The Daily Mail £10,000 Prize
22 July - 7 August 1911
H. J. D. Astley (2)
E. Audemars (13)
G. Blanchet (11)
André Beaumont (1)
Gustav Hamel (24)
C. Howard Pixton (19)
S.F. Cody (20)
James Valentine (14)
Jules Védrines (9)
C. Compton-Paterson (7)
Olivier de Montalent (23)
C.P. Pizey (17)
Lt. Reynolds, R.E. (25)
Lt. H.Bier + passenger (30)
B. C. Hucks (27)
Lt. R.A. Cammell, R.E. (12)
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his cousing, Mr. C. H. Pizer, in the passenger's seat. 1912
from Aviation Archive: Aviation Heritage
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|LAND, SEA, AND AIR:
REMINISCENCES OF MARK KERR
Admiral Mark Kerr
Publisher: LONGMANS, GREEN & CO.;
First edition (January 1, 1927)
Used copies are occasionally available.
Chapter X, Greece 1913-1915
Contrbuted by Christos Zafiropoulos, 12-16-10
"Eventually they allowed me to order three 'Sopwith' seaplanes for training, and great was the '9'4 joy of my flying officer, Collyns Pizey, one of the most charming men and excellent pilots that I have come across. In due time the three 'planes arrived, and were looked upon as toys for me to play with, and not as serious vessels of war. I think Mr. Venizelos thought that if he gave me these aircraft for my amusement he would easily persuade me to forget that the Greek Navy required submarines and destroyers !
The first difficulty was to get volunteers for the Pilots' Course, and only two names came in, Moriatinis and another. I suggested to Pizey that I should take my ticket to encourage the others, who would not think that flying was a dangerous pursuit if a person of my age could become a pilot. Pizey was delighted, and in continent I set off the next day to commence operations. Eleusis Bay is one of the most beautiful spots in the world, and the large bay, completely land-locked, made an excellent training-ground for sea ships and airships of all sizes and descriptions, though eventually we were driven from the place, "by the flocks of malarial mosquitoes," that attacked the airmen and mechanics when summer came, to set up our sheds in old Phalerum.
I found but little difficulty in learning the rudiments of flying, because of three advantages which I possessed. First, I had done a great deal of riding, hunting, polo, and racing, and I found that good hands on a horse meant good hands with a 'plane. Second, I had done a great deal of boat- and yacht-sailing, and the handling of a tiller with delicacy of touch is a very similar affair to lightly working the controls of an aeroplane. Third, I had for several years been flying as a passenger, which was an enormous advantage to me when starting to take my own certificate. Consequently I did not give Pizey much trouble. My tuition consisted of three flights with dual control, after which I did three solo flights, the six flights occupying eighty-two minutes. And then Pizey considered that I could make a bid for my International ticket.
The test in those days was not very hard. It consisted of getting into the air, climbing to over three hundred feet, making eight figures of eight in the air, and making a glide and a landing without the engine, and also to land within fifteen meters of the mark. I got through the test all right, and received the Royal Aero Club's Aviators' Certificate No. 842 of July 14, 1914.
The experiment was entirely successful: a lot of young fellows put in for the Naval Air Service, and I had the satisfaction of being able to fly practically every day, and often twice a day. The Greek is very quick to learn. The difficulty with him is that when he has learnt a little he wishes to do too much. He would like to cut out the middle of all training, and jump straight from the beginning to the end. This premature jumping to conclusions caused a certain amount of disaster to the machines, and the mechanics were kept pretty busy.
During the Great War some Greek pilots were flying with the Allies at Salonika and Gallipoli. Moriatinis, who was the first Greek pilot to take a certificate (he held No. 2, for I held No. 1 of certificates given in Greece), performed many gallant actions, and received, the D.S.O. for a fine performance in the Dardanelles. He was a very fine pilot, and it was a great loss to Greek flying when he lost his life on a flight from Salonika to Athens, after the war was over."