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John Stratford

Life Is Even Better With Wings.
In the last few years I have had notion that I have to fly, I wanted to expand my mind and get a better perspective of the fantastic country we live in and there is a no better way than achieving that from the air, especially from your very own microlight.
I telephoned Gordon early in the year 2013, he answered in a jovial and friendly manner, after a small conversation I knew I was going to have a bundle of fun with this guy while persuing my latest interest.
I admit the first time I sat, strapped in the cockpit on the ground as a student pilot I was daunted somewhat for approximately 30 to 40 seconds, that was soon erased as Gordon enthusiastically talked me through the days procedures with his usual assuring look on his face.
Ever since I was young, I have had to really struggle to maintain concentration in a classroom or even listening to a conversation whether I am interested in it or not. This was definitely not the case with my education with Skysports, Gordon always made every theoretical and practical lesson as interesting and understandable as I have ever encountered, not once did concentration get lost and I honestly hungered for the next chance I could get to learn more and fly a microlight.
I achieved my pilot certificate within a total of 23.4 flight hours, this incorperated my two stroke, human factors and RAAus flight radio endorsements, then 10 flight hours later I got my passenger endorsement. Honestly it was that much fun I would like to start over, the cost is not an issue as it does not cost a lot, even hangaring fee for my aircraft at the airfield is extremely reasonable.
Aircraft maintenance and appraisal is second to none, Gordons meticulous approach carries farther than his students and into his workshop where even I as a pedantic performance mechanic was seriously impressed. I can confidently say, no aircraft or student is going to have a failure on Gordons watch.
Since my introduction to the flight community of White Gum Farm I have gained a lot of new and interesting friends, everybody is always in a good mood, which I find wholesome.
I will always hold Gordon as a close mate, he definitely made a positive and lasting impression on myself and my family.

Thanks a bundle Gordon
It was a pleasure being educated by you!

John Stratford

Wim Hohepied

I walked into the Skysports flying school with the very best intentions but absolutely no idea about anything related to flying. Learning to fly and maintaining my own plane was a big challenge for me, as I am not the fastest learner. Six months later I have my pilot certificate, radio and passenger carrying endorsement, a trailer with a great little Microlight and the skills as well as the confidence to use it all!  In the meantime I have been flying in some very beautiful places. What more can I say?  Gordon is a fantastic, very experienced flying instructor and aircraft maintenance engineer.  I strongly recommend Gordon and Skysports flying school to anybody keen to learn to fly a Microlight or Ultralight.

Wim Hohepied

Andrew Cotterell

I have recently undertaken conversion training from Microlight (weightshift) to Ultralight (three axis), with a tail dragger endorsement. This training was undertaken at Sky Sports Aviation facility, at White Gum Farm York. 

Converting from weightshift to stick and rudder, reprogramming the feet to do the opposite to what was taught previously, is no easy task for any student or instructor alike!

The instruction I received at Sky Sports, was always friendly and extremely professional. Phil was thorough and I was shown a great deal of respect at all times. The learning here is easy and stress free. There is no pressure or ridicule, safety and attitude are paramount. There is more to learn from the instruction here than just how to fly an aircraft. Friendly conversations from a number of people who hangar their aircraft at White Gum or regular visits from other pilots and like-minded people broadens your knowledge in all aspects of aviation. 

White Gum Farm is about a life style with an aviation theme, an exceptional facility for anyone with a remote interest in aviation, pilot, passenger or partner. It caters for the whole family, with excellent amenities and a relaxed family atmosphere. There is play equipment for the children, ample seating under shady trees, barbeques, pizza oven and open wood fires for the winter. We have experienced many a tranquil evening, after the flying is over for the day, relaxing on the grass, and discussing the days flying over a great barbeque dinner. White Gum Farm is a great place to visit, even on those days when the weather is not conducive to flying. The ample length runways in wide open paddocks are forgiving and make it easy to correct directional errors. 

In my experience I have never seen a facility comparable with White Gum Aviation and Sky Sports Flying School; it is a small piece of aviation paradise. 

Andrew Cotterell

Garry Lee 

I am a Licensed Aircraft Maintenance Engineer employed with Australia's largest airline I have been involved in Aviation maintenance since 1982. Whilst working in the UK for some years, I took up the hobby of flying hang gliders at the age of 40. I returned to Western Australia in 2005 and found that opportunities for unpowered flight were extremely limited. I was the only one doing the flying and my family were always left sitting around the hill left out of all the fun bits of this terrific pastime.

With this in mind I decided to do a Trial Instructional Flight (TIF) on a Weight shift Microlight with Gordon Marshal of Skysports flying school. I found the experience to be completely exhilarating and was hooked on freedoms that this form of aviation presents. The training school and facilities provided at White Gum Farm leave the competition in their wake with a choice of six runways, three hangars and plenty to see and do when the weather is less favourable and all only a little over an hours drive from Perth.

Since that day, with Gordon's knowledge and tuition I have successfully completed my Pilot Certificate, Passenger Carrying and Cross Country Endorsements with RAAUS and feel confident with the skills and abilities that Gordon has passed on to me.

Throughout all of my training I found Gordon to be a confident, knowledgeable and supportive mentor helping to make the whole experience a pleasure!

My wife and children now happily jump into the back seat of our own Microlight and are now fully active participants instead of spectators in this very affordable form of recreational aviation. Goal Achieved !!!

Garry Lee -- Avionics LAME

Brook Papworth

Gordon is a fantastic Microlight instructor and has a flight school of exceptional quality, primarily due to having a real attention to detail and heaps of practical knowledge of flying and aircraft maintenance procedures. After having been given the run around by other flight schools in WA, it was good to finally find someone whose word meant something. In terms of instruction, on one occasion after completing my licence, he was also able to provide direction on a cross country that could have saved my life due to bad weather.

