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04 March 2014

"There's more to flying than just jumping in the cockpit!"

Bill Hopkins is a retired tool and die maker from Kansas who knows a thing or two about flying. He’s been into hang gliders, flown helicopters - and even built and piloted his own airplane. “If it’s flyable, I like to fly it,” he says.

But when he started building his second aircraft, he was hit with a stroke of bad luck. “I found out that because I have asthma, I can’t renew my pilot’s license. And my wife told me she’d just as soon I stay on the ground. But I want to stay at least a little bit off the ground - that’s how I came to hovercraft.

Being an experienced pilot, Bill understood that flying any distance off the ground requires training, so his first step was to complete an HTC training course. “There’s more to flying than just jumping in the cockpit and taking off. It’s no different than driving a car - you need somebody to show you how to do it; you don’t just jump behind the wheel and go.

After a day of training, Bill Hopkins (left) accepts his Hovercraft Pilot Certification from HTC Senior Instructor Chris Fitzgerald (center). Bill’s friend David Raynolds (right) accompanied him during his training course ...

At the Wabash River training site, Bill learns how to conduct a preflight inspection and fuel the hovercraft, while David observes ...

Bill was hit with a stroke of good luck on his training day: for the first time in weeks, the Wabash River wasn’t a flow of broken ice and debris ...

With Chris Fitzgerald providing constant instruction and feedback, Bill learns to operate the Neoteric training hovercraft’s reverse thrust ...

Bill was so impressed with his training course - and with the Neoteric craft’s reverse thrust - he said, “I might consider buying one with that reverse thrust if you have one here and I could take it home with me.”

And that’s just what he did. Here’s Bill Hopkins’ hovercraft, purchased from the Neoteric Hovercraft Trade-In Showroom, which he plans to use for lake and river cruising and fishing – and, of course, staying off the ground!

Want to get off the ground? 
Take a Test Flight and see if a hovercraft is the way to go!


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