Voldemars Janis Uplejs
Thank you very much for the wonderful experience! The flight was truly memorable, I have never before flown so fast or so high! Andrey, he is a top class pilot! It was very nice and easy to work with him.
Please, forward my thanks to all the personnel involved! They were so warm and hospitable!
Now I want to share my flight experience and you will see that I have been flying all my life but MiG-29 flight was in the Top of the list!
I started on 1957 with the gliders. 1957-1967 - I did fly around 15 different types of gliders, including the known Antonov A-9, A-11, A-13 (aerobatic), L-13 Blanic, etc. At that time I mastered aircrafts YAK-12 A, M, S, SK, R..., YAK 18, A, P, PM, T....PZL-104 (Vilga) and it's modifications, Z-226 and modifications.
I did fly aerobatics, glider towing, parachute dropping but mostly pilot training. During that time I had the most hours on YAK-12
(3290 hrs) and had 103 parachute jumps. 1968 - I obtained an Airline Transport Pilot Licence.
1968-1971 - I got a job in West Siberia (Novosibirsk, Omsk), voluntarily, to accumulate as much flight hours as possible (It was
possible to fly more than 1000 hrs a year) on the YAK 12 and Antonov-2.
1972 - with a good background in aviation I returned to Latvia.
1972-1977 - I mastered Antonov-24, Yak-40, TU-134 A, B. I carried passengers, cargo and mail.
1975 - Not interrupting my flying I graduated from Civil Aviation Academy in St. Petersburg, Russia as a Pilot-Engineer.
1978 - went to Siberia for the second time, now to Krasnoyarsk to fly IL-76.
1979 - I got accepted in the group of Test-Pilot school from civilians. Graduated on 1980 and got a job at GOSNIIGA in Moscow, as
1980 - 1989 - worked on Antonovs: 2, 3, 14, 8, 24, 26, 28, 30, 10, 12
Yakovlevs: 18T, 52, 40, 42
Ilyushin: 14, 18, 24H , 62, 62M, 86, 76M, 76MD, 76T and other modifications
Tupolev: 134 A, B, 154, 144 (just 3,5 hours, not supersonic, did not finish the transition program due to the aircraft being removed from operation)
At that time I logged the most hours on IL-76's = 3600 hrs, AN-24 = 2500 hrs, TU-134 = 1460 hrs, the others are less.
1989 - When the Soviet Union collapsed I was urged to retire and return to Latvia, that was the darkest day of my life, I can remember.
1990 - After a visit to US, I returned home and started developing my own business in aviation. I have built a private airfield and taught
the young pilots to fly as well as performed different tasks in environmental monitoring. Since 1990 to today I mostly have flown the
aircrafts manufactured in the West.
I have a valid Pilot License (ICAO & JAR FCL standard) SEP, MEP, IR and CFI with aerobatics authorization.
And finally in March 2012 I performed a splendid flight in MiG-29 in Russia! Unforgettable adventure!