Our first design
was based around a 60-size engine, specifically for aerobatics
competitions. We thought that it could be named after an
aerobatics manoeuvre, hence the name Cuban Eight.
The first aircraft took off in the spring of 1994 powered by an O.S 60RF pumper. After its first flight we looked at each other and remarked that it was the 'Mutts Nuts!' It handled beautifully; four weeks later we took it to its first competition. At that time both of us were in the GBR/CAA - Standard class [entry level]. Mike flew it in a competition and not only gained promotion points on its first flight but went on to win the Standard class. Mike has over the last few seasons achieved 'Master' pilot status using the same Cuban Eight. The Aeroplane created a lot of interest during the day with fellow flyers and indeed one of our judges, Colin Fretwell [Masters' pilot and RCM&E columnist]. He asked if he could try the Cuban Eight with a Hanno special engine, which he duly loaned us and tried it again a week later. With the feedback he had given us we went on to building one, stretching the fuselage by two inches which was the latest trend of the time. Colin flew it over the next few seasons and gained a place in the U.K's Aerobatics 'B' Team. Mel by this time had built his own Cuban Eight and flew it for the first time at the British Nationals and achieved first place as the highest scoring 'non masters pilot'. Phone calls started to arrive from around the country and the time came to put the aircraft kits into production as a quality affordable kit. A small business venture had started, its name had to be: -
ęCuban Air 1993-2001