30 September 2011

Classic DC-3 Operation

Following on from yesterday's 25 years ago post this is the Christchurch Star coverage of the launch of Classic Air's DC-3 freight operation for the New Zealand Railways Corporation Speedlink franchise

She swept in from the north through the cloud blanketing Christchurch Airport yesterday, hung for a brief moment over the main runway, then settled at the end of her inaugural freight run. Classic Air Ltd's 44-year old DC3 - ZK-AMR touched down shortly before after an uneventful flight from Wellington with 2 tonnes of Railways Corporation cargo. Classic Air, the country's newest freight carrier has a Railways Corporation contract for 12 months to carry its Speedlink parcels between Christchurch, Wellington and Nelson. Set up by a former Air New Zealand jumbo captain and a former Safe Air pilot, the company hopes to establish a tourist passenger service for aviation enthusiasts. The company's manager, Mr Peter Vincent, flew down from Wellington in the faithful old workhorse under the command of chief pilot Mr Neil Abbott. "Everything went very, very well. Being day one we expected some delays and we have had them," Mr Vincent said. Classic Air's inaugural flight carried just 2 tonnes of freight.

Source : Cullen Smith, The Christchurch Star, 16 September 1986

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