At 63 and newly retired I had always dreamed of flying. Without the time commitment and stress of a regular job I was free to explore. After looking at equipment and facilities and talking to several flight schools in the Tampa Bay area I found www.sportpilotaviation.com on the internet. It had training facilities both in Michigan and Florida. I made an appointment with owner/CFI Russ Miley and drove to Punta Gorda to meet him. He took the time to thoroughly explain the sport pilot training program. Afterwards we went up for an introductory flight in his AeroPro EuroFox. He introduced me to the controls and I was hooked both on flying and his ability to teach.
Russ relates with an easy going personality and draws upon his multi-dimensional background. He is an electrical engineer, a baby-boomer, has owned and operated a consumer electronics company with over sixty employees and comes from parents who educated in math and science. He has thousands of flying hours and is endorsed in multiple aircraft including numerous ultra-lights, tri-gears, tail-draggers and float planes. Russ is also a skilled mechanic and keeps his EuroFox in mint condition.
I feel that I benefited from Russ’s vast experience, competence and confidence and from his natural ability to demonstrate and communicate that experience. Russ will polish any of your skills that are not strong. He provided a well-planned, cost-efficient, 25 lesson plan tailored to my beginner’s background. He made the extra effort to coordinate my ground instruction and flying sessions to the 200 mile round trips that I had to make from Tampa for each lesson. He took my training personally and was as proud as I was when I solo’d. Russ was patient and generated confidence and competence when I worried with Class D radio skills. The FAA examiners know that when Russ presents a candidate for the practical exam that that student is well prepared.
I recommend SportPilotAviation to anybody who wants to learn to become a competent and safe sport pilot and wants to have fun doing it. With Russ Miley you will also gain a friend and mentor for life.