Hot Termalis
Team Captain: Michael Basa
Other Member: Julie Jardine
Aircraft: Piper Arrow P28R VH-FGE
Julie and Michael are a husband and wife team from Coffs Harbour, NSW with Michael completing his private pilot’s licence in 1996 and Julie following a few years after. A very silly comment was once made by Michael that Julie would not be able to fly an aircraft due to her severe motion sickness at the time….so the challenge was accepted and the rest is history!
The many years of experience has made the flying and navigational duties stress free and enjoyable as they are shared by both pilots on each flight taking turns at one or the other skill…. although sometimes their passenger friends might not agree.
They have owned VH-FGE, a Piper Turbo Arrow since 1998 and had travelled to many nearby destinations of only a 60 – 90 mins flight time with their children and still got the same old question over and over of “are we there yet” even though it was a third of the travel time by car.
The kids have all grown up now leaving Julie and Michael as empty nesters and with the recent sale of their electrical heating business which had been in operation since 1972, has meant that they can do a lot more flying, boating, travelling, etc... all the fun things you can do when you’re free from the rat race and kids!
Julie and Michael had become interested in competing in the Outback Air Race a few years back after speaking with their good friends Peter Williams who is the captain of the “3 Amigos” Team and an Outback Air Race committee member, and “Triple Whiskey on The Rocks” Team Captain Warren Millar who competed last time and shares a hangar at Coffs Harbour Airport with the Hot Termalis.
Many discussions prior were had of how much fun it was to compete, the long-lasting friendships made, the flying and navigational skills gained with the satisfaction of doing it for a worthy cause….it was now time to enter.
Julie and Michael are not new to fundraising and have supported many national and regional good causes such as the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service, Royal Life Saving, Camp Quality, RSPCA and now the Royal Flying Doctor Service.
Julie is also the head of a local cancer charity named “CanDo Cancer Trust” and with her committee members are raising anywhere from $60K to $100K per year for the last eight years to assist local patients in need, by paying their household bills and hospital travel costs whilst undergoing treatment that are not covered by government funding.
Michael has been signed up as a volunteer pilot for Angel Flight for 2 years, although no missions to date but hopes now to assist with many non-emergency flights for people in remote areas needing specialised treatment… now that he has more time and has recently gained his Private Instrument Rating.
They are really looking forward to the challenge and are hoping that people help them in raising the funds required for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.