DESPITE all the disappointment and challenges surrounding the first African Solo Flight Round the world, the pilot Ademilola “Lola” Odujinrin seems determined to get to his final destination having already completed a transatlantic crossing from Washington, D.C.Lola has faced quite some challenges to secure funds from his countrymen to execute the historic flight slated to put Africa, and Nigeria in particular on the map of global aviation with this incredible feat, however help has come in form of some sponsorship from Cardiff Aviation in the United Kingdom and Air Djibouti CEO Mario Fulgoni.
Lola who also is a pilot for Cardiff Aviation, the aviation services provider, aims to complete his mission to become the first African pilot in history to fly around the world solo.
Ademilola “Lola” Odujinrin embarked on the second leg of his historic journey in a Cirrus aircraft from North Weald airfield on 16 September and have completed a transatlantic crossing from Washington, D.C. in the light single-propeller aircraft, the Nigerian aviator is now heading to Malta.
He will then head on to Djibouti, where he flies as a commercial pilot for Air Djibouti, which is managed by Cardiff Aviation.
From there, Odujinrin will continue around the rest of the world, world through India and Australia, and intends to set a further aviation milestone with the fastest US coast-to-coast flight in a single-prop aircraft.
The flight is part of Project Transcend, a foundation which aims to inspire young people to achieve their goals regardless of their personal circumstances, and to never take ‘no’ for an answer.
Odujinrin says: “Less than 115 people have completed a solo circumnavigation of the globe by air, and it’s been my dream since my youth to join them. Air Djibouti CEO Mario Fulgoni and Cardiff Aviation Chairman Bruce Dickinson share my love for flying and have been hugely supportive in helping me realize a lifetime ambition. I hope to set a world first and inspire a generation of people in Africa and beyond.”
The history-making aviator was waved off from the Essex airfield by Dickinson and Aboubaker Omar Hadi, Chairman of Djibouti Ports and Free Zones Authority which owns Air Djibouti.
Odujinrin currently has over 4,000 hours logged as a commercial Boeing 737 pilot, having earned his commercial pilot’s license six years ago. As a pilot for Cardiff Aviation, he is part of the company’s ‘airline-in-a-box’ proposition, which enables countries and companies to set up EASA-class airlines with minimal risk.
Lola takes off any minute from now today and the round the world flight can be tracked on www.transcend.ng