Unlimited Team 2017 News-Updates


Team BiosVideo Photo Gallery

World Aerobatic Championships Conclude

September 18, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

The World Aerobatic Championships just concluded yesterday in South Africa. The FAI has an excellent story on it here.

Congratulations to our own Rob Holland for his 4th consecutive win of the Four Minute Freestyle. Rob brings home a Gold Medal and two Silvers for his excellent performance in Malelane. No pilot has ever won the Four Minute (also known as Programme 5 in CIVA rules) that many times in WAC history. There is a short video of him on Facebook now where he says, “The Nationals are next” and we look forward to seeing him and the other team pilots in Oshkosh at the end of this week.

Here is Rob accepting his trophy and medal. I don’t know how he is going to get that big elephant trophy into checked luggage!












Here are the Teams accepting their Medals with the USA taking Bronze in the team competition.









Incidentally, the team managers also get a large FAI Medal as well – well deserved, Alice! Congratulations to Mark Nowosielski, Craig Gifford, and Rob Holland for their scores, making this possible.


Mikhail Mamistov is the new World Aerobatic Champion. Mikhail is a real gentleman and always a pleasure to meet and talk with as well as being incredibly talented. He takes home the miniature replica Aresti Cup.











Full results are here. Lots of interesting data and a really exciting competition. Many changes in the standings due to the last Free Unknown.


Free Unknown 2 Flight

September 14, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Click here to see Jim Bourke's third contest flight on Youtube!


Unknown 3 Update

September 13, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Really???? Team USA draws slots 1, 2, and 3 for the third unknown!!!!! Bob and Jim are calculating the odds.

Unknown 3

September 13, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

With heat comes WIND!!!!! Had some unforeseen (non aviation) delays this morning. Five pilots, none American, flew before lunch break. Back at it tomorrow. Jim Bourke will be the 5th pilot in the morning flying "D".

Sequences for Unknown 3

September 12, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Unknown 1 is done. The team works tonight on putting together sequences for Unknown 3 and getting ready to fly Unknown 2 tomorrow. Jim Bourke is the first American up tomorrow at number 10. We'll be flying sequences D and A. Which is your pick?

First Unknown

September 11, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

The entire team chose sequence C for the first unknown.

Order of flight for the Free Known:

September 11, 2017  Malelane, South Africa


Figure Submissions

September 10, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Here are the figure submissions for the first Unknown at WAC. How would you put these together??????

Saturday Practice Recap

September 9, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Free Known (Programme One) order of flight drawing results of US. Actual order of flight may change due to shared aircraft. BTW the number was at the bottom of a can of lion repellent . Really!

Last practice flights before the official briefing later this afternoon. Countdown is on!

Thursday Evening Recap

September 7, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Marty and Peggy (and Marty's lovely wife Cindy) have arrived at Malelane. Another good day of practice. Everyone got one flight in the contest box and most took advantage of a second flight at Riverside. Last day of practice is tomorrow then it is showtime! A few looks at Riverside today; Mike Ciliberti getting some advice from Coco Bessiere and a few spectators at the end of the runway. The giraffe didn't seem disturbed at all by the aircraft. The last shot is from the hotel deck this morning. Nothing like having breakfast watching the antelope graze across the river.

Wednesday Practice Update

September 6, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

From the logistics end of things today...we were glamping out at the Riverside box. Our favorite giraffe and antelope showed up for the show at the end of the day. There are some really scary spiky plants in South Africa including one found just off the airfield.

Tuesday Practice Update

September 5, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Yesterday the whole team got practice time in the box! Between schedules, customs, mechanicals and a wicked virus it was a day for celebration. Today almost all had some "g-time". Just 3-1/2 practice days left until the contest flying gets underway. This team has unlimited possibilities. Here's a few pictures from our day.

First day of Practice

September 3, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Today was our first day practicing in the Riverside box. Not well marked but a good place to work on figures. Pilots still used the main airfield for takeoff and landing. The coaching staff got to see great flying as well as some local scenery.

South Africa Update 

August 30, 2017  Malelane, South Africa

Nothing says team building exercise than putting a plane together.  It's looking great!










Practicing hard in Malalane South Africa for the World Championships. Thank you very much to Mark Hensman for letting me use his beautiful MX2! Posted to Facebook by Rob Holland. Facebook video link, click here.

WAC 2017 is Almost Here!

August 23, 2017

It's getting close! Some of our pilots are already heading over the pond to South Africa. They will be practicing starting later this week. Keep checking back for updates. Go Team17!