I have visited many Ultralight / microlight facilities both in Australia and the US and Gordon's facility in York would have to be the best training facility in the country with first rate training, hangers and accommodation its so good having it all at the same place! I would also like to thank Gordon's business partner Gary for his wonderful facilities and hospitality each time we have stayed. My wife is also enjoying to learn how to fly now!

I would highly recommend anyone thinking about doing their Microlight licence visit the York Facility and go for a fly with Gordo! Keep up the great work!

Brook Papworth

Kelly-Anne Papworth

Being a new student sitting in the pilot seat I was a little nervous but Gordon's confidence and his communication as a instructor helped me to relax and concentrate on learning how to fly. I felt comfortable and safe every step of the way.

I found Gordon's way of teaching and his patience made it easy for me to fly and understand and remember flight principals and safety.

Thankyou for helping me on the road to learning how to fly.

Kelly-Anne Papworth

Arnaud Courtin

At my age, nearly 58, acquiring new skills takes a little bit longer than 30 years ago. Thanks to Gordon's patience and professionalism I obtained my Pilot's Certificate without undue trauma whilst enjoying myself. I am very impressed with the standard of the training facilities and the quality of the training aircraft. Do yourself a favour and come and see for yourself.

Arnaud Courtin mob. 0429 412 200.

Brett Ahearn

Over easter this year my family and I spent an enjoyable and relaxing two weeks at Whitegum farm; York. I was there to convert from hangliding to microlighting under the watchful eye of my instuctor, Gordon. We had excellent flying weather, morning and evening, only missing out on a fly on one day in the whole two weeks. It was great having the opportunity to train in both my own, and Gordon's Trike. Over the two weeks I learnt to fly and maintain my aircraft so that I can now fly safely and with confidence... And I must say I'm having a ball! I would recommend Gordon as an instructor for anyone dreaming of learning to fly a Trike.

Brett Ahearn

Steve Vette

Microlight Flying at its Best

The 14th August 2006 the telephone rang early with Gordon Marshall on the line requesting me to teach him, to instruct on a Microlight. After Trevor's telephone call I was expecting Gordon to call. After setting a time he arrived from White Gum Farm to start his, (my) training, (I've never flown one of those contraptions before and was apprehensive to say the least) after a good, long discussion, about the machine (contraption) we strapped in. The first thought that came into my mind was who teaches whom? Seeing that Gordon has a great experience base behind him, I asked him to show me the ropes, and we were away.

My first ever flight in the Microlight blew me away and it took a while to get my composure. After that the training started in earnest. Initially my biggest challenge was to taxi the beast and hold it straight on the taxi way. The steering on that thing was funny whilst trying to hold the wing level. It was actually quite funny as it has been a very long time ago that I've last rode in a Billy cart. It soon came back to me.

While flying, with Gordon's voice in my ears and talking me through the various exercises, my nerves settled down and I started taking in the various attitudes of the A/C and soon realised that it would, in fact fly with very little input from the pilot. We did 1.7 hrs that first day.

After that we hit the class room and discussed the briefings with the various exercises. I must say that Gordon knows his stuff and has an easy way to explain the various subjects relating to Microlight flying. It was also pleasing to see that he has spent a lot of time in getting all the various handouts and training materials ready.

The next flying session took place two days later and was as good as the first one. After having flown so many different tri-axes A/C it was quite hard initially to change to weight shift as the "beast" does not have a rudder to control direction. But again under the eagle eye of Gordon it was soon mastered. It was quite windy that day and flying under those conditions was not as easy as the first day. Again we returned to the briefing room and did some more lessons. Gordon learning about briefing. Me, about the Microlights.

The following sessions turned out to be very constructive, both with Gordon's training as instructor, and mine in flying the Microlight. As our training progressed it became easier to hold attitude and height without chasing the Alt. and Airspeed indicators. As my experience base grew I became more relaxed with the A/C and really started to enjoy the lessons. I don't know about Gordon, but I did hear some grumblings from the back seat about fixed wing drivers looking for rudder pedals. We did 3 days in a row and flew 8.4 hrs with 25 landings.

The best day was when we landed in some farmers paddock and had lunch, forced landing was the exercise. This not only hones your skills as a pilot but your judgement gets a workout at the same time. The intensity of the training and briefing stepped up to put the finishing polish on the exercises.

During the next two months the weather turned sour, but not before Trevor Baxter gave Gordon his junior instructors rating. Our next challenge was when Lee Ungermann (Ops Manager) RA-Aus arrived on the scene, and did a Flying Facility inspection after which, took me for a check flight on the Microlight. Gordon, Flying school and myself got the stamp of approval from Lee. We now had an RA-Aus approved Microlight Flying Training Facility here in WA.

Mine and Gordons training continued as we still had more work to do to finalise the senior instructors rating followed by his CFI appointment. By the
18th April 2007 we've completed 23.4 hrs and have clocked up 65 landings.

Gordon is now awaiting his appointment as a CFI in his own right and in his own "Sky Sports Flying School" as I write this.

The whole process from the onset was daunting, and appeared to be a mammoth task, but with perseverance and persistence the whole thing came together, and the aim was realised. At first I had my doubts as to my "ability" to master a weightshift A/C but with Gordon as instructor it became a reality to the point of where I now look forward to finishing my training.

All I wish to add is, well done Gordon and congratulations in reaching your goal and my you have tail winds all the time. Well Done!

Steve Vette.
CFI Avon Valley Ultralights
RA-Aus. L2. 2058
68 Newcastle Rd
08 9622-8659
0407 577617
Northam WA 6401

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