Carlo Borsattino (Flybubble Crew)

Carlo is a highly experienced freeflight pilot, coach, guide and instructor. Even after many years and thousands of hours of freeflying, he’s still a highly passionate pilot. 

Licensed as a British Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association (BHPA) paragliding instructor in the early nineties, Carlo instructed at various freeflight schools around the world. Over the years he’s helped teach hundreds of people to freefly, and fly better and safer, worldwide.

Carlo has run many freeflying trips, including cross country (XC) and safety (SIV: from the French “Simulation d’Incidents en Vol”) courses, and has amassed thousands of hours of airtime in over thirty countries.

In the early noughties Carlo and his partner Nancy Elliott formed a new freeflight business based in the UK together, Flybubble. Carlo is the Managing Director (MD) and a BHPA Chief Flying Instructor (CFI) of Flybubble. For years Flybubble offered freeflight training, tandem flights, coaching, trips and equipment. Gradually, through demand, Flybubble has become a specialist freeflight equipment retailer and distributor. Find out more about Flybubble.

Always keen to try new things, Carlo has experience of a vast range of paragliders and other freeflight gear and has flown in many environments (flatlands, hills, big mountains, towing, SIV, paragliders, mini wings, speed wings and paramotoring).

As well as being an enthusiastic free-flying pilot, Carlo has extensive experience of competition flying worldwide, including the international Paragliding World Cup (PWC) circuit and European and World Paragliding Championships. He represented Britain in top level paragliding events. He was selected for the British Paragliding Squad for four years running (1999-2002) and for the 2004 Bleriot Cup: as well as being on the winning team, he won the paragliding competition and set a new UK ‘Distance to Goal’ record. Other successes include #1 Manilla Paragliding Open (Australia 1998), #1 Argentine Paragliding Championships 1999 and #2 British Paragliding Championships 2001. Having taken part in nearly a hundred international paragliding competitions, and despite performing well, he decided to quit paragliding competitions in 2002.

Nowadays Carlo prefers to freefly recreationally (not competitively) and go cross country. In 2015 he accidentally won the UK paragliding XC league on sport class wings, with four flights of over 200km. Accidentally as he really was not trying to win the league, just enjoying his flying to the full and making the most out of the soaring conditions each day.

What Carlo enjoys most is playing, getting wholly lost in the moment (in a flow state). This might be having an epic XC adventure with flying friends, taking some nice photos along the way, and throwing a few nice wingovers before landing. Or it could be as simple as the challenge of hanging on to the weakest of climbs, the joy of swooping around the hill, or even just kiting or learning a new trick. He feels incredibly lucky to be able to free-fly with amazing kit that packs into a rucksack.

Flying Since: 1993

Total hours flown: 5000+ but it’s not about the hours!

Best distance: 239 km in the UK, from Wiltshire to Lincolnshire on an EN C paraglider. But it’s not about the distance either!

Best flight: As it happens, the flight from Wilts to Lincs was truly wonderful. However, every new wonderful experience is my ‘best flight’. The best flight is the great one you’re having right now!

Favourite flying site in the UK: It’s more about the day and the flying conditions than the site or area for me… but over the years I’ve grown to prefer the subtler (and less risky) challenges of hill flying.

Favourite flying site in the world: See above. Variety is good!

Goal: Live a good, happy and positive life. Keep learning and improving. Keep doing and trying new things.

Equipment

General/XC kit:

Hike & fly XC kit:

Hike & fly kit:

Joy of swooping kit: 

Instruments:

Accessories:

General/XC

Hike & fly:

General:

Clothing:

Summer:

Spring/Autumn:

Winter:

*The Icaro Fly helmet has been superseded by the even better Icaro Nerv (light, visor option).

Links

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