- Sean D. Tucker
Sean D. Tucker is an aerobatic
stunt pilotwho performs in airshows worldwide for Team Oracle. Tucker is a leader in the airshow business as well as in the larger aviation industry. He is the only civilian performer ever to be allowed to fly close formation with the Blue Angelsand the Thunderbirds. [cite web|url=http://www.oracle.com/cluboracle/teamoracle/about.html|title= About Sean Tucker |accessdate=2007-11-04 |format= |work= ] He is among the 2008 class of inductees in the National Aviation Hall of Fame(NAHF).
Tucker, a native of Eagle Rock,
California, earned his pilot’s license, at age 17. He has been flying airshows worldwide since the mid 70s and is considered the world’s premier airshow performer. Tucker has flown more than 1,000 performances at more than 425 airshows, in front of more than 80 million fans. More than half of Tucker’s maneuvers are original and have never been duplicated by another aerobatic pilot. All this coming from a man who used to be afraid of flying!
Tucker has been named one of the Living Legends in Aviation, is the recipient of the Crystal Eagle Award, was an inductee at the 2001 USAF Gathering of Eagles, and was named one of the Living Legends of Flight. In 2008 he will be inducted into the [National Aviation Hall of Fame] . He is included in an elite group of aviators and astronauts that includes General Jimmy Doolittle, General Chuck Yeager, Bob Hoover, Gene Cernan, and John Glenn.
Fitness and attitudeTo endure the extreme physical demands of his acrobatic flying routine, Tucker maintains a rigorous physical training schedule, working out more than 340 days per year in a routine of jogging and weightlifting on alternating days. His other physical activities include heli-skiing, cave SCUBA diving, and golfing. When asked about flying airshows, Tucker has said, “I like to think that I bring the fans’ dreams of flying into the plane with me and there's nowhere I’d rather be than in the cockpit. That’s why I train so hard to keep a finely tuned edge.”
Tucker’s self-proclaimed goal is to “share the magic of flight with Team Oracle’s guests by inspiring and thrilling them. I want them to go away saying that the airshow was one of the most engaging days of their lives.”
Awards and recognition
Inducted into The National Aviation Hall of Fame (NAHF) – 2008
Living Legend in Aviation Award – 2007
Crystal Eagle Award by the National Aeronautics Association – 2006
Named one of the 25 “Living Legends of Flight” by the National Air & Space Smithsonian – 2003
Inductee in the USAF Gathering of Eagles – 2001
Honorary Thunderbird, Blue Angel, Snowbird
World Airshow Federation Champion – 2000
International Council of Airshows Sword of Excellence – 2000
Undefeated Champion of the Championship Airshow Pilots Association Challenge – 1998–2001
General Aviation News and Flyer Reader’s Choice Award for Best Male Performer – 1997
The Art Scholl Memorial Showmanship Award and The Bill Barber Award for Air Show Showmanship – 1992
U.S. National Advanced Aerobatic Champion – 1988
Tucker's airplane, the Oracle Challenger II biplane, produces more than 400 horsepower, weighs only 1,200 pounds, and is considered the most high-performance aerobatic aircraft in the world. The Challenger II is equipped with a revolutionary set of wings that use eight ailerons instead of four. The tail on the airplane is modeled after the tail used on high-performance remote control airplanes.
2006, the control stick of Tucker's aerobatic aircraftbroke, forcing him to bail out. Tucker sustained minor injuries and the aircraft he was flying was destroyed. [cite web|url=http://www.klfy.com/Global/story.asp?S=4725123|title= Stunt plane crashes after control stick breaks |accessdate=2007-11-04 |format= |work= ] He is still performing, including participating in the 2007 EAA AirVenture Oshkosh fly-inand airshow.
In 1997, Tucker started the Sean D. Tucker School of Aerobatic Flight, with the stated aim of setting and spreading the standard for aviation safety in aerobatics and aviation at large. In 2004, through a partnership with the Tutima Watch Company, the school became the Tutima Academy of Aviation and Safety. The Academy offers a variety of courses including stall/spin recognition and recovery training, aerobatic proficiency training, a low-level aerobatic mentorship program, and formation aerobatic flight training.
* [http://www.poweraerobatics.com/ Sean D. Tucker Power Aerobatics]
** [http://www.oracle.com/cluboracle/teamoracle/ Team Oracle]
** [http://www.tutimaacademy.com/ Tutima Academy of Aviation Safety, Sean D. Tucker]
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