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Pilot sets landing record for MAF

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 12, 2011

Record breaking pilot Ron Watts.

Pilot Ron Watts has set an Australian record for the number of aircraft landings in one day, taking off and landing 102 times from Illawarra Regional Airport on May 7, to mark the 60th anniversary of the Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF).

Watts, MAF”s national bequest manager, flew his Beechcraft 19A in a marathon five sessions of 20 circuits from 7am, before finishing at Bankstown Airport at 5pm that afternoon. “If someone hears about it [the record] they might think they can beat it. Then the challenge will be for me to beat that,” Watts said.

The record achievement was intended to mark the 60th anniversary of MAF’s first ever flight on May 7 1951 to Madang, Papua New Guinea, and aimed to raise at least $10,000 for the organisation in sponsorship donations. “We are in the business of reaching isolated people with a range of aviation services, to help them receive the things they need or to provide transport in times of emergency which would be impossible by any other means,” Watts noted.

“In Papua New Guinea last year we carried out 495 emergency medical evacuations (medivacs) many of which undoubtedly saved lives. Mothers experiencing childbirth difficulties or victims of snake-bite are common among the medical emergencies that we attend.”

A Christian based organisation, MAF currently operates nearly 130 aircraft in 30 countries providing humanitarian aid and medical assistance isolated communities.

Comments (8)

  • Jonathan Dillon


    Wow, spectacular effort to Ron, well done.

    I know of MAF and they really do make a positive impact in remote communties, I remember they were very active in the Tsunami recovery in Sumatra back in 2006, flying in aid and relief supplies.
    I think their website is http://www.maf.org.au

    Good on you MAF!

  • Campbell Smythe


    Great effort Ron!

  • Jake deVal


    Ho hum – just a routine days work for an AG pilot back in the hayday of super spreading 🙂

  • Jake deVal


    Oh yes, I forgot – I did 96 separate scenic flights around the QE2 at Port Adelaide (in a B206) carrying 384 PAX plus two more takeoff/landings to ferry making 98 take-off and landings plus 3 Pax ferry each way in all – in one day – making a total of 390 PAX 🙂 Cheers all.

  • Ron Watts


    Great effort Jake – can you claim the Oz Chopper record for this? Fitting in with traffic at a very busy YWOL was a challenge, but we’d pre-warned nearly everybody, so they gave me space, and let me overtake if necessary. Good airmanship by everybody on the day!

  • Phillip Ware


    Hi Ron …

    A good job well done. After doing a couple of circuits in a Cessna 172, I’m ready for my “Poppy Nap”.

    Phil Ware.

  • Craig Sullivan


    Hi Ron,
    well done!
    I was told about your record this week so today at our Port Pirie airport, weather was not real flash so instead of going for a scoot, I had a crack. Started about 10.30am and thought everthing would be quiet being Sunday and shitty weather but i was wrong! Of course this is unofficial, had a scorer and my C.F.I was on deck carried out circuits just over 500 feet and pulled the pin after 4 hours and 14 minutes completing 126 circuits.
    Would love to find out the criteria you used so i can organise a fare dinkum varified attempt then i can rattle your crown! thanks and again well done!

  • Barry Small


    G’day Ron, can’t believe that’s nearly a year ago already. Well done mate.

    Was a good day.

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