Airtime Aviation, a dealer for Flight Design USA, recently notched its number 100 delivery of a Light-Sport Aircraft.
“Our number 100 Flight Design model, this one a new CTLSi, went to Rex Austin,” said Tom Gutmann, Jr., who operates Airtime Aviation with his father Tom Gutmann, Sr. “This is Rex’s second CTLS.”
“I have owned a 172 Cessna, a Piper Seneca, a Bellanca Viking, two Mooney models, two new Cirrus aircraft, and this is my second new Flight Design,” said Austin. He is an instrument rated private pilot with single and multi-engine credentials and has logged more than 2,600 hours in 30 years of flying. Austin buys hogs for packing companies for a living; he has also owned a trucking company and sold insurance and securities.
About the Flight Design models, Austin said, “I enjoy the low operating cost and large cabin. I played basketball in college and at 6 foot 6 inches tall, I value the large cabin. The Flight Design is the only aircraft I have ever owned that I didn’t bump my head on the roof in rough air.”
Austin reported that his wife likes the extra level of safety provided by the airframe parachute, which is standard equipment on all new Flight Design aircraft. Austin’s dedication to his wife of 43 years shows as he special ordered the N-number on his last four planes with their anniversary date or her name or maiden name in the initials.
“The long range tanks, autopilot, and glass cockpit make flying effortless,” said Austin. “Flying is now more fun than at any other time in my life. Airtime Aviation has been good to work with and arranged the sale of my 2009 CT and the purchase of my new aircraft. After three years of flying the 2009 aircraft I have been very impressed with the quality and low oil and fuel consumption. I have had back surgery and can move the aircraft in and out of the hanger without strain.”
“We are so pleased to be associated with Airtime Aviation since before Light-Sport Aircraft officially became a category defined by FAA,” said Mathias Betsch, CEO of Flight Design GmbH. “Airtime has been great to work with and are now like part of the family,” echoed Tom Peghiny, president of Flight Design USA, importer of the CT and MC line of LSA and the new C4 four seater in development.
Tom Gutmann Sr., began pursuing his interest in flying upon graduation from high school. He relocated from Dayton, Ohio, in 1969 to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to attend Spartan School of Aeronautics. After graduating he obtained his private pilot certificate followed by an instrument rating. He continued to own, operate, and maintain his own personal planes. In 1972 opened his first auto repair center in Tulsa and for the next three decades he open and successfully operated three more repair facilities. In 2001 Gutmann purchased the first Flight Design CT airplane in the U.S. “What started as a hobby soon turned into Airtime Aviation,” he reported. He enjoyed flying the plane so much and received so much positive feedback that he began distributing the plane in 2003, a year before the Light-Sport rule was announced.
Shortly after forming the new enterprise, Tom Gutmann Jr., joined Airtime Aviation. Together, they have served as president and vice president of the Ultra Sport Flyers organization, the local EAA Chapter 10, and have been instrumental in promoting the Tulsa Fly-In.
“We were the first to earn FAA acceptance for a Light-Sport CTsw in 2005 and the first in 2011 to win approval for the CTLS Floatplane,” added Tom Gutmann Jr. “Airtime Aviation has consistently been the number one selling Flight Design distributor in the USA.” Authorized by Flight Design as a Master Service Center, Airtime Aviation plans to provide professional service for years to come.
“Tom Gutmann Sr., and Jr., and their Airtime Aviation distributorship have been top notch associates of our company since the beginning of Light-Sport,” said Flight Design USA President Tom Peghiny. “Their performance in sales and service is unparalleled in light aviation and has helped Flight Design remain the leading seller of LSA since the start of the segment.”
Flight Design GmbH based in Germany is celebrating its 25th anniversary with a specially customized Jubilee model to commemorate the quarter century mark. The company remains the worldwide Light-Sport Aircraft market leader thanks to its popular CT series of aircraft. More than 1,800 aircraft are flying around the world and after eight years, CT remains the top-selling LSA in the USA.