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-   -   Tracey Curtis-Taylor (Merged threads) (https://www.pprune.org/private-flying/579030-tracey-curtis-taylor-merged-threads.html)

ShyTorque 3rd Nov 2016 19:37


(To correct your earlier post #2550),

Ms. T C-T is listed as an Upper Freeman of HCAP, not as a Liveryman.

zimbo565 3rd Nov 2016 19:41

Re the Air League:

From the outset we in the Air League knew it was not a solo flight and that point was clearly made when we made our award in May this year."
Did they now?

Odd then, that the article in their July/August 2016 Newsletter article referred only to "Tracey Curtis-Taylor who had just completed an epic flight in her Boeing Stearman open cockpit bi-plane from Farnborough to Sydney in Australia, to pay tribute to Amy Johnson’s flight
in 1929" and not to Tracey Curtis-Taylor and Ewald Gritsch.

They certainly appeared to be under the impression that the earlier flight from Cape Town to Goodwood was solo.

From the July/August 2014 Air League Newsletter article “2014 Air League Annual Reception Celebrates Excellence”:

The evening also recognised a number of personalities who had made outstanding contributions to aviation beginning with Norman Barber for his major contribution to the aerospace industry, Rescue Global for providing exceptional support to the Philippines famine relief effort, Angela Coleman for her fundraising on behalf of the Air League and her work within the Aviation Club, and Tracey Curtis-Taylor for flying a Boeing Steerman from Cape Town to Goodwood to emulate the flight in 1926 by Lady Mary Heath.
The Concise Oxford Dictionary gives the following for emulate:1. Try to equal or excel. 2 imitate zealously. 3 rival. It would, I think, be reasonable to assume that any flight emulating a historic solo flight would also be solo unless specifically indicated otherwise. Or alternatively, why was the recognition not to Tracey Curtis-Taylor and Ewald Gritsch for flying a Boeing Steerman from Cape Town to Goodwood to emulate the flight in 1926 by Lady Mary Heath if they knew it was not solo.

And leaving no room for misinterpretation as to their view of the first flight, from the September/October 2015 Air League Newsletter front page article "Reliving the Dream":

Many readers will have seen a nationally broadcast BBC television documentary, entitled The Aviatrix, in March reporting the challenge-filled journey of aviation adventurer, Tracy Curtis-Taylor, during a multi-stage flight from Cape Town to Goodwood in 2013, in her 1942 Boeing Stearman two-seat trainer. This followed, as closely as was practical, the route taken in 1928 by Lady Mary Heath, the first woman pilot to hold a commercial flying licence in Great Britain and the first to fly in a small open cockpit aircraft from the Cape to London. During the RIAT air show in July, Tracy, who is an Air League award winner and an enthusiastic supporter of aviation opportunities aimed at young people, service charities and specialist groups through an outreach programme, told the editor of her plans to follow up her epic journey with an even more demanding goal of flying 13,000 miles eastwards from the UK to Australia, to follow the path flown in 1930 by Amy Johnson. Despite an aircraft taxiing accident at Goodwood recently, she is confident that she will still be able to achieve a departure in October, as planned, with the aim of reaching Sydney early in 2016.

Her main sponsors are Boeing Aerospace and Artemis Investment Management, and as with her previous long-range solo flight, the UK-Australia journey will be accompanied by a support team travelling in a more modern light aircraft to record the journey and provide back-up if needed....

SATCOS WHIPPING BOY 3rd Nov 2016 20:20

What is clear is that all of the sponsorship would have been raised based upon the flight(s) being SOLO. Would there have been the same enthusiasm to throw money into a non-solo, less glamourous venture?

This raises a few important questions:

- When exactly did the sponsorship requests begin?
- When was it decided that it would not be a solo flight?*
- Why was the solo aspect dropped?
- Were the sponsors informed of this material change? If so, when?
- Why was it felt necessary that the front seat would be occupied for the vast majority of the journey by Ewald?
- Why, many months after the return to the UK was TCT perpetuating the solo aspect?

Care to answer these questions Tracey? An updated statement would suffice.

* It could still have been solo and have the support/film plane alongside. Although this diminishes the risk and loneliness factors, the flight would still qualify as being solo.

27/09 3rd Nov 2016 22:12

From the HCAP citation.

The Master’s award recognises Tracey Curtis-Taylor’s work in raising awareness of science and technology in general, and aviation in particular, amongst young women across the world. In recognition of her role as leader of this aviation expedition, and all it achieved, Tracey Curtis-Taylor is awarded the Master's Medal for 2015/16."
I have some questions.

