Although none of these pilots died during a Haute Voltige event, they were great people who played with us and we are proud to honour their memory:

1990 - Eric Müller (SWI) - Human factor
Eric suffered a fatal heart attack in his home, just before he was scheduled to fly at our first event.

1993 - Alexander Ljubarets (RUS) - Human factor
Just a few days after winning the 1993 European Aerobatic Champion, Alexander entered a mid-air collision with one of his team members while practicing formation flying in Russia.

1995 - Natalia Sergeeva (RUS) - Technical reason
1990 World Aerobatic Champion.
At the Moscow airshow, Natalia experienced a technical problem with the aircraft during her display (twisted push rod?).

1996 - Rick Massagee (USA) - Technical reason
Due to a defect in the manufacturing of the wing by a sub-contractor, the wing broke during his first practice flight, first manoeuvre on a new aircraft in USA.

1998 - Christian & Danny Schweizer (SWI) - Environment + human factor.
Trapped by adverse weather conditions in the Swiss mountains during a ferry flight with a P-51 Mustang, Christian and his son Danny (also an aerobatic pilot, but a passenger during this flight) both died when the aircraft hit a mountain in the clouds.

2000 - John Lillberg (USA) - Human factor
During a ferry flight in Florida, mid-air collision with a business jet. John and the three members of the jet died.

2001 - Martin Stahalik (CZE) - Technical reason
On Friday 9th March 2001, Martin was instructor on board a Yak52 with his student, a 31 year old KLM copilot when they crashed near Teuge Airport, in Holland. It seems the aircraft did not recover from a flat spin. Both pilots died.

2002 - Michel Coste (FRA) - Human factor
On June 23rd, while a wingman of the Space Knights Formation Team (AcroEze) Michel crashed after a split, without any apparent reason. No tecnical defect was found by the experts on the aircraft, no definite conclusion made by the official Enquiry Board on the human factor, it is not impossible that Michel could have experienced a medical problem.  

2009 - Svetlana Fedorenko (RUS) - Technical reason
On Sunday 16 August, Svetlana Fedorenko was instructor on board a YAK 52 with her student, a cadet from the Ulyanovsk Aviation Institute.  The aircraft crashed shortly after take-off from Drakino Airfield, in the Moscow area. 
An aircraft technical failure is currently under investigation as the main cause of the accident.

We will miss her, she was a very good friend of the Grand Prix and participated in 5 of our events.
Svetlana was married with a little boy aged 6 years. We extend our deepest condolences to her family.




2010 - Renaud Ecalle (FRA) - Environment + human factor
Renaud Ecalle,
the most talented aerobatic pilot of his generation, lost his life on Sunday 03 October along with his wife Alice and their two children.  The accident occured during a VFR cross country flight on board a Jodel DR 1050.  They were trapped in bad weather.
All our condolences to his family, friends and the international aerobatic community.

Renaud was the last winner of the FAI World Grand Prix (2008), World Aerobatic Champion 2009, and newly crowned European Aerobatic Champion 2010.

2012 - Franc Borin (ITA) - Technical reason
We have just heard about the death of Frank Borin, during a private flight in Italy, on the 5th February. 
His plane lost a wing just moments after takeoff, killing him and his young female passenger.
Franc was a member of the Pioneer Team, who participated in the FAI World Grand Prix in Motegi (Japan) in 2007.  Frank was friendly, dynamic and always cheerful,  the public relations officer of the team.
Like all those we have known and have seen disappear before their time, he will be missed. We join in the grief of the two families and their friends.

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