Training Camp 3, Day 5

August 6, 2017   Union City, TN

We used Sunday morning to rest up, go out to breakfast in Martin, TN and plan for our upcoming trip to the WAC in South Africa. Everyone got one flight in today before weather happened. We've been using this makeshift board during the training camps to do order of flight. It works great for a small number of pilots. Try it out at your next IAC chapter practice day.


Training Camp 3, Day 4

August 5, 2017   Union City, TN

Intense day with the team flying two unknowns. Brought out strengths and areas for improvement. Lots of great coaching from Coco and our guest coaches; Tom Adams, Peggy Riedinger and Wayne Roberts. Oh, and who would have thought we'd have perfect weather in August. Even a bit of color in the sky.


Training Camp 3, Day 3

August 4, 2017   Union City, TN

An unplanned and impromptu team building exercise. Begs the question "How many pilots does it take to fix a radio?" Answer: at least five (one is hiding).


Training Camp 3, Day 2

August 3, 2017   Union City, TN

Five pilots on site today, should have a full house tomorrow. We did take a quick break for lunch at a restaurant called Sammies. Had to get a picture of the team in front of this sign. How appropriate!


Training Camp 3

August 3, 2017   Union City, TN

We are here! Training Camp 3 is underway. Love being back at KUCY. Better than rolling out the red carpet we have big red umbrellas and really big red fans.












August Training Camp - last before heading off to South Africa


The members of the US Unlimited Aerobatic Team will be practicing at Everett-Stewart Regional Airport (...KUCY) August 2-7.

This is the last team training camp before they head off to the World Aerobatic Championships in South Africa to compete against pilots from 13 other countries. On August 5th and 6th they will have comprehensive coaching weekend where they will be showing off the skills they have honed over the past few months. The airport will remain open during daylight hours while the practice is underway. As is always good practice, check the NOTAMs before you fly in.

Check out the Team on Facebook: @USUnlimitedAerobaticTeam










Training Camp 2

June 2017   Union City, TN

A great Training Camp with the US Unlimited Aerobatic Team in Union City TN. We are training hard to get ready for the World Championships in South Africa this coming September. There is still a lot of work to be done but I think we are coming along pretty well and will represent the United States proudly. Posted to Facebook by Rob Holland. Facebook video link, Here (link is external).









Training Camp 1, Recap

April 18th, 2017  Union City, TN

Training Camp 1, departure day: Recap of the week - 5 aircraft, 7 pilots, 86 flights, 860 gallons of fuel, 1,000 outside snaps (some argued there must have been a bazillion), 86 successful landings, 5 cases of water, 3 dozen bananas, 6 lbs halo oranges, 4 trips to Lowes, 6 trips to WalMart and 7 pilots safely home.












Left to right: Coco Bessiere, Robbie Gibbs, Mark Nowosielski, Rob Holland, Craig Gifford, Jim Bourke, Mike Ciliberti, and Bob Freeman


Training Camp 1, Day 2

April 13, 2017  Union City, TN

Thanks to an article this week in the Union City Messenger some of our guys were recognized while making an early stop for coffee on their way to the airport. This is a community that really supports aerobatics. Another day of great weather which allowed everyone to get in two flights. Before heading out to dinner the planes were tucked away for the night. Back at it again early tomorrow morning.








Photo credit Bob Freeman.

Training Camp 1

April 7, 2017  Union City, TN

Training Camp 1 kicks off at KUCY. The team will be working on their free knowns under Coco's direction. Updates as we get underway.


IAC Team Council

The IAC Board of Directors will be invited to approve the following Chairman and members of the IAC Team Council at the Spring Board meeting, April 1-2, 2017. Michael Steveson is stepping aside and Tim Just has agreed to assume the chair of the Council.

Tim Just, Chairman

Rob Holland, (US Unlimited Team Captain)

Bob Hart, (IAC Treasurer)

Debby Rihn-Harvey (IAC Director)

Jason Stephens (IAC Glider Chairman)

Mike Heuer (IAC President and CIVA Delegate)

Nikolay Timofeev (Advanced Team Coach)

Alice Johnson (US Unlimited Team Manager)


Unlmited Team Manager Selected

March 2016

The Unlimited Team pilots met by teleconference on 9 March 2017 and
proposed Alice Johnson as the 2017 Unlimited Team Manager. Alice has
agreed to accept the position.

Congratulations USA Unlimited Team members!

October 2016

The 2017 US Unlimited Aerobatic Team has been selected. Congratulations to all those who made it! The real work now begins as they prepare to compete against the best aerobatic pilots in the World, at the 29th FAI World Aerobatic Championships in Malelane, South Africa - 9th to to 17th September 2017.