Will flying high in British squad

Will Blackburn was selected for the British development squad.
Will Blackburn was selected for the British development squad.

Pocklington School Lower Sixth Former Will Blackburn is on cloud nine after being picked for the British Gliding Association’s Junior Development Squad.

Will is one of nine young gliding pilots tipped to represent the UK in future World Junior Championships. Aged 17, he is the youngest squad member; the oldest is 25.

He will now train alongside other squad members from gliding clubs around the country, improving his own skills as well as getting used to sharing information and decision making during races.

As well as taking part in UK-based competitions at junior and national level throughout the year, Will has been invited to a week-long training session with the squad, at Issoudun in central France.

He said: “We are team training which involves flying solo in our own single seat gliders and then training in two seat gliders with current and ex world level pilots.”

Will, who flies in a Standard Cirrus club class glider, is based at the Wolds Gliding Club, close to Pocklington School. He competed in the UK Junior Nationals last summer, then aged 16, and came 11th out of 50. He was one of the youngest pilots in the competition.