STOL competitions are synonymous with Alaska but at the other end of the world they’re popular, too and a pair of Canadian-designed Zenith advanced ultralights have taken the top two spots in their class.
The STOL ST CH 701 aircraft took first and second place in the microlight (less than 1325 pounds) category at the Healthy Bastards STOL Competition in Omaka, New Zealand. Third place went to a Carbon Cub. There were 41 aircraft in the competition.
The aircraft were piloted by Deane Philip and Jock Struthers.
The 701 is a trike design, which is unusual for STOL competitions but it has its advantages, said Zenith Aircraft President Sebastien Heinz.
“The STOL CH 701 is an easy airplane to fly with its tricycle configuration, side by side seating and superb visibility,” said Heinz. “Those factors enhance any pilot’s chances in a spot landing competition.”
The Healthy Bastards STOL Competition takes its name from a New Zealand Flying Doctors video about the exuberant health of some of the nation’s back country people.