Although all the inspectors were seasoned pilots, most of them hadn't done any serious aerobatics. So when a CAA man (they were all males in those days) showed up for the first time, I made a point of giving him a thorough introductory flight. I demonstrated all the maneuvers we would be covering in the course - loops, barrel and aileron rolls, spins left and right, inverted flight, the works - with the inspector usually hunkered down in the front seat of the open-cockpit biplane and hanging on for dear life.

Before takeoff, I'd tell my trainee to relax and to learn to trust the equipment. To make sure he understood the strength and security of his seat harness, I always insisted that he raise both hands above his head once we became inverted. "Trust your seat belt," I'd tell trainees. But usually they didn't. They'd raise just one hand and hang on with the other. When that happened, I'd roll the plane over again until both hands went up. Needless to say, many of the inspectors did not enjoy the experience quite as much as did the kid in the back seat.

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