The pilot’s intention was to gain experience flying the aircraft from the right seat, so that he could later accompany a newly qualified member of the pilot-owners’ syndicate. For his first flight in the right seat, another experienced pilot occupied the left seat and they took off from Lower Upham Airfield, Wiltshire and flew towards Thruxton. The pilot later commented that it seemed “strange” flying from this seat but he felt capable of continuing and knew he could have asked the other pilot to assist if necessary.
On the final approach to Runway 25 at Thruxton, both occupants considered the flightpath was correct. However, the pilot was distracted by manipulating the control column with his right hand, rather than his left, and he experienced difficulty monitoring the airspeed indicator. As they crossed the threshold, he realised he was slow, so he lowered the nose and increased power, but the nosewheel and the propeller unexpectedly struck the runway. The aircraft bounced before the pilot regained control. He completed the landing and then taxied to the apron (Figure 1).
As a result of the accident, the pilot realised that he should have sought assistance from a qualified instructor before flying the aircraft from the right seat.
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