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02

Sep

  • pinitbutton Flying High on the FreeFest Express
freefest 300x184 Flying High on the FreeFest Express

Virgin Mobile FreeFest Express

by Becky Sauer

 

As if giving away 35,000 tickets to a concert headlined by Blink 182, Weezer and Franz Ferdinand weren’t enough, Virgin Mobile also went above and beyond to provide an extra-special Virgin Mobile FreeFest experience for a few dozen music fans on the West Coast.

Continue reading “Flying High on the FreeFest Express” »



24

Jun

  • pinitbutton The Day in the Cloud Challenge
day in the cloud sign 300x225 The Day in the Cloud Challenge

About to board

By Alain Gayot

 

Take any flight on Virgin America and compute in the cloud with your notebook or mobile phone. Today was D-day for the young airline to offer a WiFi environment for any passenger on every flight in the U.S., the first airline to stake that claim. Sir Richard Branson appeared via an animated video to introduce the program via Gogo technology, along with the flight’s friendly crew. What was special about our 6:00 am flight VA 921 from Los Angeles to San Francisco is that it competed with flight 920 from San Francisco to Los Angeles in The Day in the Cloud Challenge – an online puzzle played in the air and on the ground. Our winning plane earned each participating passenger a nifty and slim HP netbook. The game continued for 24 hours as well, and enabled all top five scorers of each flight to earn A Year in the Cloud package comprised of free flights, free in-flight WiFi  from Virgin America, a netbook computer from Hewlett-Packard  and one terabyte of online storage from Google. Happy gamers went to work early and connected to Google apps in the clouds to secure information to solve the puzzle.

 

Continue reading “The Day in the Cloud Challenge” »



11

May

  • pinitbutton Red Bull Air Race in San Diego
mike mangold edge 540 256x300 Red Bull Air Race in San Diego

Pylon turn

Racing Bulls


By Alain Gayot


Motorsports are elevated when you are a live spectator from the sound of the roaring engine to the anticipation of an active crowd of 55,000. But when you are talking about the Red Bull Air Races, everything get kicked up a notch – especially when fans can get right up to their favorite pilot for a quick autograph on a recently purchased t-shirt. Finally it certainly can’t get much better than the setting in San Diego Bay with perfect weather conditions.


Created in 2003 by the energy drink guru Dietrich Mateschitz, the air racing series is a cross between the air races of the twenties and modern aerobatics flying. Although the aircrafts are small in size, the show they put on is big – very big. And beyond the actual race plane, there are all sorts of other acts and fly-bys by the U.S. Navy, demonstrations by the Coast Guards etc. You sort of need to attend to catch the full effect.

  Continue reading “Red Bull Air Race in San Diego” »



  • pinitbutton Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Stephen F. Udvar Hazy Center
george boyd andre james warren alain 300x225 Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Stephen F. Udvar Hazy Center

George Boyd and James Warren with Andre and Alain Gayot

Tuskegee Airmen at the Udvar-Hazy Center and Baghdad


by Alain Gayot


It’s been a few decades since the end of WWII but there are still wars being fought and airmen up in the skies chasing bogies and dropping ordinance. A select group of black men, who had been previously forbidden to participate because of their race, were chosen as part of an “experiment” towards the end of the second world conflict to see if they might be fit to fly. African-American men had flown in air forces in Canada and France but never in the U.S. or for the U.S. Air Force.


“If you want to know more about us,” says George Mills Boyd, “you can watch the 1995 Robert Markowitz movie with Laurence Fishburne and Cuba Gooding Jr., The Tuskegee Airmen. But you should know that Eleanor Roosevelt was flown by the [white] Base Commander, as no [black] cadet would have been allowed to take the President’s wife up.” Alain and André caught up with four of the surviving Tuskegee Airmen, who were on their way to meet the boys in Baghdad for a motivational encounter, during a United Airlines tribute. It was an honor and a pleasure to meet a bunch of alert octogenarians who not only fought the enemy but also quasi-insurmountable racial obstacles on their ascent to build the respectable Fighting 99th Squadron. Some of them still fly to this day.

Continue reading “Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Stephen F. Udvar-Hazy Center” »



V Australia: A New Airline

on February 06th, 2009
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06

Feb

  • pinitbutton V Australia: A New Airline
australia V Australia: A New Airline

The new Boeing 777-300ER from V Australia at LAX


This afternoon on a much needed rainy day in Los Angeles, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa welcomed Sir Richard Branson and one of his brand new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft for his new airline V Australia. The aircraft was on a special livery stop-over at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Tomorrow, the crew takes the aircraft to Sydney where the sister airline to Virgin Atlantic will offer non-stop service between Los Angeles and Sydney and Brisbane beginning February 27, 2009. Continue reading “V Australia: A New Airline” »


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