Pilkington Graduate Aerobatic Scholarship

Scholarship Details

The recipient of the scholarship receives:
  • The books:
    • Aerobatics Down Under by David J Pilkington
    • The Basic Aerobatic Manual by William K Kershner.
  • Three hours of ground theory training towards the 1500 ft aerobatic endorsement.
  • Four hours of flying in a Super Decathlon or five hours in a Cessna 152 Aerobat.
The recipient must contribute to the flight instructor cost at the normal rate which would be approximately $400. The instructor is David Pilkington.

An applicant must have a minimum of an RPL and an aerobatic endorsement. Those with more aerobatic experience including aerobatic instructors are welcome to apply.

Each applicant is eligible for 12 months free membership of AOPA Australia.
Scholarship applications should be in the form of a written essay of approximately 300 words. The selection criterion is simply consideration of overall benefit to the sport of aerobatics within a reasonable timeframe. The application should include a short bio, copy of pilot licence and relevant logbook extract. Send to and ensure acknowledgement of receipt.
The syllabus of flight training covers:
  • Refresher of basic aerobatics.
  • Compound manoeuvres.
  • Flying the Australian Aerobatic Club’s Graduate (or Sportsman) sequence.
The recipient must:
  • Read the two books prior to commencement of training.
  • Complete the Endorsement Questionnaire for the aircraft prior to flight training.
  • Applications close 6th March 2022 and the recipient announced approximately 13th March.
  • Training to be done in the Melbourne area at the normal base for the aircraft.
  • Training must be completed within one year.
  • The goal is to promote competition aerobatics so the scope of training is towards a 1500 ft endorsement starting with the Graduate (or Sportsman) Known competition sequence.
  • Upon completion of this training the recipient should be ready for their first contest.
  • More information at


David Pilkington's book, Aerobatics Down Under, is available at at the reduced price of $55 and online at plus now also at 

This booklet, Learner in a Spin, may also be useful for aerobatic pilots:

For those who don't know me:

I specialise in training for tailwheel, spinning and aerobatics, especially competition aerobatics in my Super Decathlon at Moorabbin. I own a Cessna 152 Aerobat operated by the Peninsula Aero Club. Australia's Flight Instructor of the Year for 2019.
Former aeronautical engineer specialising in aerodynamics, flight handling and flight performance. Test pilot.

Looking forward to receiving scholarship applications from those eligible - email David Pilkington.

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