How did T-C-T raise awareness of science and technology especially by flying an 1940's vintage biplane? As nice as the Stearman is, there is no way in this day and age that it can be described as an advertisement of science and technology.

What evidence is there that she had any positive impact on young women anywhere?

What did T-C-T actually do during the excursion to directly raise awareness of science and technology in aviation among young woman. How many presentations did she give to young woman? Did she go into schools and out into the community to do any of this?

What did this aviation expedition actually achieve?

With all the talk about outreach there is scant evidence of any outreaching actually happening, unless of course out reaching includes extending your arm to hold a glass of plonk.

Ivor Fynn 3rd Nov 2016 22:54

Sorry, I'm a bit of a late joiner on this thread, without searching through all the links over the 129 page, is there a photo of TCT wearing RAF wings anyone could put on the thread or a link to before I hit the nuclear button.

Thanks in advance


Jonzarno 3rd Nov 2016 23:16

Will this do? (Please follow the link and click the thumbnail)

Ivor Fynn 3rd Nov 2016 23:31

That will do nicely, will be on he case shortly.


First_Principal 3rd Nov 2016 23:46

Remember the human
While, like many, I've read most of the posts here over time I have wondered latterly whether there's been a little too much of an intense witch-trial that's going on.

While it would seem on the face of it that some irrregularities have occurred, deception even, I think it behoves us to remember that this is a real person you're discussing. Someone who may be guilty of puffery, but is perhaps otherwise a decent person who has also done [good] things - as claimed - in aviation.

Those who don't take the time to follow noflynomore's links might want to read this from the rnzaf.proboards site:

For those who frequented NZ Warbirds in the 1990's, you would have met Tracey.A lovely person who was involved with the Harvard 78 syndicate and flew the aircraft on many occasions.I cant confirm ,but I believe Tracey also flew from Auckland Aero Club and may have been an instructor there. Always a very happy and delightful person to talk to.
This doesn't seem to be a bio of an evil person and while she may have later claimed something that has turned out to be untrue I'm not sure it necessitates the degree of vilification that appears here?

From my perspective - somewhat removed from many of yours - this thread looks to be more and more like a self-fueled holocaust gone awry. There is other life out there beyond PPRuNE, you've done a great job at exposing something that shouldn't have happened, but let's be the bigger people and not unnecessarily kick someone while they're down :=

I'm sure HCAP et al are now well aware of the issues and will do whatever they're going to do as they see fit. The repetition of these things isn't going to change much from here on in, and may border on Einstein's definition of insanity as I'm sure you all know- and yes I'm well aware of the double entendre :}


Jonzarno 4th Nov 2016 00:09


There are many posting here who think that Ms Curtis-Taylor should decline or return the awards she has received given that they appear to have resulted from the mistaken belief that her flights were solo when in fact they were not; and more of us who object strongly to her wearing RAF wings that, by her own admission, she never earned.

So can I ask what you think should be the outcome of this situation, and how do you think that that outcome can best be assured?

Fly-by-Wife 4th Nov 2016 00:31


Someone who may be guilty of puffery, but is perhaps otherwise a decent person.
Would a decent person have deliberately "misrepresented" the expeditions, not once but several times? No.

Would a decent person attempt to cover up the "misrepresentation" once exposed? No.

Would a decent person attack and falsely accuse the people who have pointed out the "misrepresentations"? No.

Has she declined or returned any awards because they are based on falsehoods (or at best "misunderstanding") as a decent person would? No.

One is left with the inescapable conclusion that she is not, in fact, a decent person and so does not deserve sympathy.

The repetition of these things isn't going to change much from here on in
Sadly, not continuing to repeat these things is precisely what she and her PR team are hoping will happen - they would like nothing more than for all the fuss to stop and be forgotten, so she can get on with her "inspirational" - and presumably lucrative - speaking engagements, and planning the next all-expenses paid jolly.

I assume from your post that you feel that profiting by deception is acceptable behaviour in the "other life out there beyond PPRuNe"?

There is a very simple way for her to put an end to the fuss - come clean, admit the deceptions, return the awards and then we can all return to the "other life out there beyond PPRuNe", as you so delightfully put it.


noflynomore 4th Nov 2016 00:37

FP makes a fair point and I too have been trying to rein in some of the more fanciful accusations but the fact remains that TCT is guilty of far, far more than mere puffery.

Those of us that are Professional Pilots rightly and jealously guard claims and accolades made within our sphere of interest, especially the historic ones of our recent aviation "ancestors'.

