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Teen pilot reaches Kenya in round the world quest

THE STANDARD
May 19th 2022
Mack Rutherford, a 16-year-old British-Belgian pilot, is greeted by officers from the British military as he arrives at the Wilson airport on May 18, 2022. [Reuters]

"Mack is no doubt a skilled pilot. However, we do not feel comfortable pushing the age limit to the lowest possible point for journeys where a certain level of risk cannot be avoided," the company said on its website.

Rutherford's journey will see him visit four more African and Indian Ocean countries, before heading to the Middle East, Asia and North America and finally returning to Europe.

Coming from a family of pilots, Rutherford first took the controls of an aircraft at the age of seven, sitting alongside his father.

Mack Rutherford, a 16-year-old British-Belgian pilot, sits in the cockpit after landing at the Wilson airport as part of a quest to become the youngest person to fly around the world solo, in Nairobi, Kenya, May 18, 2022. [Reuters]

At 15 he became the youngest pilot in the world and is now following in the footsteps of his older sister Zara, the youngest woman to fly around the world at age 19.

Visibility was a challenge while flying across the Sahara Desert, he said, but the scenery more than made up for it.

"It hasn't let me down, I've absolutely loved the views both around the Sahara Desert and in Kenya," he said.

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