Officer Pilot Demand

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Omega90129, Feb 18, 2009.

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  1. Hi, my first post so a quick run down:
    I've just passed AOSB briefing and have pilot aptitude testing booked at Cranwell for the beginning of March. I'm just wondering what the demand is for officer pilots at the moment in the AAC? Anyone know how many applicants there are at Sandhurst versus the number of available positions? From my limited exposure of Afghanistan through the press I see a lot of RAF Chinooks but very rarely any Lynx. I realise that's not a balanced representation but will I have any chance of getting through Sandhurst to train as a pilot or is there too little demand for them?

    If I were to get selected any idea how many years would actually be spent flying before promotion to flying a desk?

    I would love to fly but would also prefer to serve as an officer in the Army instead of the RAF, so just trying to find out the reality of this being given the scale of the AAC.

    Probably been asked before but any new input appreciated, Cheers!
  2. Dont see many Lynx in Afghan because they have all melted! Only AH is putting the AAC top of the premier league. Ask any dude on the ground that they are most happy when they have an AH overhead.

    If you get to become an Apache driver you could see yourself doing a few posting/years before flying a desk!

    It also depends how good an officer you become. Be a total tool and p!ss people off (quite a few in the Corps at the mo) then you will get sh!te desk jobs in out there yonder, just to get you out of the way.

    However be a good egg and know how to fly, then you are on the way up high (excuse the pun)

    Good Luck

  3. Err, the reverse of that is the reality Ralf.
  4. Afghan - helis suffer in the summer because the air is too squishy.
  5. Cheers Ralf, from what I understand though being selected for Apache training could take years as only a select few pilots are selected for conversion or am I mistaken? Therefore is there little chance of me actually flying on ops if they not using many helis in Afghan apart from Apaches?

    Just trying to find out what the chances are of a) getting into the AAC as an officer pilot and b) of actually flying on tours? Also how many of the 8 years minimum service would be spent flying

    Thanks for the advice
  6. Remote


    3-4 if you're lucky.
  7. You may find that certain Lynx Regts may be in a certain Op Theatre from around about autumn this year, not withstanding that the navy have been flying Lynx in Afghan since October last year

    You may also find that the same Lynx Regts have been in Iraq since 2003 or isn’t Iraq “sexy” enough as an Op Theatre anymore

    On top of that there are certain other (army) Sqns (that don’t fly AH) that fly on Op’s world wide.

    A little more research may possibly be in order
  8. Cheers guys, was aware the Navy are flying in Afghan but I'm aiming to join the army and didn't mention Iraq as I was under the impression we would no longer be heavily involved by the time I finished training? I also realise there are other squadrons that fly on Op's worldwide but I was specifically inquiring about demand for Lynx Pilots in Afghan.

    I'm trying to basically found out what the ratio is between pilot applicants to positions available? You say it's high Flasheart but are we talking 5:1 or 100:1?

    If anyone knows any non obvious sources where I can research the subject a bit more I'd be grateful. Cheers for the help!
  9. I cadged a lift in what I recall was an Army Lynx from KDR up into Helmand in early 08. So they've been there longer than that.
  10. Not withstanding the fact that applications to RMAS will be significantly up the moment anyway, there has been an increase in the numbers taken by the AAC (the argument as to whether there has been an associated reduction in quality is for a different time) - mainly due to the demands of putting bums on AH seats.

    From my intake at RMAS (before the AH surge) the rough figures were from what I recall - 100 from an intake of 270 applied. Of that 15 were put forward for the selection board in term 2 - they took 6. 2 Failed the course. I make that 4% success rate amongst those who applied. Certain things will help you be part of that percentage - visiting the AAC is a must, be sponsored by them to RMAS - although played down, it is also important. Do Grading before RMAS, certainly not during or after. Commissioning into the AAC then failing grading and having to go with a second choice isnt a hoot. Sort it all out before the madness starts.

    Flying years for officers are on the increase, slowly but surely, - i know Flash, its a scary thought... but a fact, given the extra expense of training for AH and that it is possibly a more technical trade than years gone by.

    Your desire to be an Army Officer first and foremost will stand you in good stead at interview.... the "I'm applying to the RAF and NAVY as well, just incase", line is a bad opening gambit at interview. Trust me.

    Finally - The Lynx fleet are busy, very busy. The lack of exposure in the media is due to the fact that they dont generally blow things up and are therefore less likely to generate column inches.

    By the time you come out of the box the AAC (might) be gearing up for FLYNX. Who knows......
  11. If you pass the Medical and Aptitude tests, only 1 out of 12 people on my course survived both...and no, it wasn't me.
  12. You are of course quite correct, a certain ‘Oop North’ Regt flew over the winter period 07/08 the Navy winter 08/09 and back to the Army later this year.

    I was focusing forward in response to the question

    As for Iraq, Omega you are correct. I know you are keen to get on Ops, however, the army is not just about Afgahn and I would advise that you don’t give the impression you are singly focusing on that 1 aim and show a broader knowledge of what is going on (hopefully not teaching you to suck eggs)

    Regardless, Good luck in your quest
  13. superfrog is bang on the money and surprisingly, he offers wise words!

    My original summary may have appeared a bit short but it was posted on return from a particularly heavy curry and Cobra beer night (my arse is still stinging).

    As superfrog says, the competition is fierce for DE AAC pilot but not impossible.

    PS superfrog, check your pm's.
  14. Pretty much in the same boat as you mate. My step-brother is in the RAf but is based with the AAC @ the minute and he says that they are quite under-staffed officer wise.

    Personally I would prefer to fly the Lynx but if the chance came along to fly the Apache I would definately take it however rmote that chance may be!
  15. What an excellent and technically challenging summation of the meteorological impacts on operational performance of rotary winged military aircraft.