So when some jumped-up, unsubstantiable claim to fame is assiduously marketed by City interests for commercial gain via a well connected PPL who claims to have a CPL and all sorts of other qualifications that never seem to have been used, who claims all sorts of high falutin' membership and insider dealings with the Great and the Good of our industry yet no one knows her, or has rejected her, who has clearly not only deliberately misled the media over several years re her "achievements" but has since then seen to it that she never once corrected the errors her publicity machine originally put about it isn't any wonder that Professional pilots who have a vested interest in being seen as reliable, honest and truthful take exception.

This is not puffery. This is straightforward, unmitigated fraud and deception by failure to correct the original guff her publicity machine first stated.

Everyone who has read the BIAB story was wowed with the notion of this personable, attractive bimbo flogging her way around the world solo because that is what all the hype said. Or rather, that her hype said it in the first place until everyone got the idea, and then went silent when they changed the plan from a solo transworld to a sponsored corporate expedition but never chose to correct anyone, never once as far as I can tell, never once failed to surf on the accolades of the "solo" myth they had instigated and were now perpetuating by remaining wilfully silent every time the fraud was unwittingly passed by the media across the front of their smug dishonest faces.

They ran for two or three years on the myth that everyone else understood that these were solo trips - a myth they had started and nurtured yet never chose to correct from the first take off by which time "solo" was, for them a long forgotten detail that was still assiduously cultivated in the media as so many journalists affadavits have shown.

And then tried to wriggle, weasel and squirm out of the lie with nonsense like getting EG to say people don't understand what they are talking about because there is no engine starter in the front cockpit ( a deeply offensive and disrespectful lie in the face of intelligent pilots) or the utterly risible cavil about "sole" as opposed to "solo"pilot. Or an aircraft rolled into a ball and the report submitted as an "incident" instead of "accident". I don't think she'd recognise the difference between the truth and an outright lie if it bit her hard on her perfumed, manicured, gucci clad arse, although that day is yet to come.

How dare these charlatans seek to bamboozle Professional pilots with this infantile and idiotic claptrap?

Do they really hold us - with our professional knowledge - ignorant of technicalities and in the same level of contempt as idiots that they, their PR drones and the meeja clearly view the public in general?

The sheer arrogance that these confidence tricksters fling in the face of the industry they so falsely claim to represent is the reason people here are exercised at their dishonesty. Professional pilots guard their Professionalism jealously by the exercise of that honesty and transparency that TCT and her cohorts so manifestly lack, and honesty and trustworthiness that makes Aviation itself the accepted and trusted part of life that it is. These people actively undermine this trust and thus earn our eternal emnity.

You may fool the media, the Daily Fail and elsewhere Tracey, with your peevish 5th form wailings on your website about orchestrated campaigns by nasty people and hilarious and oh so predictable claims of misoginy in this, the least misogynistic industry there is.

The Flying world sees you for what you are, Madam. And always will. How dare you set yourself up as "emulating" Lady heath like this? What an obscenity. What an utter obscenity.

If you value your "reputation", such as it is, you'd get in a Tiger Moth and do the trip again, solo - that is, on your bloody own, with no GPS, no ipad, no mobile phone and especially no Ewald to hold your pink, manicured lily-livered hand. Then we might begin to take notice. After your abject apologies for the last few years of con-tricks.
Pfff! I won't hold my breath.

Please, please, couldn't you get your PR team to have you take up golf or poker or cucumber growing?

Because you're done in Aviation.

ShyTorque 4th Nov 2016 00:44

Ms TC-T could issue an apology for causing offence regarding the use of a non-entitled flying badge and desist from wearing them again. That would be enough for me.

She could do the same regarding some of the awards, but I know that some will stand. HCAP seem oblivious to the upset and bad feeling theirs has caused.

I'm fairly sure that she will apologise for nothing because she sees nothing wrong with what she's done.

Union Jack 4th Nov 2016 00:53

......but let's be the bigger people and not unnecessarily kick someone while they're down - First Principal

FP would appear to have accidentally and precisely highlighted the problem - the lady concerned just does not seem able to admit to being down - except perhaps after her accident, sorry "incident", in Arizona of course....:=


Forfoxake 4th Nov 2016 01:13

Let me make my position absolutely clear at the start. I think that TCT's behaviour in this matter has been disgraceful and that this thread has done a fantastic job in exposing this. That is why I was one of the LAA members who voted to rescind her award, and would certainly do the same if a member of HCAP.

However, like First Principal and a few others in this thread recently, I think the tone of the debate has changed recently. There are much worse things in the world than misrepresentation and imho TCT does not deserve some of the comments that are now being made in this thread. By all means continue the campaign to rescind any unjustified awards but let's tone down the rhetoric a bit and concentrate on reasoned argument, please. Thank you all.

