, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition (1st was Eric Dufour).
2004, 1st place overall USPPA National Competition
2003, 2nd place overall USPPA National Competition