9 lives 4th Nov 2016 01:50

How did T-C-T raise awareness of science and technology especially by flying an 1940's vintage biplane? As nice as the Stearman is, there is no way in this day and age that it can be described as an advertisement of science and technology.
Ooo, Ooo, Me! Me!.... 'Cause the Stearman was equipped with the latest navigational avionics? :E

This doesn't seem to be a bio of an evil person and while she may have later claimed something that has turned out to be untrue I'm not sure it necessitates the degree of vilification that appears here?
I've thought about this, it's a fair question. This thread can benefit from balance, and people reviewing the depth of their passion on this topic. Compared to TCT's FB page, there have been very few posters who present a position which can be seen to not be objection to her actions. It does not hurt us to think about the possible outcomes of our pursuing TCT.

Having thought about it, there are more than 100 pages of posts here, nearly all expressions of dis satisfaction with TCT's conduct in one way or another - since she had a reasonable awareness of the dis satisfaction, and opportunity to make it right. Her response has been mostly mildly evasive and blame shifting, with very little taking responsibility and actually making it right.

If TCT wants the vilification to stop, she has been well advised by many here, as to what it would take to achieve that. She could do it directly here, or employ her otherwise ample PR machine to set things right.

Stanwell 4th Nov 2016 01:54

Maybe so.
The way I see it is that the TCT machine is just playing for time.

Once the Nylon "reality" production covering the Oz jaunt comes to a TV set near you, it'll be a whole different ball game.
For a limited period, the gullible public will then be demanding that 'Our Tracey' be carried on high to receive appropriate recognition for
her perceived courage, tenacity, airmanship and unbounded altruism.
(Don't forget to wrap yourself in the Union Flag, Tracey).

The other side of it is, of course, that those others who stand to benefit from such wide media exposure will be going .."Oh well,
there's the Brand Awareness we paid for - let's move on now and let her sort her problems out.
(After a suitable pause, of course.)
See if I'm not right.

p.s. On the TV show, I'm looking forward to the bits where TCT is "mobbed" by 4000 Karachi schoolgirls and, later on, sitting around
the campfire, chewing on a goanna with the Central Australian Aboriginal womenfolk, while "inspiring" them.
Should be a hoot.

SATCOS WHIPPING BOY 4th Nov 2016 02:32

As far as I see it, no one is kicking someone who is down; down will be when the awards have all been TAKEN back. We have given her, and will continue to give her, a dignified escape route. GIVE them back and recover some integrity and respect.

The lack of proof from the BiaP side of things speaks volumes; if there was a misunderstanding then we would by now have seen the e-mails or letter copies sent to the papers asking to correct the SOLO headlines. We would have seen a copy of the Press Pack that all papers have clearly had as they all use the same language, clearly showing us that she never mentioned SOLO and that this is all brought about by imaginative journos jumping to conclusions. We would have video footage of her saying "I would just like to make it clear that I was not SOLO". The closest we get to this is the clarifications about the chase plane, but never any mention of Ewald other than "mentioning" him as an engineer.

Instead we have verifiable hard evidence that SOLO was being repeated at every opportunity, headlines left unchecked, articles written with verified quotes about being alone/solo/on ones own. Official documents being played down and stories about events that just don't stack up to the slightest scrutiny.

It is not too late, people have done far worse, come clean and had very successful careers moving on from what happens short-term. The outcome is fairly and squarely in her hands.

Until that happens we will continue to find facts and keep this in the spotlight.

Clare Prop 4th Nov 2016 02:40

All publicity is good publicity. I'd never heard of Artemis Investments before this.

With all those resources behind her surely she could have done something truly pioneering rather than this 'emulating" caper.

Saw Fedor Konyukhov go overhead in his balloon in July. HE is a pioneer!

SATCOS WHIPPING BOY 4th Nov 2016 02:46

Originally Posted by Clare Prop (Post 9566671)
All publicity is good publicity. I'd never heard of Artemis Investments before this.

Really Clare Prop? Would you consider employing them? :ok:

Clare Prop 4th Nov 2016 04:32

LOL I've been a flying instructor for 25 years...no money for things like investments! I see in some videos the logo has been blurred out although other aircraft in the vid have BREITLING in big jolly letters! Can't afford one of them either!

Meanwhile I find it hilarious that the inevitable sexism accusations are coming out when someone pretends to be inspirational to women calls herself by the derogatory term "bird". Something you would expect to hear from the character Sid the Sexist in Viz magazine!

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